Weteringschans 136, Grachtengordel
There are actually two locations of Hotel V in Amsterdam, one in Centrum and one in Grachtengordel. Each is decked out in a warm design scheme that’s a mix of modern and vintage Scandinavian furniture alongside quirky accent pieces like antique portraits and decadent chandeliers. The hipster vibe is strong, too, with concierges decked out in Canadian tuxedoes and a bar menu that’s big on craft cocktails, which is usually filled with locals. The rooms themselves are a welcome place to settle in for a few days, with comfortable beds, cool bathrooms, and (worth mentioning since it's such a game-changer) excellent shower pressure.
Herengracht 115, Grachtengordel
The breathtaking Art Deco stained glass panels, gilded details, and winding wrought-iron staircase at this canal-side sauna were rescued from Au Bon Marché in Paris before it underwent a top-to-bottom renovation—the resulting space is a hybrid of immaculate Dutch craftsmanship and Parisian refinement. In addition to the various baths and relaxation rooms there are infrared saunas, a solarium, and the option to book a private massage. Fair warning: The unisex saunas and baths follow a strict no-swimsuits-allowed policy (towels are okay).
Kamerlingh Onneslaan 3, Grachtengordel
Everything about this farm-to-table restaurant is an experience: the slightly out-of-the-way location in a park in East Amsterdam, the almost entirely locally-sourced ingredients (all produce is grown on their own farm just outside the city) and most importantly, the fact that the dining room is actually a gigantic, glass-ceiling greenhouse. The multi-course lunch and dinner menus change according to the what’s in season and are set by the chef, allowing guests to sit back and not worry about ordering the right thing. What’s more, the staff will happily accommodate any and all dietary restrictions.
Keizersgracht 609, Grachtengordel
Housed in a beautiful old canal-side home, Foam is the place to go in Amsterdam to see interesting photography of every medium—from both established photographers and up-and-comers. (The museum has a designated exhibition space for new talent, which is a great place to discover rising artists.) In addition to their gallery space, Foam also organizes contemporary photography events and lectures, and publishes an international photography magazine three times a year.
The Waldorf Astoria
Herengracht 542-556, Grachtengordel
Spread out over six stunning buildings on the banks of one of Amsterdam’s most memorable canals, the Waldorf Astoria is just as much a historic landmark as it is a supremely plush place to stay. The rooms and suites are reflective of the unique surroundings, meaning that no two are the same—though the elegant décor and awe-inspiring views are consistent throughout. The central location means most sights are just a short stroll away—that said, the Guerlain spa (complete with indoor pool), a four-deep restaurant roster, and the immaculately manicured gardens make spending a day on property very compelling.
Buffet van Odette
Prinsengracht 598, Prinsengracht
This sweet soup-and-salad spot is set up right in the center of Amsterdam’s most notable sights and offers the kind of light-yet-nourishing breakfasts and lunches—including a robust salad bar where you can get heaps of fresh veggies for a good price—that fill you up without weighing you down. If staying late at the museums, the three-course dinner changes daily according to what’s in season. Weather-permitting, grab a seat at one of the outdoor tables.
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