Weekend in Putten : Overnight stay at Hotel Postillion
Between my full time job, wife duties and my hacked blog that took several days to recover, writing had been frustrating lately, to say the least. Thankfully I have a husband who is not only IT-savvy but is willing to whisk me away to a much-needed weekend retreat somewhere in the country, to the east of the Netherlands to be exact. Since he had a business meeting in that area, we took the opportunity to book ourselves a nice hotel by the beach and unwind for the weekend (Read: sauna, dinner and a walk in the park). I must say, for the last few months, this weekend trip had been one of my most relaxing trips that we have made together, however short it was.
Usually our weekend trips start on a Friday but I had to work late in Belgium and as usual drank myself silly with three bottles of those delicious dark Kasteel beers. When I got home, my husband was waiting with a bottle of Moet & Chandon, which for the life of me, I didn’t understand why I had to consume the same night. Those two together led to oversleeping and a nasty case of headache the next morning. With the help of a few pain killers and a huge breakfast of grilled pork ribs, we were off to our hotel by lunch time.
Putten is a small municipality in the province Gelderland, home of the cities of Arnhem, Nijmegen and Apeldoorn. It is also near Holland’s biggest national park, the Nationaal Park de Hoge Veluwe. Our hotel is located near the Nulde Beach, which naturally, I did not know beforehand because we did not really have plans. But that was precisely the idea, no stress in trying to come up with activities to fill up a short visit. In this weekend trip, we just let the place dictate how the the day goes.
Overnight in Postillion Hotel Amersfoort Veluwemeer
The hotel was my husband’s idea and honestly, I usually frown at his choice of hotels but this one was an exception. At a reasonable rate of €74 per night, you get a big room with a view of Nulde Beach, free use of wellness and fitness facility and free wifi. The bed itself is not that spacious but hey you’ve got a bath in your bathroom so you’d be probably not be spending so much time on the bed apart from sleeping. They also have room service which was so handy for a someone with a bad hang-over but it’s quite painful with that €3,50 service charge. When my husband was away for his meeting, I ordered a lovely cup of tomato soup which cost us €10 including the service charge.
Our room has a beautiful view of the Nulde Beach while other rooms look out to the yacht dock. During sunset, you can get a gorgeous view wherever you are in the hotel, even in the hallway. The facade of the hotel itself is not that pretty. It looks like a bejaardenhuis from the outside but inside was tastefully decorated, except maybe for the outdated wallpapers and carpets.
After a night of drinking, there is no better cure than sweating out and then relaxing. The hotel’s wellness and sauna facility was exactly meant for that. We needed to reserve an hour before using the wellness but it was not very busy that night so we did not have to wait. The gym is not exactly that big but it has a treadmill, bicycle and that other multi-functional machine, enough to make me sweat the toxins out of my body. What we enjoyed most was the spacious sauna – Finnish sauna, Turkish steam bath and the lounging area. If we were not already getting hungry, we would have stayed there for more than an hour.
Dinner at the hotel
We decided to dine-in at the hotel’s restaurant because in a place like Putten, we did not think that there are many restaurants to choose from. Fortunately we were not disappointed. The service was excellent and their home-made pesto is the best I’ve had so far. According to one of the waiters, it’s one of the best products coming out of their kitchen. Too bad it was just served for their breads.
But they were a lot of lovely dishes from the menu. My husband started with this goat cheese in short pastry and marmalade.
For main course, he had crispy duck with black pudding and apple while I settled for suckling pig with honey, pok soy, mushrooms and sherry sauce. To be honest, I wasn’t too crazy about the slice of fried pork chop that they served me but the sauce and vegetables were delicious. My husband was very happy with his duck although he did not really had a good sauce. Good thing we can share our meals.
We downed with everything with a bottle of 2009 Rioja but since I was on antibiotics and still nursing a hang-over, I was only able to enjoy a glass. A missed opportunity to enjoy a good wine.
For dessert, he had an English cheese platter with cheddar, Stilton and Shropshire while I went Italian again and ordered a Panna cotta. I should have just skipped dessert. My panna cotta was not delicious and I don’t understand the purpose of putting very hard chocolates around the inside of the glass.
As recommended by the house, he had a glass of Spanish moscatel with his cheese, a dessert wine that I am particularly fond of.
The breakfast spread
In most hotels where I pay for breakfast, I usually feel short-changed when the breakfast is minimal. But I am very happy to report that in Hotel Postillion, you get a big and varied breakfast choices, from hot, cold, continental, American, French, etc. And they have at least six different types of freshly-baked bread. Although when you wake up and eat late, chances are the bacon would not be warm and crispy anymore.
I started with a lot of fiber then a lot of fat which was a nice way to start a day of exploring the nearby nature park Schovenhorst.
But more on that later, this post is getting long.