The hotel was relatively easy to find from Schiphol airport with a map. As taxis are fairly pricey at 40-50 euros, we followed the sign for buses and at stop B11, to the right of the IAMSTERDAM statue, caught the 197 bus to the Museumplein for 5 euros each. It actually stops outside the Concert-gebouw on Van Baerlestraat so you walk down the street, turning left into Nicolaas Maesstraat which takes you directly to the hotel which is on the corner of Nicolaas Maesstraat and Hobbemakade. As rain threatened on our return journey, we booked the Hotel Shuttlebus through reception which was 17 euros each.
I had informed the hotel that we were visiting Amsterdam to celebrate my husband's birthday, so it was a lovely surprise to receive a complimentary upgrade to a superior canal-view room. Facilities included iron, ironing board, large safe, mini-bar, ice bucket, good size desk and chair and a flat screen TV was installed during our stay. Excellent bio-degradable toiletries with a lovely tangy citrus smell: shampoo, shower gel, soap and body milk but no conditioner. Delicious breakfast of cereals with sprinkles of goji berries, chopped dried fruit, spelt, various chopped nuts, yogurts, fresh fruits; breads and cold cuts; bacon and scrambled eggs. Slightly expensive at 20 euros, if, like me, you can only manage a bowl of cereal in the morning, though it is reduced to 15 euros if booked in advance. The excellent coffee machine actually ground the beans before brewing. We took one dinner which was pleasant enough, though choice was limited as the King's Day celebrations the day before had virtually emptied the larder. However, you are just 5 minutes walk away from excellent restaurants such as the Pheun Thai (turn right down the Hobbemakade outside the hotel and it's just past the bridge); and the Balti House, Monteverde, Orontes and Juuls which are all to be found on Albert CuypStraat (turn right outside the hotel along Hobbemakade and then left across the bridge.)
You can actually see the Rijksmuseum from the hotel, and the Van Gogh and Stedelijk museums are close by, as are places to take canal trips and hop on hop off bus tours. The Heineken experience is also nearby. The Vondelpark is a welcome oasis of greenery and the canals outside the hotel are full of waterbirds and their chicks right now. The tram to the Centraal Station stops just 2 minutes away down the Ruysdaelstraat. If you know where you want to visit, you can save money and time queuing by visiting Tours and Tickets who have a ticket shop in the square near the museums www.tours-tickets.com and buying combi-tickets. You may also save money by buying an IAMSTERDAM card which provides free travel on most public transport and free or discounted entry to many museums and attractions.http://www.iamsterdam.com/en-GB/experience/deals/i-amsterdam-city-card Alternatively, the hotel has bicycles for hire.
Staff throughout the hotel were friendly and helpful. My only criticisms of the hotel would be the pillows - there was an extra one in our wardrobe but we did not find any of them comfortable - and the lack of storage space for clothes. We only had a rucksack each but I ended up rolling up our jumpers, t-shirts and underwear to store in the open shelf each side of the bed.