Amsterdam Hilton Turns a Beatle's Suite Into Wedding Chapel

Reed Travel Features

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands -- Thousands of couples can boast of getting married by an Elvis impersonator at a drive-through window in Las Vegas, but how many can say they uttered their nuptials in the same bedroom where the Beatles' John Lennon and Yoko Ono staged their celebrated "Bed-In for Peace" in 1969?

The Amsterdam Hilton, where the Bed-In took place, is following the lead of an American couple who exchanged their wedding vows in the historic room in the summer of 1996. The hotel made the suite a 24-hour venue for marriage ceremonies. Although the marriage of the American couple was not an official ceremony, the Amsterdam Hilton since has received approval from the Amsterdam South City Council to permit weddings to take place around the clock in the suite. The first official wedding ceremony took place earlier this year.

The unit, which was known as Room 902/Lounge 904 during the 1969 Bed-In, was renamed the John & Yoko Suite and renumbered 1902/04 in 1990 after numerous inquiries from around the world. At that time, the general manager of the property, who was British and a Beatles fan, was inspired by the interest in the historic room and developed the idea of re-creating the room and using it as the property's honeymoon suite.

The suite was restored to look much as it did in March 1969, when John and Yoko arrived at the hotel in a white Rolls-Royce to enact their Bed-In before members of the international press. The bed (a new one, of course) even sits in the same location as it did for John and Yoko, who had every other piece of furniture removed. The redecoration of the suite, which is fully furnished, was carried out in the spirit of the couple's rally for peace, love and understanding during the Bed-In, the property said, and Yoko Ono advised on and approved the design.

The suite is simply furnished, and wood, stone and glass are the main decorative elements.

The bedroom's ceiling portrays an enlargement of the cover of the "The Plastic Ono Band/Live Peace in Toronto" 1969 album and shows the first five bars of the song "All You Need Is Love."

The suite can accommodate up to 25 people for wedding ceremonies. The cost to tie the knot in the John & Yoko Suite is approximately $466 for a daytime ceremony during the week; $621 for a daytime ceremony on the weekend, and $1,553 for an evening ceremony any day of the week. The cost includes the setup of the room, flowers, candles, a souvenir gift for the newlyweds and the official ceremony, which is performed by a registrar from city hall. If the newlywed couple choose to stay in the John & Yoko Suite on the night of their wedding, the rate is $361 and includes breakfast, champagne, fruit, flowers, hotel taxes and service charges. The rate does not include the 5% city tax. There will be no charge for the overnight stay in the John & Yoko Suite if the couple hold their wedding reception at the Amsterdam Hilton.

In addition to honeymoons, the John & Yoko Suite can be booked as a regular suite. The nightly rate is $517 and covers breakfast, a bottle of champagne, fruit, flowers, limousine pick-up from the airport, hotel taxes and service charges.

For information about wedding ceremonies or other events, U.S. agents can call the Amsterdam Hilton at (011) 31-020 571-285.

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