This is my review of the new Element Amsterdam hotel.
The amount of new hotel concepts today is overwhelming and, in order to stand out, hotels need to find their niche.
Element By Westin is an extended stay hotel brand focusing on the environment by working towards being an eco-friendly sustainable hotel.
The brand was first introduced in America and opened its first European hotel in Frankfurt in 2014. Element Amsterdam followed in April 2016.
As I had to travel to Amsterdam for my CityJet flight review, I asked Starwood if I could take a look so that HFP readers could learn more about this new brand. The hotel provided me with two free nights. As usual, Head for Points paid for all of its incidental costs.
Inside Element Amsterdam
The key point to make up front is that Element Amsterdam is not in the historic city centre. Located inside the shopping mall Gelderlandplein, it is a 10 minute walk from the business district Zuidas. Travelling into the city centre requires a train or bike ride.
As an extended stay property, the hotel consists of 160 studios and suites, all with a fully equipped kitchen, free breakfast and free wifi throughout the hotel.
Even if you don’t need to be in the immediate area, this hotel is worth considering because it is considerably cheaper than downtown hotels and you get a LOT more space for your money.
If you have Starwood Preferred Guest or Marriott Rewards points, Element Amsterdam is also an interesting redemption option at just 7,000 SPG points per night – compared to 20,000 points per night for the W Amsterdam in the centre.
Getting to Element Amsterdam
Schiphol Airport is about 30 minutes away. I took the train to Zuid station (around 8 minutes) and walked 10 minutes to the hotel. I only found out about the free shuttle bus from Zuid station to the shopping centre Gelderlandplein on my second day:
Element Amsterdam is literally inside and on top of the shopping centre Gelderlandplein and the entrance is next to the shopping centre entrance. The area outside is a bit busy at times, however the reception area was never overflowing with people.
Check in was quick and easy and only left me a tiny bit confused when the receptionist starting speaking in German and I didn’t notice at first ……
My room was a one bedroom suite overlooking the shopping centre with a fully equipped kitchen, dining table and sofa corner. It was a very impressive set up – far bigger and nicer than my London flat!
The kitchen had two hotplates, a microwave and a fridge. There was also a toaster, plastic containers for those who love to plan their lunch in advance and a Nespresso machine – although there were only two capsules for free and one of them was decaf. Additional capsules can be purchased next to the reception for €1 each.
It was incredibly rainy for the two days I was in Amsterdam as the picture below shows. This was the rain-drenched view out of my window over the roof of the shopping centre:
This is the sitting area in my room. The lamp shade is made of cardboard – part of their environmental approach – which you can’t necessarily see immediately.
The bed was a large double, super comfortable and the pillows were just the right thickness.
The bathroom had a spacious shower with a rainfall and a shower head.
Shampoo and shower gel by Pharmacopia were attached to the wall with the shampoo being a combined conditioner. Looking at my hair after I washed it, the quality of the products was pretty good.
The empty space next to the sink was large enough for my make-up selection.
The hairdryer was great with temperature regulation and, for once, no button that needed to be pushed down – yes I will continue mentioning hairdryers. I also appreciated the socket in the bathroom (one thing I will never get used to in the UK) as I believe bathroom mirrors were invented for make up and drying hair.
This is a picture of a studio room which is smaller than the one bedroom studio I received. The facilities are identical, apart from the sofa, albeit squeezed into a smaller space.
The Element Amsterdam hotel also provides free bicycles if you want to explore the area the Dutch way – which is what I did. I really wanted to cycle to the city centre to see how long it took but as it was raining heavily I ended up taking the train. Public transport is very good in Amsterdam but the ticket machines don’t accept cash and you need a credit card in order to buy a ticket.
In Part 2 of my review of the Element by Westin Amsterdam I look at the restaurants, gym and meeting spaces – you can read it by clicking here. If you are reading this via our daily emails, you will not have received Part Two so you have to click through.
I made a short video of the hotel which will give you a better feeling for how smart it is inside. If you can’t see the video, click here to visit the Head for Points YouTube page where you can watch it, and where you can subscribe so you are notified of future videos:
(Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)