2023.04 Amsterdam and Berlin (Part 2)

We stayed one night in Rotterdam before heading to visit family for Easter.  The short train ride had us avoiding the extremely high hotel costs in Amsterdam.  Considering we didn’t have plans to visit anything in Amsterdam for the day, it was a chance to sample another spot in the Netherlands.

Journey to Rotterdam

Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport is a transit hub.  Lots of local and regional trains stop at the station, and with bus connections to other parts of the region, it’s easy to go from a flight to your destination without having to get a rental car, or taxi.

The train we had was an express trip to Rotterdam that was approximately 30 minutes, and from the signboard in the pictures above, it was delayed by only a few minutes arriving at Schiphol station.  We boarded the train where my mom and Little Miss then easily found a spot to sit.  Given the quantity of luggage we had, I stayed with the luggage by the doors to minimize the effort of having to move them about the train.

Now, most trains in the Netherlands are used for commuting, so large luggage storage is sparse if any at all.  However, depending on the train model, there is space around the doors where one can place the luggage and then babysit it by using one of the drop-down seats.  As one can guess, this space is probably to allow space for bicycles, as there might be a few bicycles in the Netherlands. 😉 The ride was smooth and I liked getting a picture of the rising sun through the layers of morning cloud during our train ride.

Once at Rotterdam central station, the hotel was a short, and easy 5 (10 with luggage) minute walk.

Hilton Rotterdam

The hotel is easy to find from the station, upon exiting, the hotel is to the left of the station along the main street.  On the opposite side of the main street, the hotel borders a pedestrian area.  Although the weather didn’t cooperate for the day, I can imagine that on warm, and sunny days the area would be filled with shoppers, and every restaurant would have their patios filled with customers.

Upon arrival to the hotel, the front desk were outstanding as they had rooms ready for us and graciously let us check-in early.  This was a bonus for two reasons, first it gave us the chance to leave our luggage somewhere, and secondly during check-in we were informed that we were welcomed to enjoy their breakfast!

First up, drop off the luggage.  Our rooms were across the hall from each other on the 9th floor.  Styling was similar to the Hilton Amsterdam with the use of wood paneling:


We both had a standard room with a King-sized bed.  Our room faced towards the city hall, and her room faced the main street.

Here’s a slideshow of the room:

The room was good, the one thing that surprised me was that there was a step up into the shower.  I admit, this is a better design than a step up into the entire bathroom, however this design did make it easy for water to trickle onto the rest of the bathroom floor.

We then immediately headed back to the main level to enjoy breakfast.


We arrived for breakfast just before 9am on our first day.  On the morning of our check-out it was significantly busier, however our timing was perfect because we missed a group tour who were heading for their buses, and just before a USA field hockey team, with parents and siblings, filled the breakfast space.  This space is also their main restaurant during the rest of the day, called Jaq.  We were quickly seated.  The selection was solid, and with the ability to have made-to-order eggs was a nice touch.  I don’t think any of us ordered eggs, as the buffet selection was more than enough for all of us.

Here’s a slideshow of the buffet spread over both mornings:

Not to disappoint, here is a slideshow of what we selected for our breakfast.  Yes, I tried the chocolate cake as part of breakfast.

After being filled with an excellent breakfast, and our bodies thinking it was still the middle of the night we all agreed a nap would be appropriate.  It ended up being that my mom and Little Miss slept for most of the day, and I only slept for a few hours.  I got moving around lunch time where I let Little Miss to continue sleeping while I explored the rest of the hotel, picked up our rental car for the trip, and wandered about the neighbourhood.

Executive Lounge

We had access to the executive lounge, located on the main floor just to the right of the main entrance.  Your hotel card grants you access to the space.  The light in the space is great and being on the main floor had higher ceilings than lounges that are on guest floors throughout the hotel.  During the day, beverages and some treats were available.  I steered us by after dinner where they had a few things available to eat and some additional drinks available.

(Yes another slideshow to scroll through)

During the day the lounge only had a few other people in it, however when we dropped by after we had dinner there were more people in the lounge.  We didn’t have any issue finding a place to sit.

Restaurant Dining

When the others woke up from their nap, or sleep, we picked up a few snack items from a nearby Albert Heijn, as I didn’t know what would be available on Good Friday while we drove.  After the quick shopping trip, we decided to have dinner at the restaurant in the hotel, Jaq.  The staff (especially Hans) were outstanding, as they managed my mom’s dietary restrictions without issue.  For us, I had the Cesar salad with grilled chicken, and she had shrimp with rice and vegetables.  All three of us liked our meal — I think my mom had a grilled or poached fish.

Hotel Amenities

A few other items on the ground floor included a gym, along with bicycles that could be signed out from the front desk to explore the city.  The most interesting thing to me was the parking garage.  There was no direct elevator connection from the parking garage up to the hotel lobby.  Instead you’d have to navigate this flight of stairs!

(Slideshow of gym, bicycles, and access to the parking garage)

Finally, one amenity that we did use was the Sixt car rental desk that is located on the main floor of the hotel.  I picked up our rental car from this location as it was less expensive then starting at Amsterdam Schiphol, and as the location was closed on Good Friday, I had to pick it up during the afternoon we arrived.


In the early afternoon I headed out to grab something to eat while the others were busy sleeping.  Weather throughout the day was overcast with a mix between drizzle and rain, not unusual for early spring in Northern Europe.

(Slideshow of pictures from my short walk around the neighbourhood)

Only after walking around did I learn that the building that had the classic car parked out front was city hall.  In the pedestrian area I found a clothing shop dedicated to Formula 1 merchandise.  I didn’t buy anything, however I had originally expected it would be exclusively Max Verstappen items, given it is the Netherlands.

Overall, it was a great stay and would have no issues staying here again.

Explore other parts of this trip:

Part 1 – KLM Lounge and Flight Toronto to Amsterdam

Part 2 – Rotterdam Hilton (this post!)

Part 3 – Easter Weekend

Part 4 – Hilton Berlin

Part 5 – Pergamon Museum

Part 6 – Berlin, not sightseeing

Part 7 – Hilton Amsterdam Airport Schiphol

Part 8 – Vermeer at Rijksmuseum

Part 9 – KLM Crown Lounge and Flight Amsterdam to Toronto

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