Fed up with impersonal hotel chains? They’re easily avoided in the artsy Swedish capital. Whether you’re looking for somewhere cheap, a chic boutique or special-occasion luxe, the very best hotels in Stockholm can all offer bang for your krona. Plenty of the top boltholes are centrally located. And a third plus: here as in few other cities, you’ll most likely get a side order of swish Nordic style in your room. Some hotels boast incredible architecture and interiors, many are steeped in fascinating local history, and others are also home to some of the city’s best bars and restaurants. Whatever your budget, you’ll find something apt in our pick of Stockholm’s best hotels.
Best hotels in Stockholm
A mere 100 metres or so from Stockholm Central Station, this design hotel is the very incarnation of slick Nordic style. Expect floods of light coming in from massive windows and original artworks installed in the lobby as part of their ‘artist in residence’ programme. You’ll also find rainfall showers in the rooms, as well as luxury beds courtesy of Swedish designer Hilding Anders, complimentary toiletries, a TV and a safe large enough for a laptop. The in-house restaurant, Lykke, serves modern Nordic cuisine and offers a ‘Nordic lights organic breakfast’ featuring everything from fresh fruit to sweet, fluffy American pancakes.
Soak up some local history with a stay in the Swedish National Museum’s old archive building. Built in 1829, this beautiful place was renovated by the Small Luxury Hotel Group in 2008. Each room is decorated differently and boasts slick, contemporary furnishing and artwork on the walls. This theme runs throughout the hotel, with pieces from 1900 to the present day on rotation. In-room amenities include a mini-bar, TV and AC. Nearby you’ll find the culture hub that is Stureplan square, the beach and the recently renovated National Museum.
This is the place in Stockholm where Edith Piaf once sang, Marlene Dietrich had her own dressing room and Axl Rose once bit a security guard on the leg (losing his Converse hightops in the process, which the hotel gave away on Instagram 10 years later). More than just a place to lay your head at night, Hotel Berns is also home to an internationally renowned concert venue, where everyone from the Supremes to Rihanna has played.
For those with active lifestyles, Scandic’s Downtown Camper is the perfect spot. Not only is it located absurdly close to all the major attractions, the waterfront and Stockholm Central Station, but the hotel provides daily activities for guests, including running, walks, workshops, film nights and DJs. There’s also an in-house gym, pool, spa and yoga classes. Plus, you’ll find a selection of skateboards, kayaks and bikes in the foyer which you can hire out. There are plenty of great places to eat around the hotel, but it also has a grill restaurant that serves exquisite comfort food.
Owned by former ABBA member Benny Andersson, Hotel Rival is filled with subtle tributes to the world-famous Swedish pop group. All 99 rooms are equipped with a state-of-the-art entertainment system, a 32-inch plasma screen, and access to a library of DVDs and music by – who else? – ABBA. Plush red velvet sofas, film and theatrical motifs and tasteful lighting give the property an old-school cabaret vibe.
The Winery Hotel invites guests to follow the winemaking process from barrel to bottle. Enjoy a relaxed tasting at the bar or panoramic views from the rooftop terrace’s heated pool. All 184 guest rooms share a factory-like feel with exposed brick walls, high ceilings and windows and brass accents. Packages include guided tours of the on-site winery, tastings and multiple-course dinners; daily activities planned by the hotel’s expert sommeliers may involve learning how to open a champagne bottle with a sabre or indulging in a Kundalini yoga and wine session.
Ett Hem fittingly means ‘at home’ in Swedish. And if home is where you sneak bites of homemade apple cake from the kitchen while chatting with the chef about what you’d like for dinner or curl up with a novel under a sheepskin throw, you’ve come to the right place. From lobby to bedroom, this red brick townhouse exudes low-key elegance throughout. Guests can help themselves to everything from bicycles and raincoats to freshly squeezed juice from the fridge, play records on the hotel’s working gramophone, tickle the ivories at the grand piano or relax in the bright, sunny conservatory.
Before it became the only hotel on the island, Skeppsholmen enjoyed life as a hospital, a temporary prison and the royal naval barracks for officers of the Swedish king. Despite their more than 300 years of history – and structural changes not being allowed during renovations – the 81 guest rooms are in excellent shape. In each room you’ll find sleek, modern furnishings, rustic décor and plaques that tell you the history of the place (and what precisely went on in your room).
This comfy central bolthole offers great value for money in one of the world’s most expensive cities. Among the 271 guest rooms, accommodation options include a choice of recently refurbished suites, junior suites and studios. While the location ensures you’re already well connected to shops, restaurants and other points of interest, you won’t want to miss the ‘after work’ jazz evenings held every Wednesday in the lobby bar.
Music lovers will appreciate the Pop Hotel’s shared entrance with the Abba Museum, plus the fact that one of its owners is former band member Björn Ulvaeus. The hotel’s 49 rooms, brightly decorated with purple and lime green accents, are filled with light thanks to panoramic sliding windows. Only a five-minute tram ride from the city centre, the hotel is right by Gröna Lund amusement park, the Swedish Music Hall of Fame and Skansen, one of the world’s oldest museums.
Want to tick off the big-hitting sights?
When it comes to camera-ready sights, you could hardly do better than photogenic Stockholm. With its 14 island coastlines, the majestic parks and gardens that cover a third of the city, and excellent cultural things to do every which way you turn, this compact metropolis crams in top attractions like Swedish Surströmming (herring).