If you’re going to read about any hotel, in any city, make it the Lloyd Hotel in Amsterdam.
One of a kind, full of history, and an attraction in it’s own right, the Lloyd Hotel was a stay that I will never forget, and one that I would love to re-live.
So, what was it like to stay at the world’s first 1 to 5 star hotel?
HISTORY AND CONCEPT
This history of Lloyd hotel is an interesting one. Built in 1921 as a hotel for emigrants, and commissioned by the shipping company Royal Dutch Lloyd, it could accommodate 900 people at a given time, along with a quarantine area added not long after opening where medical examinations took place and luggage decontaminated. The photo above, seen on the hotel’s Exhibition platform, shows a picture of what it may have looked like.
The Royal Dutch Lloyd went bankrupt in 1935, and the building taken under the ownership of the city of Amsterdam, where in 1939 it was used as a refugee camp for Jewish people. However, from 1941, the German’s used the building as a detention centre.
For a long part of it’s history, the hotel served as a prison. After the war it’s function as a prison continued, and from 1964 until 1989 it found purpose as a young offenders prison. During the 90’s it finally started to change it’s course again by becoming a place for artists to live and work, until finally becoming the beautifully unique hotel that it now is in 2004.
The history of the hotel can be seen from the bottom of it’s centre stairwell through a series of photographs and documents.
The one thing that I cannot stress enough is do not book this hotel without understanding the concept. The concept of this hotel is one of a kind, and must be appreciated. Every single one of their 117 rooms is unique. No two are the same. Some rooms share a bathroom on a corridor, some rooms have a shower head on the wall with no privacy, and have their own shower rooms – this is not a hotel to book into with your colleague.
Design is the key word, from the furniture in your room, to the overlooked bench in the corridor, the furniture in this hotel is unique and tells a story of it’s own. You could stay here over 100 times and have a different experience every single time. There is art around every corner, and something weird but wonderful to be admired in most instances.
First off, thank you so much to Tessa for giving me a tour! She kindly took me around multiple rooms, most while they were getting cleaned, so these photos do not accurately represent the prepared room. Thank you to all of the cleaning staff who gave me room to look around, I cannot praise the staff of this hotel enough!
The cheapest rooms are their one star rooms, which I was actually hoping to get (I had no idea what I had booked into), which came with an amazing view over the Eastern Docklands and the same mattress comfort that can be found throughout the rest of the rooms. I especially liked how quirky these rooms were, with the walls being restored to their prison like fashion. Comfiest prison stay that you could ever ask for!
One of their five star bedrooms, complete with a seven person bed on the upstairs split level, a grand piano, and a kitchenette!
A gorgeous little four star room with the design inspired by a hotel in New York City, complete with a separate kitchenette. All of the above rooms just show how different your stay can be here, and you should definitely expect the unexpected!
All rooms come with access to perfect WiFi, and the food at the restaurant on the bottom floor is delicious and so well priced! I had meant to take photos, but demolished my plate before remembering…
I definitely consider myself very lucky to get room 608. It was the most unique, fantastic hotel experience that I have ever had, and I would 100% love to relive every single second that I spent in that hotel room. It was like any hotel stay I have ever had, and when I moved on to my next hotel I was so underwhelmed and bored after spending a whole 11 hours reading in a hammock.
Don’t let the photos fool you, the room was huge. The bath was huge. The bed was huge.
The room was unlike anywhere I had ever stayed, and I don’t understand how the designers made an attic bedroom with no floor as comfy and cosy as they did. Once it started to get dark outside, the lighting in the room created a perfect atmosphere, and from the bath you had an amazing view of the night sky. I spent most of the afternoon in the hammock, reading, and have been trying to find one to buy for my bedroom ever since returning home.
The tea facilities just outside of the room was something else, there was so much choice, so many flowers, so many antiques all around the hall.
I have over 100 photos from this hotel, that I wish that I could share.
Overall, my stay here was the highlight of my time in Amsterdam. It was perfectly located, being only 3 tram stops on the number 26 from Central Station. The price range for the rooms is so flexible to suit everyone, and I definitely want to return to have the one star experience.
Thank you so much to all of the staff who made my stay the best that I have experienced. I have never stayed in a hotel with so much character, which was an attraction in it’s own right.