So under the guise of dissertation research and serious work, I managed to persuade myself that a few days in Stockholm was exactly the inspiration I needed when embarking on the final push for the old degree. As I had been told by numerous people that I would “instantly fall in love” with this wonderful city (my dissertation supervisor included) I had high hopes for my few days away. Despite little time to research before, the combination of a Wallerpaper city app that I downloaded just before my flight, and that fact that I was staying with a local, meant that when reflecting on my five days I truly feel that I made the most of everything this Scandinavian capital has to offer.
So let me set the scene for you all, two of my wonderful housemates in Exeter are Swedish and both are Stockholm girls. Whilst Elinor was away skiing for the start of my trip, I was met by the wonderful Rebecca and quickly whisked away to her country house for a night before we headed into the city. Here are the adventures we got up to…
So this is the Swedish equivalent of Liberty London in my eyes (it even used to be their main sales point in the UK). Founded in 1924 by Estrid Ericsson, who was later joined by architect Joseph Franc, this interior design shop is the height of Stockholm cool. Imagine big bold prints adorning everything from chairs and curtains to bags and trays. With Rebecca’s mum working as one of their archivist we had no excuse not to visit, and the flagship store in central Stockholm is a real treat for the eyes.
No city trip would be complete without visiting as many art galleriers as possible, and with the National Museum closed for renovation, this was top of my list and should be the same for other art lovers. Nestled amongst local Swedish and other northern Eurpoean artists are famous faces such as Matisse, Nicki de Saint Phalle and Marcel Ducahmp. We particularly enjoyed the current exhibition of Mexican artist Gabriel Orozco.
Another fantastic example of modern Swedish art, the photography museum is equally famous for its extensive collection as for its wonderful views. Located on the Southern Island of the city the top floor of this museum is a café with breathtaking panoramas of the bay and skyline. Elinor showed us round this gallery, as she is rather familiar with its work, especially as her mum’s work has been displayed here numerous times!
This wonderful old palace is like no other – it is the epitome of old money glamour. The countess who lived here dedicated her life to preserving the house and its contents for a national museum, so everything is beautifully kept and arranged. Whilst we were there they were displaying a hat exhibition, which was good fun to see contrasted against all the old silver and ceramics. Its hard to believe that you are still in the centre of a city when wandering the dark, quiet corridors of this Venetian-esque palace.
Just take a day out to visit the surrounding areas of Stockholm, especially when the sun is shinning. It reminded me vaguely of Scotland with the tall pines and vast lakes.
City view from Bridges
As the city is arranged on islands the bridges between can offer great viewing points. This was taken on the bridge to ‘Museum Island’ looking North.
The old hunting ground for the Kings now offers a perfect spot for a morning walk. On a sunny day you will be joined by half of the city either jogging, taking out the dogs or just enjoying the weather!
Lending Hall, Stadsbiblioteket (Stockholm’s public library)
This is definitely worth a quick detour to admire Erik Gunnar Asplund’s fantastic design, it combines Nordic clasiccsm with ornamental Ancient Egypt. It is also bang in the centre of the vibrant Vasastaden neighbourhood which is full of cafes and bars.
We stopped and had lunch at the National Theatre one day, but perhaps if you were staying for longer a trip to the theatre would be a perfect evening. The bar on the top floor gives fantastic views over the city and the rooms are full of old school opulence! It’s steps outside are also the place to be seen when basking in the sun and enjoying a coffee.
Cinammon Buns with Tea (This needs no explaining at all, they are perfection!)
This food hall in the centre of the Östermalm District has been open since 1888 and caters for every culinary desire. But it is also wonderful to just wander around in and marvel at all of the different stalls. We picked up some chocolate delights to enjoy in the sun.
When deciding on a place to eat it can often be difficult to please all tastes-K25 has solved this problem. Located under a train track, this relatively new dining experience brings some of Stockholm’s top restaurants together under one roof. Think Singaporean Hakka-centre dining, with Scandanavian style and aesthetic!
Whilst this may seem like an extensive post on the beautiful city, all I can say is that it only scratches the surface of beautiful Stockholm. It is also well-known for its fantastic nightlife, the wonderful local food (I fell in love with Swedish bread) and of course the men who are commonly seen jogging together in matching sports leggings and with prams in hand!
All I can say is that I can’t wait to return to this wonderful place, hopefully this summer with the delights of the Swedish sun, Crayfish parties and even the ABBA museum to look forward too.