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Lloyd Hotel, Amsterdam
The deal: €170 for a "three_star" double; €80 ($101) for a "one_star" single with shared bath
The hood: The hot new Eastern Docklands area, a ten-minute tram ride from Centraal Station—Jamie Oliver just opened a branch of his restaurant Fifteen here.
What you'll get: A 1921 building with a tortured history: It has served as a migrant workers' dorm, a WWII prison, and a juvenile jail. In 2005, a score of Holland's top designers were let loose on the building to transform it into a hotel. The 116 rooms are divided into five grades, from one-star (robe provided for your forays to the shared bathrooms) to five (soundproofing and enormous beds that sleep ten). All the rooms look different but share a clever approach to the use of space—foldaway beds, for instance, and shower stalls that slide into the wall. The tiny cheap ones have a raised cot and original parquet floors—simple, restful, and in line with the Lloyd's egalitarian, arty vibe.
Near and not so dear: Mechanically inclined? The Energetica museum is devoted to the innovations of the Industrial Age, from elevators to generators to toasters to—well, what is that? Admission: €5.
34 Oostelijke Handelskade
Tel: 31 20 561 3636
Fax: 31 20 561 3600
400 Hoogte Kadijk
Tel: 31 20 422 1227