It’s always sad to see a building that was formerly full of life abandoned, sitting idle, succumbing to the ravages of time, becoming a derelict eyesore before finally being demolished. The group behind Amsterdam’s Volkshotel thought exactly the same as they watched the former headquarters of newspaper Die Volkskrant suffer from a lack of tender loving care since the former tenants moved out in 2007. The Dutch daily paper had been on site since 1965, but once they decided to make a move away from the Amsterdam East building, things looked grim.
In stepped Urban Resort Foundation with a construction crew and big new ideas for the premises from architect Steven Steenbruggen and interiors studio Muller van Tol. Together they have redeveloped the building into Volkshotel, but the paper hasn’t been completely forgotten – guests will see several graphical references to Die Volkskrant as one of the three main principles of the hotel’s design (the other two being city views, and room comfort). There are 172 rooms, of which nine have received a bespoke design from individual creatives. The former journalist’s canteen on the 7th floor which enjoys 360 degree views of Amsterdam is now home to a restaurant-club hybrid called Canvas, and there’s a separate cocktail bar in the style of a 1920s speakeasy in the basement. With all those entertainment options, the journalists might well be moving back in!