Amsterdam is a city of many charms, from its iconic canals to the bicycles that pass over them. It seems appropriate when visiting the Venice of the North to stay in a hotel that’s equally charming. The Pulitzer Hotel Amsterdam definitely fits the bill, being a collection of twenty five 17th and 18th century townhouses located around a lovely courtyard garden. The hotel takes its name from Peter Pulitzer, the grandson of Pulitzer Prize founder Joseph Pulitzer, who purchased 12 houses and created the first five star hotel in Amsterdam. In keeping with the literary connection, books are dotted around the communal areas and guest rooms. Many of the bedrooms and suites have canal views and they all have oodles of style thanks to a recent refurbishment.
First Impressions of The Pulitzer Hotel Amsterdam
Our spacious canal-side room had very colorful decor and every amenity you could wish for. No wonder it’s considered to be one of the best luxury hotels in Amsterdam.
From high speed WiFi to complimentary fresh berries and mint water as well as a welcome card, it felt like a real home from home. The vintage style phone and other decorative touches like the multi-coloured pencils give the place a lot of character. Despite being in the heart of Amsterdam, it was incredibly quiet and we got a great night’s sleep.
We loved the quirky keyhole window giving natural daylight to the bathroom. The toiletries were by upscale New York brand, Le Labo.
Fans of art or any lovers of beautiful decor will be impressed with the Art Collector’s Suite. It has its own separate entrance on the canal, as well as the jewel in the Pulitzer’s art collection: Hals Brunch, by Thierry Bruet. Measuring 6 foot in length, it was created for the Pulitzer and is styled upon The Last Supper by Frans Hals, however if you get close you’ll spot a laptop, hamburgers and beer cans!
One of the best features of The Pulitzer Amsterdam is their huge courtyard garden with swing chairs and ample seating.
It was originally a collection of several gardens and when the town houses were purchased it was made into one interconnecting space.
There’s a flower seller in the lobby and a library with every winning novel of the Pulitzer prize.
Hotel Pulitzer has a lovely collection of paintings and sculptures. From a distance this looks like an Old Master still life painting of flowers but look closer and you’ll see that it’s actually a photograph of flowers made from plastic spoons! Created by Richard Kuiper, it’s a contemporary take on a classic and sums up the hotel’s philosophy well. Guests also have access to a handy business area where you can print boarding passes.
The Pulitzer has one of the best locations in Amsterdam, on Prinsengracht in De Negen Straatjes. The 9 Streets, as they’re known in English, is a very hip Amsterdam area with lots of cool shops and restaurants. They’re actually three streets that cross the Herengracht and Keizersgracht canals.
There are several good dining options in the Pulitzer Hotel Amsterdam. Jansz restaurant has a relaxed vibe but don’t let this fool you…the food is among the best in Amsterdam. Sipping a glass of sparkling wine from our table overlooking the canal, we tucked into an array of delicacies. Duck terrine and hand-dived scallops were both beautifully presented starters with a delicate flavour. Our main dishes of a miso-glazed cod with dashi broth and Vadouvan chicken had a pleasing umami taste. We hadn’t tried vadouvan before, but it’s a blend of Indian spices such as cumin seeds, mustard seeds, onion and garlic which are dried before being rubbed into meat dishes.
We had saved a little bit of room for this mouthwatering chocolate cake dessert with yoghurt ice cream. The acidity of the kumquat fruit balanced the sweetness of the chocolate perfectly.
Pause Café has great views of the courtyard garden with floor to ceiling windows. Its open to non residents and is beautifully decorated with green velvet chairs and gold accents. They serve bar snacks and light meals and hotel guests can take breakfast here or in Jansz.
Pulitzer’s Bar is considered one of the best in Amsterdam for cocktails and has a selection of drinks inspired by The Great Gatsby, such as the Dashing Daisy. With canal views and low lighting, it’s an intimate place to meet friends and family.
One of the highlights of our stay at Hotel Pulitzer was a canal tour on their own boat. It dates from 1909 and Winston Churchill took a tour in it in 1946. There’s a bar if you wish to buy drinks, and a cosy indoor area although we braved the October weather to get photos from the outdoor deck. The boat departs daily from 5 pm and from Thursday to Sunday there’s also an 11 am cruise. The tour costs €39 per person and lasts for 75 minutes. If you wish to push the boat our (pardon the pun 😉 why not book a private tour. Our captain pointed out all the sights, including the 7 bridges which you can only really see from the water’s edge. We sailed past the Hermitage Museum and close to NEMO Science Museum with its distinctive boat-shaped architecture.
It was a great way to end our stay at The Pulitzer, one of the most unique hotels in Amsterdam and a delight from start to finish.