Volkshotel — Amsterdam, Netherlands
When Dutch morning paper De Volkskrant vacated its old premises seven years ago, the destiny of the 1960s concrete structure designed by Rotterdam firm Kraaijvanger was still unknown. Functioning as a link between empty real estate and a creative community in need of affordable workspace, the Urban Resort foundation swiftly converted the building into an incubator for over 200 creatives, making it one of the largest creative hubs in the Netherlands.This summer sees the building’s transformation into the Volkshotel (’volk’ meaning ’people’), a ’24-hour micro society’ that, aside from the workspaces, houses the Werkplaats café, the underground Doka cocktail bar, the Canvas restaurant and club, 172 hotel rooms and a rooftop hot tub and sauna. In keeping with the buildings past, architect Steven Steenbruggen has recreated the white and bright façade that gave the building its former nickname ’The White Swan’. Interior designer Bas van Tol of Studio Müller Van Tol has created an interior full of references to the art of print and newspaper production, such as magnified newspaper cut-outs that are plastered on the walls. Nine rooms were set aside to give Dutch creatives such as Eva van Halewijn, Remco Gonggrijp and Thijs van Oostveen free rein over the interiors.