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BackStage Hotel Amsterdam 2.0

Amsterdam, North Holland Province, Netherlands

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Hip, music-themed hostel in the heart of Amsterdam 
  • Fun music-related decor and social atmosphere
  • Three-minute walk to Leidseplein and public transportation
  • Two-minute walk to Melkweg and close to other music venues
  • Lively common area with bar, pool table, and mini-stage
  • Stylish shared and private rooms with iPod docks and flat-screen TVs
  • Inexpensive continental breakfast served daily
  • Friendly, helpful staff available 24 hours
  • Computer available for guest use
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout

Cons

  • Noise from street and bar carries to rooms
  • Most rooms have shared bathrooms
  • No air-conditioning in rooms
  • No elevator and stairs are narrow
  • Wi-Fi can be slow during busy hours

Bottom Line

The BackStage Hotel is a 22-room, music-themed hostel exceptionally well-located in central Amsterdam a short walk to music venues and the Leidselplein area. The budget property has a true rock-concert vibe with a common area featuring a graffiti-doused bar, a pool table, and a mini-stage, which can become quite lively at night. The hostel offers private and shared rooms, most of which have shared bathrooms, but they also have playful, music-themed decor; iPod docks; and flat-screen TVs. On the downside, they lack air-conditioning and soundproofing. Wi-Fi is free and a continental breakfast is available for a reasonable extra fee. Compared to other hostels, the BackStage is impressively clean and stylish, though it also tends to be pricier. The nearby Amsterdam Hostel Leidseplein has lower rates, but rooms there aren't nearly as clean.

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Scene

Hip, music-themed hostel with lively social atmosphere

Opened in 2008, the music-themed BackStage Hotel is situated in a pretty 1880 gray corner building with gently arched windows and flower box greenery. Living up to its name, the interior has a real back-stage, rock-concert vibe with stylish and modern black and red decor, flight-case furniture, music posters, and instruments hanging on the walls. The front desk and bar are black and covered in white graffiti, including tags from famous guests who have played at the nearby Melkweg and Paradiso concert venues. Near the bar, a mini-stage area with a full speaker system and instruments allows guests to play at the bar. The hostel has a social, youthful, music-friendly vibe, making it an ideal place for those in Amsterdam to enjoy the areas nightlife or a concert or show at a nearby venue. But guests warn that there is no elevator and the steps are steep and narrow.

Location

Exceptionally well-located in central Amsterdam near the Melkweg music venue and Leidseplein

The BackStage Hotel is situated on the corner of the beautiful Leidesgracht canal and Marnixstraat, a relatively busy road that leads around the edge of the canal district up to the popular Leidseplein area, which is just a three-minute walk from the property. The hotel over looks the canal as well the Melkweg, a music venue that's arguably the most popular spot in town for big-name artists. Cafes, restaurants, bars, nightlife, and other big and small concert venues are also in easy walking distance from the property. For tourists, the proximity to the Leidseplein is a real standout. Guests are not only well-connected to bus and tram lines, but can also walk to popular attractions in 15 minutes or less, including Museum Quarter, which is host to the Van Gogh Museum, Rijksmuseum, and the Anne Frank House. Dam Square is a bit farther walking or a quick ride on public transport. The hostel can help arrange airport transportation. 

  • One-minute walk to DeLaMar Theater
  • Two-minute walk to Melkweg entertainment venue
  • Three-minute walk to Leidseplein
  • Three-minute walk to Leidseplein Light Rail (lines 1, 2, and 5)
  • Three-minute walk to Stadsschouwburg Theater
  • Six-minute walk to Paradiso entertainment venue
  • 15-minute walk to Museum Quarter
  • 15-minute walk to Anne Frank House
  • 20-minute walk to Dam Square (12 minutes via public transport)
  • 15-minute drive to Schiphol Amsterdam Airport (without traffic)

Rooms

Music-themed private and dorm-style rooms with iPod docks -- but some noise issues

Rooms at the BackStage Hotel are surprisingly clean and stylish for a budget property, with white bedding, lipstick-red accents, and dark wall-to-wall carpeting. Most have stylish music-related decor such as artsy wall-sized murals, lights made from illuminated snare drums, flight-case furniture, or mirrors bordered with dressing-room-style lights. Room sizes include a selection of dorm-style rooms (for three, four, and five people) as well as singles, doubles, and twins. There are a few private doubles and triples with en-suite bathrooms, but other rooms have shared bathrooms (though most rooms have their own sinks). Shared bathrooms are clean, fully tiled in black and white, and feature sinks, toilets, standing showers, and shower gel/shampoo. Across all categories, rooms can vary significantly in size -- some are spacious, others quite compact. Basement rooms are the least desirable, as they have half-windows at street level and can get stuffy. 

In all rooms, amenities include iPod docks with speakers, 18-inch flat-screen TVs with cable, work desks, and safes. Wi-Fi is free, but can be slow during peak hours. Some rooms have extras -- like a PlayStation3 with Guitar Hero. But note that rooms are not air-conditioned, and soundproofing is minimal, with noise from other rooms, the street, and the bar downstairs (which is often a downright party at night). Still, rooms are cleaned daily, and guests are given towels, which are also changed daily. 

Features

Stylish common area with a bar, pool table, plus inexpensive continental breakfast 

The hotel has one main common area that functions as a lobby, lounge, breakfast room, bar, and general hangout spot. A continental breakfast is served daily, and while it costs an extra fee, it's pretty inexpensive and guests tend to find it worth the price. The common area has a bar offering beer and hard liquor, cafe tables, a pool table, a computer for guest use, and brochures. The room also has a mini stage area with instruments and a full speaker system for guests to play in the bar on open-mic night, and it can become quite a lively party until late. Guests find the staff, who are available 24-hours, extremely helpful. Wi-Fi is free throughout.

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Address

Leidsegracht 114, Amsterdam, North Holland Province 1016 CT, The Netherlands

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