Monday, 27 February 2012

From Stockholm With Love...

Stockholm is fast becoming one of my favourite cities, not only for the seasonal perfect weather and clean air, the constant tread of beautiful people and the truly amazing food (more on the food later, but I must point out that fish for breakfast has not tickled my fancy since returning home surprisingly!).  However, I love Stockholm last but not least for their stand out homeware brands, and I don’t mean Ikea!  I have always been a fan of Swedish fashion design, Acne is right up there on my must-have list and other Scandinavian designers such as Malene Birger are my go to brand for any occasion, so here at Butterfly Lane we were not disappointed with what this city had to offer in the homeware design stakes either.

We visited the abundant homeware stores, and trawled around the large, and the small, of what the city offered and we found the selection at NK (the Swedes equivalent to our Harvey Nic’s) to be truly wonderful and vast.  My favourite discovery was the ceramic specialists Paradis Verkstan who make amazing vases, bowls and candle sticks in pretty and neutral colours.  The pumpkins and onions are my stand out choice; they would look amazing sat on a kitchen worktop or dresser.  

Images:  Paradis Verkstan 

After a hard day interior design shopping I cannot recommend the Sturebadet Spa enough.  It’s the cities luxury pool, gym and spa and was once the haunt of Greta Garbo and is still a favourite of the rich and famous today.  The pool and spa area is so luxurious and steeped in history; it’s a real treat.  

Image:  Sturebadet Spa Pool

Food is always in the forefront of my mind and Stockholm has so much choice, I could have easily had an eating tour of the city that lasted for months!  But here are Butterfly Lane’s two favourite restaurants that we tried and tested during our visit.  All the restaurants were so inspiring for their interior design concepts, I hope they inspire you too.

Restaurant B.A.R:   This cosmopolitan eatery was a buzz of energy.  The brain child of the two award-winning chefs and gastronomic visionars Henrik Norstrom and Peter Johansson, their philosophy is simple:  the closer the producer, the fresher the produce.  The fresher the produce, the better the taste experience.  I particularly liked how they have a fish market within the restaurant, so you choose your fish, chat to one of the chefs about how you want it cooked and five minutes later it arrives at yor table.  Amazing!

Matthias Dalgren at The Grand Hotel:  Ok, so this was a real treat, voted one of the top restaurants in the world, located in the stunning Grand Hotel, the restaurant is split in to informal and formal dining.  All I need to say is that the food was incredible and the service was perfect, I couldn’t recommend it highly enough.  Even though it has been awarded two Michelin stars it lacked the portentousness and stuffiness that I hate, please go if you’re in the city!  I would also recommend finishing the evening with cocktails at the hotels Cadier Bar, it’s old school decadence at its best.

The cafĂ© culture in Stockholm is brilliant and the cakes are to die for!  Here is an image of the mouth wateringly gorgeous selection I tried to resist, but failed miserably every day!  It’s a very good job that Stockholm is a great walking city, as I needed to burn off the extra million calories I devoured during my trip!

Image:  Design Sponge

I suggest walking around the Djurgarden Canal at Gardet, it is so beautiful and peaceful and has a wonderful restaurant Villa Kallhagen on the water’s edge (here I am talking about food again!), with stunning water views, open fires in the winter, a stylishly neutral interior (very Butterfly Lane) and an incredible Swedish buffet, what more would you want?  This is really family friendly, laid back and well worth a visit. 

I loved the Swedish cake selection so much that I bought a wonderfully traditional Swedish baking book at the airport on my way home to bring some Swedish cuisine in to my own kitchen.  It’s aptly titled Swedish Cakes and Cookies by Sju Sorters Kakor and has some amazing, indulgent recipes.  My favourite and fool proof recipe is for the divine and traditional Appelkaka (Apple Cake).  The book is available on Amazon for £8.00 and I highly recommend it for some Scandinavian treats!  X

1 comment:

  1. Wow! A world away from Ikea, yet from the same country! You have opened my eyes to the best of Swedish interior design, without the hotdogs and meatballs! XxX


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