We went to De L’Europe Amsterdam for a spa day at the end of a weekend of sightseeing and sampling Amsterdam’s nightlife. Amsterdam has every kind of dance festival and night club you could ask for. Anyone who’s been on a city break knows the amount of walking you do leaves you in need of a good massage. So it was the perfect way to finish our mini break.
The first thing to note about De L’Europe is its location. It’s in the city centre, just a 10 minute walk from the central station. It also looks out over the Amstel River (more on that later), which gives it a real sense of tranquility as well. That said, it’s also very close to Dam Square, which very much the heart of Amsterdam. It is surrounded by The Royal Palace, the Nieuwe Kerk and the War Memorial and at Christmas it hosts an extremely popular Christmas market that’s worth a visit.
A little background on the hotel. While facilities and service are all about the 21st century, the building itself references the history of Amsterdam and everything it does so well. It has five stars as well as a Michelin Star restaurant, so that gives you an idea of its pedigree. It is also a member of the Leading Hotels of the World, displays replicas of famous Dutch paintings throughout the hotel, and has historic masterpieces in the grand Promenade, where it is said they serve the city’s most authentic high tea.
We however, eschewed all of that on this occasion, for a day entirely spent in the spa. As I said before, although De L’Europe is in the centre of the city, it gives you a real sense of calm, especially in the spa.
When we arrived this was helped by the fact that there were very few people. However, as an exclusive location, the numbers are generally likely to be low when you visit, so it wasn’t just serendipity.
The spa is surprisingly spacious for a city hotel and is complete with a really good array of facilities for a complete spa experience. For example, you will find an indoor swimming pool, four bespoke beauty treatment rooms, a variety of saunas, a fitness centre and a beauty salon for hair and make-up.
In particular, the hydro pool and Jacuzzi are much bigger than any photos suggest and you could easily fit 15 people into the sauna. To give an idea as to how peaceful it is, I fell asleep in the sanarium as well as in the relaxation room, and was thrilled to be woken to a plentiful supply of tea and coffee throughout the day.
I promised we would come back to the riverside location, and I am doing so from the perspective of the relaxation area. Here you will find a door leading to a decked area complete with loungers, right by the water’s edge. It’s a really unique feature of a relaxation area to be able to enjoy a cup of tea looking at the boats go by, and it was a particularly special place to spend some quality time with a friend.
In addition to the dedicated relaxation area, there’s plenty of space around the pool to sit and unwind with a magazine. Here, you can also order food and drinks, which is a nice touch whether you’re visiting on your own or with friends (we opted for chips… because, why not?)
No spa experience would be complete without a treatment. While we could happily have kept ourselves entertained regardless (we arrived at 11am and left at 5pm, and the time flew by), I am pleased we didn’t go without.
The Swedish Massage was a classic and it was completely wonderful. Therapists made you feel really comfortable and at ease. So much so that it prompted us to take a little bit of the spa experience home with us courtesy of their retail section. They have beautiful products for sale and I was especially enamoured with the candles that they had.
De L’Europe is very much a luxury experience, whether you’re visiting with your partner or a friend. It’s not really big enough to visit with a group, but it’s ideal for either a romantic mini break or quality time with a really good friend. In addition to the hotel’s own facilities and charm, the city it sits in really adds to the character and experience.
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