The College Hotel oozes cool without being overly posh or intimidating. The staff combining interns training besides seasoned professionals are extremely helpful and pleasantly mannered. Any concerns about having made the right choice of hotel were quickly brushed aside when I was checked into my upgraded room at 7am for no extra charge. What’s more the staff in designer black uniforms expertly helped me navigate the city’s tram lines, booked the museums and restaurants as well as offered very helpful advice on where to go and when…And that’s no easy task considering my mental inaccessibility to process directions on a map.
The rooms are spacious enough with comfortable fittings and modern design elements, a signature of European Boutique Hotels. A teakettle, some plates and basic cutlery was missing, but I guess the wonderful terrace dining area offered up a more picturesque experience. The bar staff were amicable and made you feel in the company of friends, although you couldn’t help but think why such a lovely space wasn’t better promoted. Heard great things about the fine dining restaurant, but after reviewing the steep set menu 3 course meal prices, I always wondered if having only a high-end restaurant on offer in a mid-range hotel was a little bit of a hindrance for the entire concept.
The hotel is a few minutes walk from the Museum Quarter and between the Van Gogh Museum, Reij Museum and Modern Art Museum, as well as Vondel Park, there’s so much to do, and as they say in Amsterdam no place is further than a 15 minute tram ride anyway. So all in all I had a delightfully surprising experience from the 19th century school building framework, to the kindness of the staff and reasonable prices when you compare to other far less interesting hotels. Also the area is less touristy and allows you for that balance between culture and craziness that defines modern Amsterdam.
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