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Hotel Des Indes, The Hague, The Netherlands

Lucy Land falls for Jacques Garcia’s opulent style at Hotel Des Indes

The Credentials:

Located on the famous leafy square of Lange Voorhout in the historical heart of The Hague, this former city palace has received the full theatrical Jacques Garcia treatment, combining top-notch contemporary amenities with rich traditional architectural flourishes.

The Starwood Hotel and The Luxury Collection member boasts 92 rooms and suites, a sumptuous dining room, intimate bar, health club and spa, business facilities and a cigar lounge.


The Dutch have embraced the English afternoon food tradition although the more substantial High Tea seems to be more popular than an Afternoon Tea among the country’s fine hotels.

With a harpist playing in the grand restaurant, we were treated to four courses – two elegant savoury dishes followed by homemade scones and pastries all made in-house – with tea pairings (my friend bought the hotel’s own blend of Assam, Java and Chinese tea to take away as a gift). The final course of numerous pastries, rich petit fours and cookies proved too much but our lovely waitress gave us a couple of boxes so we could divide and take away the remaining sweets.

Breakfast was plentiful and I particularly liked the alternative to the usual congealed hot buffet options; one-portion-sized glass pots for the scrambled eggs and for the baked beans.


Overlooking the rooftops of the chichi historical neighbourhood, our spacious red-and-gold executive twin room featured large canopied beds; a pineapple-embellished chandelier; an Art Deco wardrobe-cabinet which included a generous mini bar, Nespresso machine, iron and ironing board; large mirrors; Sony flatscreen TV; desk and seating area.

Statement lamps hung down from the ceiling and the Molton Brown-stocked marble bathroom included deep double sinks, a rainforest shower above the bath and a heated floor.

Who Goes There?

We spied mostly Dutch and Americans keen to catch the city’s cultural offerings.

Out & About:

The Mauritshuis gallery, having had €30 million lavished on its recent renovation, is a must and only a few minutes’ walk from the hotel. The 17th century jewel box of a building is crammed with Dutch Masters including three Vermeers (including Girl with a Pearl Earring) and eight Rembrandts. For modern art, head a little further to Gemeente Museum, a remarkable ‘30s building containing the likes of Mondrian, Van Gogh, Kandinsky, Kokoshka and Picasso. It’s currently showing an imaginatively curated Rothko exhibition (until 1 March 2015).

Escher in het Paleis, which includes a floor of extraordinary interactive perspective-altering installations by the graphic artist, is a few doors from Hotel Des Indes, while Denneweg, perhaps the best street for independent design, antique and fashion boutiques, is around the corner.

We gleaned tips from the hotel’s concierge, who gave us date-sensitive half-price museum tickets and booked us into buzzy Vietnamese restaurant Little V.

We couldn’t cram in as many museums as we’d intended during one weekend (despite the hotel’s great location) but art is everywhere; an Isaac Israëls portrait of a woman in a black hat hangs in the lobby – a portrait of the legendary Dutch spy and denizen of the hotel, Mata Hari.

The Worst Thing:

We didn’t have time for the spa, but I had a quick peek around – it’s pretty small.

The Best Thing:

Jacques Garcia’s maximalist touch.

The Details:

Rooms start from €129 (approximately £102) per night, room only.

Hotel Des Indes, a Luxury Collection Hotel, The Hague; www.luxurycollection.com/desindes; +31 70 361 2345