Apartment Hunting Amsterdam – The Options

On our first and only day of apartment hunting we were able to make a decision and place an offer on an apartment that we love.  Because, as our leasing agent mentioned, apartments in Amsterdam are snatched up like hot croissants!   We saw 5 unique properties but only one was a good fit for us!

The Options

#1 – The Historic Monument

This apartment had been completely refurnished less than 6 months ago and is a ‘historical monument.’  The building is a typical old Dutch house built in the 1700’s and is situated in the heart of the city.  You actually have to walk through a sandwich shop during the day (there is a private entrance at night) to reach a set of incredibly steep stairs which lead to a one bedroom apartment. Exposed wooden beams grace the living room and vaulted ceilings of the bedroom on the second floor.  The apartment also has a central vacuum system…you stick a hose into the wall, vacuum your floor, and the dirt is magically disposed of…probably out the side of the house onto passing tourists.

Positives – Quaint, large windows, remodeled, washer/dryer

Negatives – No oven…, tiny kitchen, steep stairs

Living Room

#2 – The Louis Vuitton

Next up…The Louis.  Our agent drove us to the museum district and down the ‘5th Avenue’ of Amsterdam.  Louis Vuitton, Burberry, and Tiffany all waved as we cruised.  Noor (our agent) commented that depending on what type of wife I was we could be in trouble on this street.  I let out a snort. I’m not a huge designer nut (albeit in secret it wouldn’t be horrible)  I’d rather spend my money on food;) The apartment is located on the second floor with floor to ceiling windows overlooking the street.  The kitchen has not been remodeled but was quite large and opened into the living room.  The bedroom is quite spacious and has an on-suite bathroom that is also shared with the main part of the house.

Positives – Love the windows, open layout throughout

Negatives – Worn furniture and old decor (remember we’re only looking at fully furnished), no oven

#3 – The Brownstone

Next up, a charming neighborhood with brownstones(esque) lining either side of a tree filled street.  The apartment is quite large and boasts 2 bathrooms!  The living room has large windows (seems to be a theme) and the bedroom has french doors that open into the middle courtyard of all the houses.  Right when we stepped onto the balcony, bells started playing from the neighboring church.

Positives – Neighborhood, remodeled kitchen (although small and cut off from rest of the house), separate laundry

Negatives – Awkward layout, mismatched furniture (or old), no oven

#4 – The Never Ending Stairs

We’re going up…and up…And before you think we’re wimps these stairs are not your normal USA regulated stairs.  They don’t put handrails in because you’re at a 90 degree angle and can balance on the step above.  However, this apartment has been remodeled!  The bedroom, bathroom, and den/guest room are located on the first floor (or rather 3rd floor of the building).  On the 2nd floor (aka 4th floor) is the living room and kitchen.

Positives – Large kitchen with oven, remodeled

Negatives – Did I mention the stairs?, room dedicated to one toilet, and it felt awkward to have the kitchen on the top floor

Dining room, kitchen through the door

#5 – The Cured Meat

Our last viewing of the day!  We had just stopped for a quick sandwich and coffee.  The seller’s agent was waiting for us at arrival and he gave me a small wink as I walked up the stairs.  Nice guy. The apartment is split into a long hallway and another section that houses a bedroom, den, and living room (all 3 rooms have adjoining doors).  The kitchen boasts a darling old refrigerator and a new oven!  However, the sink seems to have a rust disease and the faucet is a built in gas water boiler…I have no idea what this means but it looked like a white box affixed to the wall with a spigot.  Oh, and there was a piece of cured sausage hanging from twine on a cupboard.  Later that night, Sam told me the seller’s agent also gave him a little wink while opening the washer/dryer closet…

Positives – ??, cheap

Negatives –  Cured sausage facility, gas heating, probably have to pull water up from the canals

The sink had something like this on the wall. Although I do not remember there being a faucet like this picture.

So…which apartment do you think we chose?  Did we go for remodeled yet smaller?  Location and potential?  Or space for visitors?


8 thoughts on “Apartment Hunting Amsterdam – The Options

  1. My first guess is the Historical Monument…nice to have it newly remodeled, great to be in the heart of the city when you don’t have a car…second guess is The Never Ending Stairs…kinda nice to have an oven and it may be nice to have it upstairs in the long run for dinner parties and such…third guess is the Louis Vuitton…layout sounds great, museum district sounds AWESOME …but I figured the worn out furniture would be a big minus…then it would be the brownstone and finally the cured meat…got the feeling that the price was all it had going for it…can’t wait to hear what you guys decided!

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