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The Netherlands: Hotel Pulitzer, Amsterdam

Katie Gatens
22 July 2016

Fusing history with hip Dutch design, this sleek hotel has plenty of character – not least because it’s made up of 25 interlinked canal houses. Katie Gatens checks in

THE LOWDOWN:
When it comes to an enviable location, the Pulitzer Amsterdam has the best of both worlds – sitting pretty on the west side of Amsterdam, it’s sandwiched between the up-and-coming Jordaan district and the more touristy spots in Centrum – meaning you can dip in and out of the chaos of Dam Square and the Red Light District, but escape to the quieter café-lined Noordermarkt to pick up Dutch cheese when you need a reprieve.  

It also fuses the best of old and new in its design. The hotel has kept the original winding corridors, steep staircases and beamed ceilings of the 25 tall and narrow mismatched canal houses ­that it’s carved out of – most of which were built almost 400 years ago during the Dutch Golden Age­. I was shocked to learn that there were 225 rooms, deceivingly tucked away around twisting hallways – the hotel feels more boutique than busy. Each bedroom has a small plaque explaining the history of the building (when it dates back to and who lived there originally). For a history geek like me, this was a nice little touch.

Our suite is complete with heavy wooden beams, a tiled fireplace and beautiful antique furniture – the latter which looked like it took a lifetime’s worth of collecting to acquire. The furniture is offset by a contemporary colour palette of muted greys and dashes of neon yellow and pink. It shouldn’t work, but the daring combination does.

Downstairs in Restaurant Jansz, the candlelit wooden tables are occupied by tourists and hotel guests in equal numbers – surely the sign of a great hotel restaurant? Order the scallops and hanger steak with Jerusalem artichokes and you’ll see what all the fuss is about. Walking back to your room through Pulitzer’s bar and you can’t help but be lured in for a cocktail – it’s a sophisticated, moody setting peppered with mismatched leather chairs and oil paintings. Amsterdam is famous for its world-famous museums but here, you don’t even have to leave the hotel to get a dose of culture.

THE GOOD:
The hotel has its own 100-year-old boat that you can book for tours of the city.

The small in-room touches: colouring pencils, complimentary Dutch stroopwafels and a cocktail mini-bar complete with recipes for the items included – great for mixing your own nightcap.

The historic narrow corridors and winding staircases give the hotel bags of character.

THE NOT SO GOOD:
There was no outside space when we visited during the renovation, which was a shame – but there will be two terraces opening in August 2016.

THE VERDICT:
Part contemporary, part historic, the Pulitzer manages to get the balance exactly right.

BOOK IT:
Doubles from £225. Pulitzer Amsterdam, Keizersgracht 224, 1016 GZ (pulitzeramsterdam.com, preferredhotels.com; +31 20 523 5235)