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Amsterdam is a fantastic place to visit but can be quite expensive if you’re not careful, so it’s fortunate there are plenty of good budget hotels where you can stay. The great Dutch city has some of the finest museums in Europe, such as Rembrant House Museum, the Van Gogh Museum and Rijksmuseum, as well as a great cafe culture by the canals. Explore some lesser-known neighbourhoods such as De Pijp and Westergas staying at these hotels, one of which has previously been an artists’ studio, refugee centre and prison.
Despite the name of this hotel, guests from all walks of life stay here. Situated slightly outside the historic centre, where the De Pijp neighbourhood meets Amsterdam-Oost, the minimalist, concrete feel is livened up by brightly coloured furniture and street art murals. Rooms are generously sized and clean and each one has a double bed, shower room and desk, plus there are large communal areas including a restaurant and bar, workspaces and a gym. There is another Student Hotel in the city, in Amsterdam West.
This small hotel is down a side street in the canal district, near good restaurants, boutique shops and the nightlife of Rembrandtplein. Its rooms mix vintage, modern and repurposed furniture with stylish touches, like original centuries-old exposed brick and colourful throws. The ensuite rooms have a TV and coffee machine. Though the hotel doesn’t provide breakfast, there are good cafes just steps away.
In the hip Amsterdam-Oost neighbourhood, 10 minutes from the centre via the Metro, this fun hotel offers yoga, massage, exhibitions, boat tours, a hairdresser, life-drawing sessions and festivals. Its glass, wood and concrete decor is brightened up by bold colouring and unconventional styling. As well as the standard rooms, there are nine pricier special rooms with concepts such as a cabin in the woods or a Japanese spa. There’s also a restaurant and bar, a rooftop terrace, hot tub and sauna.
Though business travellers like this hotel because of its location in the heart of the World Trade Center complex, you wouldn’t expect it from the funky, colourful decor. Not surprisingly, it’s popular with tourists, too, being just one stop from Schiphol Airport and a short tram ride to the centre. The 82 futuristic rooms, all built with the environment in mind, are minimalist in style. There’s no restaurant or bar, but there are plenty nearby.
Each of the 88 rooms at this sleek hotel has an extra-large bed and a Philips electronic MoodPad, allowing you to control the lighting, blinds, temperature and ambience without getting out of bed. There’s a communal lounge with designer furniture and a cafe and it’s just a 10 minute walk from the historic centre. CitizenM, a chain of budget hotels, also has sites near Schiphol Airport and in the business district south of the centre.
This bright, imaginatively designed contemporary hotel is well situated near Waterlooplein Platz and its popular flea market, as well as a number of cultural attractions such as the Dutch National Opera and Ballet and Rembrandt House Museum. It has rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows, luxurious beds and funky lounge and bar areas. There’s a workstation too and pets are welcome.
This hotel has history. Since opening in 1921, it has been a prison, refugee centre, juvenile detention centre and an artists’ studio. More than 40 artists were involved in the interior design, so your room decor could be anything from art deco to modern, with features like exposed wooden beams. There are also studio flats with kitchens and rooms with up to seven beds. The Lloyd is in the Eastern Docklands, about two kilometres (one-and-a-quarter miles) from Centraal Station. You can relax with a beer on the terrace, peruse the hotel library or hire a bike to explore the city.
Sarah Gibbons contributed additional reporting to this article.