Oosterdokskade (next to Amstel Botel),, Amsterdam, Netherlands
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Reviewed by EuroCheapo.com Editors
Aart, the captain of the Beagle Houseboat, has been hosting guests on his boat for years. If you're looking for modern hotel amenities and typical service, this unique spot may truly miss the boat. On the other hand, if you’re open to sharing a cabin with three other floating guests, climb aboard!
First, the big issue here: The Beagle's only got one guest room. The below-deck quarters are outfitted with four single beds (which can be reserved dorm-style or as a private quad) and small lockers. We’ll be honest, matey: This place is simple and a tight squeeze, but where else can you take a hot shower while enjoying dock views out of nautical peep holes?
A minimum three-night stay on the Beagle means visitors will get the full experience of houseboat life in Amsterdam. There is a safe in the bedroom for small personal belongings, a lamp, a globe, nightstand and a blue light glowing in a corner to create a “psychedelic” mood.
The one bathroom has a shower and toilet. The sink is across the way next to the washer and dryer. It’s the bare minimum, and feels like a portable addition, but it’s clean, new-ish and in good condition.
The boat is pretty old, but Aart keeps both decks quite clean. The Beagle Houseboat’s terrace and roof patio provide a grand mix of nautical and nonsensical. And the “saloon” on deck level, is everything one could want from a common area: comfy couches, board games, a microwave and guest fridge—with solid views, to boot.
The canal water is clean, and it’s safe to dive overboard into the fresh, cool waters.
There is a free Internet station in the saloon. Breakfast is not included, but the saloon offers free coffee and tea, and Aart stocks the fridge with reasonably priced goodies.
Notes: The place is smoker friendly. Real smoker friendly. “Souvenirs” from Amsterdam’s coffeeshops can be enjoyed in the saloon with some of the houseboat’s handy accessories. Note that the Beagle does not accept credit cards.
The Beagle Houseboat is nestled behind a large parking lot where tourist buses like to park, but still removed from the tourists who linger nearby. Just ahead across the Prins Hendrikkade is a canal that served as Amsterdam’s entrance during the 1500s. A ten-minute walk along the canal leads to Nieuwmarkt, a popular square lined with cafes and just next to the Red Light District.
The dock area behind hoists newly-developed buildings, including a posh hotel, the public library and music conservatory school. The library has one of the best views of the city on its seventh floor, and its La Place café is a great cheap find, letting you munch on lunch while enjoying a rooftop view.
» Audrey Sykes, EuroCheapo Staff Writer
Note: This hotel was visited by a EuroCheapo editor. This review is based on cleanliness, location, price and overall quality. EuroCheapo did not charge this hotel to be listed.
- Wi-Fi: Free
About the Beagle Houseboat neighborhood
The Old Center is home to Amsterdam's main tourist attractions (with the notable exception of the most important museums). The Red Light District, Dam Square, the Royal Palace, Nieuwmarkt, and a seemingly endless supply of "coffeeshops" keep the area packed with eager—and often gawking—tourists. This is the city's touristy nerve-center. It's dirty, chaotic, crowded and, for some, enthralling.