Monday, July 29, 2013

Review: Sharm Hotel in Amsterdam

The Sharm Hotel in Amsterdam is a very basic hotel in an excellent location. If you just need a place to sleep while you're visiting the city, but don't need any special comforts, it might work for you.

The Sharm won't work for you, though, if you don't like to climb stairs or you're bringing heavy bags. The first thing you'll find is that you have to ascend an incredibly steep flight of stairs just to reach the check-in desk, and then one or two more equally steep flights to reach your room. We were huffing and puffing by the time we reached our top-floor room and we were only carrying two modest backpacks.

Our room was small, and the bathroom even smaller. You could practically sit on the toilet, wash your hands in the sink and take a shower all at the same time.

There was no air conditioning, which probably isn't a big deal most of the year, but we happened to arrive on one of the hottest days of the year and our room was quite warm and stuffy.

Still, the room did have a TV and working Wi-Fi. The beds were small. The pillows were quite good.

The Sharm's big strength is its location. It's just a 15-minute walk from the Amsterdam Centraal train station and just a 2-minute walk from the Anne Frank House. You're close to Dam Square, and there are plenty of restaurants and shops in the area. It's pleasant to stroll along the canals in the neighborhood.

There's no automated way to reserve a room through the hotel's website, but there is a contact form. I made our reservation through, and we ended up paying $191 for one night in our four-bed room. I consider that really expensive for this sort of accommodation, but all the hotels in Amsterdam seemed to be high-priced in the middle of summer.

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