Set on a string of islands and connected by numerous bridges, Stockholm has always been one of the world’s most visually striking cities. But it now has more to offer than ever before in terms of fashion, art and design as well as its hotels, restaurants and museums. As a Swedish expat living in London, I’m proud to see my hometown growing up and finally embracing its position as a world destination. There is no place better for a late-night party. It’s in our genes to stay up late, drink and have as much fun as we can; clubs close at 5am and some places stay open much later than that. The diversity of Stockholm’s five boroughs, each with a very different crowd and atmosphere, also tends to set it apart. There’s Södermalm which is more bohemian and creative, with a lot of smaller brand-name design stores, and Kungsholmen, which is more laid back and has great cafés. Östermalm is the smartest part of town with its amazing restaurants and parks and Norrmalm, or the city centre, offers great shopping and people-watching opportunities. Then of course there is Gamla Stan, or Old Town, where – even if it is packed with tourists – you can still find pockets of great restaurants, boutiques and cafés.

The best time to visit is undeniably between May and September, when Stockholm and its inhabitants truly come to life after the long cold winter slumber. But I still love this town in the winter, especially when it snows and the streets are dotted with lights, remember the days are short and it gets dark at 3PM in the winter. One of my favourite things to do on the weekend is to stroll to Kungliga Djurgården (Stockholm’s Hyde Park) for a hot chocolate at one of the many cafés. If you look carefully you will see thousands of people, most of whom come from the adjacent neighbourhood of Östermalm, walking over the ice – join them if you dare.

TO STAY

Lydmar

A trendy hotel with only 45 rooms and the same views as its neighbouring but more traditional sister establishment, the Grand Hotel overlooking the Royal Castle. The popular restaurant here serves a mixture of Swedish and intercontinental dishes, and is always packed with a good-looking crowd. In the summer the bar on the terrace is a must. Lydmar is walking distance from everything and offers the perfect destination for both couples and singles in one of the best party cities in the world. There is no hotel gym, but guests are free to use the amazing spa at the Grand.

  • +46 8 22 31 60
  • Go to Website
  • Södra Blasieholmshamnen 2
    Stockholm
    10324

Nobis Hotel

Known as the hotel to be seen in, and less well-known as birthplace of the term Stockholm Syndrome, this is where the Norrmalmstorg robbery of Kreditbanken took place, in which several bank employees were held hostage in a vault from August 23 to 28 in 1973 while their captors negotiated with police. These days it’s a much friendlier place but some of its heritage lives on in the hotel, with the bank’s boardroom kept perfectly preserved upstairs. The rooms are spacious and modern and the inner courtyard is always a good place to start an evening out.

Ett Hem

I often tell friends that this tiny 12-room hotel alone is worth a trip to Stockholm. Owner Jeanette Mix and famous interior designer Ilse Crawford have created a balance between impeccable taste and a homely feeling without making it pretentious in any way. There’s no menu for dinner – the chef will open the fridge in the kitchen, tell you what there is to choose from and then whip up something special. Just like at home, where you seldom spend time in the bedroom, most guests sit and relax wherever they feel like it. Don’t be surprised if a celebrity settles down on the sofa next to you.

The Story

This is a fun concept hotel with no reception; when you book online, you will receive a code instead of a key to your room. There is a very happening bar for the young, cool crowd of Stockholm, and the tapas restaurant on its main floor is also fun and reasonably priced. Travel with friends and book one of the rooms with bunk beds.

Berns Hotel

A boutique hotel with a huge amount of history which shows continuing support to the arts. The beautiful old building houses a majestic ballroom fitted with sparkling chandeliers and has played host to big artists such as Rihanna. It serves as a central, highly convenient and luxurious base at any time of the year, but especially during Fashion Week. Berns is also home to one of the best Asian restaurants in town, and guests receive a VIP wristband giving them access to the hotel’s nightclub and several others in the surrounding area.

Lydmar

Nobis Hotel

Ett Hem

The Story

Berns Hotel

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