Reviewing Stockholm

Reviewing Stockholm - Stockholm, Sweden

As you already know, we adore Stockholm. But what was it like to work there? Editor Alex Robertson Textor gave himself a little interview to tell us all about it. Here he talks about speaking Swedish and eating carrots and kiddie food.

1. Favorite hotels.

One favorite in Stockholm is Wasa Park, which is perched over Sankt Eriksplan. A Swedish friend refers to it as 19th century Swedish country style. The hotel is the sort of place that you can imagine fussy value-hungry senior citizens eating right up.

Another good Cheapo (and a quite quirky one at that) is Vanadis Hotell och Bad. Vanadis is especially nice in the summer months, when the attached pool is open.

And I can't write about Stockholm hotels without praising the "cabins" of Hotel Örnsköld. Örnsköld is a fine, charmingly old-fashioned midrange hotel with some extremely inexpensive, tidy little single rooms, which the hotel refers to as "cabins," with shared facilities. Hotel Örnsköld is possibly the only sedate, grown-up hotel in Stockholm with single (albeit miniscule) single rooms priced under SEK400.

2. Favorite thing about working in Stockholm.

Stockholm is one of my favorite cities. I just love the look and feel of the place, and the way the city appears to be surrounded by bodies of water. I love the public transportation system, the ease locals seem to have with each other, and the omnipresence of fantastic modern design. Having Swedish friends has been a wonderful point of entry.

3. What surprised you about Stockholm?

Well, this is less of a surprise than a confirmation of past observations, but I find that foreign-born Swedes are much more willing than native Swedes to let me practice my unschooled Swedish on them. In light of the fact that the vast majority of the adult population speaks English very well, I suspect that it's only people who have learned Swedish as a second or third language who have this kind of patience.

4. Funny story.

I enjoyed being offered carrots by the sweet receptionists at Hotel Bentleys. It didn't strike me as funny until I told the story to a few people.

5. City secret.

I write about the importance of obtaining a transportation pass in the Getting Around section of the Stockholm City Guide, but never get on the metro without having purchased a pass before hand. With a 24 hour pass, for example, you'll save money after two or three rides.

6. Favorite local food.

Swedes will make fun of me, but I love Kräm! Kräm is a kiddie food, a viscous fruit treat, often eaten with yogurt. Another amazing supermarket find is nyponsoppa, or rose hip soup. Nyponsoppa with whipped cream is tasty and vitamin-rich. I'm also a fan of kanelbullar (cinnamon rolls), sold in most bakeries. And I love how cardamom makes its way into Swedish pastries. Clearly, my culinary tastes are plebeian, even infantile.

7. Highlights of trip.

Successfully pronouncing Hammarbyhöjden felt good.

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