A first-time visitor to the Netherlands may be forgiven for thinking that windmills are a mere anachronistic tourist attraction. But at the Conscious Hotel in Amsterdam’s Westerpark, they also provide 100 per cent of the hotel’s power, which is stored using ATES thermal energy. Renewable electricity is just the beginning of the hotel’s stylish sustainability efforts, which they call “eco-sexy.”
Located inside the Dutch Neo-classical brick office building of the former Westergasfabriek, which supplied gas to Amsterdam’s streetlights in the late 1800s, the one-year-old Conscious Hotel, one of four by a new Amsterdam hotelier, has lovingly considered all the details of an environmental design in its creative adaptation of the property. Furniture is made from recycled materials, the hotel’s cleaning supplies are chemical-free, all food and beverages at the hotel restaurant are organic and locally sourced, and the building’s eco-roof is even home to a hive of bees.
In each of the 89 conscious-guestrooms, visitors sleep on a Royal Dutch Auping bed and are provided with binoculars for a closer look at the birds in the neighbouring park, or the 19th-century architecture across the way.
The hip and minimalist hotel experience at Conscious Hotel is in an ecosystem of its own: the creative-startup and summer festival district, Westerpark. A comfortable five-minute walk from the hotel, electronic music festivals, outdoor movie nights, and strolls in the park make for a lively evening close to home. And, for those long-distance journeys, you can take the city’s favourite modes of transportation. Bike and boat rentals are both just steps from the entrance.
From the concierge
Ton Ton Club
Inspired by Japanese arcade halls, the low neon lighting and upscale Japanese food make this the perfect adult playground for kids at heart. In good weather, gaming moves outside to the sunny terrace.
Using the factory setting of the Westergasfabriek as a brewing location, young micro-brewery Troost, founded in 2014, has become the largest independent brewery in the Netherlands. Visit the taproom and pub, organise a tour to see brewing in action, or simply enjoy live jazz in the factory every Wednesday night.
The home of arthouse cinema and film festivals in Amsterdam, Ketelhuis offers an international film programme and café that’s a favourite among film buffs as well as filmmakers.