The College Hotel Amsterdam

a lifestyle all of its own


find it in | Amsterdam, The Netherlands
we did | Concept, Architectural and Interior Design for a boutique hotel with 40 rooms

Within months of opening, The College Hotel won the Prix Villégiature Paris award for ‘Best Hotel Interior Design in Europe’ and the 2005 Award for Best New Hotel Design in the Netherlands.

This 1894 building is a former school, a role still evident in the wide staircases, 5-metre-high ceilings and converted gymnasium, now a trend-setting gourmet restaurant whose menu was originally curated by the chef Schilo van Coevorden. The design throughout pays homage to Holland’s rich heritage and the restaurant celebrates the Golden Age of Dutch cuisine. In fact, all things Dutch are celebrated, most noticeably with a 1.5-metre-high Delft Blue tulip vase in the bar. The bar itself is made of onyx and Fendi-leather and has become one of the hottest watering holes in town. There are also seven chandeliers in the public areas (the largest is in the ladies’ Powder Room and features diamond crystals). In the 40 bedrooms the palette of colours used in the restaurant (moss greens and cream) and bar (orange, lavender and brown) has been toned down to warm browns. Most of the furniture was designed especially for the hotel and hand crafted in Italy. The bed linen was also sourced from Italy and created specially for The College Hotel’s beds. The chairs and tables in the restaurant feature silk tassels and screws that have been individually bronzed; these are techniques and effects which hark back to 17th-century Holland.

As its name suggests, the hotel is a training ground for students at Amsterdam’s ROC Hotel School. The building is a classified historical monument. We endeavoured to preserve the historical aspects of this classified building, which was built in the same period as the world-famous Rijksmuseum nearby, by applying new additions to the structure that look original but were actually created specifically for this renovation. This included balancing new design details, necessary in a modern hotel, with the history of the building, resulting in an elegant and tranquil environment.