One of the first recommendations given to those who are planning a trip to Iceland is: book your room early. In fact, it is perhaps one of the most difficult parts of planning, especially if the trip is in the summer. The accommodation facilities are very few compared to the amount of tourists who, Covid aside, in recent years have chosen the island for a vacation, which was once off the beaten track.
Even the capital presents problems, because it naturally attracts the largest number of requests, despite not being a destination for an extended stay. To cope with the demand, around the island we equip ourselves as best we can: bed & breakfast, farmhouses, guesthouses and then the curious "Hotel Edda", also called summer hotels open mostly from June to August. The Hotel Edda chain is evenly distributed throughout the country as most of them are schools that are transformed into accommodation facilities during the vacation period.
Hverfisgata 8, Reykjavík 101
One of Reykjavik's first boutique hotels. Located in a 1930s building, it's still one of the best around. The rather anonymous exterior is deceptive, but the interior designed by owner and designer Ingibjörg S. Pálmadóttir with its 38 rooms (six suites) is in constant pursuit of a balance of details, against a palette of blacks, whites and slate gray. The common areas are dedicated to a collection of works by Icelandic artists. The wellness center, spa and gym are up to par.
It's also strategically located: the Icelandic Opera House is just a stone's throw away, and it's a 20-minute walk to the Icelandic National Gallery and the National Museum of Iceland. The port is ten minutes away.
Canopy by Hilton Reykjavik City Centre
Smidjustigur 4, Reykjavík 101
It is a self-proclaimed "lifestyle hotel", and the definition fits the price-quality ratio. We are right in the center of the city, at the intersection with Hverfisgata Street, the first Green Road in Reykjavik. The Laugavegur shopping street with its shops, bars and cafes is within walking distance, and the harbor area is just down the road. There are currently 33 Canopy properties in Europe, North America, Asia, South America and the Middle East – this was the very first of them all. The exterior betrays the true dimensions, which are developed by connecting six different buildings, which were originally a furniture factory, a recording studio and an arts hub. The decorators have, therefore, deliberately kept these roots alive in the details of a hotel that, first and foremost, aims to be an example of Nordic hospitality.