Buzzing lobby Bar & Lounge with fireplace and afternoon tea
The College Terrace with olive trees and a waterfall; open seasonally
The College Restaurant serves gourmet cuisine; guests can watch chefs at work in the open kitchen
Rooms have elegant style, free Wi-Fi, and flat-screen TVs with satellite channels
Modern (but small) bathrooms with rainfall showerheads
Robes and slippers, as well as turndown service with free bottled water
In-room massage services available (but no spa)
Housed in a 19th-century school building
Museum Quarter location, with a tram stop right in front of the hotel
Small, dark rooms have awkward layouts and too few electrical outlets
No fitness center (though guests can access a local gym off-site)
No coffee or tea facilities in the rooms
Fee for parking
Cordless phones have spotty connections
Tram or taxi ride necessary to reach sights in Old Center or Canal Ring
The College Hotel is a sensuous, intimate four-pearl option in the Museum Quarter. It is appropriately named -- not only because it is housed in a historic school building, but because most of the staff members are hospitality students in training. Features are few -- there's no fitness center or spa on-site -- but there is a popular Bar & Lounge with a fireplace where afternoon tea is served, as well as a fine dining restaurant. Though the public spaces wow with their sultry sophistication, rooms aren't quite as impressive, with cramped layouts, too few electrical outlets, and mood lighting that many find too dim to be practical. Note that third floor rooms have slanted ceilings -- homey to some, a nuisance to others.
In the Museum Quarter, a quiet, residential neighborhood about a 15-minute drive from the Old Center
The College Hotel is located in the Museum Quarter, within walking distance of the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijkmuseum (which translates to "national museum"). This quiet area has a residential feel, and is a tram or taxi ride away from popular tourist sights in the Old Center and Canal Ring (though it's possible to walk to the outer canals).
Marked by cobblestone roads, street-level canals and an abundance of coffee shops (which are most often known for something other than coffee), Amsterdam is both a quiet and lively city without the pretention of other European metropolises.
In the summer, visitors can enjoy live music at the Openluchttheater, an open-air venue at the Vondelpark, or the Roots Music Festival. The Gay Pride parade also takes place in the summer, and the city's many museums -- including the Van Gogh Museum or the Anne Frank House, where Frank and her family hid from the Nazis during World War 2 -- are popular year-round. Visitors in April can experience Queen's Day, which celebrates the queen's birthday and includes a massive flea market, parties, and outdoor concerts.
Noordermarkt is known for its antiques, and Brouwerij de Prael is a recommended stop for beer enthusiasts. Fun dining spots include the famous sandwich spot Van Dobben, as well as Pancake Bakery, which offers more than 70 types of pancakes and a slew of other breakfast goods.
7-minute walk to Concertgebouw, Amsterdam's main concert hall
13-minute walk to the Van Gogh Museum
14-minute walk to the Heineken Experience
14-minute walk to Rijkmuseum, which houses a world-class collection of art (including works by Dutch masters)
18-minute walk to Vondelpark and the open-air theater
11-minute drive or 21 minutes by tram and foot to the Old Center (and Red Light District)
11-minute drive or 22 minutes by tram and foot to the Anne Frank House
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