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Hotel Review: Hotel Pulitzer Amsterdam (Starwood)

by on December 31, 2011 · 12 comments

in Starwood, Trip Reports

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This is an installment in my Istanbul: End of Year Mileage Run with Dad series. Posts include; Cheap Istanbul Flights: From $576 Total Roundtrip on Delta from JFKHelp Plan My Long Weekend in Istanbul,Flight Review: Alitalia JFK-Rome in CoachHotel Review: Westin Excelsior RomeHotel Review: Park Hyatt Istanbul Spa RoomIstanbul Eats and Excursions.

The next stop on my European adventure with Dad was Amsterdam, where we stayed at a Starwood Luxury Collection property called the Hotel Pulitzer (hey, I have to keep racking up those SPG points and status!). In fact, I almost exclusively use my Starwood points when I travel to Europe because the Euro makes hotels very expensive (well, at least for now) and I get treated extremely well as a Starwood Platinum in Europe – even on points stays.

This hotel is pretty awesome—basically they took over a block of 25 traditional 16th and 17th century Amsterdam canal houses along the famous Prinsengracht canal near the central city, and converted them into 230 rooms. Despite that size, from what we saw, a lot of the seem to have an individual character (and varying sizes—see below!).

The Upgrade

As happened at the Westin Rome, my SPG Platinum elite upgrade came through without a hitch, but in addition to that, my dad also got an upgrade.

We had booked two Classic Rooms using SPG’s Cash & Points option for 4,800 Starpoints and $90 each. These rooms go for around 259 euros or $340 a night, endowing those points with a value of about 5.2 cents each, which is already a great value in and of itself. However, dad was upgraded to a Junior Suite priced at around 449 euros ($585) and I got a huge two-bedroom duplex suite that goes for starting at 549 euros ($715).

The Suites

As I said, we originally booked Classic Rooms and had no idea what to expect since they range from 160-270 square feet, so you can end up with a really tiny room if you’re not aware. My last stay as a Platinum I got a regular canal view room, which was spacious and had a lot of character.

Luckily, dad’s Junior Suite (about 3 room categories higher) was a lot larger. Though these can also range widely from 310-635 square feet, he seemed to end up somewhere in the middle of that square footage, and loved the atmospheric feeling of the heavy wooden beams, and the extra space he had with a living room area with lots of seating.

My suite was a fair bit bigger at almost 1,000 square feet, and I loved the cheery bright green wooden beams crisscrossing the ceiling in one of the bedrooms, and the gable In addition to the two bedrooms, it had a large living room area with an armchair, sofa, small dining table, flat-screen and work desk.

Despite the disparity in room size, I really had a great experience at the Pulitzer. That’s thanks in part to my SPG Platinum perks like free WiFi (it’s usually for a fee) and free breakfast in the restaurant (last time I didn’t get free breakfast, but this time they said it was included, so I’m not sure if that’s a policy change or mistake on their side).

I also love properties that combine a sense of history with modern amenities, and this one certainly did that. Its setting was definitely, uniquely Amsterdam, and the design touches wouldn’t be out of place in any of the world’s most sophisticated destinations.

Apart from the rooms, we did drinks in the cozy lobby bar and they also offer a business center with free internet. For dinner on my last night, I met up with several Dutch  friends and we dined at the trendy Lion Noir restaurant, which was fantastic. Great ambiance and food – I had the leg of venison with pumpkin puree, Brussels sprouts, chestnuts and game sauce with cranberries which I’d highly recommend.

I took a few shots of my suite, and Christmastime Amsterdam, so take a look. As always, I love Amsterdam at all times of the year and look forward to my next visit – even if it’s only a day-long layover!


Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Brent

    I’m pretty sure breakfast is included with any room above an executive.

  • Hvsmith69

    pretty ugly rooms if you ask me, dungeonesque

    did you and daddio visit the ladies of the night while you were there?

  • Rebecca

    Brian, I’d love to stay here for my 2 night visit to Amsterdam June 29-July 1 but need to do the cash and points option. Right now there is no availability for those dates for cash and points. Is that something that could possibly open up in the coming months?

  • Brent

    I’ve stayed here a few times. What was interesting when I went to leave the hotel at night there was an escort with her madam just outside the entrance. The madam was arguing with some john on the phone that the hotel will only allow the girl up to the room if the guest escorts her to his room. Needless to say the guest did not want to do this. Went back into the hotel and the night auditor at the hotel told me this was very common. Kind of an experience to stay at this class of hotel and hear that it is allowed at the hotel as long as the guest is discreet.

  • Aeroman

    Dungeonesque? No one asked.

    This hotel looks great and it is awesome how they kept the old and blended with the new. The Dutch architecture is beautiful.
    Amsterdam is a city of many things to see and do. It always amazes me how the only thing many Americans associate it with is pot and prostitution. It demeans and give more worldly Americans like Brian a bad rap.

  • worldtraveller2

    I stayed here last year and loved this place. Just curious, since it is just you and your Dad, why would you get TWO suites versus just the two of you staying together? Are you both working on your SPG nights that count towards status? $90 bucks is a steel for this gem! that’s what we paid too.

  • Terence Cho

    Hmmm. Honestly, I’m not a fan of this hotel as I find it old, musty and resting on its laurels. I’m a bit surprised you rate it so highly, but to each his own.

    I’m looking forward to the Andaz Amsterdam.

  • CorinneL.

    I love, love, love Amsterdam and so does my husband. i am trying to work in another trip this year when we take our vacation in Italy. When it comes to Amsterdam have you stayed at the Grand by Soffitel? We stayed there in January 2008 and they have since updated the hotel to be more modern instead of traditional. Wonder if the service is still wonderful?!

  • Nathan

    I nominate this person for removal from posting privileges. If you don’t have anything productive or polite to contribute, then please just shut it.

  • Greg

    Just wondering why your SPG Platinum is so valuable here in Europe. You said

    “My last stay as a Platinum I got a regular canal view room, which was spacious and had a lot of character.” and yet this trip your dad as a NON Platinum got a suite???

    Anyhow a great review, and it seems like you love this hotel. I may try it out myself when I am in Amsterdam.

  • Tpg

    Brian

    1: how did dad get upgraded too?
    2: how I’d u get from AMS to Hotel?

  • Chris

    What room # was your 2 bedroom suite? I want to stay here for Queens Day in May and am looking for one of their rooms that sleeps more than 2.

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