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XO Hotels Blue Square
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Reviews (2,092)
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All reviewscity centrecontiki tournumber busmin tram ridetrams and busesnice hotelpublic transporttravel cardbuffet breakfastresidential areanice staytwo single bedswould stay againclose to the hotelbooked this hotelshort breakcentral station
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Reviewed 17 October 2013

On arrival at Schipol Airport go to tourist information shop to the far right of the airport passed the train ticket hall and buy a 72 hour GVB public transport pass this enables you to transfer by bus to the hotel using bus 69 which you get in Bay 15. It is about 30 - 40 mins depending on time of day and traffic we did it in 35 mins. The pass can be used on all GVB buses and trams and for €16.50 represents excellent value for money. We used €12 worth in one day. It is €2.60 for a single trip. The bus goes right by the hotel and stops about 3 mins walk from the hotel if you don't get off at the right stop which is just in front of the hotel.

The hotel is in a residential area with nearby shops, a small shopping centre and places to eat, ATMs so the location is convenient if you need to buy supplies i.e. snacks, fruit. Don't be put off by the area it is a quite and safe.

Now the hotel.The exterior was not very clean the autumn leaves made the steps up to the front door dirty, on entry my friend and I were surprised by the lobby area, so clean, bright and welcoming. Dana checked us in but we were very early, check in was 14:00 we got there about 11:30 and Dana managed to get our room ready and we were able to lie down for a few hours before tackling central Amsterdam. Dana also offered us a drink while we waited for the room to be ready which was about 15 mins not the 45 mentioned. Very pleased.

As I had read a few reviews about being able to choose our preferred room we chose a room on the first floor as previous reviews recommended this. We were pleasantly surprised with a large room with a tub as described.

The bed was too soft for me but provided a good night sleep. We entered to jazz music playing via the TV. So we were more than happy with the room. (When you turn on the tv it has a personal welcome message. Nice touch)

I decided to use the bathroom and found I could not get out as the door lock had jammed and I had to wait about 10 mins before I get get out. My friend had to call reception to get the caretaker to come and take the lock off the door! If I had been traveling by myself maybe I would not have shut the door but if I had I may have been there until the next day when the cleaner came to make the bed!! Also the bathroom has no heating and was freezing cold, plus the light switch was outside the door so it could have been a bad experience.

As mentioned in previous reviews, the 7 & 14 Tram/bus runs passed the hotel you can get the bus by turning left and walking towards the supermarket about 3 mins or turn right and walking in the direction of the Tram/bus and get the bus round the corner to the right about 4/5 mins walk just passed Aldi on your right.

If you get a chance you should check out the shopping centre, it has all the stores you would expect to find at home, Dutch versions of Holland and Barratt, Superdrug, Euroland, Spec Savers and the like.

The Tram take you to Dam Square (14) or on the outskirts of central Amsterdam (7) short walk to Dam Square. Also the 21 takes you to Centraal Station if you need to get to the station. About 20 -25 mins. Pick it up at the same bus stop (go right out of the hotel).

Back at the hotel we showered in the freezing cold bathroom, note of caution, the bath is high and slippery both my friend and I slipped I recovered myself but my friend fell out twice and bruised herself. When she reported this to the reception staff the next morning they said they didn't have an accident/incident book so she couldn't have it recorded and bath mats were only provided for elderly residents. Being 50+ wasn't a factor.

That said the towels were placed on rake above the toilet which is one reason why my friend slipped as she was stretching to get the towel whilst in the bath and the fixed shower screen didn't allow for her to get the towels with ease.

We stayed in Premier Inn prior to our Stansted to Amsterdam flight and the towel rail was at the end of the bath easy to access towels, plus the towels were large and fluffy. The towels in the Blue Square were basic and barely covered ones body.

On the plus side we needed have bothered to bring any toiletries i.e. shower gel etc as they provided lovely lemon grass, shower gel and body lotion, shampoo and conditioner, soap and shower caps. Nice touch. These were replaced on the next day.

The next morning as I had read reviews about ordering breakfast I ordered on check in for both mornings.(€10) The restaurant was like most I had been in, however I didn't have the cooked breakfast but my friend did and had to request that it be put into a microwave as it was cold. The staff member was most obliging. However the kitchen staff came out and made a big deal about the temperature of the hotplate opening doors and checking pipes etc, all in Dutch but we knew that they were saying there was nothing wrong with the hotplate. However the following morning the food was piping hot. So I wonder.

Staff were mostly very very pleasant with one or two not even bothering to smile when we approached the reception. Dana however being the exception.

Whilst we were there we saw many people coming and going so it is a very popular and busy hotel. For a budget hotel you cannot go wrong with the Blue Square.

The location isn't great but you get what you pay for, and if you have come to see Amsterdam you see both sides tourist/residential it wasn't a problem having to travel 15 - 20 mins into the Central. We even got off at one point to visit a local bar which look interesting from the outside but wasn't much on the inside as the main nights are Thursday - Sunday. Oh well maybe next visit we will do a weekender.

Still not sure about staying at Blue Square?
1. It is Clean and Tidy
2. Staff were mostly pleasant
3. Rooms a good size with a tub
4. Ask for a room with a view of the canal on the right hand side of the hotel. We stayed in 160.
5. Good night sleep guaranteed
6. Tea/coffee making equipment available cups not mugs though.
7. Resturant and Bar available with a snack machine in the lobby
8. Accessible to Central 15-20 mins. Trams are frequent with a night bus after midnight.
9. Local shops available for emergency supplies.
10. A summer visit would be better as there were cafes/restuarants by the hotel over looking the canal which were closed.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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12  Thank nubianqueen59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 October 2013

We stayed here for four days and the corridor in desperate need of a vacum was never cleaned. Room was clean though. Price was decent, but they do advertice the location being a lot closer to the town senter than it is. All in all we would stay again for the good price, and easy access to public transportation.

  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank KAW76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2013 via mobile

The hotel was okay. Good value for money I suppose. Not very central but near the trams so it was easy to get from place to place. Also very near a local market which popped up on weekends so that was fun. Staff did not seem very affable or friendly but helped nonetheless. Rooms were not bad. Breakfast and dinner were great!

  • Stayed: September 2013
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Thank MaseehaJeewa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2013

What a great experience I get from my 1st visit to Amsterdam , I spent 4 days there during early days of September 2013, the overall experience is quit good, reception team was great and very helpful in submitting info about Amsterdam , hotspots, public transportation and locations you might be interested in, one more thing might be taken in consideration , the internal entertainment within the hotel is very poor and need to be revised.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled solo
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1  Thank Hawkhok
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 October 2013

I stayed here for 2 nights at the end of a 25 day Contiki tour and it was heaven to us. The twin bedded rooms were amazing, plus it was a bonus getting a bathroom with a full sized bathtub. We had buffet breakfast included and I could not fault it. If I am ever back in Amsterdam I would definitely stay here. The location is a bit further out from the city though but since we had transport it didn't really matter.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank nursetabs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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