Recently we travelled to Haarlem as part of an extended weekend we had. We first visited the Dutch Tulip Fields in the Bulb Region (Bollenstreek), and then travel onwards to visit Haarlem. A city we had never been before, so we were very curious. We decided to spend a few days in the city and its surrounding nature and stayed at the Boutique Hotel STAATS.
There are plenty things to do in Haarlem, and close by you’ll find Zandvoort and Zuid Kennemerland National Park. In this blog I will explain why Boutique Hotel STAATS is a great place to stay when visiting Haarlem.
Boutique Hotel STAATS in Haarlem
Boutique Hotel STAATS opened its doors in 2017 and ever since opening it attracts a diverse crowd of domestic and international travelers and tourists. The hotel is located in a former school building right on the edge of the city center of Haarlem. Every hotel room is different and all areas are decorated with attention to detail. The hotel in fact is a collaboration of designer Michel Ruijgrok and hospitality professional Claudia van den Berg, and that clearly shows. The hotel has 21 rooms and suites, they all look very different and appealing and they all have something special.
Location of Boutique Hotel STAATS
Located in the city center of Haarlem, Hotel STAATS is the perfect place for a city getaway. STAATS is located just outside the buzz of the city center and at a short 2 minute walk from the train station, which makes this hotel very easily accessible when travelling by public transport.
Being at the edge of the city center, all shops and city highlights are at walking distance. Parking can be a bit of a challenge, being located in the center of Haarlem, all spots are paid parking spots. However, if you’re up for a short walk, then I can recommend parking at either the Paul Krugerkade or the Kick Smitweg. You can park here for free, and it’s just a short 10-15 minute walk to the hotel.
Restaurant De Ripper
Hotel STAATS has a great restaurant on-side, restaurant de Ripper. This restaurant is actually a unique training restaurant. Unique because of the combination of learning and working they offer. Unique because of the new opportunities that young people are offered when they drop out of regular education, and because of the results they have achieved so far.
In the atmospheric restaurant, youngsters are trained for a professional diploma in hospitality. The team consists of young people aged 15 to 27 who have dropped out of mainstream education. Restaurant de Ripper offers them a great opportunity to get their life and education back on track.
Thanks to the excellent cooperation with a local college, the youngsters can obtain their professional diplomas for the hospitality industry. Most of them obtain the nationally recognized diplomas for catering assistant, chef or host / hostess. Most of them end up at catering companies in the Haarlem region. I really think it’s great how hotel STAATS and restaurant de Ripper work together and offer youngsters such an amazing opportunity.
Normally restaurant de Ripper is also the place where they serve breakfast. However, due to the global Covid pandemic breakfast is now being served as a take away breakfast. They have placed a table and two chairs in every room, so you can have breakfast in the room. Upon check in you are given a form which you are asked to fill out for you preferred breakfast order. You can also choose your desired time and breakfast will be ready to pick up at de Ripper restaurant.
Living & meeting room
Definitely one of my favorite places at hotel STAATS is their living room. Located at the ground floor the living room is a very welcoming part of the hotel. Complimentary coffee, tea and filtered still and sparkling water, as well as homemade cakes and biscuits.
The meeting room is an interactive room with conference tables, an interactive monitor, table football and table tennis. At the living and meeting room they also have the so called honesty bar. It provides guests with a wide range of savory snacks, spirits and chilled drinks such as soft drinks, beer and wine. As a guest you can grab whatever you want, and just write it down on a registration card, truly based on honesty. You don’t see that much anymore nowadays.
We were given room 106, located on the first floor of the hotel, overlooking the inner courtyard and bicycle storage. The boutique hotel Staats room is very luxurious, I immediately noticed the very high ceilings, which I absolutely loved! Room 106 is a Deluxe room, with a large and comfy bed, a television with Google Chromecast and Youtube, very easy! It has a luxurious bathroom, a lovely rain shower and even hotel STAATS branded shower gel and body lotion.
Always a fun and typical Dutch thing to do is explore a city or its surroundings by bike. Luckily Hotel STAATS has some bikes available for rent. As we had plenty of things we wanted to explore while visiting Haarlem, we decided the best way to do so is by bike. You can rent them for the full day. They are Hotel STAATS branded and have yellow bicycle tires, easy to recognize!
We often visited Amsterdam, as it is our capital city and easy to go to. Even though Haarlem is located just a short 30 minute drive from Amsterdam, we had never visited before. Until just recently when we decided that it was about time to visit.
Haarlem is a great city, smaller and more relaxed compared to Amsterdam. It has an amazing and beautiful historic center, museums, shops, restaurant, everything you could wish for. Just around the corner you’ll find the beach and the National Park Zuid Kennemerland. Haarlem has everything.
I fully enjoyed just cycling and walking around the city, discover picturesque squares, hidden courtyards and the many canals. Unfortunately for us, we visited this lovely city in lockdown, so shops, restaurants, museums, everything was closed. Even then we really enjoyed the city and have a few more reasons to visit Haarlem again!
Zandvoort aan Zee
Just a short 20 minute drive to the West will get you to the beach, which I think is just lovely. Coming from the far South, for us the beach is always at least a 2-3 hour drive away. We visited Zandvoort while staying in Haarlem, had a beautiful and warm sunny day and totally enjoyed our time at the beach. Just stroll along the boulevard, get some fresh air at the beach and enjoy the many beach houses at Zandvoort Beach.
Zandvoort has always been famous for its circuit located in the dunes. A few years back it was announced that Formula 1 would return to Zandvoort. It was planned to happen in 2020, however due to Covid that was postponed. It is now set to happen in September of 2021. The Dutch people, and all Max Verstappen's fans are very much looking forward to welcoming Formula 1 back to the Netherlands.
You can walk the dunes around the circuit and get a few glimpses of the circuit, which will soon be part of Formula 1 again.
Zuid Kennemerland National Park
Zuid Kennemerland National Park is one of the many National Parks of the Netherlands. It is located in the province of North Holland and west of the city of Haarlem. It’s characterized by a dune and beach wall landscape. The National Park is famous for its beaches, vistas and lots of animals you can spot.
We took our rented bikes from Hotel STAATS and cycled all the way to Zuid Kennemerland. There are some great cycle paths which are highly recommended! Zuid Kennemerland is ideally suited for walking and cycling.
Dutch Tulip Fields
Haarlem is located on the north side of the bulb region (Bollenstreek), and therefore a popular city to visit to combine with a visit to the famous flower fields in the Netherlands. The area is one of the most famous places to visit in the Netherlands and best known for the cultivation of tulip bulbs, but also the crocuses, daffodils and hyacinths. You will find endless tulip and flower fields here, very colorful rainbow sequins. Make sure to check out our very comprehensive article about with tips about visiting the Tulip Fields in the Netherlands.