30 hours in amsterdam

:: by Lizzie


I recently spent 30 hours in Amsterdam and wanted to share with you what I got up to.

Below are my suggestions for must dos when on a whirlwind trip to Holland’s capital…


T H E  H O X T O N  H O T E L :

My top recommendation of where to stay in Amsterdam right now would have to be the newly opened Hoxton Hotel. It was my base in the city for the short time I was there and I loved every minute I spent inside. As I mentioned in my monthly faves, it’s part of a group of London design hotels, but don’t let that put you off. It felt very Amsterdamy – if that’s a word!? It had a bit of London and New York thrown in of course but I definitely felt like I was in Amsterdam. The location is perfect. It’s on a residential street, not too far away from the hubbub of Damrac, that boasts a canal running down the middle of it. You can just tell that the area is full of locals and that’s exactly what I’m looking for when visiting a city. A full review of the hotel is coming soon so I won’t bore you with too much detail now, but I should mention that I loved by room so much that I could have quite easily spent my 30 hrs in bed (which happened to be one of the comfiest I’ve ever slept in) just enjoying the decor, super soft sheets and canal view.






D R O O G :

My first stop when arriving in Amsterdam is always hotel droog. If you only visit one of my suggested locations in Amsterdam, make it hotel droog. It’s sort of like Amsterdam’s answer to Dover Street Market. There’s great design, fashion, art and food which is all styled and curated under one roof in an inspiring and often surprising way. I’d recommend the brunch in their restaurant Room Service which includes the soup, salad and sandwich of the day along-side mini breakfast pastries, fresh juice and a pot of one of their many loose leaf teas. The shop on the ground floor carries many Dutch design classics as well as up-and-coming designers. Think HAY, Scholten & Baijings, Rob Brandt. Make sure you take a peek at the ‘Courtyard’, an exhibition space just up a few stairs from the restaurant. It’s well worth a look and will add even more wow to your breakfast, lunch or tea.






L U N C H :

The go-to place for food in my opinion is De Kas. Totally seasonal cooking, totally delicious results. Mum and I enjoyed a super fresh, light and very satisfying meal when we visited. You can hear more about what we ate for lunch here. I’m sure dinner is fabulous too but my tip would be to go for lunch so you can fully appreciate the greenhouse setting in daylight hours. Stop by the Frankendael Foundation, just next door within the grounds of Park Frankendael, for a browse of the current contemporary art hang.






S H O P P I N G :

Atelier Sukha – A very pinterest-worthy and Instagramable shop full of clothing and homeware in every shade of white.

Tenue De Nimes – Also on Haarlemmerstraat and also beautifully curated, this clothing store specialises in denim (as the name suggests). But that’s not all they do. I tend to splash out on a fabulously fragrance candle each time I visit. They seem to know their high-end candles just as well as their designer jeans.

Gathershop – In a slightly different end of town (Van Woustraat), you will find Gathershop, a store full of handmade objects by undiscovered labels and designers. Here thoughtful craftsmanship is key and simplicity is celebrated. It’s my best new find for jewellery and leather goods.

Hutspot – Walk just a little further down the street and you’ll come across Hubstop, one of my favourite places in Amsterdam. Each time I visit something new is happening in this womenswear, menswear and homeware store. There’s now a barber, a photo booth, a cafe and an art gallery all within the same space. Once you’ve browsed the rails, pop upstairs for a green juice and a sit down to while away some time Instagramming your favourite finds and weighing up which items will be coming home with you.









C O F F E E :

Lot Sixty One should be your first stop in Amsterdam if you’re a big coffee lover. It’s a roastery and coffee shop in one. They’re design lovers too and have recently shacked up in Amsterdam’s Urban Outfitters to bring great coffee to the young and stylish masses.






S T U D I O  L E N N E K E  W I S P E L W E Y :

The main reason for my trip was to visit Dutch ceramicist Lenneke Wispelwey. You’ll have heard all about her work and our upcoming exhibition upstairs at SMUG by now from reading my July Favourites and from checking out www.islingtondesigndistrict.com so make sure you stop by SMUG to see the show 19th – 27th September. If you’re in Amsterdam for only a short time and can’t make it out to her shop in Ahern (about an hours train ride from Amsterdam) then make sure you pop into the Stedelijk Art Museum shop where you’ll find pieces by the best up-and-coming Dutch designers, including Lenneke’s ceramics and also textiles by the equally talented Mae Engelgeer.






Do you have any top tips of design-led things to do, places to eat, sites to see when in Amsterdam? If so please do leave them below for everyone to check out and I’ll add them to my to-do list for next time I visit. Planning a trip to Amsterdam? You can also ask me for more info on any of the above suggestion in the comments section below.