There are three major cities in the world that spring to mind when you think party—Vegas, Bangkok and Amsterdam. However, Amsterdam has many fine draws designed with the sophisticated gentleman in mind, including world-class museums, spa havens and gourmet dining. We uncover an Esquire side to Amsterdam.
Check into a ‘Sir’
When you up the ante as a traveller, you are knighted as a jet setting ‘Sir’, and the best way to cement your new title is in one of Amsterdam’s boutique ‘Sir’ hotels; Sir Adam or Sir Albert. Being the sophisticated gents we are, we stayed at Sir Adam, behind Central Station, overlooking the IJ River (you have to take a little ferry to it, which runs every three minutes). Rooms are designed with more than just sleep in mind, because Amsterdam is Amsterdam, after all. Our ‘Sir Deluxe Corner’ room came with a minibar full of greatest hits, a turntable with an eclectic selection of vinyl records, and a Gibson guitar adorned the wall—very glam era rock ‘n’ roll. The room also had 180-degree views of the city, though, for the full 360 you can head up to the rooftop which has giant dare-devil swings. On-site facilities include a 24/7 gym, and a very buzzing downstairs with games, bar, and other gentlemanly favourites. Suits you, Sir.
Amsterdam is in no shortage of fine restaurants fit for an Esquire lad. Give Jansz a taste, in the heart of the Nine Streets of Amsterdam. You’ll find gourmet dishes served with relaxed Dutch style, including lobster risotto and veal entrecote with red wine sauce. The restaurant was named after 17th-century craftsman Volkert Jansz; a man with discerning tastes, a keen eye for style, and a passion for conversation and debate. These influences bring a wonderful aesthetic that is clean and modern intertwined with traditional architecture. Adjacent to Jansz is Pulitzer’s Bar—great for post-dinner cocktails. The menu tells stories with cocktails such as ‘Old Man and the Sea’, a modern twist on a Cuban classic, and ‘Lost Generation’, a twist on the traditional Sazerac.
Experience authentic nightlife
To see Amsterdam’s world famous nightlife at its best, see it with Jackson, one of the city’s nocturnal legends who seems to know every single partygoer and worker in town (need a guest list? She’s your gal). She offers bespoke Amsterdam By Night tours for two to six people, taking them everywhere from cool new pubs and the Red Light District to late-night eateries that are packed with Dutch-only clientele. This isn’t just a leisurely stroll with selfie-sticks on tow, you become one of her party gang (just don’t arrive tired!). Her tours are available as part of Sir Explore, an experiential service connecting guests with local friends.
Learn about history and art
Amsterdam culturally rich in history and art, and the number one visit is, of course, the Anne Frank House, which was once home to the famed diarist. You have to pre-book and be warned, tickets are like gold dust—so enlist in extra hands, phones, and tablets. Another popular option is the Van Gogh Museum, which has the largest collection of his paintings and drawings in the world. Finally, for something different, why not visit the very unique museum of fluorescent art, Electric Ladyland. You’ll enter and become part of the masterpiece during your visit to witness dazzling colour and wavelengths of light. You need to see it to believe it.
Recover from a big night
How do you nurse yourself better in Amsterdam? You go to the spa for ‘man treatments’. Akasha Holistic Wellbeing is the largest spa in the city. They offer a brilliant ‘Skin Care for Men’ package, consisting of a total of 80 minutes of a back scrub, a nourishing wrap and a made to measure facial. You’ll feel better than when you first arrived in Amsterdam—something which doesn’t usually happen to the average gent! In addition to treatments, they have a stunning 60ft lap pool, steam room, sauna, Jacuzzi, private Hammams and a gym.
Amsterdam is a major European capital, now served by Eurostar with quick and easy links to London and Brussels. Why not take half a day out of your itinerary to visit a neighbour? Business Premier features express check-in, access to lounges, and plenty of opportunities to whip out your laptop and keep business rolling while you’re en route to leisure (though if you’re lucky enough to be able to switch off from the office, passengers also have access to complimentary Amazon Prime Video). The best thing is probably the on-board meals, which are designed by Michelin starred chef Raymond Blanc, OBE. This beats taking the standard trains around Europe.