Hotels.nl BV was founded in 2001. We are one of the largest websites for hotel bookings in the Netherlands and Belgium. You can book over 1,900 hotels in the low countries through our website.
We strive to make it as simple, clear and cheap as possible for a wide-ranging public to book a hotel room in the Netherlands or Belgium. We try to do this by constantly improving our website and by incorporating the wishes of guests.
The Hotels.nl Team
The Story of Hotels.nl
Hotels.nl is a Groningen-based company, founded in November 2001 by Kees Eldering and Henriëtte IJzelenberg. The first version of the booking site only featured two hotels: Hotel Ravel in Hilversum and Novotel Amsterdam. At the time the site was only available in English. Nowadays, Hotels.nl can be viewed in eight different languages and features over 1,900 affiliated hotels.
The founders bought the domain name Hotels.nl at the end of November 2001. They subsequently built a booking engine and placed this online.
After a good start, business quickly began to grow. The first member of staff was employed and office space was rented. Up until then all operations had been carried out in the living room at home, but this was no longer suitable.
In 2003, Hotels.nl was translated from English into Dutch. Hotels.nl expanded, taking on another six employees, and moved to a larger office space on Museumstraat in Groningen.
Hotels.nl was already available in Dutch and English. In 2004, another language was introduced to the site: German. A Reservations Department was set up for telephone bookings and customer support. The Reservations Department, available from 09:00 until 22:00, was now also able to assist guests in three languages.
Due to the Reservations Department's extensive opening hours it was necessary to expand the team again. In 2005, the number of employees rose to twelve. The office space in Museumstraat was exchanged for a stately canalside building on Hoge der A in Groningen. The Hotels.nl website continued to grow; and to stimulate growth further the website now also offered hotels in Belgium.
Hotels.nl celebrated its five year anniversary. 2006 also saw the launch of a successful marketing campaign: a flock of sheep along the motorway near Joure sporting sheep blankets bearing the Hotels.nl logo. The campaign caused a lot of fuss. The local authority of Joure didn't think it was a good idea and actually wanted to prohibit the marketing stunt, propelling Hotels.nl and its sheep blankets to world news: even making it to the New York Times and several other international newspapers. Partly thanks to this marketing stunt, the website continued to attract even more visitors. As such, the decision was taken that the Reservations Department would also be available on Saturdays.
The magic number of 1,000 affiliated hotels was reached in 2007. The sheep blankets advertising stunt secured Hotels.nl the AMMA-award for the Best Media Stunt of 2006. Hotels.nl was also runner-up in the nominations for the Technology Fast 50 Award, organised by Deloitte.
In 2008, the number of employees increased again. Nevertheless, an office move was not on the cards quite yet. Hotels.nl exhibited, for the very first time, at the Vakantiebeurs (Dutch Tourism Expo) in Utrecht. Our message: No booking fees with Hotels.nl.
A lot of investment went into research and technology in 2009. A new version of the booking site was launched in November. Hotels.nl became faster, more advanced and more user-friendly.
The new website was an automatic hit: in 2010 Hotels.nl was chosen as the most user-friendly travel site and won third prize in the Usability Award, scoring an average of 8.3 out of 10. Hotels.nl continued to grow and an office move was now a necessity. The company had very much enjoyed working at their former canalside premises, but exchanged it in 2010 for a building on the Grote Markt in Groningen. And if you happen to be passing by in the near future, our illuminated sign will show you where our office is situated.
Hotels.nl happily celebrated its 10 year anniversary with the team in 2011, which by now also included a number of international employees.
In 2012, we continued to develop the site further. The team was constantly trying to improve the site to help guests find and book a hotel as easily as possible.
We also embarked upon the automobile sector in 2012. In collaboration with Noordlease we offered attractive, fun and beautifully stickered Volkswagen UP cars, entirely in Hotels.nl style! Available to everyone for a great price. It turned out to be a great success from the get go; a small fleet of UPs were driving around in no time!
In 2013, Hotels.nl began their 'Deal of the day' campaign. The most beautiful hotels can now be booked for rock-bottom prices. Visitors are informed of the latest deals through the digital newsletter and Facebook.
Hotels.nl strives to do its utmost to help you choose and book a hotel in the Netherlands and Belgium. We manage all our operations ourselves, guaranteeing the commitment and engagement of our employees. We take great pleasure every day in helping you to book a hotel as easily and simply as possible.
Facts and Figures
more than 1,000,000 visitors per month 1956 affiliated hotels (and growing) 30 employees 0 euro booking fees 0 shirt ties 2 blocks of cheese and 3 to 4 loaves of bread per day view of the Grote Markt: priceless!
All contact details can be found on the contact page.