The Toren Hotel in Amsterdam

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by Santorini Dave • Updated: January 31, 2019

Review of The Toren in Amsterdam.

The Toren – Over-the-top luxurious boutique hotel in the heart of the historic canal belt.

Spread across two stately 17th-century canalside buildings, The Toren is not subtle. The interior is all dark wood, chandeliers, gilded mirrors, luscious fabrics, and a color scheme heavy on crimson, purple and black, with a few surviving original features – painted ceilings, stucco molding. The rooms come in all shapes and sizes and are as eye-catching as the common spaces, with four-poster beds, gilded ceilings, and bold wallpaper in all but the smallest, along with contemporary touches such as Nespresso machines. Some bathrooms are open-plan; most come with walk-in rain showers and the pricier rooms come with jacuzzis. Service is well-informed and congenial.

Toren – Location

  • Address: Keizersgracht 164,1015 CZ Amsterdam.
  • Nearest Tram: Westermarkt.
  • Area: On a quiet street overlooking the Keizergracht canal in the historic Canal Belt, just a few minutes’ walk from the lively Jordaan district and the boutiques, cafes, and bars of the trendy Nine Streets neighborhood. The Dam Square and the Royal Palace are a 10-minute walk away, Anne Frank House is less than 5 minutes on foot, and the Museum Quarter is around 20 minutes away by tram. Good tram connections to the Centraal Station from the nearest tram stop (3-minute walk).
  • How to Get There: Take the train from Schiphol Airport to Centraal Station, then tram #13 to the Westermarkt stop, a 3-minute walk from the hotel.
  • Handy to: Anne Frank House, Nine Streets, historic canal ring, Dam Square.

The Toren – The Basics

  • Location: On a quiet street overlooking the Keizersgracht canal in the historic Canal Belt, just a few minutes’ walk from the lively Jordaan district and the boutiques, cafes, and bars of the trendy Nine Streets neighborhood. The Dam Square and the Royal Palace are a 10-minute walk away, Anne Frank House is less than 5 minutes on foot, and the Museum Quarter is around 20 minutes away by tram. Good tram connections to the Centraal Station from the nearest tram stop (3 minutes’ walk).
  • Ages: The hotel has an adult, romantic getaway feel to it, but children are welcome.
  • View: Many rooms overlook the Keizersgracht, while others offer garden views.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Pricier rooms come with jacuzzis.
  • Laundry: In-room laundry service.
  • Extras: There are bicycles available for hire (€15 per day).
  • When to Book: Reserve 3 months in advance for the mid-March to mid-May tulip season, the July and August high season, and the Christmas-New Year period.
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
  • Phone: 020-622-6033
  • Email[email protected]
  • Website: thetoren.nl

The Toren – Amenities

  • Pool: No pool.
  • Spa: No spa.
  • Fitness Center: No fitness center.
  • For Disabled Guests: Not suitable for disabled guests.
  • For Families: Kids under 6 eat free of charge, and there’s a 50% breakfast discount for children under 12. Babysitting services can be arranged, though.

The Toren – Food and Drink

  • Restaurant: Open from 11 am to 11 pm, the Bar Lounge serves light dishes, canapes, and platters of cold cuts. • $$.
  • Lounge/Bar: The atmospheric Bar Lounge serves expertly mixed cocktails and wine by the glass.
  • Breakfast: Not complimentary. A decent breakfast buffet (served in the Bar Lounge from 7 am to 11 am) costs €19 per person.
  • Room Service: Room service is available around the clock.

The Toren – Rooms

  • Room Types: Cosy Single • Cosy Single with Bath • Cosy Double • Cosy Double with Canal View • Cosy Double with Extra Bed • Deluxe Garden View • Deluxe Canal View • Special Deluxe Canal View • Special Deluxe Triple Canal View • Junior Suite • Garden Cottage • Royal Suite • Executive Suite • Double Executive Suite
  • Smoking Rooms: The Toren is 100% smoke-free.
  • Best Room: The Executive Suites comes with private garden terraces – a huge boon in the summer. All suites have whirlpool tubs big enough for 2, rain showers, and aromatherapy steam cabins.
  • For Families: Some of the larger rooms can accommodate an extra bed or 2.

Toren – Local Transport

  • Walking: Anne Frank House, the Medieval Centre, the Royal Palace, and the characterful Jordaan neighborhood are just minutes away on foot, the Red Light District is 10 minutes’ walk away, while the Museum Quarter is 25 minutes on foot from the hotel.
  • Tram: From the nearby Westermarkt stop (3-minute walk), trams run to Centraal Station via the Medieval Centre. To head south towards Leidseplein and the Museum Quarter, catch a tram from the nearby Dam stop (7-minute walk).
  • Taxis, Uber: Taxis and Uber charge around €35 from the airport to the hotel. Within the city, Uber rides cost around half of taxi fares. It’s often quicker to walk, cycle, or jump on a tram.

The Toren – What’s Nearby?

Recommended Nearby Tours

  • Gs Brunch Boat – The world’s only brunch boat sets sail year round from Keizersgracht 177. Extensive menus are accompanied by mimosas and bloody marys, together with an hour and a half’s Amsterdam canal tour. Start location: 2-minute walk
  • Lovers Canal Cruises – Hour-long small boat canal cruises depart from the dock near the Anne Frank House. Start location: 2-minute walk.
  • Secret Food Tours – Sample raw herring, stamppot, stroopwafel, pancakes, and more on this walking tour of traditional Dutch food hotspots. Meet at the Anne Frank House. Start location: 3-minute walk.
  • Jewish History Amsterdam – Themed walking tours of Jewish Amsterdam; tours of the western canal ring typically start at the Anne Frank House. Start location: 3-minute walk.

Best Nearby Restaurants

  • Spanjer en van Twist – Frequently changing, internationally-inspired menu, excellent apple tart, and a great canal-side terrace for people-watching. 1-Minute walk.
  • Restaurant Bleu – Salads, hamburgers, and croquet monsieurs for lunch and carpaccios and steaks for dinner at this hip brasserie. 3-minute walk.
  • Wil Graanstra Frites – Some of Amsterdam’s best Belgian fries, around the corner from Anne Frank House, served with ketchup, mayo, peanut sauce, or spicy sambal. 3-minute walk.
  • Pancake Bakery – Traditional Dutch pancakes with sweet and savory toppings, cooked in an open kitchen opposite the Anne Frank House. 4-minute walk.
  • Koh-I-Noor – Established Indian restaurant specializing in tandoori dishes and curries. 4-minute walk.
  • Bistro Bij Ons – Homestyle Dutch dishes such as stamppot (potatoes mashed with sausage and vegetables) and poffertjes (pancakes with butter and sugar). 5-minute walk.
  • Breda – One for special occasions. Multi-course, seasonal lunch and dinner menus by some of the city’s most creative chefs, plus 15 wines by the glass. Reservations essential. 5-minute walk.
  • La Perla Pizzeria – Thin-crust pizza wood-fired in a traditional stone oven. Bring your family or bring a date. Bookings recommended. 5-minute walk.
  • Japanese Pancake World – Thimble-sized Japanese spot where you choose what goes on the iron grill before eating the okonomiyaki pancake. 5-minute walk.
  • D&A Hummus Bistro – Compact Lebanese place renowned for its hummus dishes, though its lamb kebabs and spiced cod also shine. 6-minute walk.

Best Nearby Bars and Breweries

  • De Twee Zwaantjes – The Two Swans gets particularly lively on weekend nights with karaoke sessions. 2-minute walk.
  • ‘t Smalle – 18th-century jenever distillery turned beautiful brown café, with porcelain beer pumps and appealing riverside terrace. 3-minute walk.
  • Café de Vergulde Gaper – Former apothecary turned popular canal-side bar, with vintage posters and sunny terrace. Good for a coffee, beer, burger, or light lunch. 4-minute walk.
  • ‘t Arendsnest – Dutch beer only: almost 200 bottled brews, and 30 on tap. Choose between the canal-side terrace, or the gorgeous brown café interior, complete with copper jenever boilers. 5-minute walk.
  • Pulitzer’s Bar – Stylish art deco cocktail bar inside the eponymous hotel. Classic cocktails as well as expertly-mixed signature drinks. 6-minute walk.
  • Bar Prik – Retro gay bar that attracts a crowd in their 20’s and 30’s, with live DJ sets in the evenings. 6-minute walk.
  • Wijnbar DiVino – Superb selection of Italian wines – by the bottle and by the glass – with a supporting cast of cheese and charcuterie platters. 7-minute walk.
  • De Drie Fleschjes – Characterful 17th-century tasting house that specializes in liqueurs and jenevers. The accompanying snack of choice here is meatballs. 9-minute walk.
  • De Admiraal – Amsterdam’s largest traditional tasting house, with 16 jenevers and 60 liqueurs. 10-minute walk.

Nearby Shopping and Cool Shops

The Toren – The Hotel

The Bar Lounge is popular for its wine selection and cocktails.

Open daily until 1 am, the Bar Lounge serves carefully-selected wines by the glass and expertly-mixed cocktails.

The Bar Lounge serves breakfast buffet, light dishes, and snacks.

A continental breakfast buffet is served in the Bar Lounge from 7 am to 11 am. The rest of the day, the Bar Lounge serves light dishes and snacks until 11 pm.

The guests can lounge in the pleasant garden terrace.

There is a pleasant garden terrace for guest use.

Compact cosy rooms feature Nespresso machines and either tubs or showers.

The Cosy rooms are the most compact of the accommodations on offer, but some come with canal views, and all are equipped with Nespresso makers and either tubs or showers.

Special Deluxe Canal View has an in-room jacuzzi.

The Special Deluxe Canal View comes with an in-room Jacuzzi and separate rain shower. And views of the Keizersgracht canal, of course.

Deluxe rooms with canal views cost a bit more.

Deluxe rooms look out either over the canal or the garden; it’s worth paying a bit extra for a canal view.

Most bathrooms have a bath-and-shower combo.

Most bathrooms come with a bath-and-shower combo.

The Junior Suite features a whirlpool bath and an aromatherapy steam cabin.

While the Junior Suite doesn’t have much of a view (it looks out over the back of the hotel), it does come with a whirlpool bath, twin rain showers, and an aromatherapy steam cabin.

The Executive Suite has a spacious and colorful sitting area.

The Executive Suite has a spacious sitting area, complete with fainting couch.

Royal Suite has several period features.

The appropriately grand Royal Suite looks out over the garden and boasts many period features, such as the ornate plastered ceilings.

The Royal Suite has a jacuzzi and a rain shower.

The Royal Suite is equipped with a jacuzzi and rain shower, both accessed via a typical canal house staircase.

The Garden Cottage is very romantic.

The sumptuous Garden Cottage, located in the Main House, is one of the hotel’s most romantic rooms.

The Garden Cottage comes with a big jacuzzi and a steam cabin.

The Garden Cottage bathroom comes with a jacuzzi big enough for 2, as well as an aromatherapy steam cabin.

Spanjer en van Twist serves an imaginative and ever-changing menu.

A block and a half west, Spanjer en Van Twist is one of the more imaginative restaurants in the western canal ring, with a frequently changing menu and a nice canal-side terrace.

The Tulip Museum showcases the country's centuries-old obsession with tulips.

The Tulip Museum is across Prinsengracht canal from the Anne Frank House. If you’re not in Amsterdam during tulip season, it’s well worth visiting the museum to understand the country’s centuries-old obsession with the flower.

De Twee Zwaantjes is a very local Dutch pub.

Next to the Tulip Museum, if you want to experience a very local Dutch pub, try De Twee Zwaantjes, particularly on weekday evenings.

Universe on a T-Shirt lets its customers choose the design.

Nearby is one of Jordaan’s many independent gift stores – Universe on a T-Shirt – where you get to choose the design.

Rock Archive sells limited edition music prints.

On the edge of the narrow Egelantiersgracht canal, Rock Archive is the place to shop for limited editions prints of David Bowie, Leonard Cohen, and other music icons.

‘t Smalle is popular for its selection of local jenevers and outdoor terrace.

Just across the canal, ‘t Smalle is one of the most atmospheric bars in the city for trying the local jenever spirit. Great little outdoor terrace too.

Japanese Pancake World is a popular cook-it-yourself okonomiyaki pancake place.

A block west, the narrow street is lined with a number of good eateries with an ethnic bent; Japanese Pancake World is a cook-it-yourself okonomiyaki pancake joint.

Rebel Wines sells organic, bio-dynamic, and specialty wines.

Look for your organic, biodynamic, and other specialist wines at Rebel Wines, just around the corner.

La Perla is one of Amsterdam's best pizzerias.

A block away along Tuinstraat is La Perla, considered one of Amsterdam’s best pizzerias, with thin-crust pizzas fired in a traditional wood-burning oven. It’s super-popular, so book ahead.

Wijnbar DiVino is an excellent Italian place known for its huge charcuterie platters.

3 blocks away, along busy Westerstraat, is Wijnbar DiVino, one of several excellent Italian places in Jordaan. This is more a wine bar than a restaurant, with lots of Italian wines by the glass, plus huge charcuterie platters. Bring friends.

D&A Hummus is a popular local dining option.

Another great local dining option is D&A Hummus, also along Westerstraat.

I Love Vintage is popular for its vintage apparel and accessories.

There are a few independent boutiques dotted around the part of the historic canal ring around the hotel; I Love Vintage stands out for its vintage dresses and accessories, as well as vintage-style women’s apparel.

The Pancake Bakery serves delicious traditional Dutch filled pancakes.

Nearby, the Pancake Bakery is good any time of day for traditional Dutch pancakes with sweet or savory fillings.

Café de Vergulde Gaper is set in a former canal-side apothecary.

Around a block north, Café de Vergulde Gaper is one of the few bars in the north part of the canal ring; it’s a former apothecary with a popular canal-side terrace.

Restaurant Bleu is known for its burgers, salads, and steaks.

Half a block east, Restaurant Bleu is the pick of casual dining options in the northern canal ring, with burgers and salads for lunch, and more substantial steak dinners.

Anne Frank House is one of Amsterdam's most popular destinations.

A couple of blocks southwest of the hotel is the house where Anne Frank and her family hid from the Nazis and one of Amsterdam’s most popular attractions. Book your ticket online to beat the queues.

Wiil Graanstra is an excellent place to have Belgian fries.

Right nearby, Westermarkt square is where you’ll find one of the best places for Belgian fries in the city – Wil Graanstra. Have them with mayo, ketchup, peanut sauce, or sambal.

Koh-i-Noor is a local favorite for its curries and North Indian dishes.

Across the street, Koh-i-Noor is a longstanding local favorite for curries and Northern Indian dishes.

Bistro Bij Ons serves large portions of hearty Dutch classics.

Around the corner, Bistro Bij Ons serves gut-busting portions of hearty Dutch classics.

Dam Square is Amsterdam's busiest square, and features the Nationaal Monument.

From Westermarkt, a short walk or 1 stop on the tram brings you to Dam Square, the popular gathering point in the heart of the Medieval Centre.

The Royal Palace is a popular tourist attraction.

The big attraction here is the Royal Palace – the official residence of the King of the Netherlands. When the king’s away, you can check out the sumptuous rooms.

Nieuwe Kerk is known for its beautiful oak chancel and excellent exhibitions.

On the north side of the square, Nieuwe Kirk is well worth a look for its beautiful oak chancel and excellent temporary art and photography exhibitions.

Madam Tussaud's is located at the corner of the square.

Madame Tussaud’s Amsterdam is on Dam’s southern side, in case celebrity wax works are your thing.

Mark Raven Amsterdam Art sells Amsterdam-inspired memorabilia and t-shirts.

Just north of Dam, there are several shops along Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal worth checking out: one is Mark Raven – Amsterdam cityscapes, prints, and t-shirts.

Rush Hour Records is popular for its superb vinyl range.

Another is Rush Hour Records, a large vinyl and CD shop with a particularly good house and techno selection.

De Drie Fleschjes is very popular for its range of jenevers and local liqueurs.

The maze of tiny medieval alleyways north of Dam is dotted with bars and eateries. The 17th-century De Drie Fleschjes is not to be missed if you want to try jenevers and other local spirits.

Bar Prik is a popular gay club on Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal.

There is also a lively gay nightlife in this part of the Medieval Centre; try Bar Prik back on Nieuwezijds Voorburgwal if that’s your scene.

Puccini Bomboni specializes in the city's best handmade chocolates.

Back in the canal ring, there are 2 worthwhile shops facing the tiny Torensluis square that overlooks the Singel canal: 1 is a branch of Puccini Bomboni – some of Amsterdam’s best handmade chocolates.

Reypenaer Cheese Tasting offers cheese tastings in its cellar.

Across the street is the Reypenaer Cheese Tasting; there are cheese shops with a wider range of Dutch cheeses, but this place does regular cheese tastings in the cellar (book ahead).

Amsterdam Duck Store specializes in novelty rubber ducks.

A short walk west is the Amsterdam Duck Store; novelty rubber ducks range from Harry Potter and Madonna to Game of Thrones characters.

Breda offers imaginative, seasonal, multi-course tasting menus.

Just south of Torensluis is Breda, one of the most imaginative restaurants in the city, the higher-end sister to Guts & Glory (off Rembrandtplein), and a great place to bring a date. Reserve well ahead for the seasonal, multi-course tasting menus.

The Otherist is a weird but fun independent shop.

Right near the hotel is one of the canal ring’s weirder independent shops: The Otherist.

‘t Arendsnest serves 200+ bottled and 30+ on tap Dutch beers.

A couple of blocks northeast of the hotel, facing the Herengracht canal, is ‘t Arendsnest. Local beer lovers swear by it: it only serves Dutch beer – over 200 bottled brews and around 30 on tap. Atmospheric interior and great canal-side terrace.

The views of the Herengracht canal are particularly good outside ‘t Arendsnest.

Just outside ‘t Arendsnest, you get excellent views of the stately Herengracht canal.

Nine Streets shopping neighborhood is close to the Keizersgracht canal.

While The Toren is not quite in the hip Nine Streets shopping neighborhood, which is densely packed with boutiques and cafes, Nine Streets is only a short walk south along Keizersgracht canal.

Mendo is an excellent bookstore with a good selection of coffee table books.

One of the best specialist bookstores in the city, Mendo stocks a wide range of books on art, architecture, and design.

De Admiraal is popular for its selection of jenevers and local spirits.

A block east, along Herengracht canal, De Admiraal is a must for those wanting to try local jenevers and liqueurs – it’s the largest tasting house in the city.

Pulitzer’s Bar serves excellent cocktails by the canal.

Back along Keizersgracht canal, Pulitzer’s is a superb cocktail bar with a great canal-side terrace.

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