The Volkshotel in Amsterdam East is more than just a hotel. The history of the building as headquarters for the progressive Dutch newspaper, De Volkskrant, is visible in every detail. The hotel has 172 rooms, of which the design is “Inspired by newspaper production and the vanishing world of paper, ink and photographs.”, as they so eloquently describe the interior themselves. On the ground floor they offer various spaces where creatives, hotel guests and locals can meet. A quirky, affordable hotel only a few metro stops away from Amsterdam CS.
Quirky, creative hotel where history is the present
As I said, the building where Volkshotel (People’s Hotel) is located is the previous headquarters of newspaper, De Volkskrant. They used the building for 42 years, before they left it to move to a new office building. For a few years the building was used by creative entrepreneurs, and became the largest creative workspace and incubator of the Netherlands. Here the idea was born to turn (part of) the building into a hotel. The history of the building is visible in so many different details, that you could spend your whole time in Amsterdam, just wandering through the hotel. Walls are covered with immensely blown-up news articles and photos, various typography for the room numbers and scribblings on the walls. Each room is different. There are even nine ‘special rooms’ designed by nine different designers. So if you feel like camping in a hotel room or like to pretend that you are in Japan: ask for one of the special rooms.
Hotel, cafe, restaurant, club and creative incubator all in one
You could spend 24 hours in Volkshotel and have a fabulous, varied day of activities. And then I don’t even include sleeping. Your day could start with breakfast in restaurant Canvas on the 7th floor. From here you have an almost 360º view over Amsterdam, due to the windows all around. The ground floor functions as a big meeting space where you can sit in the cafe for a cup of coffee, or on one of the large tables in the Werkplaats (Workplace). Here you can do some work and meet (other) creative entrepreneurs that work here or locals who come in quite regularly. For lunch you can go back to the 7th floor or stay in the cafe. If you really like the view over Amsterdam, head to the top floor of Volkshotel and enjoy some splashing about in one of the two hot tubs on the roof. Or hop in the small sauna cabin. Back in Canvas restaurant you can enjoy a candle lit dinner at sunset. In weekends you can stay on the 7th floor and dance the night away in Canvas Club; or descend to the basement for a delicious cocktail in cocktail bar Doka (in the weekend until 7am!).
The easiest way to get to the hotel by public transport is from Amsterdam Central Station. Hop on any metro line and get off at Wibautstraat station. The stop for tram 3 is about 10 minutes walk.
Careful conscious ratings
We give Volkshotel careful ratings as they are still in the process of getting more sustainable and conscious. They will get a Green Key certification in 2016, they are working on their sustainability policy and as off 2016 they will only use renewable energy.
Canvas restaurant aims to use local, seasonal products as much as possible. Meat is also preferably bought locally and with an organic certification and about a third of the menu is suitable for vegetarians. Tap water is readily available at the reception, bar and restaurant.
Volkshotel offers a room type – Madam Miva – equipped with all the necessary aids for those needing a helping hand. And big enough for a wheelchair. The hotel makes a lot of effort to connect with their neighbours, involving them in many events and projects they work on. In that respect, the Volkshotel really honours its name as ‘People’s Hotel’
They have great intentions and plans, and we hope we can revise the ratings soon.
Address: Wibautstraat 150, Amsterdam