A Floating Feast
Amsterdam’s iconic waterways, decked with a mind-boggling array of 165 canals, are souvenirs from its Golden Age circa 1600, when a rapidly growing population lured by the wealth that was trickling in from foreign trade pushed the city, formerly a swampland, to expand past its Medieval walls. That photogenic tree-shaded belt has inspired a host of prolific artists, ranging from Monet to Camus, and continues to be an emblem for the easygoing metropolis. Nowadays, though overcrowded boat tours are often the go-to route for exploring its scenic waterfront, Hotel De L’Europe, a glamorous riverside retreat where multi-tiered glass chandeliers and doormen in top hats hark back to the 19th century, offers a far more refined cruising option. Guest can book an evening or afternoon onboard The Dyos, the hotel’s own fully restored 1928 tugboat, where decadent dishes from the property’s Michelin-starred restaurant, Bord’Eau, punctuate a blissful three-hour sail.
Book an evening onboard The Dyos, the hotel’s own fully restored 1928 tugboat, where decadent dishes from the property’s Michelin-starred restaurant, Bord’Eau, punctuate a blissful three-hour sail.
An open brass kitchen and uniformed servers add just the right dose of grandeur while a fireplace delivers the necessary gezellig (a distinctly Dutch way of saying “cozy”). From the expansive porthole, you’ll peer at some of Amsterdam’s most charming bridges which include the Blauwburg, an especially ornate stone bridge festooned with fish sculptures, and the Magere Brug, a nine-arched beauty, studded with thousands of tiny lights. Guests can rest assured their sail is 100% earth-friendly—in an effort to keep its historic waterways pristine, Amsterdam now allows only electric tour boats on its canals, which means your ride is emission free.
The Dyos’s sophisticated lunch and dinner menu, an artistic array of French-inspired, vegetable-forward cuisine, comes courtesy of Bord’Eau’s dynamic young chef, Bas Van Kranen. The 28-year-old prodigy began at De Leuf, a two-Michelin starred farmhouse bistro tucked in the hills of Limburg, on Holland’s southeastern side. Here, Van Kranen served as head chef, tasked with filling the decidedly large shoes of the restaurant’s owner, late gourmand Paul van de Blunt, a Dutch icon whose sudden death cast a dark shadow in 2014.
Today, Van Kranen’s own obsession with wanderlust, and a Steve Jobs-inspired commitment to simplicity and sophistication guide many of his globally-accented creations at Bord’Eau, and onboard the Dyos. They include Anjou pigeon with pickled cherry blossoms—inspired by a recent spring he spent in Japan—and a quartet of tuna, dashi, bergamot and radish. Other examples of his ode to a distinctly East-West blend trotted out as part of a five-course tasting menu include Norwegian scallops, served alongside a consommé of Thai shrimp and green papaya; and red mullet with pomegranate, Inca berry, and coriander. In many ways, Van Kranen’s menu is a snapshot of present-day Amsterdam itself: a bold melting pot of international influences, best suited for the open-minded. Accompanied by a bottle from the restaurant’s superlative wine collection—at 850 labels strong, it was singled out by Wine Spectator for having one of the world’s most impeccably curated lists last year—the floating feast here is truly an indelible one.
To learn more about Hotel De L'Europe or to reserve your dinner aboard The Dyos, please contact the concierge upon making a reservation.