History of the hotel

A rich history that dates back to the 13th Century

Originally founded in 1275, present-day Amsterdam is redolent with history. With its numerous museums and galleries, the city is now undergoing an arts-led renaissance that is feeding a resurgent appetite for travel to Amsterdam, both locally and from abroad. The Conservatorium – with its rich history - is part of this renewal.
The building was originally designed by the Dutch architect Daniel Knuttel as the Rijkspostspaarbank and sparked the regeneration of the Museum Quarter at the end of the 19th century.

In 1897, the building site was purchased for 120,310 florins (€54.600,-), and was soon transformed into a defining icon of the city’s architecture,
whose development was further aided by the horse trams that began connecting the centre of Amsterdam with the Van Baerlestraat.

When the Rijkspostspaarbank had to move offices following a series of merges, the building was abandoned in 1978. After lying empty for five years, it became the home of the newly formed Sweelinck Conservatorium, consisting of three musical institutes.
Some remodelling was required to modernise Daniel Knuttel’s architecture into functional acoustic classrooms.

In April 2008 the Conservatorium of Amsterdam outgrew its home and departed to its current location at Oosterdokseiland. In 2008, The Set Hotels purchased this wonderful building, attracted by its glorious past. In a vision to restore its former beauty, award winning Milan-based designer Piero Lissoni guided the creation of the hotel, whose rich historical narrative is woven with utmost care into its very fabric. The Conservatorium's history has ensured it is once again on the pulse of the city’s cultural and architectural heartbeat.

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Design and Architecture

One of the most beautifully designed hotels in Amsterdam, the Conservatorium is on the site formerly occupied by the city’s Sweelinck Music Conservatorium. Originally built as the Rijkspostspaar bank at the end of the 19th century, the building was conceived by the renowned Dutch architect Daniel Knuttel. It heralded the regeneration of the Museumplein, an area previously derelict.

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Knuttel was praised for his ability to fuse simplicity and functionality and the award-winning Milan-based designer and architect Piero Lissoni has embraced this tradition through the reincarnation of this spectacular building 100 years later.

Known for his austere lines, demure fabrics and shades of grey with occasional bright accents, Lissoni is considered one of the most prominent and exciting contemporary Italian designers and architects. His clean designs are a hybrid of modernist and contemporary chic and contrast playfully with natural daylight throughout the building's spaces. Furniture from leading Italian manufactures such as Living Divani, Kartell and Cassina sit prominently in all communal spaces while accent pieces such as vintage Asian rugs provide a sense of familiar comfort and cement the Conservatorium as one of the best designed hotels in Amsterdam.

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SUITES

Experience exquisite luxury in the most beautiful hotel suites in Amsterdam. Our collection of suites embodies Dutch style and design, with sumptuous king size beds and unique and thoughtful features to make your stay exceptional.

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MEMORABLE EVENTS

Venues in Amsterdam don’t get much more inspiring than those at the Conservatorium. Whether it's an annual meeting or a business launch, a banquet or an auction, every gathering in the world's most creative capital deserves a venue that's equally imaginative. This means not just state-of-the-art technology, but an environment that is itself a work of art. While many hotels hide their meeting rooms, we gave ours pride of place, designing a special events tower, right in our landmark lobby. So whether you're holding a concert for ten, or training for a hundred, it's an inspired choice for any event, in the centre of the Conservatorium, in the centre of Amsterdam.

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  • The SET
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