The ultimate guide: our top 5 hotel ballrooms in Amsterdam for incentive groups

TOP 5 BALLROOMS

Hotels come in all shapes and sizes in Amsterdam. In this blog, we’re presenting you with our TOP 5 hotel ballrooms for events during incentive programs. This list is composed following a number of criteria divided over 2 main categories:

  • The ballroom itself (size, accessibility, daylight, pricing)
  • The property (location, amount of rooms, service level)

How hotel ballrooms are used on incentive programs?

Hotel event spaces are often used in incentive programs. Either as welcome drink area, dinners, lunches, a kick off or gathering place for the group for their departures to offsites. Typically the ballrooms are used for F&B moments or meetings. It depends on the property and the WOW factor of the ballroom as to what it is used for exactly. Generally, hotels are an integral part of every incentive we organize for our clients. They are critical to the success of a program. We can hit it out of the park with our offsite program and gala dinner entertainment, but a bad night sleep and poor service at breakfast throws that right out the window.

Why even hold your event in a hotel?

Reasons for holding your event as part of an incentive in a hotel (ball)room are endless. Below we list the 3 most the most common reasons:

  • It’s budget friendly

Naturally this varies per property and wishlist, but a hotel ballroom with the hotel’s infrastructure is typically a more budget-friendly option than a stand-alone venue. There is less choice in suppliers (especially catering, decor and staffing), but a lot of the infrastructure one needs to pull off an event is in-house already. Think furniture, cutlery, linen, staging and decor. Now all of these items are typically appealing to many customers, so not necessarily what you had in mind, but if budgets are in play, concessions have to be made, right?

  • It’s part of the negotiation with the hotel property

Imagine being a hotelier with a large number of bedrooms and loads of meetingspace on site. You’d want to ensure you have both your bedrooms as your meetingspace filled. It’s one of the negotiation points with hotels we see most often. ‘The minimum F&b spend on site is …’ is a common phrase for group quotations. Most clients want to explore the city as much as they can and spend their functions off property, so that’s always a point we negotiate on. Sometimes it boils down to a take it or leave it deal. However, with larger groups with multiple arrivals and departures from all over the world a welcome dinner or farewell lunch on property is actually a great part of the program.

  • We want high numbers on the afterparty

After a long day of activities, it’s finally time for the awards dinner. It’s the final night and many of the participants have early flights back home. Having your event in the hotel property will likely increase the attendance to the after party of the evening. This sounds strange as it could also be a low threshold to sneak out and go to bed, but our experience shows that this is the case.

Without further ado: OUR TOP 5

Number 5: Pearl Room at Park Inn City West

  • 680 m2 + 250 m2 balcony
  • 760 pax theatre (84 pax covid) / 540 pax dinner (60 pax covid)
  • The ballroom has a balcony for additional seating
  • Very vibrant and modern colours and use of lighting
  • No natural daylight
  • €€
  • AV and catering via hotel

The Pearl ballroom is part of the conference centre of the Park inn City West. Located in the west of Amsterdam outside of town, this property is well connected to the city centre via train and metro. Again, the pricing is similar to Leonardo Royal. We really like the ballroom at this property for it’s opera style balcony seating. Along with the state of the art audiovisual that’s already in house, favourable pricing and no less than 476 rooms to host your groups in this property earned a spot in our top 5.

Number 4: Amstel room at Leonardo Royal

  • 900 m2
  • 760 pax theatre (156 pax covid) / 480 pax dinner (72 pax covid)
  • One of the largest pillarless hotel ballrooms in the city
  • Outside terrace next to the ballroom
  • €€
  • AV and catering via hotel

The Amstelroom is located on the second floor of the Leonardo Royal Amsterdam. This hotel is located towards the South East of Amsterdam with a metro station next door the hotel. It’s not bang in the city centre, but access to Schiphol airport and the city centre is very good. The pricing for a property a bit outside of town is naturally different than a city-centre property and in that respect it’s definitely a great option. This 4 star property with 490 rooms has been a great addition to Amsterdam’s conference hotel landscape. The Amstel ballroom can be divided up into 3 smaller segments or used as one. the high ceiling (6 meter) along with it’s many windows and outdoor terrace (300 m2) right next to the ballroom definitely justifies a spot in our top 5!

Number 3: De Koepelkerk

  • 450 m2
  • 375 pax theatre (100 pax covid) / 250 pax dinner (60 pax covid)
  • Banqueting kitchen on the premises
  • Recently renovated
  • Jetty for boat arrivals
  • €€€
  • AV and catering via hotel

De Koepelkerk has recently been completely renovated recently and comes highly recommended. The location is part of the Renaissance Amsterdam, located bang in the city centre of Amsterdam at a 5-minute stroll from Central Station. The property itself boasts 402 rooms and access to the koepelkerk (which is on the other side of the street) is via an underground passageway, so in case of bad weather, you are covered. Owing its name to the copper dome, the Koepelkerk was built in the 17th century and long served as a point of orientation for Amsterdammers. Christian relics are not abundant in this former church and outside of the barely visible religious text in the dome you wouldn’t even notice you’re in a church if it wasn’t for the fabulous barrel organ (yes, it works!) and moderate pulpit. With the renovation the Koepelkerk earned a spot in our top 5!

Number 2: Grand Ballroom at Krasnapolsky

  • 510 m2
  • 700 pax theatre (120 pax covid) / 320 pax dinner (60 pax covid)
  • The ballroom has a fixed stage
  • The ballroom has indirect daylight
  • Located on Dam square, right in the city centre
  • €€€€
  • AV and catering via hotel

The Grand Ballroom at NH Collection Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky is the biggest ballroom in a hotel in the city centre of Amsterdam. Located right on the damsquare in the heart of town. Ideal if you want to be in the midst of things, but concessions have to be made as well (coaches can’t get to the hotel for example). What we love about this ballroom is the branding possibilities on the side banners and the fact that the back opens up in to the world famous wintergarden of the hotel for breaks and lunches. The quality of the space, the location, the F&B on offer and the grandeur of the NH Collection Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky justify a runner up spot on our list.

Number 1: Grand Ballroom at Hotel Okura

  • 902 m2
  • 1015 pax theatre (100 pax covid) / 650 pax dinner (72 pax covid)
  • The ballroom natural daylight
  • The ballroom is located on the first floor
  • Located in fashionable Amsterdam South
  • Fantastic F&B offering
  • €€€€
  • AV and catering via hotel

The Grand Ballroom at the Okura hotel is our top pick for this ballroom top 5. This 301 room property in the South of Amsterdam is known for it’s Japanese heritage and culinary excellence. The ballroom has a car elevator that enables larger items to be placed in the ballroom very easy. The banqueting kitchens are behind the ballroom (complete with conveyer belts), so this ensures that the dishes served during the events are of the best quality. This 5 star deluxe property never fails to deliver and earned it’s spot on the top of our list!

About the author

My name is Daan Riemeijer and i'm the owner of Performance Travel DMC. Performance Travel specializes in running incentive programs in Amsterdam. Through our blog incentives.amsterdam we try to showcase our knowledge on Amsterdam and what's possible in terms of incentives in our city.

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