Droog likes to see itself as an “all-rounder”. Pragmatic sartorial creations and affordable home accessories are made in collaboration with prestigious designers such as Hella Jongerius and Marcel Wanders and sold in its own outlets, worldwide via retail partners and online. At the same time it holds readings and events, produces books and curates its own exhibitions on the threshold between art and design as well as vernissages – and this always comes with a good pinch of dry (“droog”) humor.
And now it can add a hotel to its repertoire. On September 16 “Hôtel Droog” was opened at heart of Amsterdam’s historical center, housed in a 17th-century townhouse. Japanese firm Atelier Bow-Wow was entrusted with the design and renovation of the 700-sqaure-meter space, which used to house the city’s textile guild.
Those looking for a selection of chic single and twin rooms, smartly-dressed concierges, the obligatory breakfast room and a nice hotel bar for good measure will be in for a surprise. You will be astonished to find yourself in a place where all of the supposedly fixed functions and components of a hotel are questioned and redefined. The game is given away early on: there is only one hotel room. But this is, if we are to believe Droog, “The One and Only Bedroom”, the ultimate in hotel rooms. A generously-sized space with a view out over Amsterdam’s rooftops awaits the hotel’s guests. With a bedroom, living area and kitchen, it is indeed more reminiscent of an apartment than a hotel room.
So a simple overnight stay is clearly not what this hotel is about; and so there are plenty of other gems to discover and experience at Hôtel Droog. In a 160-square-meter gallery, select exhibits from contemporary art and design are on display, a visual treat for any art aficionado. In the “Dining Room” guests are greeted with an array of creature comforts. A conscious renouncement of pomp and extravagance means that only down-to-earth, at times improvised dishes made with carefully chosen, seasonal ingredients find their way to the table here. Furthermore, three in-house boutiques give guests the opportunity to treat themselves with a range of top-quality and original fashion and beauty products – and of course the hotel wouldn’t be complete without a Droog store.
If you are looking for some peace and quiet, we would recommend spending some time in the “Fairy Tale Garden”. As the name suggests, the hotel’s oasis boasts an imaginative, fanciful design concept, even if it does have a slight penchant for kitsch. If you so wish, you can take a stroll along the synthetic-turf path, surrounded by giant mushrooms and a sea of flowers, light-heartedly pondering everything you have seen so far.
With its unconventional and humorous hotel concept, Droog remains true to its principles. This bright, cheerful location is definitely worth a visit during your next trip to Amsterdam. But if you really are looking for somewhere to stay, then you should either book the only vacant room as early as possible or make do with a “normal” hotel. You will surely be safe from surprises there and everything will be as you have always known it. Smartly dressed concierges and breakfast room included.
1011 JJ Amsterdam
The “Fairy Tale Garden“: An oasis of artificial and real plants, photo © Thijs Wolzak
“The One and Only Bedroom“: A bright and loft-like living space with a spectacular view over the roofs of Amsterdam, photo © Thijs Wolzak
“The Dining Room“: Simple and seasonal food will be served in the colorful restaurant at Hôtel Droog, photo © Thijs Wolzak
The gallery: 160 square meters of exhibition space will be used for the presentation of contemporary art and design, photo © Thijs Wolzak
Beauty out of the bottle: The beauty studio ”Cosmania” is one of three exclusive boutiques at Hôtel Droog, photo © Thijs Wolzak
For fans of the outdoors: Hotel guests and visitors can buy outdoor-products at ”Weltevree”, photo © Thijs Wolzak