Since the opening of Lloyd Hotel, Piet Boogert has been the General Manager. With his valuable pillars of diversity, inclusiveness and curiosity, he contributes to the unique culture of the hotel, which is so much more than just a hotel. On November 11th, the Lloyd Hotel celebrates its 15th anniversary with Piet at the helm. Join him for a tour at 11am, 2pm and 3pm!
Lloyd Hotel was the beginning of a new development in the hotel business. In March 2005 the Financial Times named us in a publication ‘Good design can make all the difference’. I find it very exciting that I am part of this. When the rooms weren’t ready yet, I went to a conference about the hotelmarket with moodboards. I was declared a fool because we placed the bath in the middle of the hotel room. By now there is hardly any boutique hotel without a freestanding bath in a room.
It’s a hotel where people dare to experiment. And anyone who experiments runs the risk of being turned down. We still get reviews from guests who don’t like it. We always respond to this. Sometimes we know how to make people fan after a complaint, that’s what I like best. Then we managed to take them along on our journey of discovery.
When Lloyd Hotel just started it instantly became popular. The press was very enthusiastic. But we didn’t want it to become a hype. It had to be a future-oriented place. The group of entrepreneurs with whom we opened Lloyd Hotel was very diverse. Suzanne Oxenaar was very culture savvy. Otto Nan was strong in business. I was the experienced hotelier. We all brought with us a different network, like current employees do as well. This mix sometimes creates tension, but at the same time makes it interesting. It suits me well, diversity and inclusiveness are very important to me.
The hotel is more than just a hotel, many travellers will find a unique culture. Artists are involved in exhibitions and the rooms are created by different designers. I believe that high culture and popular culture should be able to coexist without prejudice.
We have 117 different rooms and are the first hotel in the world where you can choose from a 1- to -5 star room. This idea came in response to the Fear Of Missing Out. Here you have a different experience every time you visit. We don’t have pictures of all rooms. At first the idea was not to share any photos at all, when you go to stay with family you don’t ask for photos of the bedroom beforehand either. In practice this was of course not tenable.
My favorite room has shifted over the years, as if Lloyd Hotel gives you the opportunity to grow with it. The Chelsea room (112) is one of my most precious rooms, Linda Troeller, who lived in the Chelsea Hotel for 25 years, shared her photos with us. As a tribute to the Chelsea Hotel we made this room. The piano room (221) I see as a beautiful meeting room, Joep van Lieshout made this room truly iconic.
In the hotel business you can notice a development towards self-check-in kiosks. However I hope that human interaction will remain, for me this is essential. I always do my best to get to know our guests, the interaction makes it interesting. The ‘open arms’ culture is made by the people who work here, together the people create the identity of a hotel.
As far as I am concerned, hospitality goes hand in hand with an open attitude towards others, regardless of their clothing or appearance. At the hotel school, many students are taught to work within a framework, with us, interns see that hospitality can also be different. You can’t be hospitable without being curious.
Fifteen years in charge of Lloyd Hotel delivers memorable moments. His focus on diversity, curiosity and inclusiveness have been created since he was a child. Piet grew up in a farmers family, where people in need were always welcome. His dean lured him into hotel industry. At the Hogeschool Maastricht he developed into a host pure sang. The school eventually taught him to stay close to himself. Anyone who meets him during the week always sees Piet in a suit, and at the weekend he wears jeans, even when he’s at work. The suit and tie are part of his identity, with which he triggers others not to judge him on his appearance.
Our true Amsterdammer Dave has been working as a waiter in our restaurant for the past year. Working 4 days a week makes him one of the regular faces in our team. You can describe Dave as a hard worker and an all-round nice guy, someone who really wants to do good and a true happy face. During a conversation with Dave he talks about our guests, the menu, the neighbourhood and also about himself.
‘Our restaurant has been renovated in the past year. I would describe it as a brasserie with a fresh style. The architecture is divers and layered, it seems to reflect the variety of work we do. You won’t find an old-fashioned vibe here, and we mainly get positive reactions to the changes we recently made to the restaurant.
I’m also very curious to see what the new furniture in the rooms look like, and especially what people think of the room designed by Bas Kosters.’
‘Every season we change our menu. Before the menu is released in the restaurant we get to taste it. It’s great to get to understand the menu, which enables you to recommend and explain items on the menu to our guests. Our guests appreciate the seasonal menu, but we are also asked when favourite dishes will come back. The pasta Vongele is very popular and also my favourite!’
‘We often share hotspots with each other. I love Amsterdam East, for sports and food. I enjoy boxing at East Bound Gym, really fantastic. They have those sweaty sofas. East Bound is not like a standard gym, it has a more living room feel to it. When you enter the gym, you find yourself in a room where you can chill out, which creates a nice atmosphere. The beer garden in East is also a fantastic concept -for tasty beers- and the terrace of Lloyd Hotel is great. It really is! I quite frequently end up staying for a drink after work, it’s comfortable and has a lounge-like vibe.’
Well cared for
‘I recently took a cocktail course. Our cocktails are becoming more and more popular, because of their great taste, but also because they are not stupidly expensive. I enjoy making them. It’s great!
On busy days, especially on the terrace, you walk crazy distances. But we are well taken care of here. We get lunch and dinner, and twice a week a masseuse comes by to give massages to the team. But too be honest I’m a bit afraid of massages.’
‘We don’t experience many crazy things. The band Venice gave a concert here a while back, which was great! The restaurant was full of Venice fans. An older American woman walked in, I think she was around 70. She wasn’t expecting the crowds and you could see she was startled. But she turned around to the band and did a split right in front of the stage. I thought that was really cool!’
‘An older couple over 80, he gives a very firm handshake. They usually order wine. He likes white, she often chooses red. Sometimes he has a notepad with him, then he orders a different wine from the wine list and takes notes. He always ends his visit with an Irish coffee. His birthday is on the same day as mine.’
Working at Lloyd Hotel
‘You come into contact with so many different cultures, which is great. I have also learned a lot, in the field of service. It is very diverse, because there are so many different tasks. I love the fact that you get to know your colleagues and guests. If you want to work here, you have to speak easy, our guests like getting to know you and all that is going on at the hotel. It would be nice to have some new colleagues, so that we can spend even more time getting to know our guests.
Before, I worked at Loetje, whilst following my studies to become a physical education teacher. As of September, I’m going to study communication in addition to working at Lloyd Hotel.’
Hi! My name is Boy Glansbeek, 28 years old and living in Amsterdam. I’m the Head of Sales at Lloyd Hotel and responsible for the commercial activities, acquisition and relationship management. In my spare time I highly value variety; finding peace in the city parks and forest or exploring the city’s bubbly nightlife. Amsterdam has it all for me! What’s my ultimate day?
The place to start the day. You can enjoy breakfast, brunch or lunch here. They are located near Lloyd at the gardens of the Hoftuin, or at the heart of Amsterdam South. I can highly recommend the Forrest Dwellers (poached egg with mixed mushrooms).
Yoga session at… Conscious Club
You can follow amazing yoga classes here in an inspiring and peaceful ambiance. Conscious Club is the first climate neutral canal house in Amsterdam. Check out their website for special events. Tip: try the Deep Guided Meditation.
Afternoon walk through… The 9 Little Streets
You can find the ‘9 Little Streets’ in the heart of the canal district. Between Prinsengracht, Keizersgracht, Herengracht and Singel. There are some amazing shops here (such as Skins Cosmetics, Velour Amsterdam and ZIpper). For a quick lunch I go to The Lebanese Sajeria, delicious! If you have space left, you need to try the famous ‘Van Stapele’ chocolate cookie.
Museum at… De Nieuwe Kerk
De Nieuwe Kerk located right off Dam Square is a beautiful church. They have been known for high-profile exhibitions about art and photography. My favourite exhibition: World Press Photo (from April 13th until July 7th, 2019).
Cocktail o’clock at…Hiding in Plain Sight
A unique location with a unique menu! The bar team is very kind, service minded and create (to my taste) the best cocktails in town. The ambiance is really intimate and cozy.