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I’ve been to Rotterdam twice now and have thoroughly enjoyed both my weekends there, especially because they have good Asian food! Both weekends were completely different from one another. The first weekend, I went to enjoy Rotterdam’s rooftop days, sights, and shops whereas the second weekend I went, it was for North Sea Jazz Fest! Between the two trips, I feel like I’ve gotten to know the city’s offerings pretty well, especially in regards to where you should stay.
Whether you’re on a budget and want something down-to-earth, vintage, and gezellig (Dutch for ‘cozy’ or ‘heartwarming’), or you want a more modern, design hotel with very reasonable prices, you’ll be happy with wherever you choose to rest your head so you can play all day in Rotterdam.
citizenM Rotterdam: Modern, Comfortable, and Surprisingly Spacious
If it’s your first time in Rotterdam or you’re only there for a couple of days, then staying right in center is a good idea because most of the must-sees of Rotterdam are in this area. I opted to stay at the citizenM Rotterdam hotel because it’s all about location, location, and location.
- Location: The entrance to the citizenM hotel is about 500 feet off the the Rotterdam Blaak stop, which is one stop after the Central Station stop. My train from Amsterdam went all the way to this stop making it super easy to get to the hotel. Of course, if your train brings you to the Rotterdam Central Station stop, then you are only one stop away and also near a couple of tram lines like #21 and #24.
- Location: This hotel is right across the street from the Markthal, which is a modern architectural marvel with an indoor food hall and many dining options, and the cube houses, one of the most popular tourist attractions in Rotterdam.
- Location: CitizenM hotel is a 20 minute walk from Central Station, an 8 minute walk from the Cool District, the commercial shopping area, and a 20 minute walk from the Katendrecht neighborhood, which reminds me of Williamsburg 10 years go.
Of course, location is clearly the highlight of the hotel, but the design, comfort, and price are major bonuses. There are so many things I loved about the hotel, but if I had to narrow it down, here are a few:
- Oh so comfortable and huuuuge bed + black-out curtains = best sleep you’ll ever have.
- Everything is controllable from the iPad they provide you. That’s right– you can change the mood lights of the room or watch TV from the tip of your finger.
- The shower is magnificent. There are two shower heads: the rain shower head and the handheld, adjustable one. Even the one that’s adjustable has a large head so you are fully covered in warm, massaging water.
- The room is small, but because the bed is big, and everything is so well designed that you won’t notice it. Some of the well thought out touches include the EU, US, and UK plugs in the wall, and the switch that turns everything off at once when you leave the room.
For what you get, the prices are very reasonable, but don’t take my word for it. Check out the rates for citizenM Rotterdam yourself here.
Hostel ROOM Rotterdam: Down-to-Earth, Cozy, and Chill
If you’re looking for your home away from home in a beautiful national monument building, and a place to meet like-minded travelers, then Hostel ROOM is calling your name. It was built by two sisters who themselves had traveled for many years before opening up this down-to-earth hostel with cool themed rooms, a friendly staff, and a chill lounge area to hang out in that feels more like your own living room.
Hostel ROOM is only a 15 minute public transportation ride or 25 minute walk away from citizenM, and as a result, all the sites right near citizenM, but Hostel ROOM has its own location benefits too. It’s right in Scheepsvaartkwartier, a fancy neighborhood in center, and close to the National Fotomuseum, stunning architecture, and hip places to shop, eat and drink like POSSE Rotterdam Restaurant Gallery (a restaurant/bar), Kopi Soesoe (a bar), and Witte de Withstraat, which has vintage clothes shops.
Notice that rose artwork in one of the frames. A traveler we met on the train gave us that, and we thought it fit in so well with our art room that we stuck it in the empty frame- hehe. I wondered if they noticed!
As for the hostel itself, it’s clean, relatively quiet, and chill. The staff is quite friendly and helpful, and the hostel gives you towels and sheets for free! Best of all, the shared common space, which I like to refer is as the living room, is really comfortable to hang out in. After we came back from the North Sea Jazz Fest, instead of going out to bars, we just grabbed local craft beers and tea from Hostel ROOM’s own bar and chilled there. They play great music like Radiohead, which added to why we loved hanging out there so much. Good music is key!
Aside from all that, the hostel offers free wifi, breakfast, lockers, theme nights, budget guides, group trips, and more. We were too busy to take part in all the activities, but they seemed really fun and a great place to meet people!
Lastly, the reason I picked this place over another hostel I was looking at is because the room sizes are small. Another hostel had 30 bed rooms! No thank you!
Check to see if Hostel ROOM has any availability in their cozy hostel right here.
Don’t forget this key item for Hostel ROOM!
So it’s been awhile since I stayed at a hostel, but I forgot a major item: flip-flops! Flip-flops are so key for taking a shower. Although Hostel ROOM was clean, the idea of going barefoot where other people took showers too kind of skeeved me out. But I had to shower so I just bared it, and it turned out ok. Don’t be like me though. Pack flip-flops!
Also if you’re a light sleeper and you have a snorer in the room, you’ll want ear plugs and an eye mask to block out the light when your roommates come back late and shuffle through their stuff to find their PJs.
Which hotel is the one for you? citizenM or Hostel ROOM? You won’t be disappointed with either!
Thanks for stopping by! xo.
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