W AMSTERDAM HAS MADE ITS DUTCH DEBUT
We just talked about W Hotels sprucing up its Montréal property to bring it in line with some of the brand’s newer urban properties. Speaking of those, it doesn’t get much newer than W Amsterdam, welcoming guests now for less than two weeks to its former telephone exchange and bank buildings smack in the middle of the Dutch capital.
Reception and lounge are in the 1903 telephone exchange building, or rather, on the roof: an all-glass floor was added to the red brick building to house the majority of the public spaces.
This is an entry-level room, which as these days is almost the norm, features a semi-open bathroom. The vanity does double-duty as bar/work area, with a built-in sofa underneath the window. Images on the wall include a telephone, presumably a reference to the building’s former life. Close ups of frosted glass in the bathroom on the W website show words like ‘tulips, windmills, beer, red, white, blue, cobblestones’ scribbled across. Welcome to the Netherlands!
Speaking of (perhaps not very subtle) references, the W London Leicester Square has ‘gone Dutch’ in celebration of its new sibling, which as we saw this week means bicycles in the lobby, pictures of bridges and canals, and Amsterdam’s emblem crudely duct-taped to the bathroom walls (no joke).
We are looking forward to seeing some of the suites the hotel has in store in person, which have retro fireplaces, sectional sofas, and in the case of the WOW suite, a circular bed.
Restaurant The Duchess is set in the glorious former hall of the KAS Bank building and serves Mediterranean cuisine. A ‘FIT’ fitness facility and spa will open here next year as well. Rates for a ‘Cozy’ room in the Exchange building start around €400 (about $450/£295 at the moment) a night if we look at dates in November.
W Amsterdam is one of a number of recent openings that have livened up the city’s fairly stale hotel scene, like The Hoxton, less than five minutes’ walk away, the Waldorf Astoria, and before that the Andaz and the Conservatorium. That’s not all though – another handful of hotels are still in progress, with our eyes mostly on Soho House and the conversion of the former Palace of Justice.
The list of upcoming W Hotels is extensive, but a few to highlight are the W Milan (above, on Via Brera – due to be finished in 2017 after an initial promise of a 2013 arrival), the W Punta Mita and Tel Aviv (both next year), and the just announced W Belgrade (2019) and W Sharm el Sheikh (2020).
[W Amsterdam renderings and photo: W Hotels. W Milan photo: LE Miami]