August 23, 2019
Steeped in medieval history and riffing trademark Scandi simplicity, Stockholm's raw beauty might be intimidating to the untrained eye. Not, however, if you’re peeping through the gimlet eye of LUXE insider and longtime travel aficionado Béla Molnár, aka Mr. Globetrotter
Hungarian Béla's early career in music instilled a love of travel and discovery, and as a photographer, filmmaker and brand strategist he's constantly on the hop, seeking out under-the-radar delights around the globe. Here Béla shares his favourite places to sleep, eat, shop and drink on a weekend in Stockholm.
Ett Hem is a 12-room, simple-but-stately hotel set in an old Stockholm townhouse. If – like lucky me – you’ve stayed in your fair share of Soho House hotels, you’ll notice the similarities, largely because design genius Ilse Crawford is behind both brands. Guests are encouraged to lord-and-lady it up, treating the house as their own. That means dining wherever you like – the library, the kitchen or the greenhouse – and serving yourself from the well-stocked honesty bar.
Fabrique is a tiny, quirky coffee shop set in an old C.18th warehouse in Gamla Stan and the perfect place for breakfast. For lunch, take a boat across the water to Restaurant J and soak up those jaw-to-the-floor sea views. Come dinnertime, it has to be seafood at B.A.R. or Southeast Asian cuisine at Farang. All beyond delicious.
Grand Hôtel, which sits on the waterfront facing the Palace. As far as I’m concerned, stopping for a drink here is compulsory when visiting Stockholm. You should also pay a visit to Melt, in Norrmalm, a 1920s style speakeasy serving up cool cocktails and cabaret. Yet more impressive concoctions can be found and drunk (and drunk again) at Pharmarium, a Stockholm institution and another absolute must.
Luxuries from Sweden and beyond can be found at NK (Nordiska Kompaniet), the Selfridges of Stockholm. If offbeat and vintage are more your thing, take a walk down Bondegatan, then pop around the corner onto Södermannagatan, where you can try to keep up with the cool kids at Scandinavian lifestyle store, Grandpa, possibly the hippest shop in the city.
Snap up the grand Royal Palace over in Gamla Stan (the Old Town) and wander the streets for a kaleidoscope of colourful Scandi architecture. There are ‘grammable goodies to be discovered underground too as more than 90 of Stockholm’s metro stations have been decorated by artists in a project that started in the 1950s. Mind-blowing, sometimes futuristic, designs grace the walls and getting a glimpse (and a few shots) is certainly worth stumping up the price of a metro ticket.
Jetting off to Europe in the not-too-distant future?
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