Amsterdam

Sleepover: Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam

How to compete with other luxury hotels in the higher segment? Little details, that count for a lot. The Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam understands this very well. Here's my full recap on my sleepover at the Waldorf: 

First impressions
The centre of Amsterdam isn't my favorite place to drive. It's busy, bikes pop up out of nowhere and parking next to the canals is just plain scary (I'm so afraid I'll drive in the water). Luckily, Waldorf Astoria offers valet parking. You only have to worry about your handbag and the rest is taken care off. The check-in ritual is one of the better ones I've experienced. We even got to chose the fragrance for the turndown, something light and sweet to fall asleep in. A hot towel, some drinks and the biggest smiles behind the desk. And the dresses of the ladies...! Hello Jan Taminiau! Gorgeous waving dresses with the map of Amsterdam's city centre. Little details, again.  

The room
There's no place like home, right? But, a hotel can feel homely as well. There are in total 93 luxury rooms in the hotel, with the biggest being as big as any pied-à-terre in a cool, international city. The room I had (#131) was very spatial. I really enjoyed the desk because I had to do a lot of work. The bathroom was filled with great essentials and things you sometimes forget to pack. Oh, did I mention we walked in on a bottle of cooled Champagne, freshly baked Madeleines and a chocolate key to invite us to the vault? Walking around the room with soft slippers in the morning was just the cherry on top of a great sleep and stay. Breakfast was served from 7 until 10.30 and offered a large range of typical breakfast dishes. I went for a lot of coffee and the vegetable omelet, together with my delivered newspaper the perfect way to start a hectic day. 

Great history
The hotel can be found on the Herengracht, as part of the UNESCO site - views of the canals. The six canal houses that make up the Waldorf Astoria have great history. It's legacy can be found all over the hotel. Little signs, the black and white strips across the walls (reminder that you walk into the next canal house), the fresh tulips in the room and old details all tell us the story of life in the 17th and 18th century. It took a few years to completely renovate the property, but it was well worth it. This year the Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam celebrates it's 4th birthday, but is already a household name. It's not without reason the hotel is on all the top lists concerning interior, service, food & beverages and spa. 

A lot to do
If you're in Amsterdam for leisure, make sure to spend some time in the hotel. There's a lot to do! You can book appointments for the Guerlain Spa, relax at the pool, enjoy tasty cocktails at the Vault bar and have dinner at the two Michelin star restaurant "Librije's Zusje". The restaurant is quite popular, so if it's full you can always book a table at the Goldfinch Brasserie. This restaurant shares the same kitchen as Librije's Zusje, so you are in for a treat! 

The verdict
My stay at the Waldorf Astoria was in one word: wonderful. The entire staff is easy to talk to and are helping you however they can to make your stay the best. The concierge tipped us for some great places to go in the neighborhood. I'm normally quite picky where to eat, but he understood our criteria perfectly. It's not the cheapest place in town, so I won't be staying here every time. But for a special occasion I'll be ready to check in!

This blogpost is written in partnership with Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam. The opinion in this blog is mine and represents my true sleepover experience. If you have questions about this sleepover I'll be happy to answer them!  

Hotspot: Choux

During my last trip to Amsterdam I went for a late night dinner at Choux. The website didn't say that much, but the people around me did. The restaurant is ideally located for people from out of town, it's a five minute walk from central station. 

Natural wines with a 3 course dinner
We sat down and ordered a nice subtle red wine. Nice to know: all wines on the menu are natural wines. Since it was already past 9 PM we opted for the 3-course vegetarian flight. The tasty amuse with fennel was a great way to start our appetites going. As it should be. 

The entree 'green leaves from the garden' had a nice balance between oils and crunchy vegetables. As the main dish we enjoyed something the waiter called "a vegetable bouquet of bitter vegetables". These kind of dishes I always enjoy a lot. Simple, tasteful, playful. The dessert was an interesting choice. For us, it felt more like an entree than a dessert. Probably because of the beetroot. Espresso and some chocolate to call it a night. 

I'll be back
Choux has a nice casual atmosphere with dito staff. We paid 125€ including tip, which I found was neat pricing for the quality and quantity. I will definitely come back another time to taste some more and make my final decision about where this restaurant fits in my list of Amsterdam tips. 

(Honestly, after a day of working, walking and wandering I didn't write down all the menu details. That doesn't matter all that much, it's the overall experience and vibe that matters. Emotions over facts. I'll do better next time!)