Unlike some reviewers here, I can't think of many negative aspects about my stay at Hotel Arena, but perhaps that's because of my room. I stayed for two nights in a Deluxe room, during which I was more than pleased with the excellent and very affordable hotel plus friendly staff.
The hotel is situated about a half an hours' walk away from the city centre, or by tram, somewhere around ten minutes. Personally I would suggest a tram and then walking especially if you're not in a hurry, but should you want to get around faster, a rental bike is recommended. The hotel rents bikes for around 15€ per day. A car is not really a smart choice unless you need to travel longer distances, which you can cover with a taxi too, though. Parking is available on the hotel grounds for 25€ per day, which is quite steep. That's what you get for having a car, though :) Looking closer, the building is located at the edge of the Oosterpark, which on a sunny day seems like a great place to have a stroll or zip through with a bike. Plus there are canals and waterways everywhere, so I suppose the inherent beauty of Amsterdam is ever present.
Entering the hotel, first things you notice are the external beauty of the building (which is a former orphanage, built in 1890) and the grounds around it. These alone give a very high-class impression, which only gets enhanced when you step in and see the dark but sleek decorations and interiors of the house. Corridors and lobby rooms are spacious and beautiful, and at least my Deluxe-class was really comfortable. It's a modern, two-storey room with the bathroom and living areas on the "ground" floor and bed+TV on the second floor. Room height must be somewhere around four or five meters, give or take, and the room window is as high so you get a lot of light in. It was a bit hard closing the curtains, though.. Amenities are good; you have your notepad, minibar, tea and instant coffee with a water kettle, a decent sofa and a blow dryer, additional soap, shampoo and body lotion in the bathroom. Wifi, while slightly slow, is free. The room, as it was so large, was slightly cold. Using the AC helped, but it was pretty noisy. Then again, if all you do is sleep in the room, then that probably won't be a bother as you're warm between the sheets.. I can't think of anything that would have been horribly wrong about this room, except maybe for the temperature and really soft bed - but then, that's just a personal preference as I sleep on a Futon at home.
Reception staff were pleasant, helpful and professional and happy to help with anything, for example calling a taxi.
I didn't go for a late night dinner, but the menu sounded good and would most probably have been delicious too. Breakfast at least was very very good. While this was a continental class buffet, it was a very good one at it. The dining rooms were also very spacious and a joy to eat in.
All in all, I really loved staying at this hotel. The only thing I would complain is the breakfast not being included in the room price and the odd "city tax" that you pay when signing in. Even then, it was a pleasant stay and would happily return immediately if I was in town.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Arena is not simply a 4 star hotel, it is a place of cultural history. A place where people used to come together and it still is for both locals and citizens from all over the world, from artist to business people. Hotel Arena offers a restaurant with a sunny, laid-back terrace; the perfect retreat to have drinks. Hidden away is the enclosed backyard where you can enjoy your Sunday breakfast. Moreover, Hotel Arena regularly hosts contemporary art exhibitions and boasts its very own night club. Hop on one of the hotel bikes and discover Amsterdam’s Eastern Quarter, where Hotel Arena is situated. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Arena Hotel Amsterdam
- Hotel Arena Amsterdam