Lodging Review: Haymarket by Scandic, Stockholm
I'd stayed in a few Scandic hotels in my previous travels through Sweden - once each in Stockholm, Linköping, and Gothenburg. They were all pretty nice, clean hotels, approximately the standard of a Hilton Garden Inn perhaps.
So I was curious what kind of hotel "Haymarket by Scandic" would be. Usually when someone puts a new name, followed by the world "by" and then the original brand name, it means that the new concept departs from the original brand in some way.
And the Haymarket certainly does! In fact, I'm not really sure what the "by Scandic" buys it from a branding perspective. The Haymarket is a hip, stylish hotel built in a former department store, and carries a 1920s glamour theme consistently throughout the experience from the logo typography down to the last details of even the bathroom mirror and coat rack.
My room had plenty of lighting and seating options, and a real desk, with plugs located all around the room. I liked the hard flooring too, giving the impression that it would be cleaner than rug in the wintertime when one might track in sludge from the streets.
With heavy coats a must in this season, it's great that there's a dedicated coat rack along with a lighted armoire hiding a minibar and laptop-sized safe. I appreciated having a couple different places to place my suitcase.
Ignoring the one missing bulb in the bathroom mirror, the compact bathroom was really a lesson in space efficiency. There was a good amount of counter space to lay out my toiletries (I always leave a sprawl of toothbrush, toothpaste, and various products out!), and places to leave towels.
Old school glamour permeates the space. And the bed was truly lovely - I was sad I had to leave so early my last morning, because I wanted to luxuriate longer in it!
My particular room looked out upon Hötorget Square, where there were produce markets on the weekdays and a flea market on Sunday. I've heard people complain about noise when the vendors are setting early in the morning, but I wore earplugs so this didn't bother me. What did bother me - perhaps my only complaint - was that the sound proofing was not up to par: I could hear neighbors watching TV.
Breakfast is included in the price, and you have hot and cold buffet items, and find a space yourself in any of the dining areas.
I liked the Swedish pancakes the best, topping one with Nutella, another with whipped cream and lingonberries, and a third with maple syrup! I also loved the rustic pate, which I took a generous helping of every day.
The breakfast area can get very crowded, so I'd recommend getting there early - you can get some seats with nice views of the square.
I loved my stay at the Haymarket, and wish I could have stayed longer. The location is great - walking distance to the Central Station and Arlanda Express, with pedestrian shopping streets all around.
The service checking in wasn't overly friendly, but when checking out early morning, the gentleman offered to fetch me a cup of coffee before I departed, which was very kind (I declined).
In full disclosure, this hotel was booked and paid for by the fair I was attending, so I can't comment on the value. And I've just checked on their website that some of the rooms they offer don't have windows, which makes sense given that it's a converted department store with expansive floors with proportionally less exterior-fronting linear space. So I'd look carefully when booking, but can say that if the price is competitive and you can get a room with a window, I'd recommend going for it!
Haymarket by Scandic (www.scandichotels.com/haymarket)
111 57 Stockholm