Amsterdam was a city that I always wanted to visit but always thought wheelchair access around the city would be tricky. The more research I did the more I began to realise it was more accessible than I originally thought. So last month we decided to go for a long weekend city break. We flew from Edinburgh into Amsterdam on a Thursday evening and spent three fantastic nights. So let me tell you how we got on at the Corendon Vitality Hotel Amsterdam in a wheelchair accessible room.
Booking an Accessible Room
When we decided to visit Amsterdam I began researching accessible hotels. I wasn’t sure what area to base ourselves in so I decided to contact Accessible Travel Netherlands for some help. The lovely Veroniek from Accessible Travel Netherlands was fantastic and so helpful providing lots of suggestions and advice. I’ve never booked a holiday or hotel through an accessible travel agency, but it made sense to book the hotel through Accessible Travel Netherlands as Veroniek was a great resource and help to us. Veroniek also dealt with any questions and requests I had such as organising a shower chair for me. Once the booking was finalised, I then received an invoice from Accessible Travel Netherlands.
Location & Parking
It was late when we finally landed in Amsterdam Schiphol Airport so we were glad we had pre-booked a wheelchair accessible taxi (Salders) to take us to our hotel. We didn’t want any stress or hassle of having to figure out public transport late at night. The taxi driver was patiently waiting for us even though we were 2.5 hours later than expected. He was very understanding. The taxi journey to Corendon Vitality was only 10 minutes so it was perfect.
Corendon Vitality is located in Nieuw-West (New West), just outside the city centre on Aletta Jacobslaan. Don’t let the fact it’s not in the heart of the city centre put you off. It has great public transport links and as I just mentioned, super close to the airport. There is a tram stop (line 2) only 400 meters from the hotel, which provides an easy, accessible and efficient journey into the city centre. In fact, National Geographic Traveler has voted tram line 2 one of the most beautiful lines because of the many sights you see along the way. We used the tram stop Johan Huizingalaan and Louwesweg during our trip. If you are arriving in your own car, then you will be able to park in the hotel carpark as well.
The hotel is situated in a fairly quiet area with a lovely canal across the street, which we enjoyed walking along each day to get to the tram stop. You can see in the photo above, Corendon Vitality Hotel in the background behind the trees.
Entrance & Reception
We checked in at 1am, but even though it was dark and we were tired, we could tell it was a lovely hotel. The entrance has a revolving door and a wheelchair accessible door on the right which is activated by a button. When we arrived a member of staff seen us approaching so opened the door for us. This made it easy for us as Allan was juggling the suitcase and a few other bags at the time.
The reception staff helped straight away and got us checked in to our accessible room within minutes. The reception desk was a solid marble top with three computers lined up along the front. The desk was a little too high for me to see over, so I was expecting Allan to check us in. However, I thought it was lovely that the woman on the front desk immediately lowered her computer screen to greet me so that I could see and speak to her directly.
Self-check in and outs computers are available in the lobby if you prefer to do this yourself. There was also a nice area for relaxing in the lobby.
Wheelchair Accessible Room #428
I don’t think I’ve been so excited about getting to a hotel room and getting into bed than I was that night. I was exhausted so I was beyond relieved when I got into bed and discovered it was a freaking awesome bed. The dreamiest, comfiest and cloud-like mattress I’ve ever lay on. Thank you Corendon! The travel mat that I always travel with remained in the suitcase the entire trip as there was no need for it and I wasn’t sore or uncomfortable at all in bed. Why can’t all hotel beds be like this?
The bed was made up of two twin beds joined together. To my surprise both beds were adjustable, so it was just like our bed at home. Did I mention how amazing the mattress was? I’ll try not to go on about it too much but it is amazing when a bed is actually comfortable for me. There was plenty of space underneath the bed for a portable hoist if required.
The headboard had inbuilt lighting and an overhead shelf which could come in handy if you needed somewhere to place items within reach. I loved the windmill print above the bed. I found the height of the bed to be pretty good and we didn’t have any trouble transferring me to/from the bed and my wheelchair.
In terms of transferring from my wheelchair to the bed, we found there was only enough space on one side of the bed, closest to the bathroom. The other side of the bed was close to the desk and although my wheelchair could fit alongside it, it was slightly tighter than the other side of the bed.
There was minimal furniture in the room which was good, giving me fewer obstacles to manoeuvre around. Apart from the bed, there was only an armchair, a desk and a desk chair. Despite its minimalism, I did feel that our accessible room was slightly on the small side. I was able to move around in my wheelchair but certain turns were tight or I had to reverse.
The desk was positioned in front of the large windows, which would have provided the best light for doing my makeup. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to manoeuvre into the desk as the space wasn’t big enough. Instead, I did my make up at the bathroom sink. A kettle, telephone, lamp and fridge were all at the desk area.
A 42″ flatscreen TV was mounted on the wall and had lots of cool features including YouTube, games, information on spa treatments available, food & drink and Netflix. I loved relaxing in bed each night and watching Netflix.
Another great feature in our accessible room was the automatic door entry system. The large button on the wall was easy to push and placed at a good height for wheelchair users. The curtains were also operated automatically.
Wheelchair Accessible Bathroom
The bathroom was accessed through a sliding door. The turn into the bathroom was a little tight for my wheelchair, but my amazing driving skills managed. Once inside the bathroom, I found there was enough space for what I needed.
The toilet was set at a good height with a pull-down grab bar on one side and the toilet roll holder positioned at a lower height, within reach.
Next to the toilet was the roll-in shower. During the booking process, I requested a shower chair and Accessible Travel Netherlands made sure to organise it. If booking directly with the hotel I’d recommend you request the shower chair as from my understanding it doesn’t automatically come with the accessible room. I also believe there is only one shower chair available so I advise you request this straightaway at the time of booking. There wasn’t a shower curtain so keep this in mind and take care if water is on the floor.
The bathroom sink was positioned at the right height to allow my wheelchair to roll underneath, but due to my weaker arms and poor upper body strength, I found it a little difficult to reach the taps fully without help. The sink was a good size with a large wall-mounted mirror as well as a small magnifying mirror which was great when getting ready. A hairdryer was also located next to the sink, wall-mounted soap dispenser, box of tissues and towel rail.
If you don’t want to leave your room and head down to the spa, then you can turn on the infrared light in the bathroom. It is placed in the bathroom ceiling and is lovely and warm. A speaker system means you can listen to music or keep up with what’s happening on the TV while in the bathroom.
Amenities & Features
In the Room
- Temperature control
- Working desk
- Complimentary tea and coffee facilities
- Blackout curtains
- Complimentary WiFi
- Fairtrade toiletries
- 42” Flatscreen TV
- Laptop safe
In the hotel
- 24/7 Bazar (lobby shop)
- Complimentary access to the fitness centre
- Cor & Don’s Restaurant and Bar
- Car park
- Vitality Spa
As breakfast was included in our reservation we made full use of the international buffet breakfast each morning served in Cor & Don’s Restaurant. There was a wide range of options on offer and it seemed to be going down well with the other guests. We filled ourselves up with toast, pain au chocolat and lots of fruit.
Cor & Don’s Restaurant also served a ‘Burgers & more’ lunch menu and Mediterranean cuisine from lunchtime onwards. Drinks are served in the bar and there is an outdoor terrace to relax in with your meal and drink.
If you’re looking for a quick snack then The Bazar is ideal. The Bazar is a 24hr shop in the hotel lobby selling lots of goodies and useful items. Order at The Bazar or from the comfort of your room via the menu on the TV.
You can even buy some last minute souvenirs for your family before heading to the airport. We bought our GVB travel cards from the Bazar which provided us with unlimited travel on the bus, tram and metro. You can buy a GVB card for 24, 48 or 72 hours.
Corendon Vitality Hotel Amsterdam is one of the cities wheelchair accessible hotels offering great accessible rooms and features. The things I loved the most about this hotel other than the look and feel was the accessibility through the building. The heavenly bed and accessible technology in the room such as the automatic door system, automatic curtains and ordering food to the room via the TV. The tram stop was incredibly close to the hotel which made it easy to travel to and from the city centre. My only negative regarding our accessible room was that it was slightly on the small size, but it didn’t affect our overall experience or comfort at Corendon Vitality Hotel Amsterdam. A great wheelchair accessible hotel in Amsterdam and I would definitely consider staying at Corendon Vitality hotel again.