Where to Stay in Amsterdam for a Local Experience

Boat & Co, a luxury aparthotel
Boat & Co, a luxury aparthotel | Courtesy of Hotel BOAT & CO / Expedia
Photo of Sarah Gibbons
13 January 2021

Avoid the usual tourist traps – the Red Light District and hazy coffee shops – by reading our guide to the best places stay in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam is notoriously touristy, but there are still hidden gems and locals’ secrets to be discovered in the historic Dutch capital. Sip coffee in the trendy Jordaan neighbourhood, browse a 400-year-old food market or rub shoulders with Amsterdammers at a rooftop bar. Whether you’re here on a “workation” or just want a more authentic experience of Amsterdam, read our guide on where to stay.

Sweets – Kattenslootbrug

Hotel, Apartment
Map View
Sweets – Kattenslootbrug, Amsterdam
Courtesy of Sweets – Kattenslootbrug / Expedia
You’re in for a sweet treat at this unique, award-winning accommodation in Amsterdam. Located across the city in 28 different bridge houses, each one has been transformed into an independent hotel suite by a dedicated team of architects. This studio in Kattenslootbrug is snug, but well-appointed with eco-toiletries and a tablet to check the news and weather. Foodies must stroll to nearby Noordermarkt (open on Saturdays and Mondays) – it’s been running since 1623 and sells some of the best organic food in town.

Zoku Amsterdam

Serviced Apartment
Map View
Zoku Amsterdam, Amsterdam
Courtesy of Zoku Amsterdam / Expedia
Why not opt for an apartment on your next break to Amsterdam? Zoku offers serviced, well-equipped stays from a few nights to several months. Perfect for “workations”, you can make the most of the co-working space and meet like-minded travellers at the Kindred Spirits bar, the go-to spot for a coffee break. For something more substantial, Zoku residents and locals alike can enjoy the sixth floor Living Kitchen restaurant for simple, tasty fare – amazing view included.

Canal House

Boutique Hotel, Hotel
Map View
Canal House, Amsterdam
Courtesy of Canal House / Expedia
Located in the heart of the Jordaan, the cultural centre of Amsterdam, Canal House is situated on the Keizersgracht (the Emperor’s Canal) and is comprised of three higgledy-piggledy 17th-century merchants’ houses. Now a “monumented” site, the building features all signs of wealth in years gone by, from its original features to its stately proportions, particularly in the Great Room where you can enjoy a quiet cocktail or a few rounds of Scrabble.

The Hoxton Amsterdam

Suite Hotel
Map View
The Hoxton, Amsterdam
Courtesy of The Hoxton / Expedia
The Hoxton brand’s first addition outside of London in 2014, its Amsterdam hotel can be found on Herengracht in one of the most happening parts of town, the 9 Streets. Here, you’ll find the capital’s best independent shops and gourmet restaurants. True to Hoxton style, the hotel has its own trendy bar and restaurant to enjoy too, Lotti’s. Enjoy a leisurely breakfast, catch up with friends over lunch, or sip on cocktails into the evening alongside locals.

Chasse Hotel

Map View
Chasse Hotel, Amsterdam
Courtesy of Chasse Hotel / Expedia
Located in the popular district of Baarsjes, around 15 minutes from the centre of town, this hotel is housed in a striking monument – a historic church. The boutique hotel offers bright and airy rooms with a breakfast service and food throughout the day and evening at the Grand Café. It’s also part of the Chassé Complex, which houses the world’s largest dance center, Chassé Dance Studios.

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  • Volkshotel

    Hotel, Spa Hotel
    Map View
    Volkshotel, Amsterdam
    Courtesy of Volkshotel / Expedia
    Once a newspaper headquarters, Volkshotel is now home to 177 hotel rooms, including nine special themed rooms for the ultimate experience to write home about. These include Johnny Jukebox, for music lovers, which gives the feeling of being inside a jukebox, to the Japanese-themed Bathing Bikou, featuring an impressive wooden bathtub and minimalist design. Don’t forget your swimsuit, you’re not going to want to miss soaking in one of their rooftop hot tubs, before enjoying a sundowner and some live music.

    The College Hotel

    Boutique Hotel
    Map View
    The College Hotel, Amsterdam
    Courtesy of The College Hotel / Expedia
    The place to be in Oud-Zuid for tourists and locals alike, The College Hotel is housed in a stylish 19th-century building that was opened as a school in 1895. Expect classical high ceilings, large fireplaces and spacious stairwells combined with award-winning contemporary design. Escape to the Mediterranean-style terrace for a glass of wine, or try something more hearty at the sumptuous Foodbar restaurant – and there’s live music every Saturday.

    Boat & Co

    Luxury, Apartment
    Map View
    Hotel Boat & Co, Amsterdam
    Courtesy of Hotel Boat & Co / Expedia | Courtesy of Hotel Boat & Co / Expedia
    An aparthotel on the waterfront in Houthaven neighbourhood, one of the city’s most up-and-coming areas, Boat & Co is ideal for those who like their own space, but enjoy access to luxury hotel services. Explore the area, known for its forward-thinking design and gourmet restaurants, or take a leisurely bike ride to trendy Jordaan, with its quirky independent shops and creative vibe.

    Mr Jordaan

    Independent Hotel
    Map View
    Mr. Jordaan, Amsterdam
    Courtesy of Mr. Jordaan / Expedia
    Want to escape the touristy city centre for a more authentic, local experience? You’ll love Mr Jordaan, a quirky four-bedroom B&B located on Bloemgracht, an enchanting 17th-century canal in the heart of trendy Jordaan. It’s come a long way since its origins in the 1960s when its founder used to advertise his couch – long before couch surfing became a thing – but the homely vibes and welcoming spirit remains.

    B&B Milkhouse Luxury Stay Amsterdam

    Luxury, Bed and Breakfast
    Map View
    B&B Milkhouse Luxury Stay Amsterdam
    Courtesy of B&B Milkhouse Luxury Stay Amsterdam / Expedia | Courtesy of B&B Milkhouse Luxury Stay Amsterdam / Expedia
    Once the home of Dutch aristocracy and wealthy traders in the 17th century, B&B Milkhouse became a head office in the dairy industry, hence the name. This cosy place to stay offers two light and airy rooms, both of which have a private front door and direct street access onto Keizersgracht. Breakfast is served at Bagels and Beans, a Dutch favourite just down the road that dishes up ethical, organic food with particularly good vegetarian options.
    These recommendations were updated on January 13, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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