A Bar and Amstel Hotel Bar
Photography by diffordsguide.com
Words by Simon Difford on 25-May-2016
InterContinental Hotel Amstel Amsterdam, Amsterdam, 1018 GX, Netherlands
Tel: +31 (0)20 622 6060
Website: View bar's website
Hours: Mon-Fri 4pm-1am, Sat-Sun noon-1am (Amstel Bar: Mon-Sun 11am-1am)
Style: Hotel bar
Recommended for: Cocktails
Price guide: Middling
Food: Full menu
Built in 1867, InterContinental's Amstel Hotel sits like an old palace on the Amstel River and over the years we've enjoyed its starchy yet relaxed old-school bar hidden below the grand entrance lobby. However, in 2013, a second 'A Bar' was added at lobby level with a contemporary interior, superb cocktails and a Bowers & Wilkins sound system capable of shaking the hotel's marble and crystal chandeliers.
Both bars boast outside terraces looking over the Amstel River. The downstairs wood panelled room is cosy with a low ceiling and a nautical theme. A brass ship's clock and barometer behind the granite topped bar, leather bucket chairs line the tartan carpet and polished wooden tables are set for dinner (the extensive food menu and silver service befit such a hotel).
Upstairs the contemporary styled 'A Bar' has a very different vibe with modern rather than classic cocktails - although requests for classic cocktails are welcomed by the experienced bar team. The long rectangular drawing room is very civilised but with Venetian style glass lamps resembling tulips and artwork by Hendrik Kersten of his daughter Paula somewhat reminiscent of Vermeer's iconic Girl With a Pearl Earring.
Be sure to snack on some Bitterballen with your cocktail.