internet-immersed cityhub hotel in amsterdam plans to attract digital natives
internet-immersed cityhub hotel in amsterdam plans to attract digital natives internet-immersed cityhub hotel in amsterdam plans to attract digital natives
nov 29, 2015

internet-immersed cityhub hotel in amsterdam plans to attract digital natives

internet-immersed cityhub hotel in amsterdam plans to attract digital natives
the front facade and transition was designed by mulderblauw architects
all images courtesy of cityhub






there’s a new kind of traveller roaming the streets of europe – carrying a smartphone and looking for the new underground cultural scene, these digital native tourists don’t want anything to do with the typical tourist. that’s why cityhub in amsterdam is focusing on these upcoming internet connected generations with a hotel that offers 50 sleeping units, a ‘digital’ lobby and an app that familiarizes travelers with the city.


a tour of cityhub amsterdam
video courtesy of cityhub




situated in a 600 square meter industrial warehouse in amsterdam’s out west district, the hotel houses private sleeping units called ‘hubs’. the interior layout and hub design was conducted by dutch studio studio uberdutch, with each micro-room equipped with a double bed, WiFi, mood lighting, and music streaming systems that guests can personalize. the cityhub hangout is a lounge where travelers can get together and, with the use of personal RFID wristband, can check themselves in and serve themselves at the bar.

cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-02 the micro rooms




to promote the use of its app, cityhub teamed up with internet service provider t-mobile to offer guests access to use their own MiFi hotspot mobile route in the city. with this feature, travelers don’t need to worry about data roaming when using the internet.

cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-03 the units are opened with RFID wristbands




during a stay, guests have access to the downloadable cityhub app – a travel guide that provides tips for activities and events based on what is taking place in amsterdam at that particular time. a cityhost at the hotel can also suggest where to wander through the city. the app offers a chat room, allowing guests to connect with each other and share new hotspot that they have found. in additional to all that, the app can be used to control the mood lighting, alarm clock and must streaming within the sleeping units.

cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-04 inside the hub




the cityhub concept was started by two college friends sem schuurkes and pieter van tilburg. the set themselves a goal of improving the traditional hotel with the latest technological capabilities and current traveler needs. designboom spoke to sem schuurkes about the idea behind cityhub, and the hotel’s strongest assets.


designboom (DB): what originally made you want to create the city hub?


sem schuurkes (SS): we were students ourselves that travelled often. we prefered to take more trips and spend less money than to go for one big holliday each year. to make the trip affordable, we would stay in hostels. the nice thing about a hostel is that the it has an informal vibe and an interactive community. the disadvantage is that you share a room with strangers and often you cannot be sure that its clean. a hotel, on the other hand, offers you privacy but is usually too expensive for the amount of time you spend in your room. we set up cityhub to combine the two; the interactive community of a hostel and the privacy and comfort of a hotel. to take it a step further we integrated smart and fun internet solutions.

cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-05 the shared bathroom area




DB: what particular aspects of your background and upbringing have shaped your design principles and philosophies?
SS: the fact that travelled a lot, but also that we are part of a new generation. this generation is much more connected than former generations and uses this to take as  much advantage of their time as possible.
DB: what has been the biggest influence for this project?
SS: the japanese capsule hotels were an influence for the design of the hubs. but because we wanted to create a place that is not just efficient but also has a nice vibe, we have looked at the design of hip boutique hotels and bars that we liked.

cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-06 a map of amsterdam offers inside the lobby




DB: overall, what would you say is your hostel’s strongest asset?
SS: both the hub and the digital community. the first allows travellers to travel affordably and comfortably, the second facilitates travellers to joinlty explore the city rather than just offering them a place to stay.
DB: how – and to what extent – do other creative fields influence city hub?
SS: we have managed to integrate various internet solutions in one solution. an important influence field is the world mobile app design.
DB: what are you currently interested in and how is it feeding into your designs?
SS: we are looking to grow our brand internationally. we have learned that there are many factors that have to come in to place in order to open a new hotel. we are therefore doing a lot of research into how to make our solution as flexible as possible. this means we are adapting the design of the Hub to be able to fit in different types of buildings and to comply to the different regulations of cities.
DB: can you tell us about any projects you are currently working on that you are especially excited about?
SS: we will soon start our growth trajectory into europe’s major cities. this means we will start looking for buildings everywhere at the same time. very exciting to be able to finally start exploring the cities ourselves after working in amsterdam for five years!

cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-07 the hotel lounge area cityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-08 check-in and check-out systemcityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-09 the cityhub appcityhub-connected-hotel-amsterdam-designboom-10 founders pieter van tilburg and sem schuurkes

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