Stockholm is ever changing, ever evolving – that’s what makes this capital city tick. Set over 14 islands, the surrounding water provides a sense of calm while the architecture breeds a sense of wonder. Recently branding itself as “the open city”, the Nordic capital isn’t as heart on its sleeve as you might expect. It can be difficult to get under the skin of the place and its citizens, but those who persevere will be rewarded with a diverse food scene, interesting nightlife and a surprising number of subcultures to explore.

Very much a seasonal city, some places are only open in the winter or the summer – and in some cases change their name and design every other month. In summer, as the sun stays beaming in the sky well throughout the night, the terraces of the city come alive with postcard-worthy views and sounds of electronic, pop, rock, soul and hip hop bellow out onto the streets. In the winter the city turns inward, with cosy bars, soul-warming restaurants and hour-long fika (cake) sessions. It’s easy to try and categorise the different neighbourhoods into exclusive Stureplan or hipster Södermalm, but with so many places to explore and a constant reimagining of spaces, it’s really much more complex than that.

Plan more than a few days to get a true taste of Stockholm – it’s not a place that you’ll conquer in 48 hours – and prepare to have any preconceptions of this future-conscious city turned upside down.

TO STAY

Lydmar

Overlooking the Royal Castle, this stylish hotel is popular among an eclectic set. Its restaurant perpetually overflows with a good-looking crowd, and in the summer the terrace bar throngs with locals. There isn’t a gym but guests are free to use the amazing spa at the Grand, while the hotel is walking distance from nearly everything.

  • +46 822 3160
  • Go to Website
  • Södra Blasieholmshamnen 2
    Stockholm
    10324

Hotel With Urban Deli

Looking for something near the city centre, on-trend but quiet? Check into Hotel With Urban Deli for a taste of where Scandinavian design is heading. Well-curated “lean luxury” rooms, which are all located below ground level are situated inside the central Urban Deli space meaning a bustling restaurant and bar, food marketplace and rooftop park are at your disposal.

Haymarket by Scandic

Haymarket is something special. With soft jazz pumping through the lobby bar, zany furniture and welcoming staff, this is a home away from home. Its 400 rooms are bright and colourful, combining modern comforts with timeless style. Bathrooms are spacious, beds are sinkable and vinyl players wait tentatively for your holiday soundtrack to start playing.

Miss Clara by Nobis

With a design aesthetic inspired by the Swedish forests, Miss Clara is nothing short of idyllic. Filled with history, the property – formerly a girls school – was built in 1910. Named after the headmistress, the hotel has kept many of the original details thanks to architect Gert Wingårdh. It’s also in the heart of the city meaning it’s easy to get around.

Hobo Hotel

Consisting of 201 “creatively comfortable” rooms and common spaces, Hobo is designed for those who love the adventure of travelling. Centrally located, cosiness is combined with smart Scandinavian design in four types of rooms ranging from suites to sleepers. An ideal place to begin and end your Stockholm soirées, there’s almost always something on at the bar, be it a concert from the local Get Up Soul Choir or a vinyl DJ set from Swedish producer HNNY.

Ett Hem

This tiny 12-room hotel alone is worth a trip to Stockholm. Owner Jeanette Mix and renowned interior designer Ilse Crawford have created a balance between impeccable taste and a homely feel. 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.

Lydmar

Ett Hem

Hobo Hotel

Haymarket by Scandic

Hotel With Urban Deli

Miss Clara by Nobis

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