Smart business hotels where work meets play

CNN  — 

The line between work and play is more blurred than ever. A new generation of mobile workers has traded cubicles for coffee shops, and offices for hotel rooms around the world.

As long as digital nomads have Wi-Fi and a laptop, they can get the job done just about anywhere – be it from the pool, beach bar, or a trendy restaurant. By 2022, the global mobile workforce is expected to grow from 1.45 billion in 2016 to 1.87 billion, accounting for 42.5% of the worldwide workforce.

A handful of hotels have answered the call for “bleisure” travel – offering business-meets-leisure experiences that emphasize thoughtful technology, well-designed communal spaces and networking opportunities. From Amsterdam to Hong Kong to San Francisco, these innovative addresses aim to help digital nomads thrive.

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Volkshotel, Amsterdam

Volkshotel: glass-fronted work cabins in the Werkplaats.

Built in a former newspaper building from the 1960s, the 172-room Volkshotel emerged from extensive renovations to welcome a new generation of nomadic creatives. This Amsterdam hotel is a hive of activity around the clock.

There’s a popular restaurant and buzzing club on the top floor, a cocktail bar in the basement and the hotel’s signature Werkplaats – aka a cafe with flexible co-working tables.

Offering lots of networking opportunities, the hotel is also home to Broedplaats VKG – a workspace for local entrepreneurs equipped with 85 dedicated hot desks, offices and multimedia studios. Or guests can simply work in their room, where a window-seat work nook, silk screens and views of Amsterdam will get creative juices flowing.

Throughout the hotel, there are several nods to the former journalistic digs – magnified newspaper cut-outs, ink raster patterns, photography and an annual theater festival with thought-provoking performances.

Volkshotel; Wibautstraat 150, 1091 GR, Amsterdam; +31 20 2612 100

Zoku, Amsterdam

Inspired by a shift in work and lifestyle habits around the globe, the founders of Zoku designed this smart short- and long-term stay with mobile professionals in mind. Decked out in warm wood and Scandinavian style, the loft-like rooms feature thoughtful layouts and large dining tables to facilitate deadlines and meetings.

Meanwhile, fully equipped kitchens, espresso machines and international outlets in every corner ensure batteries are fully charged.

On request, Zoku also offers a handy “office toolbox” with handy markers, rubber bands and more. And should the need arise, there’s also a 3D printing service available. Whether guests are in the colorful Living Room or sharing a table in one of the Communal Working Areas, the hotel’s open-plan design and communal tables aim to connect bright minds from around the world.

Zoku; Weesperstraat 105, 1018 VN Amsterdam, The Netherlands; +31 20 811 2811

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