January 26, 2018
Hotel Review: Apollo Hotel Executive Room in Amsterdam

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The Apollo Hotel in Amsterdam is part of Starwood’s Tribute Portfolio collection. It’s located about a 20-minute drive or tram ride away from the center of the city. The price is significantly lower than hotels located directly in the heart of Amsterdam.


Check-In



There are three such check-in counters in the hotel’s lobby. I was helped right away as I arrived late at night and there was no one in line. Check-in went smoothly, but there were some misses. Agents are supposed to recognize customers’ elite status-this never happened. He also made no mention of a complimentary room upgrade. I was upgraded from a Deluxe room to an Executive room (there isn’t a whole lot of difference), but this was never communicated to me.



Onc you’re done checking in, this snazzy hallway takes you to the wing with all the rooms.


Room



My room was perfectly fine. It had Queen sized bed and a one-person couch. There were ample power outlets throughout the room to charge all my devices. I should note there was no Platinum welcome amenity. Most SPG hotels leave some fruits, sweets, etc in the room for Platinum and sometimes Gold members.



The major piece of furniture was this desk located adjacent to the window overlooking one of Amsterdam’s many canals.



The bathroom looked newly renovated. The floor tiles were also heated, which was a nice touch.


Dining

I tried a few dining options at the Apollo, so let’s go over them in order.



First you have Bodon, La Grande Brasserie. This is the buffet restaurant where the hotel serves breakfast. It overlooks one of Amsterdam’s canals and has a decent selection of options.



Cold cheeses and meats



Cereals



Hot options including scrambled eggs, roasted tomatoes, roasted mushrooms, sausages, potatoes etc.



There was a standard selection of fruits, jams, and bread. I particularly liked how drinks worked here. Everything was self-service. There was a combination coffee/tea maker as well as fruit juices and water available at the buffet. It bugs me when I get food from the buffet and come back with no drinks on the table after having ordered. Being able to grab your drinks at the buffet solves the dilemma!



Next up we have The Harbour Club. This was more of a hip and modern themed restaurant with red mood lighting and red Christmas trees when I visited in January. You can see one of two indoor fireplaces on the left side of the photo.



This was the chicken I ordered. It came with a couple pieces of hot charcoal in the pan. Aside from the cool presentation, it tasted delicious! Service was consistently well executed among the several waiters I interacted with.


I finally want to mention room service. While the hotel’s restaurants were great, room service was a miss. The menu is just a small sheet of paper with a limited range of options (I wish I had taken a photo). And the Apollo charges a 10 euro delivery fee…on top of the inflated food prices. I did not enjoy paying 27 euros for a Caesar salad with chicken.


Gym



The gym was about as bad as most hotel gyms. This was the entire free weight section. There’s one bench and the heaviest dumbbells are 30 pounds.



They also had this contraption which is a mixed-use weight machine. You can choose what to push and pull to work various muscle groups. It’s a clever way to save space.



There was another room with these two bikes, adjacent to a room with a yoga mat and medicine balls. I was not at all impressed with this gym. Maxing out at 30 lb. dumbbells and no free bars…I guess it’s slightly better than nothing.


Amenities



This business center with a few computers and a printer is located on the ground floor. There’s also an indoor cigar room next door to the business center. The Apollo had high-speed Wi-Fi throughout the property and connected without any problems.


Overall Rating


Check-In: 4/5

Recognition of SPG status: 1/5

Room Comfort: 4/5

Bed Comfort: 5/5

Wi-Fi & Power Outlets: 5/5

Dining: 7.5/10

Gym: 2/5

Service: 8/10


Cumulative Rating: 7.3/10


Overall I enjoyed my stay at the Apollo in Amsterdam. Customer service was top notch with every employee I interacted with. The Concierge did an excellent job helping me out and giving me advice on what to see and how to get around. The location was a bit far from the city center. But I can live with that, given that it’s about 50% cheaper than similar hotels located in the center.


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