Sofitel Legend The Grand. An excellent, very high standard hotel.
We arrived uneventfully by rental car from Belgium and thanks to GPS and excellent highways all the way, eventually found our way to the hotel. We found a car in central Amsterdam a major encumbrance. The picturesque canals leave only a crowded cobblestoned sliver on each side for pedestrians, bicycles and the occasional tourist foolish enough to try to travel by car. As it’s one way only on each side of the canal, if you inadvertently miss your location, as we did, you then need to find a bridge wide enough for a car to cross over, so as to be able to try the lap again – and a lap could easily take a quarter hour, or more. And there is often not a great deal to stop one inadvertently driving into a canal if not careful while changing a cd.
Fortunately the Grand Hotel had a vehicle accessible court yard and parking at its front door. There seems no shortage of polite and efficient staff. The bags were removed from the car, put down at reception, and carried to our room. We were handled promptly by a receptionist who cleverly managed to up sell us to a superior room, and it was superior for little more. When we initially demurred he also offered what later proved to be an excellent afternoon tea, London Ritz Hotel standard. Our room faced the canal and had a good view of the neighbourhood and enabled us to vicariously share in the nightlife, albeit from a great height. The windows open and the air-conditioning can be switched off.
Although the hotel is located in that famous street, it is sufficiently far down the other end from the world famous windows, and their offerings, that you would never know they were there, unless you went looking – though they are within walking distance.
Also within walking distance is Dam square – the centre of town.
The room we had originally booked overlooked a, for Amsterdam, surprisingly large courtyard garden and would no doubt have been quieter and more suitable if we had been on business, but we were not and we were pleased we had made the change.
The hotel building has had many different uses over its many hundreds of years as a prominent Amsterdam landmark. It was once a palace of William and Mary, who later became king and queen of England. Large sections of an interior courtyard facade are similar to the later façade put on Hampton court in London, the side facing the Thames.
Until relatively recently the hotel was the town hall and had clearly had very large sums spent, in good taste, on it. It is in excellent repair. We were told it was one of the best examples of the Amsterdam school of architecture. Very square and formal and fitted out in dark tones, very impressive, though perhaps a bit overpowering when carried through to a bathroom – though I suppose consistency is important.
The high quality public areas had some very interesting statuary. Public Lavatories had cotton single use hand cloths and good quality lotions – at least the male ones did. There is a library and apparently a chapel, and a very impressive stained glass window in the stair foyer, running to multiple floors.
Excellent wide ranging buffet breakfasts were included in our tariff. Like most others, we had ours in the courtyard garden; however a dining room was also available.
There was an espresso type coffee machine in the room as well as all the usual such as a bar fridge hairdryers, tea facilities, and the like. We were unable to work the Bose sound system late one night. When one of the staff, who promptly attended, had similar difficulty, she had it promptly replaced within minutes, with a new one by one of the maintenance staff. Quite impressive for late sunday night. No clothes line in the bathroom, though it did contain a Jacuzzi, a phone and a television.
On leaving our bags were taken from our room to the taxi.
An excellent, very high standard hotel we would be happy to recommend to anyone.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- SOFITEL LEGEND THE GRAND AMSTERDAM.Furnished with French elegance and grandeur, the hotel welcomes a variety of visitors, from the trendy Amsterdam elite to royal brides or famous international movie stars. In each of the rooms, the restaurant, the hallways and the beautiful garden terrace, design and history captivate and seduce everyone into visiting. ROOMS & SUITES.Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam offers 177 spacious rooms, including 52 luxurious suites, amongst which 14 individually designed Suite Apartments: lodgings in 17th century canal houses. The rich history of the hotel is, as naturally, incorporated into the new architectural details in many ways. WELL BEING.Access to the relaxing SoSPA is complimentary for all hotel guests. It is the ideal place to unwind and pamper yourself. SoSPA houses an indoor heated swimming pool, a private Turkish steam bath, a Jacuzzi, a sauna, private treatment rooms and a SoFIT fitness area. INSPIRED MEETINGS.The 17 fully equipped banqueting and conference rooms, five of which are listed as historic monuments, provide the ultimate venue for meetings or conferences in Amsterdam. All rooms have natural daylight and are equipped with the latest technical facilities. BRIDGES RESTAURANT.The modern and trendy fish restaurant serves dishes with an emphasis on sea food and fish, mostly Dutch organic produce with a French twist. Bridges bar and lounge are the heart of restaurant, offering exclusive wines and vintage Champagnes. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sofitel The Grand Amsterdam Hotel Amsterdam
- Accor The Grand Amsterdam
- Sofitel Amsterdam
- Amsterdam Sofitel