The city of Amsterdam is popular for its compelling architecture, interlaced water canals, bridges, and docks. However, alongside these water canals lay old guard cabins that have been left to defunct. A restoration project by Dutch architecture firm space&matter promises to bring together the historic city's tourists and water canals through a unique architecture project.
Until 2009, a large amount of these bridges had tiny cabins for the bridge guards who safeguard the water traffic. However, after automating the bridge control system, almost all of these cabins were deserted. In 2010, space&matter's design team experimented with the empty cabins, and turned them into hotel rooms, each with a panoramic view of its bridge, roadway, and waterway. The team transformed 28 bridge houses into variously-designed double-bedrooms under the SWEETS Hotel brand.
Each cabin stands with unique features. The oldest guard house dates back to 1673, while the most recent one dates back to 2009. The sizes range between 753 square feet ( approx. 230 square meters) and 130 square feet ( approx. 40 square meters), each designed and treated differently.
The unique stay offers people an unprecedented experience of sleeping in the middle of busy road crossings, with omnipresent clanging bells and a priceless view of Amsterdam and the people. As of 2019, 18 rooms have been completed, with 10 more to be completed by 2021 or 2022.