We have stayed twice at Amsterdam’s Hotel Arena. Once while it was undergoing a major remodeling and later when it was completed. The construction wasn’t a big inconvenience as the hotel worked very hard to keep things under control. Afterwards the changes were very impressive.
The hotel is in a good location for seeing the city, situated at the edge of the city center and near to Oosterpark. It is a short three block walk to a tram stop and another block or two to an active restaurant district. It is also in a historic building built in 1888. The Arena has preserved much of the original accents, like the original cast iron and marble staircase and a restored Chapel. Also, because it has adapted to the buildings original layout from the 19th century every room has a unique layout.
On the ground floor is a good restaurant and a bar that flows out onto a nice patio area. The patio bar is also popular with locals after work. We would give the hotel staff very high marks and considering that rooms were well under US$100 it is an excellent value.
We’ve stayed in two different rooms in the Arena with one being a loft and were very pleased with the space and furnishings. In both rooms there was however a disconcerting feature. The bathrooms in both were enclosed completely by glass walls. We’ve stayed in hotels from Thailand to Mexico, Argentina to Singapore and all over Europe and North America and must admit that this was a first. Getting past the bath issue we’d give the Hotel Arena four plus stars and a bonus for value.