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2018 is a special year for the team of Htel Serviced Apartments. The company celebrates its 15th anniversary. Htel was the first professional short stay provider in the Netherlands and offered expats and business travellers a home away from home. Even today, Roger Wiersma (34), account manager at Htel Serviced Apartments, is still convinced of the strength of the concept.

How did you end up at Htel?

“I was born and raised in Friesland, in Leeuwarden to be precise. I moved to Amsterdam seven years ago and have been working at Htel Serviced Apartments for three years now. Before I worked in the event industry. But the unique concept and the ambitious organization really appealed to me and I decided to apply. Succesfully.”

What exactly do you do in your position as Marketing & Account Manager?

“In this position I am the link between our clients and our internal departments. I spend a large part of my time proactively unburdening my customers and searching for opportunities for new collaborations. For companies looking for accommodation for their employees and for the leisure sector. We also work together with various partners, with whom I maintain contact. Important aspects of my work are giving guided tours, appointments on location, and visiting network events and (inter)national fairs. On a regular basis I also maintain contact with our marketing team at the headquarters about promotions for our clients and guests.”

It’s a unique concept. How do you describe Htel when you explain to friends for what company you work?

“When I just started at Htel, I soon found out in the conversations I had that our concept was even more unique than I already thought. It turned out to be unknown territory for many, despite the fact that we have been around for 15 years this year. For that reason I try to compare it with a hotel, but I explain that we distinguish ourselves in terms of space, tranquillity, accessibility and the price-quality ratio. For example, our apartments have their own kitchen and are located in quiet neighbourhoods that are easily accessible by public transport, so you can really live like a local. In addition, you can enjoy hotel services, therefore the comfort level is high. Meanwhile more players are operating on the market. However, I look at this as a positive development. It not only keeps us sharp, but makes ‘serviced apartments’ a much better known concept. And therefore more easily recognizable for our target group.”

 

“For that reason I try to compare it with a hotel, but I explain that we distinguish ourselves in terms of space, tranquillity, accessibility and the price-quality ratio.”

You have been working for Htel for three years now. What do you like so much about your job?

“I really like working with so many different organizations and cultures. It is a dynamic and international work environment where your creativity and service orientation are sometimes put to the test, but for every problem we find a suitable solution. That is because of our personal approach.”

What do you notice that customers find important?

“That is absolutely unburdening! Our reservation team is on standby seven days a week and we always make sure that we respond to an application the same day. That is what clients wish for. In addition, the reception is manned 24/7 at both locations and we have an in-house technical service. So we can act quickly. These services take a lot of work off our clients plate. They know that their employees are in good hands. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It is also important to maintain a warm contact with clients, so that we are aware of what is going on within their company. For example, it recently emerged from a conversation that one of our clients was looking for a good event location. We linked our client to SugarCity Events. Just like Htel, this company (event venue) is part of the Cobraspen Group. Ideally we will of course look for a combination where we can take care of the accommodation, and SugarCity Events the location for the event. A bit of extra service. That is how we distinguish ourselves.”

What do you do to support customers?

“The most important aspect is to make the reservation process as efficient as possible. That is not always easy, because every company has its own way of working. My task in such a case is to get a good understanding of the companies needs and find a suitable solution as soon as possible. A solution that works for both parties.”

Do you have a fun anecdote for us?

“Every year we organize an event to thank our clients for their trust in our collaboration. Last year the event took place in summer. It had been beautiful sunny weather all week and all preparations had been made. What could go wrong? Well, the weather completely turned around fifteen minutes after departure! Wind, rain.. the plastic sliding windows could not even withstand the gusts of wind. It was a wild ride. But our clients are still talking – and laughing – about it.”

What is the best compliment you received?

“That is actually a compliment for our entire team. The reservation team had contact with a group that had previously stayed with us. They were very satisfied with their first stay, but because we could not offer breakfast, Htel wasn’t on their list of possible accommodations for a second stay. Our solution? Since September 2017 we offer the Htel breakfast box! Jutter & Speijs, one of our partners, put us in touch with a supplier who could help us realize this concept. As a result, we were not only able to offer breakfast to this specific group, but we also reached a new target group. So you can say that we take that extra step to unburden our clients.”

Htel celebrates its 15th anniversary. What opportunities do you see for the coming years?

“New players are operating on the market, but we distinguish ourselves from the competition through our years of knowledge and experience in this market. We are aware of the challenges our clients face and keep an eye on developments in the market. In addition, our concept offers the opportunity to grow and improve our services. These opportunities and plans already exist. Because of that we can make a difference.”

Would you like to get in touch with Roger? Please fill in our contact form here attn. Roger Wiersma.

 

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We are very excited to share with you that Htel Serviced Apartments Amsterdam has received the Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence! We will tell you some more about this certificate. 

 

Since 2011, the Certificate of Excellence honors hospitality businesses that deliver great service across the world on a constant level. This recognition is presented to approximately 10% of total businesses on TripAdvisor that have achieved great reviews over the past year. There is no application process, the achievement is earned over time. Katrien Snoep, General Manager Htel Serviced Apartments: “This certificate of excellence is very important for us at Htel. As it is solely based on the actual comments and reviews left by our guests, it shows their appreciation for what we are trying to achieve: a warm welcome, a pleasant stay at one of the best aparthotels in Amsterdam. This award gives us an extra boost to continue doing what we have been doing for the last 15 years: making our guests feel welcome and at home at Htel”. 

The Tripadviser Certificate of Excellence, how does it work?

The TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence honors select accommodations, attractions, and restaurants that consistently show a commitment to hospitality excellence. TripAdvisor uses a proprietary algorithm to determine the Certificate of Excellence honorees that takes into account the quality, quantity and recency of reviews and opinions submitted by travellers on TripAdvisor over a 12-month period as well as a business’s tenure and ranking on the Popularity Index on the site. To qualify for the Certificate of Excellence, a business must maintain an overall TripAdvisor bubble rating of at least four out of five, have a minimum number of reviews and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months.

 

We would like to thank all our guests for sharing their experience with Htel Serviced Apartments and we will continue to work hard on providing our guests a true home away from home experience. Do you want to leave a review as well? Use this link to provide us with your feedback. 

 

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Don’t know which present to give your dad for Father’s Day this year (June 17)? We’ve collected a number of tips (18+) to show you that Amsterdam is the perfect city for a weekend away with your father.

Hard Rock Café Burger Cruise

Not on Father’s Day itself, but on the Friday or Saturday before: sail along with the Hard Rock Café Burger Cruise through the famous canals of Amsterdam. During the trip in Hard Rock style, a world famous Hard Rock burger is served with, of course, a delicious cold drink on the side. The tour boat leaves at 7 from the jetty directly opposite the Hard Rock Café. Buy your tickets here.

Heineken Experience

Another beer lovers experience: a visit to the famous Heineken Experience. In 1988 the former brewery was closed because the factory could no longer meet up to the high demands. Nowadays you can learn everything about the heritage of Heineken® via an interactive tour in English, Dutch, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese or Russian. Tip: buy your tickets on the official website. You will get a €2,- discount, two beers and a free map with the hidden treasures of the city.

Dad’s edition at BAUT

At restaurant BAUT they combine beer and a delicious 4-course lunch with .. soccer! In collaboration with Two Chefs Brewing, the restaurant will serve a lunch with special beer pairings on Sunday 17th, after which the World Cup match Germany-Mexico will be shown on a big screen. More information can be found on their Facebook page.

Watersports

Time to get active after enjoying burgers and beer? Watersports centre Sloterplas is the perfect location to be outside in Amsterdam. Sailing, supping, windsurfing, canoeing … here you can enjoy yourself on the water. And that within fifteen minutes of cycling from the centre of Amsterdam!

Johan Cruijff ArenA

The Johan Cruijff ArenA is the home of AFC Ajax. During the ArenA Stadion Tour you get a look behind the scenes of one of the most successful football clubs in history. Take a selfie in the Ajax locker room, visit the Ajax Gallery of Fame or imagine yourself the new coach of Ajax in the press room. Note: unfortunately it is not possible to do the tour on June 17th because of a concert by Beyonce and Jay-Z, but Friday 15 or Saturday 16 June is still possible! More information can be found here.

Discover Amsterdam the Dutch way 

One of the best ways to explore Amsterdam is by bike. If you book a stay at Htel, you can also rent one of our Htel-bikes to discover the city the Dutch way! Want to make sure that there is still a bike available during your stay? Please contact our reservation team. Happy Father’s Day!

 

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In and around Amsterdam alone, over 300 festivals will take place in 2018. More and more of those are great to visit with kids as well. We’ve listed the festivals in Amsterdam you really should not miss this summer during a family getaway.

Food Festival TREK 2018

From Friday 13 to Sunday 15 July the Food Festival TREK at the Amstelpark will bring together delicious food, live music and theatre. Take a seat at one of the mobile food trucks and taste all sorts of food. From sushi to Surinamese and from vega to burgers. And special acts by young theatre makers and intimate live performances by musical talent will make the visit worthwhile. The festival is freely accessible.
Location: Amstelpark Amsterdam. Opening hours: vr 16-23, za 14-23, zo 14-22. More information: festival-trek.nl

De Parade 2018

At the Parade 60 theatre, dance, mime and music performances play in theatre tents. Every day from August 17 to September 2 there is an extensive KinderParade (children Parade) with performances and workshops. The great thing is that the majority of the performances are made especially for the festival and can only be seen at the Parade.
Location: Martin Luther Kingpark. More information & tickets: deparade.nl.

Pure Markt 2018

Are you crazy about good and healthy food and drinks? Then visit the Pure Markt. Every year many families with young children and people with a more than average interest in good and healthy food and drinks are enjoying themselves here. The market takes place at various locations in Amsterdam this summer. For a day trip with children, the editions in the Amsterdam forest are the best choice. Here you will find a climbing forest, a goat farm and you can also rent a canoe on hot summer days.
Location: Amsterdamse bos. Dates: 22 juli & 23 september. Opening hours: 11-18. More information: puremarkt.nl.

Book your stay in Amsterdam at Htel Serviced Apartments

Are you coming to Amsterdam this summer, maybe even visiting one of these family festivals, and still looking for an accommodation? Htel offers fully furnished family apartments (including kitchen), which thanks to the space and level of privacy are ideal for a stay with a large or small family. Apartments with separate bedrooms are available and special baby cots or smaller beds are available for families with young children as well. Our Htel Serviced Apartments in Amsterdam and Amstelveen are located in a green, residential area and in short distance to the city centre. Check out our possibilities here.
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Htel Serviced Apartments celebrates its 15th anniversary this year. At the time Luigi Prins – director of the Cobraspen Group – anticipated in an early stage on the growth of the number of expats in the Netherlands. As the first professional short stay provider, Htel received expats and business travellers offering them a home away from home. Although the concept exists for over 15 years now, we still regularly get the question: what exactly is a serviced apartment? We will answer that question today.

 

When you are looking for a place to stay (for your clients) during a short or longer period abroad, a serviced apartment offers the perfect solution. For example, most of our guests are expats awaiting for their new permanent home, or business travellers visiting one of the various conventions organized each year in our capital. We accomodate both individual business travellers and corporate groups.

 

Serviced apartments: it’s all in the name

A serviced apartment offers the best of both worlds. You can experience the freedom and space of a private apartment and enjoy the services you are used to at a five-star hotel at the same time. Our apartments are twice the size of the average hotel room, so they offer more space as well as more privacy (separate bedrooms). Each apartment has its own fully equipped kitchen too. How great is it that you can prepare your own meal if you don’t feel like going out?

Hotel services

Now, what services can you think of? To make you feel at home, you can enjoy hotel services such as:

 

  • A 24/7 manned reception, available for questions at all times.
  • Free use of the gym, spa and sauna.
  • A cleaning and laundry service to make your stay as comfortable as possible.
  • Extra facilities for children, such as special cots or smaller beds, as well as a toy cupboard that can be placed.
  • It is permitted to bring small pets, after all they belong to the family too.
  • And if you have work to do: High Speed ​​WiFi and meeting rooms are available.

Temporary housing in a residential area

Our serviced apartments aren’t located in the busy city centre, where you can find most hotels, but in residential and green areas. With the advantage that you can live like a local! The Htel short stay apartments are located near 6 international schools, parks and playgrounds, so they are also perfect for a family stay.

Register at the municipality

If you, as an expat, live in the Netherlands for over 4 months within six months, you must personally register with the municipality within 5 working days after your arrival. When you stay with Htel you can register as well. This makes it easier to arrange legal matters.

Last but not least: most taxes and utilities are included within the rental price!

For business and pleasure

The definition ‘Serviced Apartment’ is seldom used outside the corporate relocation and business travel markets. But also for the consumer that is looking for a temporary home or a holiday accomodation in the Netherlands, are serviced apartments a good option. They are especially nice for your travel budget for longer stays, group travel or family parties, allowing you to save on dining out and offering in-house entertainment.

 

Conclusion: Serviced Apartments offer facilities much like a traditional hotel but with added space, convenience and privacy like a home, so you can enjoy living like a local when travelling. You can discover our possibilities here.

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The World Dog Show is one of the largest dog shows in the world, with shows attracting up to 10,000 visitors. It is held in a different country each year. From 9 to 12 August the Dutch Kennel Club organizes the World Dog Show 2018 at the RAI Amsterdam. The theme this year is ‘Show the world your talent’.

 

This unique event is all about keeping dogs. Dogs from all over the world are presented and they represent (almost) all dog breeds. Next to visiting the shows there are many other activities with and for dogs.

 

Program World Dog Show 2018

During the four-day event several prizes will be awarded in different categories and visitors can also participate in an educational and fun program which covers many facets of dog sport, training and health, or shop at stands which offer the newest dog articles and services.

 

The World Dog Show 2018 in Amsterdam expects about 20,000 dogs at the shows. Are you visiting as well, reminder when entering the Netherlands all dogs must be chipped, adequately vaccinated or have undergone serum antibody titer testing. For more information visit the website.

 

Tickets World Dog Show Amsterdam 2018

It is already possible to order tickets for the World Dog Show 2018 at the RAI conference centre in Amsterdam. We recommend not to wait too long, because as time goes by the prices of the tickets increase. And as Amsterdam is a popular holiday destination in the summer months, it gets more difficult to find a nice place to stay as well. Especially an accommodation that allows dogs.

 

Hotel accommodation during the World Dog Show

Millions of tourists from all over the world come to Amsterdam each year. Last year tourists spend 14 million nights in our beautiful lively metropol! This means that it is not always easy to find a hotel in Amsterdam. Especially not in summer when the World Dog Show will be organized. At Htel we still have some apartments available. We provide fully furnished luxurious and spacious holiday apartments in short distance to the Amsterdam RAI. Check our availability here. See you in August?

 

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In 2018 over 300 festivals will take place in and around Amsterdam. But which of them you really should not miss? We have listed the best for you. Today we start with the best food festivals in our capital the coming summer.

 

Rollende Keukens 2018

The Westergasterrein will be transformed into a food lovers location from 9 to 13 May. Dozens of food trucks will converge to form one big outdoor restaurant during Rollende Keukens 2018. Each truck has its own charm and theme. From pizza and BBQ dishes to gourmet delights to try. It is the #1 food festival in Amsterdam according to many locals. Are you ready to enjoy food, the tastiest wines and live music. Location: Westergasterrein. Opening hours: 13:00 – 23:00. More information, click here.

Taste of Amsterdam 2018

The next food festival on the agenda is Taste of Amsterdam, which celebrates its tenth anniversary this year. From 1 to 3 June the top restaurants of Amsterdam present their favourites in the Amstelpark. You can enjoy culinary delights cooked by the best (inter)national chefs. An evening in the sun with delicious food, DJs and tasty summer drinks is what Taste of Amsterdam is all about. Don’t forget to buy your tickets in time. Location: Amstelpark. Opening hours: fr. 15-23, sa & su 12-23. More information & tickets, click here.

Bacchus Wijnfestival 2018

As a wine lover don’t skip the Bacchus Wine Festival in the Amsterdamse bos. In two weekends in June (8-10 & 15-17 June) the festival presents wines from all corners of the world, in combination with plenty of mobile catering, DJs and live music. A holiday vibe will take over when nipping your wine in the bonfire setting where at dawn small lights come on. The programme is designed to appeal both newbies and connoisseurs. Location: Amsterdamse Bos. More information & tickets, click here.

Foodtruck Festival TREK Amsterdam

TREK festival from 13 – 15 July is a fun food festival to go to with family. There is a lot of variation in trucks and therefore something to love for everyone. The Amstelpark will be a mega picnic place where young, old and children run around or lie down in the grass. Entertainment is also provided. Singing, music and theatre talent get the chance to break through in their own city. Location: Amstelpark. Opening hours: fr 16-23, sa 14-23, su 14-22. More information, click here.

Book your stay in Amsterdam at Htel Serviced Apartments

Are you coming to Amsterdam this summer, maybe even visiting one of these food festivals, and still looking for an accommodation? Htel Serviced Apartments offers spacious short stay apartments in Amsterdam and Amstelveen that are ideal for couples, families and groups. For a carefree stay Htel offers hotel services. For example: the morning after you can take a dip in the pool or go to the sauna. A walk through the quiet, green surroundings is also a good idea, sit down at a cafe for a nice cup of coffee and bring back the good memories of the day before.

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5 trips to make with your family in Amsterdam during the May Holidays

If anywhere you have plenty of choice in terms of child-friendly cultural trips, cinemas and restaurants in the Netherlands, than it is of course in Amsterdam. Are you coming to our capital for the May holidays? We have put together a list of 5 trips to make with your family during your next stay here. 


NEMO

The interactive science and technology museum NEMO is a striking appearance along the waterside. So one thing is for sure: it will not be difficult to find it. Their motto? Prohibited to stay off. How cool! Children learn everything about the world around us by doing. They can for example blow a bubble that is so large they are able to stand in it, they can do chemical experiments or protect the earth against dangers from the universe in an interactive game. | NEMO Science Center, Oosterdok 2 Amsterdam, open Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00-17:30. Prices: up to 3 years the entrance is free, from 4 years: € 16.50.


Scheepvaartmuseum

The Scheepvaartmuseum (maritime museum) is located near NEMO in – again – an impressive building. At the dock you will find a life-size replica of a VOC ship. An 18th-century cargo ship of the Dutch East India Company. You can board the ship and at the bottom of the cargo hold kids can climb, clamber and crawl between the crates and ropes. New is the Virtual Reality tour entitled ‘Dare to Discover’. It teaches you everything there is to know about life on a ship in the time of the VOC. | Het Scheepvaartmuseum, Kattenburgerplein 1 Amsterdam, open daily from 9:00 to 17:00. Prices: children under 4 are free, 5-17 years € 7.50, from 18 years € 15.


Museum Tramlijn

Are your children crazy about trains and trams? Take the Museum Tramlijn. An antique tram runs on an abandoned railway line between Amsterdam Oud Zuid and Amstelveen. Wooden benches, bells ringing and a conductor.. you’re going back in time. Tip: get off at the Amsterdamse bos, where you can go for a walk through the forest or eat pancakes at Boerderij Meerzicht. | You can get on at the Haarlemmermeerstation. The historic trams run every Sunday from April to October according to a fixed timetable. Prices: children 0-3 free, 4-11 years € 4, from 18 years € 7.


Kinderkookkafé

In the Kinderkookkafé at the Vondelpark – which has its own (vegetable) garden, terrace and playground – children from 1 to 6 years old can come to cook. Decorating cakes, making a pizza or building carrot cucumber puzzles, it’s all possible. In addition to cooking, the children can also help serving and cleaning while you’re enjoying a nice cup of coffee. | The Kinderkookkafé, Vondelpark 6b Amsterdam. Open daily from 10:00 to 17:00. There is no entrance fee, but the (small) price depends on what you are going to make (or order as a parent).


Pampus

If you see it from a distance you might not think so, but Fort Island Pampus has a history that goes back 400 years and it is packed with adventures. You will get there by ferry – the kids will love it – and the best way to discover the fort itself is by following the multi-media and interactive exhibition. A tour through the secret tunnels of the island which reveals all secrets… | Fort Pampus in Muiden. Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:30 – 17:00. Prices: up to 4 years free, up to and including 11 years € 13.50 and 12 years and older € 17.50.

 

Are you convinced now that Amsterdam is the perfect city for a getaway with the family? Htel offers fully furnished short stay family apartments (including kitchen) which, thanks to the space and level of privacy, are ideal for a temporary stay in Amsterdam with a large or small family. Book now!

 

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Easter is great for a city trip. There is so much to see and enjoy in Amsterdam during the spring and Easter period. You can enjoy the tulip festival. The tulips are the messengers of the spring season. It brings out the best of Amsterdam. There is the magic of the Rijksmuseum and a unique exhibition of Dutch masters from the St Petersburg at Hermitage museum.

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