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“Wow Wow Wow. Well worth the wait!”

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Harlingen Harbour Crane / Crane Hotel
Ranked #3 of 12 Harlingen B&B and Inns
Loughborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Wow Wow Wow. Well worth the wait!”
Reviewed 28 November 2011

This crane that is situated on the harbour in the delightful little town of Harlingen Haven in The Netherlands is an experience not to be forgotten.

It was booked as a surprise for my 40th birthday and wow what a surprise. The crane is fitted out with much care thought and attention to details its a fabulous place to stay. The views are amazing. The town is full of lovely little places to eat and drink too so that was a great bonus. It also seems to be the home of many 'tall ships' so a wander around the unique shops and canals is a great way to while away a couple of hours.

Its decor could be described as 'space age' and it feels like a bit of a star trek experience with the very tight sqeeze in the final lift to get into the crane itself. Not for anyone who is very claustrophobic though.

The bed was incredibly comfortable, the breakfast is lifted up to you in the morning by a local baker and was totally delicious with freshly squeezed orange juice and gorgeous pastries fresh eggs too! Cannot really complain about any of it really! The lighting system is fun to fiddle about with and if you are anything like my mildly geeky husband much time can be had fiddling with the touch screen control to get just the right effect!

The train station for Harlingen Haven is in sight of the crane and about a two minute walk away.

The icing on the cake is being able to turn the crane around to choose the view you fancy and if you get a bit bored watching the sun go down or the boats come in you can turn yourself around and have a change of scenery over the lovely little town! Brilliant fun!!!

This is one stay I will never forget and although I have been very lucky to stay in some wonderful hotels this is like nothing else and will be totally memorable whereas however nice a hotel is they can all become a blur after a while and difficult to differentiate, you will never say that about the crane!

Awesome is the only way to describe our stay.

Room Tip: Only one room to choose from here but the crane comes with the added bonus that if you get a bit bor...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank FloEddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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19 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
TheHague
Level Contributor
159 reviews
140 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 287 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 November 2008

It took a long wait to get our hands on a night in the crane, but boy was it worth it !

Since I suffer from mild claustrophobia, particularly in elevators, I was a little apprehensive when I saw how the crane was accessed. However, in the event it wasn't bad at all, there's a short ride in an elevator with glass windows to a lower platform, from there its a slow ride up a Starship Enterprise-type contraction with barely room for 2 people and one bag. However, the fact that there's no ceiling takes away the claustrophobia, in the event of a lift failure it wouldn't be hard to climb up the tube !

The beam-me-up-Scottie lift reaches the main cabin area. Not particularly big, but room for a double bed, two reading chairs and a small kitchen area with boiling water on tap for the large selection of speciality teas and coffees on offer, plus there's a well-stocked minibar and a large bowl of fruit as a welcome. Not so much space, but who cares, the choice is either to lie in bed and watch the large flatscreen TV with cinema sound (there's no TV reception but the crane comes with a good DVD collection, the remote controls for the TV and DVD do take a bit of getting used to though). Alternatively, park up in the reading chairs and look out to sea and the Friesian Islands. Also next to the bed is a touchscreen panel for fiddling with all the different lighting and heating controls (my only gripe of the entire stay: heating seemed to be ineffective). I spent way too long creating a multi-colour lightshow in the toilet ! There's no bath, just a very large walk-in shower with room for 3 people, never mind two !

Going up a level is the crane controls, with an opportunity to act out one's Bob the Builder fantasies - rotating the crane through 360 degrees is possible, allowing the view to be changed, whether it be evening sunset at sea, or the night sky over the town of Harlingen.

And finally, on top of the crane is a terrace area for sipping a cold white wine as the sun sets ...

The crane has acres of space for parking and its only 5 minutes walk from the ferry terminal and railway station. Although the harbour area is busy and the crane has a lot of big windows, there's total privacy, and no disturbance at night. Eating options are about 10-15 minutes walk away in the town centre.

And in the morning the owners deliver a huge continental breakfast tray to enjoy in bed. No early check-out either !

An expensive place, but truly unique !

ps I'd bring warm clothes in winter and don't even think about trying to fit more than 2 people in here

  • Liked — Everything !
  • Disliked — A bit chilly at night
  • Stayed September 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank Casualist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cardiff, wales
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2008

This exceeded all expectations - a wonderful idea brought to fruitation in a wonderful way.
The lift system is amazing, though possibly worrying for the claustrophobic. The room itself is very well-equipped, with touchscreen climate and lighting control - a choice of five different lighting combinations for the double shower alone! The bed is large and comfortable and the HD screen and surround sound excellent. Operating the crane is addictive and although the sun deck was more of a bluster deck while we were there, there's plenty of space for two people. The views are wonderful and the morning mist is lovely. A delicious breakfast arrives in a basket in the lift, with still-hot eggs.
One night is not long enough!

  • Liked — It's a CRANE!
  • Disliked — That we had to leave it to get dinner!
  • Stayed October 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank erromango
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
london
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 August 2008

Firstly hats off to the person who with his team had the vision and dedication to carry out this project and to such a high standard. My wife and I stayed for two nights end of July 2008 and thought it wonderful. Sitting on the top deck drinking Champagne watching the busy comings and goings of the boats was bliss, plus if you tire of that view hop in the drivers seat and give your crane a spin. We found the hi tech living area very comfortable, a great shower and an excellent breakfast .
Harlingen is a very nice little town with lots of boats,a good choice of cafes and restaurants and some nice historic buildings. We had an enjoyable evening at the Gastronoom not cheap but reasonable value and they give lots of freebie tasters. People seem to go early we booked for 8.00 and were virtually last to arrive perhaps because of this service was a little slow but very friendly and we enojyed our meal.
Thank you HavenKraan Van Harlingen for a memorable stay

  • Liked — The ingenuity and hi tech design
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank jimpatco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Harlingen Harbour Crane / Crane Hotel

Property: Harlingen Harbour Crane / Crane Hotel
Address: Dokkade 5, 8862 NZ Harlingen, The Netherlands
Region: The Netherlands > Friesland Province > Harlingen
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 12 B&Bs / Inns in Harlingen
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Special stay in a Harbourcrane It's easy to find the Harlingen Harbour Crane. All you have to do is look for the Crane's high legs standing almost in the Wadden Sea yet only a stone's throw from the centre of historic Harlingen. Staying the night in a Harbour Crane? We'll bet you've never dreamt of that! A unique experience We have applied to the Harlingen Harbour Crane all the knowledge and experience gained from working on the Lighthouse and the Lifeboat. It is here that the unassailable elevation of a lighthouse merges with the freedom of living on the water. And to top it all off, you get to do something unbelievable: you can have the crane swing into action! ... more   less 

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