This was my third trip to Amsterdam but the first time I actually enjoyed it. I never really cared for the city before, dismissing it as a den of prostitutes and pot. This time, I saw there is so much more to one of the most picturesque cities in the world. Hyatt Andaz Prinsengracht proved a perfect base during my weekend stay.
Andaz Amsterdam Booking
I will not call it a mistake, but it is the reason the new five points per dollar hotel benefit with American Express Platinum means nothing. I booked this via Orbitz. With $112 in Orbucks hotel credit, expiring I figured I would sacrifice a qualifying stay (60 now needed in the World of Hyatt) in order to save $112. The room price was $278 so the $112 made it a much more reasonable price. But because I booked via Orbitz, my elite benefits were limited. I still was treated as a Diamond (now Globalist) and given a complimentary canal view room and breakfast, but not allowed to apply a suite upgrade to the reservation. The sad thing was that there were suites available and my 2016 suite upgrades expired a week later.
Without going too far off on a tangent, under the new World of Hyatt program, the hotel would not even be required to recognize my Globalist status, so no suite upgrade, breakfast, or upgrade of any sort.
Andaz Amsterdam Check-in
I arrived from Jakarta early in the morning and completed online check-in around 7am. A follow-up email promised to notify me when my room was ready. I spent the morning in the Aspire Lounge at AMS working. That e-mail finally arrived around 1pm. I took the train into the city then Uber to the hotel.
As you walk into the property you encounter an ornate hallway and you might be tempted to think that the hotel is in beaux arts style. It’s not. And yet it sort of is. The whole style of the hotel is td to capture in words: hip, modern, with a bit of everything. A famous Dutch architect named Marcel Wanders designed it and it is unique and avant garde. More on the design history here.
The check-in agent — and just about every other staff member at the hotel — addressed me in Dutch. The Dutch are so fluent in English that even KLM has only English safety announcements, but be prepared if you stay in this hotel. I wish I had brushed up on a few Dutch phrases!
Andaz Amsterdam Room
My room, 313, was so quirky, but I loved it. A wash table and vanity greeted me just inside with a closet and water closet to the left, a shower behind, and the bedroom area overlooking the Prince Canal (Prinsengracht). The bright yellow chair, fish/spoon artwork, and Delft Blue WC somehow all came together for what I considered a attractive room design.
As with all Andaz properties, all nonalcoholic items in the mini bar are complimentary. As far as snacks, though, there was just two Halloween-sized chocolate bars and some crackers:
The room also had great views–
Andaz Amsterdam Design
I mentioned the style above, but a bit more about the oddities that make this hotel unique. There is “moving artwork” displayed on monitors in the halls. The TV outside my room showcased a short clip of a Pentecostal pastor performing an exorcism…playing in reverse. The stairs down to the fitness center and spa are red, resembling Amsterdam’s famous red light district. The guardrail is made of clear plastic, resembling the windows with which women peek out. Nearby, the lobby includes high-back red chairs.
As you ride the elevator downstairs you encounter this elclectic design–
Andaz Amsterdam Coffee and Evening Reception
Andaz properties do not have lounges, but do offer complimentary beverages throughout the day. While I was not offered one during check-in, I was invited to what the check-in agent called the “living room” in the front of the hotel for coffee or water through the day and wine in the evening.
The Nespresso machine was a large version of what is found in every guest room. After an afternoon walk, I enjoyed a couple delicious chocolate oatmeal cookies and an espresso.
That evening, I returned toward the end of the wine reception (6-8pm) and enjoyed a glass of very decent Argentinian red wine.
Andaz Amsterdam Dining
The Bluespoon Restaurant and Bar is just adjacent to the lobby. The restaurant and bar are beautiful. Although I ventured out of the hotel for lunch and dinner, I did enjoy Sunday morning breakfast in Bluespoon.
A full buffet cost 32EUR. That included the buffet and any of the eggs and specialties off the menu. My breakfast was complimentary as a Globalist member.
Both the buffet and hot items were delicious — high quality and tasty. I dined at around 9am and the restaurant was quite crowded and appeared understaffed. That slowed down service, but the staff did well under the circumstances. The only complaint — the cappuccino was horrible. The culprit: H-Milk. It brought back memories of always having to go to the organic store to buy fresh milk in Germany. H-Milk is milk processed at an ultra-high-temperature and common in Europe. I find it gives the milk a revolving taste.
Room service is also available (and room service breakfast is complimentary for Globalists).
Andaz Amsterdam Fitness + Spa
I worked out on Saturday and spent time in the sauna both Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon. The whole time I never saw another person — it was wonderful having a private gym and spa. The gym is fairly small, but perfectly functional and I got in a great workout.
Andaz Amsterdam Garden
The Andaz is comprised of two buildings connected by a beautiful garden courtyard. Although it was a brisk winter afternoon, I enjoyed basking in the warmth of the afternoon sun.
Andaz Amsterdam Location
I cannot underscore how perfect the location of this hotel is. Absolutely in the heart of Amsterdam, you can walk to any tourist attraction. Restaurants and bars abound in the neighborhood and it is simply a beautiful area just to take an afternoon stroll:
This is a pricey hotel, but you get what you pay for. Everything about this experience I enjoyed and although I look forward to trying the new Hyatt Regency in Amsterdam next time, I cannot wait to return to this hotel. Great staff, a cool room, and good food in Bluespoon made for a nice stay.