InterContinental Amstel Amsterdam
There's no better way to discover historic Amsterdam than from its many canals. You can start your day exploring the city's waterways with a private tour on one of our authentic saloon boats. As you cruise past the city’s tall canal houses you can enjoy a full breakfast or sip mugs of steaming coffee. Afterwards, the skipper can drop you off at the Rijksmuseum to view priceless masterpieces of European art. The concierge is happy to help with booking tickets, so you'll even avoid the queue.
After lunch at the hotel, you can take a leisurely 25 minute stroll along the canals to the Van Gogh Museum, which houses a vast collection of the great artist’s work. The Stedelijk Museum next door explores contemporary art and design, and a quick taxi ride will take you to the picturesque De 9 Straatjes (Nine Streets) neighbourhood, dating from the 17th century. Today it's home to a cluster of vintage fashion boutiques, bars and cosy cafés, ideal for an afternoon drink or some gentle shopping.
As the sun sets over Amsterdam, relax with a cocktail in the hotel's chic A bar. For a truly authentic experience sample some jenever, a traditional Dutch spirit and precursor to gin served in tulip-shaped glasses. Classical music lovers can book tickets for an orchestral concert at the stately, 19th century Concertgebouw concert hall nearby, but you don't even have to leave the hotel. Book dinner at our gourmet Amstel Restaurant and you can settle in for a memorable gastronomic treat.
Originally, the hotel was to consist of four wings built around a glass-covered inner courtyard with access for coaches on Sarphatistraat. Of the preliminary design only the westerly wing, facing the river, was actually built. Unfortunately, Dr. Sarphati died before the property was completed. When the hotel opened in 1867 the most expensive rooms were on the ground floor as lifts did not exist yet. In the first years of existance, the Hotel owed its exceptional clientele of royals and celebrities to Dr. Mezger who started his practice in the Amstel Hotel during the opening years. In the Amstel Health Club of the hotel you can still find a remembrance plaque.
AMSTERDAM'S THREE CROSSES
The city's official motto "Heldhaftig, Vastberaden, Barmhartig" (Valiant, Resolute, Merciful) which is displayed on the coat of arms, was bestowed on it by Queen Wilhelmina in 1947 in recognition of the city's bravery during World War II.
Amsterdam: 17th Century
In the 17th Century Amsterdam was the most important city in the world in terms of trade. The most successful businessmen had houses on the main canals and in the nearby countryside along the rivers, like the Amstel and the Vecht. The inner ring of city canals has been nominated by UNESCO as World Heritage List.
Amsterdam: Capital City
Although Amsterdam is the capital of The Netherlands, the Houses of Parliament, ministries and embassies are all based in The Hague.
Built in 1648, this former town hall was built during the Golden age of the Netherlands but turned into a Royal Palace in 1800 by Napoleon's brother Louis. As the Amsterdam soil consists mainly of marshy subsoil (peat) it was built on 13.600 piles driven 20 metres deep.