On my recent visit I was looking for a good value, quiet place to stay and after some searching came across Shelter City which as a Christian Hostel, does not allow alcohol and has single sex rooms only. Perhaps not what everyone looks for but it suited me perfectly as I was there to see the sites and needed somewhere to sleep. The added bonus was that I was able to book into a four bed dormitory with en suite.
As essentially a non Christian, I was a little concerned that, though inclusivity was stressed on the website, I may feel a little out of place but this was far from the case, and while it would have been possible to join in a Bible discussion and Prayer Meeting, this was really the only thing that marked out the hostel’s ethos as far as I was concerned.
The room was quite spacious and the bed comfortable. I was also impressed that the hostel responded quickly to an e mail requesting a lower bunk and was given this with no problems. The ensuite was tiny but functional and fairly new. In addition, I visited during an unseasonably hot June week and it was really lovely to sit in the evening in the hostel’s peaceful courtyard which has a large pond and fountain, and even a cat with a Facebook page!
As for location, I think I could have done my research better. The hostel is around a 10-15 minute walk from Centraal Station down a street crammed with cafes, bars and restaurants (many of them Thai, if that’s what you’re looking for), which opens into a pleasant square (Nieuwmarkt) with more cafes. It’s also not too far from Dam Square but I was surprised at how sprawling the City is and the hostel is quite a distance from the Museumplein, although I think public transport would have been possible. I was also quite amused to find that by diverting onto a parallel street I found myself in the heart of the Red Light District!
Finally, one key point to note is that, while in the main costs can be kept down when hostelling by self catering, this really isn’t an option here. There is a fairly small fridge and a microwave but otherwise food can only be bought from the hostel’s own café (which is open late and cheaper than outside) or elsewhere in the city.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Friendly, clean hostel in the centre of Amsterdam. Single-sex dormitories and rooms with 4-8 beds, some with en-suite bathrooms. 24 hour reception, cafe with cheap food and drinks, free use of lockers, great garden to hang out in with giant fish-pond! ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- The Shelter City Hotel Amsterdam