Top 10 Asian restaurants in Amsterdam

We can’t deny that Asian food is extremely popular in the Netherlands. Time for a list.

With Chinese, Indonesian, Thai, Japanese and upcoming Korean cuisines, Amsterdam is a melting pot of Asian flavours. We’ve lined up 10 amazing Asian restaurants in Amsterdam that we think you should try.

Bo Nam

Apparently, all the cool people go here. We went and boy, the food and atmosphere was certainly cool enough to keep coming back! Located in the lively district in Amsterdam near Leidse square, it somehow still attracts the locals and hasn’t become a place full of tourists that want to eat quickly and leave. With R&B and Hiphop playing though the speakers, it makes Bo Nam the perfect place to eat, drink and socialize for hours. Even though the food concept is Vietnamese, Bo Nam offers a lot of different flavours on the menu but you can find 5 different spring rolls variations, bao’s, tasty prawns, salads and noodle dishes. 

Asian restaurants in Amsterdam Bo Nam
Source: Bo Nam

Ron Gastrobar Indonesian Downtown, Rokin 49

Firstly, we think this restaurant looks amazing inside. If you want to go all out and leave with an experience of food, ambience and entertainment, you should definitely visit Ron Gastrobar Indonesian Downtown. Honestly, the food isn’t just a pretty sight. It’s well spiced, carefully thought of and defines the Indonesian flavours very well. The wine and cocktail menu is also impressive. We will be back.

Ron Gastrobar Downtown Indonesia

Branie, Ten Katestraat 26

This tiny restaurant is one of Amsterdam’s best kept secrets when it comes to Asian restaurants. So what does Branie stand for? In fact, the name means daredevil, but in a cheeky way. It totally reflects the menu and a-ma-zing cocktails. They serve innovating Indonesian style food such as tea salad, soft shell crab bao and sweet desserts. Come to Branie with friends or a lover. You’ll have a good night.

Branie KFC bucket

Full Moon Garden, Leidsestraat 94

If you say DimSum, we are there in a heartbeat. This was by far the best DimSum we ate in Amsterdam. Relatively new, they invited us in their opening month and we couldn’t stop eating. The dumplings tasted exactly like they are suppose to taste, and if you are vegetarian, try the Chinese broccoli or eggplant with peppers. Yum! Read our full review!

Full Moon Garden Amsterdam

Umani by Han, Ovetoom

Located on the always busy Overtoom in Amsterdam, Umani opened about 3 years ago. This concept was founder by renowned Chinese chef Han Ji. restaurant is large and feels homely with a Asian style bar at the entrance. The open kitchen looks amazing and the Asian accessories and wall art completes the look & feel. They also open during the day for a quick business lunch or à la card meal, but you can also walk in for a coffee or glass of wine. A three course menu costs €27,50 which we think is very reasonable. Read more about Umami by Han.

Best Asian restaurants in Amsterdam, Umami

A-Fusion, Zeedijk 130

This place is Sarah’s favourite Asian restaurant in Amsterdam! It’s a family run restaurant where they serve amazing tasteful dishes from California rolls, steamed oysters and dumplings to beef in black pepper and chicken in curry sauce. It’s a combination of Chinese, Japanese, Thai and Korean dishes. Besides that all the products they use are fresh and there’s a very pleasant up-tempo and excellent service. Reserve your table here.

Kyoto Sushi, Central Station

Go where the locals eat. The advise that is actually true. Good news, because at Kyoto Sushi you will find a lot of Japanese people eating. Even though they offer an all you can eat concept, it surely is the best one we’ve had in this category. Their prawns, good gawd, try them. We usually stop at round 4, but at Kyoto we push till round 5! Add Kyoto to your favourite Asian restaurant list.

Best Asian restaurants, Kyoto Café

Chin Chin Club, Rozengracht 133

Dimsum and karaoke is always a great combination and the owners of the ChinChin Club must have noticed because the Asian trend is growing in Europe. Expect confusion Chinese food, fun cocktails, nostalgic games and late-night dancing. Chin Chin Club is the place where that one last drink turned into one too many. Go here with friends and sing while you eat! 

Restaurant Blauw, Amstelveenseweg 158-160

Surely you want to get fancy now and then. At Restaurant Blauw you can go all out on fancy Indonesian food. If you want, you can also order a la carte but we definitely recommend what restaurant Blauw is famous for. The traditional “rijsttafel” which is translated to rice table, is brought to another level here. Beautiful small plates are set around the table, filled with delicious Indonesian food. restaurantblauw.nl

best Asian restaurants in Amsterdam. Blauw

New King, Zeedijk 115

This list wouldn’t be complete without the infamous New King right? Located in China Town in Amsterdam, it’s a crime if you haven’t tried this Chinese restaurant. Unfortunately, it’s always busy so you must reserve a spot to avoid disappointment at the door. The food portions are large so be wise what to order. newking.nl

All things considered, there are many many more Asian restaurants in Amsterdam, but we can guarantee that these are the ones you will love.

Also, find out where our favourite lunch restaurants are!

Enjoy!

Wander-Lust

LALO & COCO | TWO NEW MEXICAN HOTSPOTS IN AMSTERDAM

This spring, two Mexican hotspots are launching simultaneously on the 24th floor of the iconic NH tower next to the RAI Amsterdam.

LALO Contemporary Mexican Kitchen & Bar and COCO Lounge & Bar will be inspired by the colourful cultural and culinary traditions of Mexico. It will be the latest project by the Entourage Group, who are also behind Mr. Porter, The Duchess and Izakaya.

LALO

Notably, LALO translates the essence of Mexico into an unparalleled dining experience. Sparkling, lively and energetic. And of course, with dishes that will resemble that. In the kitchen & bar, fine dining merges with a sexy lounge, where DJs add flavour to the evening with their beats. Together it creates an energetic atmosphere of drinking, eating and socialising that is revolutionary within Amsterdam. Both concepts cover the entire 24th floor of the tower and therefore have a 360 ° view of the city.

Find out which lunch spots in Amsterdam made it to our top 10!

LALO Mexican restaurant Amsterdam

Globetrotters and local townspeople relax in the leather saddles with woven backrests that are handmade by Mexican artisans.

Interior

Despite the modern architecture of the building, LALO represents the bustling and uncontrolled energy of Central America. The renowned designers of Studio MU Architecture & Design translated the essence of the country into a design full of characteristic materials such as antique iron, rough concrete, lush plants, rustic wood and unique terrazzo. As an illustration, golden and brass elements in the design symbolise historical art objects. But no matter which place guests choose to spend their time, LALO offers fantastic views of Amsterdam everywhere. From the seats directly at the window to the high bar stools, large tables and the intimate booths.

COCO Bar & Lounge

With its energetic lounge atmosphere and colourful dishes, COCO, as a long-awaited sky lounge, gives Amsterdam hospitality a refreshing boost as a long-awaited sky lounge. The lounge & bar menu captures the grand dynamics of Mexico. Small dishes are combined with one of the 100 tequila options or the tropical cocktails full of Mexican and South American influences. COCO looks out over Amsterdam at a staggering 91 meters. In that exciting and cosmopolitan setting, it bustles all day long. From lunch to after work drinks, to an informal dinner with live DJ music.

COCO Amsterdam

In either case, we can’t wait for these two new hotspots to open!

LALO Mexican Kitchen & Bar
COCO Bar & Lounge

Europaboulevard 2b, Amsterdam
Website

ADVENTURE IN JORDAN | AND WHY YOU SHOULD GO

The enchanting country of Jordan offers many adventures. From the ancient sites that sit amongst modern day life in to marvelling at the cultural hustle and bustle found in Amman. But it’s the wonder outside of the capital that sparks the most joy.

Millions of years ago, Wadi Rum was once a vast ocean but fast forward to 2020 and it’s now a desert with the most fascinating rock formations. Famed for being a back drop for Star Wars, Aladdin, The Martian and Laurence of Arabia, it is little wonder that Wadi Rum, Jordan attracts the crowds. Fear not though, there’s plenty adventure for everyone.

Plan your trip to Jordan

Before you go, book your accommodation so that you can sleep under the stars. There’s a plethora of budget chic to luxe campsites to meet a range of budgets all offering private rooms. Most sites offer a range of activities you can get involved in as well including traditional desert meals cooked in the ground as evening entertainment. Star gazing at night time and camel riding to watch the sun rise. You can also arrange for a jeep safari through the desert which will include stops at sand dunes the height of sky scrapers as well as ancient wall drawings. Most travellers start in Jordan’s capital, Amman. Read our tips about Amman!

Jordan Desert

The almighty Petra

Possibly the most famous destination in Jordan is Petra, one of the wonders in the world. It’s a 16km ancient city which was built by hand between 6,000-1,000 BC. There are few words to describe the scale and beauty of Petra. Most might know it for the Treasury which featured in Indiana Jones, but so much to see. Upon entering you’l have a 1km walk through canyons which were formed during an earthquake thousands of years ago. Some parts of the path are only 2m wide which meander downwards until you see the Treasury peaking out at a small gap.

Petra, Jordan

If you’ve got the chance to go early, do so. Gates open at 6am and theres only a handful of tourists at this time. Anytime after 11am and you’ll be amongst the thousands. Beyond the Treasury you can trek to the other side of the city, climbing 850 steps through rock face to see the Monastery. There is a cafe for those needing a refreshment upon arrival. At nighttime, 2,000 visitors are permitted to see Petra by Night. A guided tour walk through the canyons and arriving at the Treasury – all of which is lit up by candlelight. While entry is included within your Jordan Pass for daytime sightseeing, you’ll need to buy an additional ticket for the night pass.

Camels at Petra, Jordan

Dead Sea – a must see

Next stop on your trip itinerary must be the Dead Sea. There are many resorts which offer accommodation should you wish to stay over, but for anyone wanting a day visit the Jordan Pass will once again step up to the task. Picture this: most seas have a salt content of around 3% whereas the Dead Sea has 37%. This means that anything which enters will float which is quite a novelty sensation. The tranquility is also appealing – a chance to lie back and read a book in the sea while the sun sets is like nothing else. For 3JD you can cover yourself in mineral-rich mud which will leave you with baby soft, nourished skin.

Dead sea Jordan

Best time to visit Jordan

Jordan attracts visitors the world over and peak times are from October – March, in part due to the temperatures. Even during this period it can peak at 30 degrees during the day time. Plus temperatures can drop in the desert at night time. With so much political instability from their surrounding neighbours, Jordan is hard placed within the Middle East. But with wonders as appealing as Petra, Wadi Rum, the Dead Sea and the delights of Amman their profile is rising fast.

Our lasting advice? Don’t miss out.

Love,

Stephanie

Our top 10 favourite lunch spots in Amsterdam

To be fair, there are too many great lunch and brunch possibilities in Amsterdam, but a few standout! 

We’ve handpicked our favourite 10 lunch spots in Amsterdam because they have that extra little thing. More importantly, we have also selected our choices by these important pillars:

  • They serve topnotch food
  • Provide excellent and friendly service
  • Good quality at reasonable prices
  • Great vibe
  • Inspirational or unique design

1. COTTONCAKE, 1e van der Helstraat 76-hs

This Concept store in the Pijp has it all! No need to travel to Paris,  Berlin, Melbourne or New York – Cottoncake brings all influences together in their store and café. They put all their love in fine organic food & smoothies. Besides food & drinks you will find a mix of fashion, design & lifestyle. From lovely handmade jewelries of Mimi et Toi & Monocraft, organic creams of La Bruket, to lovely basic shirts of Samsoe & Samoe and beautiful knits of Sita Murt.. I really fell in love with this concept store; you can sit down and relax, enjoy their organic healthy food and find that special item that you have to try on and you will keep for ever. cottoncake.nl

CottonCake
source: www.cottoncake.nl

2. BAKERS & ROASTERS, Eerste Jacob van Campenstraat 54

Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland are known for their great coffee shops and these two friendly owners of New Zealand & Brasil brought the caffé culture to Amsterdam. This New Zealand style café is a very nice place where they serve fresh fruit salads, healthy juices, hot pies fresh from the oven, eggs, granola and is packed every day and we totally understand why! They do not except reservations, but it’s worth to wait.
Don’t forget to take a coffee, since their crafted coffee is a selection of Roasts from Ozone Coffee. They establish relationships with all their growers, batch roast & dispatch daily to ensure maximum taste & freshness. http://bakersandroasters.com

Lunch spots Amsterdam

3. VINNIES DELI, Haarlemmerstraat 46 | Nieuwezijds Kolk 33

Are you looking for tasty & healthy lunch where they use organic, fair-trade and sustainable products? Then Vinnies Deli is definitely the place to be for you! It’s no surprise this is one of our favourite lunch spots in Amsterdam. It’s a small cozy lunch/coffee room where you can eat your hart out! I have two favorites on the menu: eggplant with buttermilk sauce and pomegranate, and smoked mackerel with grapefruit chutney. But they also serve delicious cakes & coffees. Vinnies Deli is open from 7.30m in the morning and does take a killer take away and delivery. Do you like what you see inside? All the designer furniture is for sale! vinnieshomepage.com

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4. GARTINE, Taksteeg 7

In the hectic city you will find this secret’ place in Amsterdam, Gartine, a cute, cozy and lovely restaurant that is known for it’s high tea! From the garden to your plate: The special thing about Gartine is that they produce vegetables, fruits and herbs from its own garden. Almost all products are produced locally and everything is organic. They serve high quality breakfast, lunch & high tea dishes on flower-printed china plates. You need to make a reservation upfront since they only have 7 tables in total. gartine.nl

gartinesource: www.gartine.nl

5. CANTINA, Joris van Den Berghweg 107

In case you were looking to escape the city, Café Cantina is one of our favourite all time spots in Amsterdam. It’s not close to the city center and you can only reach it by car and bicycle. Therefore it’s never crowded and popular with locals. The organic café is also part of “Het Rijk van de Keizer” which is a location that can be used for weddings, parties and special dinners. You chill in the sundeck on a fatboy, hammock or even sit in an old car wreck. Find a spot in the shade under umbrella’s tucked away in between the trees. Don’t be surprised if you see chickens walking around, this is normal! Read more about this amazing spot.

Favourite lunch spots in Amsterdam, Cantina

6. SLA

If you want to eat something healthy and nutritious and organic, SLA is the place to do it. Currently, they own x locations in Amsterdam and they are still growing. Our favourite location is the one on the Amstelveenseweg because it’s large and next to the famous Vondelpark in Amsterdam. Every season they change their salad options, so you won’t get bored and they have more than 12 choices! It’s also one of our favourite workspots in Amsterdam, and furthermore, they offer free tea refills! ilovesla.com

Lunch spots in Amsterdam, SLA
Source: SLA

7. KARAVAAN, Kwakersplein 2h

To begin with, this place is brand new. It’s large, warm and the staff is extremely friendly which can be rare these days. In terms of people, you will find it all here. Couples, friends, freelancers, you name it. Find out more about this favourite lunch spot in Amsterdam.

Karavaan, lunch spot Amsterdam

8. BENJI’S

One of us has Indonesian roots, so we especially love Benji’s Toko. That being said, all of their locations are magnificent!  Best of all, all locations are full of plants and greenery, making you feel like you are in a tropical location.

Benji's

9. DROVERS DOG, Heemstedestraat 25 | Eerste Atjehstraat 62

This Australian café/restaurant has been around for many years now, but is still popular with locals and visitors till this day. To be fair, their service is excellent and the kitchen produces delicious comfort Aussi style food. In fact, two Australians and a Dutchman set up this great spot. In addition to the fact that a Drover is a well-known dog breed, the name has more to do with what these dogs do. They bring large herds of cattle together in Australia and bringing them together is what is important at  Drovers Dog. It is always cozy and full of friends, couples and families. Everyone who works there speaks English fluently and often with a strong Australian accent. (Oh, how we love it). 

10. BAR LELY, Cornelis Lelyplein 4

It’s one of Elke’s favorite workspots in Amsterdam at the moment, and situated at a brilliant location in Amsterdam West. Bar Restaurant Lely is so much more than just a restaurant next to Lelylaan train station. The restaurant opens at 8am, so early birds can drink a quick coffee and have some simple breakfast such as granola & yoghurt or a croissant. For lunch they serve simple but very tasty options and I must say that the avo on toast with a poached egg. 

Bar Restaurant Lely Amsterdam

Happy eating!

Wander-Lust

14 x Valentine’s Day idea’s in Amsterdam

Whether you’re in love, in a romantic relationship, or still wondering where your big love is wandering around, Valentine’s Day should or could be for everyone! We’ve selected 10 romantic things you can do on Valentines Day!

Some for singles, some for lovers, some for all! These are our top things to do on Valentine’s Day in Amsterdam.

1. Get Married for 1 Day!

At Wed and Walk you can get married for one day! Ok, it’s just for fun but you get a dress, suit and a picture to prove it! Maybe this is a good try out with your love to hence the feeling before the real big deal.. Prices start from €75,- which includes a wedding picture and rings to remember the big day! www.wed-and-walk.com

Wed and walk Valentine's Day Ideas in Amsterdam

2. Valentines Movie Classics at the Concert Hall

You don’t need to be a huge fan of classical music to go here because everybody loves a good romantic movie soundtrack! On This special night, the Concert Hall in Amsterdam will play the film music such as Romeo & Westside story, Carmen and more. Tickets are available from €35,-.

3. Valentine diner at Rijk van de Keizer

Imagine. While enjoying love flowing through the heart, Het Rijk van de Keizer brings you love flowing through the mouth. On this beautiful day of love the pop-restaurant located in Amsterdam New (find our where the best lunch spots are!) West serves a special Valentine’s Dinner dinner in Amsterdam for you and your love. They were fully booked last year so make sure to reserve your table! The menu will be organic, fresh and local and cost €37,50 per head.

Mr & mrs Watson

4. Fly over Holland

Forget all of the old-fashioned Valentine’s Day stuff and fly over the Netherlands with your lover! Okok, not in a place but in front of a massive screen with stunning images that will make you feel like you are actually in the air due to all the technology. Receive 2 glasses of bubbles and a flight over the Dutch landscape for 17,50 per person. For tickets and more info check www.thisisholland.com

5. Jazzy Valentine’s dinner at In-Stock

Save a dinner for two! At In-Stock they only use ingredients that would otherwise be wasted. They want to break the food waste cycle by turning food surplus into an appetising breakfast, lunch and dinner. Think of fruits and veggies with some beauty flaws, one-day old bread, and fish and meat leftovers. They are planning to turn their restaurant into a lovers cave with candles and live music while you enjoy a 4-course dinner for two. Reserve your spot at www.instock.nl/restaurant/restaurant-amsterdam 

6. Valentines Day underneath the stars at Artis

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with you love under the stars. Come with your loved one or invite your Valentine at ARTIS Zoo. In the Planetarium you are introduced to cosmic couples, such as tight double stars and clashing galaxies and you explore the attraction between earth and moon. Once back on earth, you look up at the galaxy. Listen to mythical stories about the male and female hunt of Jupiter and the sneaky relationship between Mars and Venus. It starts at 7:30 pm and ends at 9pm. Regular tickets cost €25 for 2 persons, €20 with a membership and include a drink.

Starts at Artis

7. Valentine’s Boat Cruise

Imagine the romantic canals of Amsterdam, twinkling lights everywhere, in the background a romantic music is on, in your hand you have a glass of cold prosecco and outside the romantic views of Amsterdam pass you by. Can it be more romantic?? Enjoy a 90 minutes boat cruise while enjoying a drink on the heated blue boat during valentine. Book it here from just 19,50.

8. Eat in the Dark at CTaste

Test your taste buds and eat in the dark! Upon arrival, diners are instructed to leave any light sources in lockers, so they can feel and taste their way through a three-course menu served by highly-trained blind (or partially-sighted) servers. We think this is an extra nice touch! The chef will offer foods that will make you talk about it so no need to worry about those awkward silence moments if it’s your first date! For more info visit www.ctaste.nl

9. Enjoy a Luxury High Tea

For all the best high tea spots, you’re good in Amsterdam. We’ve selected 6 of our favourite places that you can visit with your loved one, your family or friends!

high tea in Amsterdam

10. Valentine’s Movie Screening

Valentine’s day is not just for romantic lovers, it’s for all your pretty faces. Calling all lonely hearts, hopeless romantics and lovesick souls. Join Cinema of the Dam’d, a non-profit foundation that curates and presents unconventional film programs in Amsterdam, on Valentine’s Day for a special screening of Wong Kar-wai’s ravishing, bittersweet classic: IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE. Bring a date (or don’t). There will be chocolate for all! Tickets cost €6,50 and the bar opens at 7pm.

11.VSPA Gala at Pllek

If we need to believe the hype, it will be an evening full of love and dreamy gardens. This year the prom will take place on valentine’s day. How romantic! Take a chance and ask your crush to the gala. The party ‪starts at 22:00‬, so make sure to be there on time! So, don’t forget to buy a beautiful dress or suit, get a fresh haircut, buy the perfect heels, and we’ll see you at the Prom! Ticket sales will start on the 27th of January. www.pllek.nl/pllek-agenda

12. Ice-Skating 

There is nothing more romantic than holding each others hand and skate in front of the Rijksmuseum. With the lights and hot chocolate on tap, you are in for some romance on skates! Amsterdam also offers ice-skating rings at Rembrantsplein and Jaap Edenbaan (the largest ice-ring), but the ice-skating ring at museum square has the be the most romantic one. They are open till 9pm until the 3rd of February.

13. Cuddle With Cats at Kopjes

Single and not ready to mingle but do you have enough cuddles to give? Then head down to the cat café in Amsterdam West. Kopjes is the first cat café in Amsterdam and was funded by a crowdfunding started on the internet. It has cats in all shapes and sizes that are rescued and looking for some love. Order a ‘catuccino’ or enjoy some of the sweet delights that they are serving. Valentine’s Day in Amsterdam has never been so cute. www.kattencafekopjes.nl

kattencafe Amsterdam

14. Talk at Lab 111; is Monogamy still a thing?

If we believe Hollywood, we should live happily ever after and preferably as romantic and monogamous as possible. In the new film program The More The Merrier: Moving Beyond Monogamy, we challenge this ideal through stimulating films, talks and art. On Valentine’s Day Lab 111 starts the program with a conversation about the self-evidence of monogamy and the stigmas surrounding non-monogamy. Is monogamous still normal if 40 percent of marriages fail? Moderator: Dorien van Linge, writer of Feminist Fataal (2019), journalist at de Volkskrant and known as DJ Dorien.

We wish you a year full of (self)love this Valentines Day!

Wander-Lust

KARAVAAN AMSTERDAM | The All Day Food & Drink Spot

They secretly opened last week, but it didn’t happen unnoticed. Karavaan is open for business and we think this one is here to stay.

Situated in Amsterdam West, Karavaan – translated from the Dutch word Caravan, is located on the perfect corner on Kwakersplein. The building – previously occupied by Bar LouLou, was empty for months on end and people wondered what was coming. Ultimately, three experience entrepreneurs (the guys behind Panache, Waterkant and Ebeling) decided to turn it into the ideal place for breakfast, lunch, dinner and cocktails.

Karavaan Amsterdam interior

Karavaan can be anything you want it to be – the all day hangout, your morning coffee spot, the place for Friday night drinks, a neighbourhood cafe, city oasis, or breakfast club.

Karavaan lounge area

The Menu at Karavaan

For one thing, Karavaan doesn’t want to stick with the same menu. However, you can describe the current menu as a journey across the globe with Mediterranean style food for dinner, European breakfast and a mix between no-nonsense Dutch and International lunch. In other words, the menu is ever changing with boundaries. We tried the pumpkin salad and the bagel with beet and feta cheese, which was fresh and tasty! Additionally, we are especially curious about the dinner menu to say the least.

Karavaan Menu

At Karavaan the evenings are all about food, speciality beers, cocktails and tasty wines!

The Interior

With 3 bars, the total space unfolds into different directions indicated by changes in colours, interior finishes and light objects. The morning breakfast/coffee bar is located at the entrance and has a structure of mirrored light panels hanging above the bar, which can be flipped, changing from ‘Caffeine’ to ‘Cocktail’ Karavaan. This way the venue is suitable for all occasions and Studio Modijefsky designed the interior with this intention. Using earthy colours and patterns, the space feels warm and inviting. Parents, freelancers, friends and couples, Karavaan attracts a wide audience. If you need a located for a party or presentation, you can also do it here.

Karavaan Amsterdam Chairs, table

Drinks & Hangout

To enumerate their all-day-night concept, Karavaan is open until 1AM during weekdays and 3AM in the weekends. Additionally, DJ’s will be playing tunes on Fri, Sat and Sun from 10PM, making it the perfect spot for dinner and drinks with friends or colleagues. And let’s not forget about their massive outside terrace! From this coming March you will be able to soak up that sunshine and we cannot wait.

All in all, we are happy Karavaan has struck down in the city. We think this will be one of Amsterdam’s finest places to be, for a long while at least.

Karavaan
Kwakersplein 2h, Amsterdam
Website

Love,

Elke

Find out what’s new in our Amsterdam Guide!

 

 

 

 

 

 

These are the Best Spa’s in Amsterdam

Time for some YOU-time. Luckily, Amsterdam has a wide variety in Spa’s where you can pamper yourself.

These are some of the best spa’s in Amsterdam that are worth your while.

Akasha Spa, Conservatorium Hotel

This one is considered as one of the best spa’s in Amsterdam. located in the middle of the museum district inside the Conservatorium Hotel. Complete with a swimming pool, sauna and amazing treatments, this is a place where you walk out as a new you. I enjoyed an aromatherapy massage for 75 minutes and it was heaven. Prices are what you expect of a top notch hotel like this but let’s be real, everybody deserves a treatment like this once in a while!

Akasha Spa
Van Baerlestraat 27
www.conservatoriumhotel.com

Akasha-Moderne-Hippies-winactie2
Total zen at the Akasha Spa

Skins Institute at Hotel De L’Europe

This amazing Spa is located at the 5 star Hotel De L’Europe in the heart of Amsterdam. They used to have 2 locations, but they’ve now put everything under one roof. They do body, face, waxing, beauty and even hair treatments. I tried and tested one of their signature facial treatments and wow…heaven! Seriously, I should do this more often! You can even create your own exclusive oil base by getting your skin analyzed. A full day at the spa will cost you 30 euro’s and you can use the swimming pool (pictured), sauna’s, steam room and relax area where you can read. They serve lunch from the hotel and during spring and summer, you can enjoy the patio outside overlooking the Amstel.

Skins Institute
Nieuwe Doelenstraat 2-14
www.skinsinstitute.nl

PicMonkey Collage
Also on top of our list as one of the best spa’s in Amsterdam 

Sauna Deco

This Sauna and wellness Spa has been settled in Amsterdam  for 30 years already! The art decor is what you call, somewhat special. Sauna Deco is a household name in Amsterdam and many of our friends love going here. Their massages are reasonably priced and the sauna wellness area is available from 19 euro’s per person.

Sauna Deco

Herengracht 115
www.saunadeco.nl

Sauna Deco Spa
Source: Sauna Deco Spa

Spa Sport Hotel Zuiver (Spa Zuiver)

It’s where you will find mothers & daughters, couples, friends and business people. Spa Zuiver is for everyone. Sarah loves this place and returns here a couple of times a year.

Spa Sport Hotel Zuiver
Koenenkade 8

Spa_Baden_Zwembad35A3903
The pool area in Spa Zuiver. Photo by Karen Steenwinkel

These are without doubt the best spa’s in Amsterdam

The City Street Spa

Lucky for us, this Spa has 2 locations in Amsterdam! One flagship and one smaller which is called “Le Petit Spa”. From facials, pedicures, killer eyebrow and body treatments to Acupuncture and reflexology, you can find it all in one place. This popular spa also offers special face, hand and feet treatments for men so if you ever want to surprise your boyfriend, this is the place! 

The City Street Spa
Prinsengracht 764bg
Centre neuf Utrechtsestraat 120
www.thecitystreetspa.com

one of the best spa's in Amsterdam
Source: hethaartheater.nl

Cowshed at the Soho House

Cowshed
Spuistraat 210, Amsterdam
www.sohohouseamsterdam.com/en/spa

Cowshed is located on the ground floor of the relatively new Soho House Amsterdam. The Soho House is a members club but the spa is open to everyone. The Spa has six treatment rooms and four mani-pedi chairs which are divine. Men can also enjoy a traditional barber and hair treatment here, but we tested the massage. The Cowshed relaxing moody massage is wonderful and you can choose between different oils. After the treatment you can enjoy a free herbal tea and on Thursdays they serve bubbles and chocolate! Good to know: All skin products are free from parabens, petrochemicals, sulphates, and artificial fragrances. 

Cowshed spa in Amsterdam

Human Beauty

This spa is not huge but smaller and cozy than the above mentioned. This makes your spa experience more personal and customers keep returning. The interior is light and bright with a small boutique where you can buy ceramics and Jewellery from the like of Mimi et Toi.

Human Beauty
Eerste Tuindwarsstraat 1
www.humanbeauty.nl

Best spas in Amsterdam
Photographs by Lisan Timp  &  Marijn Wijs

Floatcenter Amsterdam

Floating is one of the most relaxing things you can experience. It’s weightless, silent and you and your mind is all there is. A little difficult for some of us as doing “nothing” is somewhat out of the ordinary when you have a busy schedule like us but nevertheless, very needed. This spa also offers massages, a hamam (scrub),spa capsules, beauty treatments and sauna.

Floatcenter Amsterdam
Nieuwe Kerkstraat 5k
www.floatcenteramsterdam.com

PicMonkey Collage
Me floating at the float center Amsterdam. 

Spa 1001

Most hotspots are in the city centre of Amsterdam, at least that’s what most people think. I live outside the centre so I know better. Spa 1001 is located in Amsterdam New West in Osdorp and close to the upcoming Tuinen van West area. The spa is also popular with Dutch celebrities like actrice Victoria Koblenko, footballer Justin Kluivert, vlogger Sisi Bolatini and other top sporters and well known vloggers. You can either book 2,5 or 5 hours and enjoy your private sauna, steam room with a optic star-ceiling, spacious jacuzzi or unwind in the luxurious (and large) lounge area that includes a fireplace. 

Spa 1001
Meer en Vaart 4, Amsterdam

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Spa 1001, best spas in Amsterdam

Love,

Elke

ELLIS GOURMET BURGER AMSTERDAM

It is years ago now, but when I lived in London and I found out that an Ellis Gourmet Burger restaurant was opening near my place, I couldn’t be more thrilled. I’ve been a vegetarian for most of my life, so why do I dig this burger place you ask?

In comparison, Ellis Gourmet Burger is a little different to other burger joints. And in recent years, they’ve made an even bigger transition when it comes to their menu. Surprisingly, vegan and vegetarian dishes are well established on the menu so when Wander-Lust was asked to test the new latest venue in central Amsterdam, we said yes in a heartbeat.

Ellis Gourmet Burger

With restaurants in Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam and Breda, Ellis Gourmet Burger is doing something right in the Netherlands. It has been a while since I ate at a burger restaurant, so I invited Sarah to join at their location on the Gravenstraat so we could pick and mix. 

Wander-Lust at Ellis Gourmet Burger

The Menu at Ellis Gourmet Burger

Honestly, everyone can eat here. But oh boy, those sticky flower wings. Basically, these are deliciously disguised cauliflower parts, glazed with sweet sriracha and panko-crumbed. Still licking my fingers as we speak. They are the latest edition on the menu plus they’re 100% vegan!

Vegetarian Burger Ellis Gourmet Burger

For mains you have plenty of choice between 11 burgers, sides and salads. Sarah tried the Quinoa & goat cheese salad (it was January, so healthy orders were made), and I opted for the vegetarian burger. By the way, the buns at Ellis Gourmet Burger are crunchy and not to be compared with the soft dry burger buns you get at Mac D’s. We all have our preferences, but I prefer this. If you still like the taste of meat but you want to save the planet, you can order the revolutionary and sustainable plant-based Beyond burger!

The Interior

It has to be said, this wasn’t my favourite location I’ve seen. However, the location is perfect for visitors, as it’s located right in the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam’s shopping district, near the Dam Square. If you are looking for a more local experience, try their other locations the Prinsengracht or Singel.

All in all, I filled my tummy with some good comfort food!  Vegetarian or not, I can assure you, Ellis surely knows how to serve a tasty burger!

Ellis Gourmet Burger
Gravenstraat 20, Amsterdam
Website

Elke

 

Discover Vilnius, the underrated gem of Europe!

Vilnius is a place with lots of amazing architecture and delicious local cuisine. This guide will tell you about the best hotspots and foods that Vilnius has to offer!

Truth be told, I didn’t know anything about Vilnius or Lithuania in general. It is quite an unknown city in Europe, but it turned out to be a great place for a city trip with a variety of hotspots, historical buildings, culture, history and especially loads of foods. 

How to get there

Lithuania is situated in the north of Europe and is part of the Baltic states. There are several flights to Vilnius from Amsterdam, however only with Air Baltic you can fly directly from Amsterdam to Vilnius in 2 hours and 15 minutes. Other airlines like Lufthansa and LOT offer flights with one transfer. The airport of Vilnius is very close to the city centre and you can easily reach the centre by bus or train for less than €2.

Lithuania – a place just a 2-hours flight away from Amsterdam– is still fairly unknown as a tourist destination.

Where to stay

Vilnius is not that big so the city’s highlights are relatively close. There are many hostels for the budget traveller and hotels are available for as little as 30 euros per night for two persons. We stayed at the Amberton hotel which had the perfect location on Cathedral Square right in the middle of the city centre. If you want to have a really luxurious stay, I would recommend design hotel Pacai, which is modern and unique with authentic details like frescoes.

Pink Building Vilnius

What to see in the city centre

Not surprisingly, Vilnius Old Town is full of historical buildings with impressive architectural styles. I was amazed by all the architecture; around every corner you will find a building that takes your breath away. The streets of Vilnius are not very crowded and you can enjoy the beauty of the city without being disturbed by many tourists. Furthermore, everything is walkable! Here are some of the top spots of the city.

  • Cathedral Square
    This square is the heart of the city. You can spot the Cathedral Bell Tower, where you can climb to the top to have a perfect panoramic view of the city. You can also visit the Vilnius Cathedral and right next to it you’ll find the Grand Dukes Palace. In December there’s a Christmas market with a beautifully decorated Christmas tree in the middle.
  • The Uzupis area
    Uzupis is the oldest suburb of Vilnius and has been declared as the Republic of Uzupis by Lithuanian artists. Just walk around and take a look at the street art and beautiful buildings. Make sure you go to Paupio Street where you can find special plaques with 41 rules of the Republic in various languages. Close to Uzupis you can visit the Gothic St. Anne and St. Bernardine churches from the 15th century which are very impressive and statuesque. The beautiful St. Michael the Archangel Church is also nearby.
  • The Church of St. Casimir
    This building was one of my faves, mainly because of the beautiful pink exterior with baroque architecture. Since many of the houses surrounding the churches and historical buildings are quite small, you can spot the church from many different places in town. It’s easily recognizable with a golden crown on top of one of the towers.
  • Turgus Hales
    Many locals come to this market hall to do their shopping and you’ll occasionally spot a tourist. Roots is a particularly interesting little store, because it has the largest selection of Lithuanian handcrafted cheese in the country. The lovely ladies there are happy to let you try some of the cheeses.

Street Lithuania

Vilnius Church

Things do in and around Vilnius

  • Go by bike or step or make a trip with a hot air balloon
    You can easily get bikes in the city or rent an electric step to discover the Old Town. During spring and summer, you can even take a balloon ride over the historical city centre. Breath-taking views guaranteed!
  • Visit a museum
    Vilnius has various museums. The National Museum portrays the history and culture of Lithuania, but if you are particularly interested in the Soviet period of the country, you should visit the Museum of Genocide (KGB museum). The exhibition tells more about the terror of the Soviet Union in Lithuania and you can visit the prison complex.
  • Visit historical town Trakai
    Trakai is a small town with a rich and interesting history. It’s only a half-hour drive away from Vilnius. The Trakai castle is based on an island in the middle of the lake. You can visit the museum and find out more about the medieval history of Trakai and its inhabitants. If the weather is good you can also take a boat ride across the lake to see the castle from various viewpoints.

Trakai Castle
Trakai Castle

The city of great food

If you are a food lover, Vilnius will not disappoint. The locals really value their local produce and everywhere in the city you can find shops that sell unique local products. Cheese, fruit wine, rye bread, kvass (a soft-drink) and tree cake are popular amongst locals. Going on a food tour is a must-do if you’re a foodie! Vilnius has various restaurants with local cuisine, the ones below are definitely worth a visit!

  • Queensberry
    A special product of Lithuania is wine made of fruits like rhubarb, raspberry, and cherry. Queensberry is a good place to go if you want to try the different types of wines in combination with modern Lithuanian food. Do try the fried rye bread with cheese dip, it is so yummy!
  • Ertlio Namas
    Ertlio Namas is a very special restaurant where authentic Lithuanian cuisine is mixed with modern cuisine. You can choose a 4-course or 6-course tasting menu and the enthusiastic waiters will tell you a historical background story with each course.
  • Augustas ir Barbora
    If you want to visit a cafe which is Instagram worthy, then you should go here. The interior is filled with pink chairs and flowers on the ceiling. Grab a coffee here, have breakfast or enjoy various pies and tasty pastries.

Terrace Vilnius

Vilnius is the hidden gem of Northern Europe, so go there in 2020 (find out which destinations we recommend for this year) before everyone else knows about it!

Love,

Merel

*Merel is one of our guest editors in Rotterdam. She describes herself as a daydreaming student who loves to travel. Last year she made a 5-month backpacking trip through Asia and she can’t wait to see more of the world. Check her out on Instagram: @merel_d94.

 

 

 

 

 

 

NHOW AMSTERDAM RAI IS OPEN

After a 3 year period of intensive construction, the highly anticipated nhow Amsterdam has finally opened its doors on the 10th of January for guests.

The new hotel is a unique location for meetings and events, with nine different rooms on the 23rd floor that offer an amazing view of Amsterdam. A few important facts about the brand new nhow Amsterdam RAI:

Facts nhow Amsterdam RAI

  • The already iconic building between the RAI and the A10 was designed by the renowned architectural firm OMA. (fun fact, the architect used to be my father in law)
  • The interior contains colours and patterns from all over the world; the design stimulates inspiration and creativity.
  • nhow Amsterdam RAI has 650 hotel rooms and nine multifunctional event spaces on the 23rd floor.
  • Luckily, the hotel is only a ten-minute drive from Schiphol Airport.

bedroom nhow Amsterdam RAI

Food & Drink

Both international guests and locals can work and network in the lounge on the first floor. THE ENTOURAGE GROUP is launching a Kitchen & Bar and Lounge & Bar on the top floor at a height of 91 meters with a panoramic view of the city. The hotel is directly located on the RAI complex. Between the Europa Boulevard, the A10 ring road and RAI Amsterdam. Schiphol Airport is only ten minutes by car or train and the tram will take you to Dam Square within six minutes.

Restaurant nhow Amsterdam

RAI Amsterdam headquarter hotel

Needless to say that hotel is perfect for organizers, exhibitors and visitors to national and international events at RAI Amsterdam. Maurits, COO of RAI Amsterdam, adds: “As a multicultural hotspot, the hotel will be the home base for organizers, exhibitors and visitors to national and international events. With this RAI Amsterdam strengthens its competitive position on the international stock exchange and congress market and adds something special to the city of Amsterdam. “

Pink room nhow hotel

Future plans for nhow lifestyle brand hotels will be opened in the coming three years. Nhow Brussels, nhow Frankfurt, nhow Hamburg and nhow Lima are on the planning.

Book your stay here!

Love,

Elke

Find out which hotels in Amsterdam are the most sustainable!

Most sustainable hotels Amsterdam