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Amsterdam Hotels

I’m looking a two hotels & I wanted to have your suggestions & comments. We’re looking for a large twin room 7-11Dec. I understand that rooms are small in Amsterdam. Breakfasts are very expensive at €25 pp…are they worth including in the room when I book? Are nearby cafes expensive too?
The Sint Nicholaas Hotel & the Dikker & Thijs are two hotels that I’m interested in. Dikker advertises a large superior room w canal views, and am I Iguaranteed to get have this room if I book it?

Where can I find email addresses for these hotels (or others)? I’d like to contact them without having to phone, but I can’t find any hotel’s emails.
We want a place that’s convenient to day tours & getting to local attractions & museums.
The Festival of Lights will be on, so is there a location that we’d be able to see the lights near our hotel?
Thank you!

Posted by
26369 posts

Dikker advertises a large superior room w canal views, and am I guaranteed to get have this room if I book it?

The definitive answer to that would be from the hotel. They could probably answer your question about the Festival too.

Their website is https://www.dikkerandthijshotelamsterdam.com/ On their main webpage is a "Contact" tab which gives their email as info@dtfh.nl and there is a convenient query form next to if you prefer that.

I haven't looked at the other hotel but it probably has a "Contact" tab or page too.

Posted by
26369 posts

I've just looked at the webpage for the other hotel. I does indeed have a "Contact" page showing their email address as info@hotelnicolaas.nl.

Their website is https://www.hotelnicolaas.nl/

I found both hotel websites by typing their name into Google and picking the official one.

I'm not commenting on the individual hotels because when I visit Amsterdam I always stay in Haarlem, Utrecht or Rotterdam.

Posted by
12754 posts

Berry, I can't answer your question about the festival but almost all hotels these days have a contact page on their websites. Both of the hotels you're interested in have them, along with an online form for questions + phone numbers and address.

Here are the websites and contact pages for the two hotels you're interested in:

https://www.hotelnicolaas.nl
https://www.hotelnicolaas.nl/contact
(The contact form is their email OR use info@hotelnicolaas.nl)

https://www.dikkerandthijshotelamsterdam.com
https://www.dikkerandthijshotelamsterdam.com/contact
OR info@dtfh.nl

Assuming those rooms are not already fully booked for your dates, I'm quite sure if you book the superior twin room w canal views at Dikker & Thijs, that's what you'll get.
Oops, posted the same time as Nigel but at least we came up with the same info! :O)

Editing to add: no I wouldn't fork over 25 euro pp for breakfast but we don't need a big, sit-down breakfast every day either. Would be more likely to grab coffee and a pastry at a bakery, or something from a market.

Posted by
16169 posts

Sint Nicolaas has their email listed on the front page of their website. https://www.hotelnicolaas.nl/

Dikker & Thijs on the contact page. https://www.dikkerandthijshotelamsterdam.com/contact

I can tell you that I have stayed around the corner from the Sint Nicolaas at the NH Barbizon. Convenient to Centraal train station and the central tram station in front.

Dikker & Thijs is near the Leidseplein with a tram stop on the bridge over the Prinzengracht. Lots of restaurants in the area. If breakfast is too dear, there is a McDonalds right around the corner.

Posted by
941 posts

Berry, if you want to be closer to the big three museums as well as the canal house museums and Nine Streets, then Dikker and Thijs is your better choice. You might have coffee in your room and then grab breakfast at Bagels and Beans nearby on the Keizergracht. You also have a Dunkin Donuts and Greenwoods on the Keizergracht nearby. As for seeing the light installations, here is a map I found for this year's walking route. When we stayed in Amsterdam during Christmas of 2016 we took the Light Festival boat cruise with ThoseDamBoatGuys and enjoyed being inside a warm boat drinking gluhwein as we toured the canals.

Have a great stay in Amsterdam!

Amsterdam Light Festival

ThoseDamBoatGuys

Posted by
6837 posts

We noticed many cafes serving breakfast when we were in Amsterdam.25€ seems a high price.

Posted by
115 posts

Thank you for your responses!
I found Banks Mansion & it looks like a good area for touring the city & seeing the museums.
Where would we catch the day tours into other areas of Holland?
I booked a deluxe twin room w canal view for $1200. for 4 nights. This is the response I got from the hotel:

“What you requested can't be arranged ahead of time but Banks Mansion - All Inclusive Boutique Hotel said they'll do their best to accommodate you on arrival.”

We don’t want to arrive & have a queen bed. If we pay for a deluxe 269 sq ft room w twin beds overlooking the canal, shouldn’t that be guaranteed?
This is very confusing.

I decided on this hotel rather than the Nicholaas or Dikker because of the room size & room view of the canal.

Now, I’m not sure what to do! If they can’t accommodate us & if we don’t know until we get there, what recourse do I have? Is this normal in Amsterdam or is this hotel running a scam, bait & switch operation? The place sounded perfect, but now I’m not so sure about the legitimacy of it all.

Posted by
16169 posts

Banks Mansion is part of Carleton Hotels, an upscale chain that I don't think would be running a scam. Maybe they're just being up front and honest with you.

Posted by
16169 posts

Since you seem to be so picky, why not upgrade to and Executive Canal View room? 400 sq ft and what appears to be a split king, so you can separate them into 2 twins. Only another 50 EUR per night.

Posted by
12754 posts

I'm thinking the same as Sam. If it was a Deluxe TWIN you requested, they don't appear to even have a room by that description; just Deluxe rooms. If that's the case, they're definitely not engaging in bait-and-switch or scam, merely verifying that they cannot promise you a 'true' twin room. Looking at the Deluxe rooms, it appears the even if you do end up with two single beds (the pix of this room show them pushed together to make a larger size) it doesn't look as if there's very much room to pull them apart with much of any room to walk around them; check out some visitor photos of these rooms on TripAdvisor.

If it's more space and the more promising ability to split the beds, I'd book the larger Executive Canal View room.

Posted by
115 posts

Sam, when I’m paying over $300 per night for rooms that can’t guarantee that you’re getting the room you’ve booked & most hotels don’t include anything but a bed…no breakfast…yes, I can be picky. The Amsterdam city tax of over $80.00 & the €3 per night, per person add ons, don’t make tourists want to visit. I realize that Amsterdam has announced they want to discourage tourists in their city, so I’m wondering if that’s why rooms in the low season (late November & early December) are so expensive & additional taxes & fees are designed to make us want to go elsewhere??

I like your idea of the €50 upgrade, but again, will this be guaranteed???

Posted by
16169 posts

Ask them. Split kings are extremely common in Europe, almost standard for rooms with large beds.

Cities like Venice and Amsterdam are always making noises about "too many tourists". Yet nearly every business in the city is focused on the tourist trade. A tour guide there told us the average Dutch resident only lives in the center city for 4 years, then moves on to "normal" Netherlands. A lot are students and young people. Nonetheless, there is no sign of either city losing popularity with tourists, Raising prices only seems to make it a more desirable destination.

Posted by
12754 posts

Berry, many US cities have higher occupancy taxes than Amsterdam's 7% + €3 pp nightly tax; some of them are double that! They may also add additional fees, such as county taxes and daily resort fees (for pools, workout facilities, etc,) you have to pay for whether you use them or not.

Not sure why you decided against Dikker & Thijs Hotel as the location is fine, and on booking.com I'm seeing a Superior Twin Canal View Room for 4 nights for $1,083 (no breakfast) or $1,249, (breakfast included). Free Cancellation up to nearly midnight on Dec. 5, and the room is a bit larger than what you've booked: 377 sq. feet. Taxes are not included in that price so would be additional. A nice perk: if you happen to be flying into the Amsterdam (Schiphol), a free taxi from the airport is included for bookings over $313.00 (may only be a perk on the bookng.com site; not sure).

Yes, Amsterdam is an expensive city for accommodations.
And no, Amsterdam doesn't have ANY issues attracting enough tourists; it was positively overrun prior to COVID, and will be again, if it isn't already.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jan/25/overtourism-in-europe-historic-cities-sparks-backlash

Posted by
26369 posts

that reply doesn't sound like the hotel directly replying ... "so and so said..." as opposed to "we can or we can't".

Are you booking direct or through a travel agent or booking firm such as booking.com?

If it is the third party then they are right - they can't guarantee it, and they put your request forward.

And in the end - think of it this way... how can they guarantee you a specific room? What if the person before you doesn't check out on time? What if they become ill and the room has to be decontaminated before you check in?

Unlikely, sure, but it makes a cast iron guarantee pretty difficult - particularly in these unusual times...

Posted by
115 posts

Thank you for your responses. Yes, it’s true that a specific room can’t always be guaranteed, but a king that’s made up of twins, would certainly be an option. I just never heard of a hotel giving a response to a booking, knowing its two women traveling. I did book through Booking.com although I tried to book through the hotel directly. I’m in Europe quite a bit & I've noticed when booked through a 3rd party, the rooms are always in the best areas of the property. Thinking I’d save a hotel from paying the 20% commission, I called overseas & talked directly w the owner. I was told that the hotels have entered into the contract w the booking agency & are not allowed to undercut the rate. They can however, offer breakfast or upgrades. When encountering a problem at a hotel, I’ve been told there was little to be done to correct it, as I booked through a hotel booker. I’d love to book directly but I hate making the long distance phone calls.

Posted by
12754 posts

I’d love to book directly but I hate making the long distance phone
calls.

But you don't have to call them on the phone to book directly? All 3 of the hotels mentioned in this thread have booking tabs right on their websites.

I just never heard of a hotel giving a response to a booking, knowing
its two women traveling

Well, sometimes a "couple" of two women (or two men) traveling together don't desire separate beds. 😉

Posted by
2135 posts

If you'd like to talk to them directly - but are concerned about the international call charges - contact them via email and ask the hotel if they have a WhatsApp number, or another online capability like Zoom, TEAMS, etc. Many small hotels often use WhatsApp and then you can talk to them "free" using your local data or wifi. I have a long list of nonpublished WhatsApp Hotel connections. Or, book through a TA and let them do the phone calls and legwork for you.

I've booked Banks Mansion a few times and travelers have enjoyed their stays. They can be "rather direct" in their communications. As far as using third-party sites like Booking.com to get the best room, I'd have to disagree with that approach. Speaking to the hotels we work with, there is a hierarchy for room assignments, upgrades, amenities, enhancements, etc. but 3rd-party OTA's like Booking, Expedia, etc. are on the lower end of the scale, rather than the top. BTW, Booking.com is originally a Dutch company, founded in 1996. You'll see their presence in Amsterdam!

For the best results, book direct or book through someone who has a connection/relationship with the hotel you're interested in.