Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Antwerp's Historic Hideaway
Nestled along the winding cobblestone streets of Antwerp's historic center sits a hidden gem - The Pulitzer Amsterdam. This luxurious property seamlessly blends Antwerp's rich history with contemporary style and comfort.
Built inside 25 restored 17th and 18th century townhouses, The Pulitzer provides an intimate setting in the heart of Antwerp's cultural district. Just steps from the famed Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekathedraal, it surrounds guests in classic architecture from stone facades to vaulted brick ceilings. Inside, the hotel artfully pairs these historic details with chic modern furnishings and art.
While the property itself provides a living connection to Antwerp's past, it also offers every modern amenity. Guests rave about the property's spa, featuring a striking indoor pool, Finnish sauna, and various treatment rooms. The Pulitzer's spacious guest rooms provide tranquil retreats, with free WiFi, Nespresso machines, and luxurious Pratesi linens.
When hunger strikes, two on-site restaurants provide delightful dining options without leaving the hotel's elegant confines. Breakfast in the airy conservatory at The Pulitzer Restaurant, then return for creative French fare at dinner. Or unwind over Belgian classics and craft cocktails at the cozy Pulitzer Bar.
Beyond its doors, The Pulitzer provides a perfect home base for exploring Antwerp's cultural treasures. Stroll along the riverfront and marvel at centuries-old architecture surrounding the Grote Markt. Lose yourself for hours among the works of Rubens and Van Dyck at the Royal Museum of Fine Arts. Or discover Antwerp's reputation as the "diamond capital of the world" at the awe-inspiring Diamond District.
What else is in this post?
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Antwerp's Historic Hideaway
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Bruges Boutique Retreat
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Ghent's Designer Digs
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Haarlem's Artsy Abode
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Maastricht's Chic Stays
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Rotterdam's Architectural Gems
- Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - The Hague's Hip Hangouts
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Bruges Boutique Retreat
Step back in time amongst the medieval splendor of Bruges at The Pand Hotel, an intimate boutique retreat in the heart of the city. Enveloped by UNESCO-protected architecture dating back to the 13th century, this charming property blends into its historic surroundings while offering a peaceful hideaway from the crowds.
Tucked away on Pandreitje Street, The Pand Hotel occupies a row of three classic Bruges townhouses overlooking one of the city's prettiest canals. Inside, the historic exterior gives way to chic, contemporary spaces filled with modern art and sleek furnishings. Neutral tones and natural materials create a soothing ambience, while large windows flood the rooms with natural light.
Despite its small size, The Pand Hotel punches above its weight class with amenities. Guests particularly praise the lavish breakfast spread served each morning, featuring fresh local flavors like Gouda cheese, charcuterie, and Belgian waffles. The hotel's cozy lounge provides a perfect spot to unwind over Belgian craft beers or fine wines from the bar's extensive list.
While The Pand Hotel offers respite from the hustle of central Bruges, it also enjoys an enviable location steps from all the top sights. Meander along postcard-perfect canals that weave past medieval facades and graceful stone bridges. Lose yourself for hours inside the Groeningemuseum's collection of Flemish Primitives. Or sip Belgian brews al fresco overlooking the tranquil Minnewater lake ringed by swans.
Guests of The Pand Hotel particularly appreciate the knowledgeable staff, who happily share local tips and recommendations. They can book canal cruises, secure restaurant reservations, or arrange bicycle rentals for further exploring this fairy-tale city. Many also take advantage of the hotel's partnerships with area attractions to skip the ticket lines.
With just 38 rooms, The Pand Hotel provides a more personalized experience than larger chain hotels in Bruges. The staff learns each guest's name and preferences, adding thoughtful touches like leaving personalized notes or favorite snacks in the room. While the cozy rooms tend towards smaller sizes, they charm with exposed brick walls, plush linens, and modern rain showers.
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Ghent's Designer Digs
Tucked away in Ghent's historic Patershol neighborhood sits 1898 The Post, a design-focused boutique hotel occupying a converted former post office. This industrial-chic property charms guests with its creativerepurposing of the historic building, while surrounding them in contemporary Belgian artistry.
As the name suggests, 1898 The Post once housed Ghent's main post office. The historic facade remains largely unchanged, with its towering dome crowning the imposing brick exterior. Inside, however, Dutch design studio Concrete has transformed the space into a modern architectural marvel. The guest rooms and public spaces juxtapose raw, industrial touches like exposed brick and pipes against sleek, modern furnishings and decor.
Beyond admiring the contemporary interior design, guests also enjoy amenities tailored towards design aficionados. The on-site POST bar serves artisanal Belgian cocktails and local craft beers, surrounded by edgy interior finishes like a moss wall. The hotel also offers custom-designed urban bikes for rent, featuring a patented aluminum frame conceived in Ghent.
For those eager to discover Ghent's artistic side, 1898 The Post enjoys an ideal location in the hip Patershol quarter. Its narrow cobblestone streets harbor creative boutiques, contemporary art galleries, and quirky cafes. The acclaimed Design Museum Gent sits just steps away, housing a world-class collection of furniture, textiles, and graphic arts.
Guests particularly highlight 1898 The Post's spacious, loft-style accommodations. While preserving historic architectural details like exposed beams, the rooms feature chic modern interiors with designer furnishings and striking contemporary art. Rainshowers, luxurious linens, and floor-to-ceiling windows further enhance the urban oasis vibe.
Beyond admiring the public spaces, many guests spend time relaxing in the hotel's spa and indoor swimming pool. The serene facility provides a peaceful contrast to the post-industrial edge found elsewhere. Massages, facials, and other wellness treatments incorporate natural, local ingredients for an authentically Belgian spa experience.
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Haarlem's Artsy Abode
Tucked away in Haarlem's leafy outskirts sits the charming Ambassade Hotel, a peaceful hideaway celebrating art and nature just a short train ride from Amsterdam. This refined boutique property wows guests with its eclectic design touches and bespoke experiences tailored to art aficionados.
Occupying a 1902 manor house amid gorgeous gardens, Ambassade Hotel immerses guests in turn-of-the-century grandeur meets contemporary chic. You'll discover historic details like parquet floors and ornate moldings paired with edgy modern art installations and sleek Scandinavian-inspired furnishings. The hotel's glass-enclosed lounge and tranquil courtyard provide captivating indoor-outdoor spaces to admire the unique decor.
Beyond aesthetics, Ambassade Hotel excels at catering to design-conscious travelers through exclusive arts partnerships. Guests gain VIP access to Haarlem institutions like the Frans Hals Museum, showcasing the 17th-century master's portrait techniques. The hotel also partners with edgy local galleries like Parts Project, arranging private viewings of provocative contemporary works.
Satisfying traveler's inner epicure is also an art form at Ambassade. The hotel's romantic restaurant inhabits a glass pavilion overlooking the gardens, serving seasonal tasting menus that thoughtfully incorporate local flavors. Their award-winning bar Shake'n Stir woos mixology nerds with molecular cocktails and tastings of rare Dutch spirits.
Guests particularly praise the "arty vibe" throughout Ambassade Hotel, from in-room accents like photography books and easels to the rotating exhibits in the lobby gallery. While rooms range from cozy standards to spacious suites, all feature design-forward touches like rainfall showers, Nespresso machines, and bathrobes from premium Dutch brand Lytess.
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Maastricht's Chic Stays
Embraced by medieval walls and crossed by romantic canals, Maastricht charms visitors with its deep history and irresistible old-world charm. But among the Gothic facades and cobblestone streets, discerning travelers will discover contemporary cool at Maastricht's chicest places to stay. These properties blend historic architectural details with sleek, modern interiors, surrounding guests in the best of old and new.
One shining example is Kruisherenhotel Maastricht, occupying a 15th-century former church and cloister. Inside the Gothic arched windows and lofty vaulted ceilings, Dutch designers have juxtaposed raw industrial materials like concrete and steel against refined luxuries like rainfall showers and linens from Maastricht's historic JAB Anstoetz fabric house. Guests particularly praise the spa's lavish yet minimalist design, featuring a stunning 25-meter pool that seems to stretch into infinity.
Nearby, Boutique Hotel Sint Jacob provides another urban sanctuary steps from Maastricht's bustling Vrijthof square. Its 14th-century guest house retains its medieval magic through original details like exposed brick walls, tile floors, and antique four-poster beds. The hotel's newer contemporary wing contrasts sleek, modern interiors but seamlessly connects guests to the historic spaces.
At the edge of Maastricht, Kasteel Borgharen casts a striking silhouette that reveals its 13th-century moated castle origins. Inside, however, carefully restored guest rooms exude refined modern elegance with luxurious fabrics, rainfall showers, and river views. Guests particularly praise the castle's Michelin-starred restaurant, Beluga Loves You, where Chef Jacob Jan Boerma artfully reinvents French cuisine.
Beyond admiring their own smart design, Maastricht's contemporary-cool hotels also provide insider access to the best of the city's arts and culture. Properties like the Van Der Valk Hotel arrange behind-the-scenes museum tours and private concerts at St. Servaas Basilica. And at hip hotels like Hotel Garage Suites, guests mingle at the buzzy on-site brasserie with Maastricht's young creatives and university crowd.
While blending historic and modern, Maastricht's exquisitely designed hotels still retain intimate charm and personalized service. At The American Hotel, a property that has welcomed illustrious guests like Thomas Jefferson since the 18th century, the exceptional staff addresses you by name and tidies your room when you head out for the day. Nearby at Boutique Hotel Sint Jacob, the gracious host Martijn presides over the breakfast room each morning, making sure each guest's stay gets off to a delightful start.
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - Rotterdam's Architectural Gems
At the heart of the tourism debate lies a deep desire to preserve Faroese culture and protect the islands' fragile arctic ecosystem. This remote North Atlantic archipelago has developed a way of life intimately connected to its rugged landscapes and unforgiving climate. From grass-roofed houses to pilot whale drives, Faroese traditions have been passed down for generations and remain an integral part of residents' cultural identity.
However, some locals fear mass tourism could erode the social fabric that binds their small, tight-knit communities. They worry their native language, Faroese, will become lost as more interactions happen in English. Traditional chain dancing, officially recognized by UNESCO as "Intangible Cultural Heritage", could be reduced to a performance for tourists rather than a living, evolving practice. Even the controversial grindadráp, or whale hunt, is seen as an expression of Faroese identity that some residents believe should be managed by locals, not outside forces.
Preserving natural habitats and wildlife is another concern raised by proponents of limiting visitor numbers. The Faroes' treeless slopes, sheer sea cliffs and cascading waterfalls provide vital seabird breeding grounds, but increased foot traffic threatens fragile vegetation and disturbs nesting. Locals call for education and enforced regulations to prevent littering, off-trail hiking, and disrespecting protected bird areas that travelers may not be aware of. Some tourism companies have adopted practices like cleaning gear to prevent introducing invasive species that could displace native plants and animals.
Those in favor of restrictions cite global examples like Maya Bay in Thailand, where damage from tourism led to the iconic beach being closed for rehabilitation. They stress the importance of a proactive approach before the Faroes' pristine vistas and Arctic biodiversity is lost. By pausing now, they say, steps can be taken to build proper infrastructure and develop visitor guidelines that allow tourism to resume sustainably.
Yet opponents argue tourism brings economic benefits that enable preservation efforts. Revenue supports cultural institutions like the Faroese language school and helps restore historic grassroofed huts. Well-managed tourism can educate visitors about protecting environments and respecting traditions without excluding them. With open communication and proper planning, they believe tourism can co-exist with conservation.
Modern Luxury: 5 Stylish City Hotels in Belgium and the Netherlands - The Hague's Hip Hangouts
The Hague often gets overlooked by tourists flocking to Amsterdam, but this regal seaside city has plenty of hip hangouts to discover. Beyond the landmarks, you'll find The Hague humming with youthful creative energy, multicultural influences, and an emerging foodie scene.
Start your exploration in the lively Bierkade neighborhood bordering the city's famous canals. On sunny days, locals and visitors pack the terraces of waterside cafes like De Zwarte Ruiter. Their lengthy beer list highlights top Dutch breweries alongside Belgian favorites like Delirium Tremens. Nearby, cozy bookstore cafe 't Suskabinet woos bibliophiles with over 10,000 secondhand titles and beer brewed exclusively for the shop.
Venture east to the diverse Schilderswijk and you'll find a bustling indoor food market at De Bazar. Graze through the stalls trying Surinamese bara, aromatic Turkish kebabs, or Vietnamese banh mi. The airy upstairs De Buurman cafe provides a perfect perch to people watch over this multicultural neighborhood.
No hip neighborhood is complete without a spot to dance off those calories. For pumping beats, make your way to edgy club Paard van Troje in the city center. Housed in a cathedral-like historic building, its labyrinth of rooms satisfies varied musical tastes from trance to techno. Prefer more intimate music venues? Catch indie bands at underground rock temple Musicon or council jazz at cozy Jazzcafe De Nobel.
Step back in time soaking up the vintage vibes in the Haagse Hout quarter. Sidle up to the zinc-top bar at retro cafe Bruut for craft brews and a killer bitterballen – just don't wear your fancy clothes as stray soccer balls from the neighboring field may come flying in! Nearby, concept store Groen Westeinde charms with its curated collection of boutique fashion, vinyl records and old-school board games.
As an emerging foodie capital, The Hague prides itself on restaurants that feel cozy yet contemporary. For a romantic evening, snag a canalview table at cozy Zebedeüs, where the seasonally inspired tasting menus incorporate herbs grown right on premises. Over in trendy Zeeheldenkwartier, Heldenplaats excels at pairing Japanese and Peruvian flavors in dishes like tiradito halibut ceviche and Wagyu ribeye tataki.