Located on the Van Baerlestraat in the Museumplein District, right in the heart of Amsterdam, the Conservatorium Hotel is a mix of 19th century history and 21st century architecture. The building was originally designed by the Dutch architect Daniel Knuttel as a bank and sparked the regeneration of the Museum Quarter at the end of the 19th century. When the bank had to relocate, the building was abandoned and after lying empty for five years, it became the home of the Sweelinck Conservatorium, consisting of three musical institutes.
In 2008, The Set Hotels purchased this amazing building, attracted by its glorious past and in a vision to restore its former beauty, award winning Milan-based designer Piero Lissoni led the creation of the hotel, making sure as many of the original features of the building were preserved. The Conservatorium today has once again its finger on the pulse of the city’s cultural and architectural heartbeat.
SPA & WELLNESS
The Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre is located in the basement of the building and is a lovely retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Perfect for a rainy day, the spa covers 1,000 square metres of space and consists of an 18-metre swimming pool, seven treatment rooms, including a double treatment suite. There is also a private hammam for purifying scrubs and massages, and it also holds Amsterdam’s only Watsu pool for tailored hydro-treatments and guided meditation. The spa mixes ancient Eastern traditions with innovative Western practices.
The spa also includes a sauna, a well-equipped gym, organic bar and a fitness class area. The low lighting and relaxing music create the perfect environment to get some well-needed rest and recuperation while you enjoy the luxury facilities. The spa treatment menu includes a wide variety of massages, body and face treatments and uses brands such as Natura Bissé and Anne Semonin.
The original building designer Knuttel was acknowledged for his ability to blend simplicity and functionality and the award-winning Milan-based designer and architect Piero Lissoni has embraced this tradition through the reincarnation of this spectacular building 100 years later.
Lissoni is known for his austere lines, demure fabrics and shades of grey with occasional bright accents, and is considered one of the most prominent and exciting contemporary Italian designers and architects. His clean designs are a hybrid of modernist and contemporary chic and contrast playfully with natural daylight throughout the building’s spaces. The furniture in the communal spaces of the hotel is all from leading Italian manufacturers such as Living Divani, Kartell and Cassina.
Each room or suite has a flat-screen TV, an iPod dock, a well-stocked minibar, tea- and coffee-making facilities. And the bathroom has an LCD bathroom-mirror TV and a separate bathtub.
The elegant 170-square-metre Penthouse Suite has floor to ceiling windows that overlook the neo-Gothic building of the historical Conservatorium, courtyard and Brasserie with a view of the Rijksmuseum and Amsterdam beyond.
The 128 rooms include Superior Single Rooms, Duplex Rooms, Deluxe Rooms, Rooftop Suites, Conservatorium One Bedroom Suites, Van Baerle Suite, Conservatorium One Bedroom Suite with Balcony, Concerto Suite, I Love Amsterdam Suite among others. The hotel offers two rooms accessible for people with disabilities.
WHAT WE LOVE
The high ceilings are one of the first things you will notice about the hotel, one of the original bank features. Also, the Duplex rooms are lovely and feel very spacious. All of the rooms have large bathtubs for you to relax in and powerful rain showers.
Many rooms come with brilliant city-centre views and the most romantic spot by far is tucked away in the ‘I Love Amsterdam’ suite at the top of a spiral staircase leading off a wood-beamed mezzanine. From here, you can step out onto a rooftop terrace for panoramic views of Amsterdam – perfect for a glass of bubbles while you enjoy the skyline view over the city.
The hotel has two options for dinner, the Brasserie or Taiko Restaurant, which are under the direction of the celebrated Dutch chef Schilo van Coevorden. His style of food has continuously evolved through the years, adapting and adopting traditions from all over the world while retaining the virtues of simplicity and keeping a focus on locality and seasonality. The Brasserie is set in a beautiful atrium with spectacular floor-to-ceiling windows and a glass ceiling. Taiko is named after ancient Japanese drums, said to beat with a mythic rhythm. The chefs at Taiko are constantly searching for the finest Hida beef, the only true wasabi grown in Europe, and vintages offered nowhere else. Their sake sommelier even trains new ones – the only person in The Netherlands certified to do so. In a hotel this focused on food and drink, there’s no such thing as a humble ingredient. At the Brasserie, the chefs aren’t just attuned to the right season for each fruit or vegetable, but the specific weeks when they’re at their peak. Beauty, flavour, aroma and texture are the instruments used to enchant every sense. The Brasserie and Lounge offer contemporary classic all-day dining, including salads, sandwiches as well as a traditional Royal Afternoon Tea.
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW
Make sure to have a signature cocktail in the Tunes Bar (virgin cocktails available too).
Breakfast is included in the room price, enjoy a selection of continental, Dutch and healthy menu options to start your day off in a great way. Sound proof rooms so no noise from outside or other guests.
Located within a five-minute walk from the hotel are the Van Gogh Museum, Stedilijk Museum, Rijksmuseum, Diamantmuseum and the Moco Museum.
The hotel is situated right next to P.C Hooftstraat, which is the main designer shopping street in Amsterdam. Adjacent to that is the Vondelpark, the biggest public park in Amsterdam with plenty of activities going on all year round.
The hotel has a range of modern meeting rooms for hire for business meetings or special events.
TRAVEL IN STYLE
Although the Dutch have a fairly relaxed clothing style, this hotel is so elegant in design that you will want to dress the part. Casual dress will be great for exploring the city and something a little smarter for dinner will be perfect. Don’t forget to check the weather before you leave the hotel, you may want to take their complimentary umbrella with you.
WHEN YOU SHOULD GO
Amsterdam is a great city to visit all year round as there is always plenty going on whatever the weather or season. The Amsterdam Light Festival is especially special throughout the winter months and can be seen on foot or even better by canal boat. There are always lots of music concerts and events going on during the summer months, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
A superior single guest room starts at US$560 per night.