In the heart of the Dutch city of Harlingen, lies a very weird and wonderful hotel indeed. Situated in the city’s historical docks, the Harlingen Lighthouse spent 75 years illuminating the area. However, in 1998, its service ran its course and its future looked bleak. But that was far from the end of this lighthouse, as it’s now a magnificent 3-storey hotel with all mod-cons!
Like the city’s Crane and Lifeboat Hotels, the Lighthouse offers a unique holidaying experience. With a 360 degree view of the surrounding area, and original lighthouse features, you can experience comfort as well as quirkiness! And with a radio to keep you up-to-pace with the shipping news and wind speeds, you’ll feel like a real-life lighthouse keeper!
Fancy a cruise, but don’t really want be set adrift the ocean? Well, Harlingen’s Lifeboat Hotel could be just what you’re looking for!
Situated in the northern Netherlands, Harlingen is a town built on fishing and shipping. What then, could be more appropriate than a quirky hotel sitting gracefully in the town’s beautiful harbour?
Having saved lives off the English coast for almost 25 years, the Lifeboat was lovingly restored by the same Harlingen team that resurrected the town’s crane and lighthouse. Now, it offers sumptuous accommodation to the standards you would expect from a contemporary hotel.
So, wake to the smell of your freshly baked breakfast, which can be enjoyed al-fresco on deck, or down below in the privacy of the aft cabin.
When you need to get away from it all, the Lifeboat Hotel really could prove to be an absolute life-saver!
The crew’s next stop on the Netherlands section of their journey is to the town of Harlingen. Here they will visit a trio of Weird & Wonderful Hotels, starting at the Crane Hotel.
What really got the team excited was the fact that you can move the crane around from inside, they’re just big kids at heart!
After a short stop in Amsterdam, the Weird & Wonderful crew have made it to the Wine Cask Hotel of Stavoren.
As well as staying in these converted casks, I’m sure the crew will find time for some wine tasting too.
We’re all familiar with the contents of a wine cask, but what’s it like to be inside one? Well, we’re off to the Netherlands to find out!
The small town of Stavoren is where we find our hideaways. Behind these beautiful oak doors lie comfy twin beds lit by natural light during the day and lamps at night. But that’s not all – beyond the casks, you will find a superbly appointed living area as well as your own bathroom! A real home-from-home!
It doesn’t end there though – the beach offers superb aquatic sports holidays and the hillside forests and bicycle paths allow you to explore the region. For those wanting a more sedate holiday, watch the ships come and go while enjoying a superb meal at the ‘de Vrouwe van Stavoren’ conservatory restaurant.
Holidaying at the de Vrouwe van Stavoren Hotel really does offer opportunities for all!
Got your builder’s head on? Great! Then let’s get over to the Netherlands and enjoy Harlingden’s Crane Hotel. Yes, Crane Hotel! A mini-hotel in a real crane!
Situated some 17 feet above the pier, this is a real one-off! Not only can two people enjoy some alone time, but they can also see that industrial does not mean uninviting!
Inside, the cabin is well-equipped with Charles Eames chairs lending a touch of glamour and a shower/bath for two being the icing on the cake! And for the big kid in you, you even get to move the crane! Imagine, in the unlikely event you should get bored with the view, simply move it around and start afresh!
Ever fancied spending the night in a converted tram run by two enthusiastic, Dutch, Prince fans? Yes? Then get yourself packed and make your way over to Frank and Irma Appel’s Controversy Farm.
Named after Prince’s 1981 album, this is more kooky than controversial. The accommodation is made up of four train carriages that include beds, showers and toilet facilities. The carriages are each themed around a different part of the world: Italy, England, America and Mexico – which even includes its own sombrero-shaped Jacuzzi!
The weird and wonderful factor doesn’t end there – there are also some strange sights to be found around Frank and Irma‘s home! Various car conversions are underway and the couple even sleep in a double-decker bus. Oh, and maybe someone should ask where they got the garden’s fighter jet from?