As a surprise for my birthday, my wife booked a weekend in Amsterdam staying on The Rose houseboat. We visited from 15th to 18th March. I had never stayed on a houseboat before and wasn't quite sure what to expect, but I wasn't disappointed.
First of all it didn't feel like we were on a boat and having looked at the many houseboats while we were there, I think the reason for this may be that it is one of if not the fanciest houseboat in all of Amsterdam.
When we arrived in horrible weather, sleet and snow, we were promptly met by Olga, as Nina and Erik were unavailable, who gave us a quick tour of the facilities which were all you could need for a short (or even a longer) stay. The living and kitchen area is compact, but we didn't do any cooking so it was fine for us, but if you want to cook it has all you would need. We couldn't figure out how to operate the music system, but that was maybe down to us and we weren't there to listen to music.
The spiral staircase to the bedroom and bathroom area appeared a bit daunting at first, but was fine. The bedroom was spacious and had a flat screen TV on one wall and the bed was very comfortable. The bathroom was good with a large good shower, although I sometimes nearly forgot to use the bin for disposing of toilet paper as you are not allowed to put it down the toilet. My favourite feature of the houseboat were the heated concrete floors on both levels.
It was in a superb location, with decent views and no more than a ten minute walk from Central Station and a five minute walk from the Nieumarket area (which was a tip from Olga) where you will find no shortage of cafes, restaurants, a supermarket, a food market on Saturday, ATMs, etc. and things are generally cheaper than in central Amsterdam.
Despite it being located next to a main road, there was no problem with traffic or other noise.
I would also recommend that you go across the road to the Café Pollux and introduce yourself to Fritz who is one of the friendliest barmen I have met, although all of the Dutch people seem to be very friendly and helpful.
One tip I would give is don't feed the ducks. We did and were promptly invaded by a flock of seagulls, but they disappeared as soon as the food was gone.
Nina and Erik were friendly and unobtrusive hosts who will accommodate special requests (my wife had requested champagne to be there on our arrival). Overall, I would thoroughly recommend this houseboat.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Amsterdam HouseBoat is a most beautiful and romantic large sea ship on top location in the heart of Amsterdam: Central Station, NieuwMarkt, Oosterdok, Red Light District, Dam Square, China Town, Waterloo Flea market, Nemo, the New Library... Are just a few minutes from your front door. Private parking,(upon request) large sun decks, free fast internet, bedlinen towels & kitchen utensils, fully furnished, smoking friendly and all the VIP services you wish for. ... more less