While puttering around Amsterdam, we stumbled onto this beautiful shop called Options! on the Damrak which is a super busy street that leads from Central Station to Dam square. The shop was a breath of fresh air and respite from the tourist shops. It's design heaven for sure! There are lots of pretty home decor items and cute things for kiddos. It was like design blogs coming to life in front of me. ; ) And while I hate to use the word "curated" as it's so overused, this shop made me feel like I was walking through a gallery full of thoughtfully arranged vignettes - which elevated the entire shopping experience.
There were two levels and this was the bottom level, below. The woman sitting at the computer works with Options and was super friendly and excited to share more of what they're about, and happy to get the word out about the shop. I asked if the sewing equipment was set up for classes, but they actually have artists creating items for the shop right in store. Cool, huh?
She also told me that they offer accommodation at Hotel The Exchange where rooms are designed in collaboration with the Amsterdam Fashion Institute. We didn't get to check out the hotel, but I found these amazing photos online - really cool! How interesting are these rooms?
Here's a bit more about them:
Hotel The Exchange has 61 rooms, ranging from 1 to 5 stars. Each room has been designed and dressed by graduates and alumni of the Amsterdam Fashion Institute (AMFI). The rooms are as diverse and inspiring, as the neighborhood the hotel lies in. The romantic at heart can fall asleep in a Marie Antoinette-inspired room where a huge dress drapes over the walls and unto the bed. Or, if you prefer a more minimal look, opt for a room that is based on the old fairy tale of the Emperor’s New Clothes.
Hotel The Exchange is a concept by Suzanne Oxenaar and Otto Nan, initiators of the Lloyd Hotel & Cultural Embassy. Hotel The Exchange is part of ‘The Red Carpet,’ an urban-renewal project that is aimed at giving the Damrak a more diverse and fashionable look.
The hotel is located in three buildings, of which the oldest dates back to the 17th century. In the same buildings there is a 230 m2 contemporary department store Options! and a restaurant Stock that serves breakfast till late.
The next time we visit Amsterdam, I definitely want to check out this hotel. Be sure to follow Options' blog and facebook. It doesn't look like they sell online, but here's a selection of the products they carry. You can contact them here to inquire about possibly purchasing something.
All photos ©Danielle Thompson (that's me). Other photos source.
See more posts about our trip to the Netherlands and Belgium here.