Shellfish season

18/9-20

Now that the crayfish season is coming to an end, we are welcoming the other shellfish. Shellfish is often associated with summer, but it is actually now, in the autumn that they are at their best. The main reason for this is that the cold water makes wonders. Do you remember the old rule saying that seafood should only be eaten during months with the letter "R"?

Is there anything more festive than seafood? Oysters and a glass of icy and cold champagne, or a deep red lobster for the New Year’s celebration? The versatility is another advantage of seafood, that they can be cooked in so many different ways and how the flavors vary from fresh salt to subtle sweetness.

Since seafood often tend to be relatively salty, white, fruity and fresh wines are the best option.

Here at the Grand Hôtel, we have had a tradition of celebrating the entrance of autumn with our Shellfish extravaganza for many years.
Our popular seafood weeks take place from 16 September until Sunday 11 October.
Special times require special solutions. Therefore, we have chosen to serve the seafood buffet in the Winter Garden, where there is a lot of space for social distancing. 

 

Wrap up the summer at the Spa

28/8-20

Late summer is one of the best times of the year. Re-energized after the vacation, you tend to make smarter choices. Such as booking a relaxing spa treatment or just plan some me and myself-time. In this blog post Camilla Garcia, our Spa manager at Nordic Spa & Fitness will talk more about how to reboot after the summer and how to increase the wellbeing during the autumn. 

Nordic restart
Give your summer body a reboot with a Nordic Restart in our sublime spa. First, some vigorous dry brushing, then a nutrient-rich herbal wrap to boost circulation and give the skin a deep, healthy glow. Meanwhile, enjoy a soothing scalp massage and a quiet moment in a private steam room, while finishing up with a massage of the neck area, hands, and feet.

Beaty boosted by technology
Recently the Magic Glow Wand signed Joanna Vargas was introduced at our Nordic Spa. This is a new high-tech beauty tool, that uses targeted temperature and massage settings to refresh, revive and give the skin a glowing complexion. In our 90 minutes Tailor made facial the Magic Glow wand is used with the cool mode, to minimize the appearance of pores and to decrease puffiness. The 90 minute is a complete treat, with a more in-depth treatment, including massage and nurturing products for your feet and hands too. 

Nordic Bath de Luxe 
The Nordic Bath the luxe is our DIY - Spa ritual. The combination of sauna and cold water, exfoliating scrub and nourishing mask, revitalizes and renews. In addition to the entrance fee, the experience includes a glass of sparkling champagne and homemade chocolate, an invigorating Scandinavian cranberry scrub, a nourishing facemask, and a healing hair pack. Finish up the experience by applying a moisturizing facial oil and take home an organic dry skin brush.

Joanna Vargas products for the home Spa 
The renowned American skin care brand Joanna Vargas is the fantastic brand that we use in our facials, and 16 of these products are also available for purchase in our Spa shop. These products are both vegan and organic and was originally developed by Joanna Vargas to offer customers the best beauty routine between the salon facials. Stop by and talk to us and we will help you find your new favorite. Of course, the Magic Glow wand is also available in the Spa shop. 

 

Royal Stockholm

6/8-20

Photo credit: Jeppe Wikström/mediabank.visitstockholm.com

A visit to one of the royal palaces or the royal parks is a great way to get to know more about Royal Stockholm. In July, HM The King decided that four of the royal palaces should reopen to visitors. In addition to these four palaces, the surrounding parks at the other royal destinations are open. The parks are amazing destinations for beautiful walks filled with sculptures and garden art.

The Royal Palace
The Royal Palace is one of Europe's largest and most vivid castles The Royal Palace of Stockholm is His Majesty the King's official residence and is also the setting for most of the monarchy's official receptions. Enjoy the Baroque architecture spread over eleven floors with more than 600 rooms.

The Drottningholm Palace 
Since 1981, the Royal Family has used Drottningholm as their permanent home residence. Drottningholm Palace is on UNESCO's World Heritage list. It is the most well-preserved royal castle built in the 1600s in Sweden. The combination of the exotic Chinese Pavilion pleasure palace, the palace theatre and the magnificent palace gardens make a visit to Drottningholm a unique experience.

The Chinese Pavilion 
Did you know that Chinese Pavilion pleasure palace is a birthday present from King Adolf Fredrik to Queen Lovisa Ulrika, given to her on a July evening 1753?  During this time, everything Chinese was in vogue which is reflected in both the external architecture as well as the interior design. 

Gripsholm Castle
This castle built in the 16th century is located beautifully by the lake Mälaren, close to the picturesque city of Mariefred. It was built by Gustav Vasa, one of the most famous Swedish kings and the interiors from that time are well preserved. Make sure to pay the large portrait collections a visit and learn more about Swedish history. 

 

Ten facts about Stockholm

30/7-20

Photo credit: Björn Olin/mediabank.visitstockholm.com

Today we are listing ten astonishing facts about our beautiful Stockholm that gives the city its special character and a make it such a popular travel destination. 

The Stockholm Globe
Stockholm Globe Arena is currently the largest hemispherical building in the world.

The world’s longest art gallery
One hundred stations, each with unique art on its platform, walls or waiting hall makes the Stockholm subway the world’s longest art gallery. 

Fresh air
With a total absence of industries Stockholm is considered one of the world’s cleanest metropolitan areas in the world. 

UNESCO World heritage sites
Both the Royal Palace Drottningholm and the The Skogskyrkogården Cemetery are listed on the UNESCO World Heritage sites list. 

Venice of the North
The Swedish capital is situated on 14 islands, connected by 57 bridges which gives Stockholm it’s special atmosphere and beautiful views from wherever you are. 

Smörgåsbord
The traditional Swedish buffet food smorgasbord originated in Sweden in the beginning of the 20th century. During the 1912 Olympic Games, restaurants in Stockholm stopped serving smörgåsbord as just an appetizer and started serving them as a main course instead – like it is served today. The smörgåsbod at Grand Hôtel’s veranda is considered one of the best in Stockholm. Read more here. 

The world’s narrowest alley
The Old city’s Mårten Trotzigs Gränd Alley is the narrowest alley in the world – its diameter is barely 90 cm.

Riddarholmskyrkan
Riddarholmskyrkan is Stockholm’s oldest remaining building, built in 1270 and used as a royal burial site.

Cultural Stockholm
With nearly 100 museums, Stockholm has one of the highest rates of museums per capita in the world. 

The Nobel Prize
Stockholm became the venue for the award of the first Nobel Prizes in 1901, and still is.  

 

A historical walking tour in the spirit of Régis Cadier

24/7-20

The young, French chef Régis Cadier had no intentions to stay longer than necessary in Stockholm when he first came here with his employer Russian Ambassador Count Dashkov in 1852. When he arrived, on a grey and rainy day in November, the general impression in his home country of Sweden as an inhospitable place in the north was quite accurate to him. Although, it would turn out that Cadier would not only spend the rest of his life in this country, but also have a monumental impact on its hotel- and restaurant scene. 

We would like to take you with us on a journey through some of the parts of Stockholm where Cadier left his prints during his time in the city. For a perfect finish, make sure to visit the Cadier bar at the Grand Hôtel and try out our rewarded cocktail menu inspired from Cadiers adventures abroad.

The Cadier family had been running hostelries since the 17th century in the Alps. Cadier was naturally involved in the family business but continued working and educating himself as a kitchen boy in Grenobles, and then moved on to Paris to study the art of high cuisine. He earned his skills at the exclusive restaurant Trois Fréres Provencaux in the Palais-Royal, where he became the executive chef within just a couple of years, cooking for well-known guests like Robespierre and Napoleon Boneparte. His reputation got him the offer to work for the Russian Count Dashkov in St. Petersburg. Shortly after he came to St. Petersburg, far away from his beloved Paris, the count was to be moved to Stockholm.

Skeppsbrokajen
The steam ship Furst Menschikoff has sailed from St. Petersburg to dock here at Skeppsbrokajen on 3rd of November 1852, leaving the servant staff to prepare for Dashkov’s later arrival. Isn’t it funny that this is where Cadier sets foot in Sweden for the very first time, and that he later establishes his life’s work just across the water?

Fersen Palace
When the Russian count and ambassador arrives, this is where he takes up residence with his family and the staff. The kitchen, located on the ground floor, is ruled supreme by Cadier. Accompanying the delegation from Russia is the young Estonian Caroline Roberg, called Lilly for short. She is Countess Dashkov’s lady’s maid. Lilly and Cadier soon take a liking to each other and are later married.

The Royal Palace
Cadier’s employment with the Dashkovs only lasts about a year, partly due to his own ambitions but also because of the deterioration in Franco-Russian relations at the time. A French chef in the Russian delegation is no longer suitable, and Cadier needs no time to consider his answer when he’s offered the prestigious position as royal chef at the Royal Palace in Stockholm. During this time, he will become close friends with King Oscar I and his family – which will turn out to have a huge impact on his future career.

Fredsgatan 24
In 1854 Cadier opens the doors to his new “charcuterie shop”, while he continuously assists the court’s kitchen when needed. Thanks to his polished French manners and courteousness toward his customers, Cadier manages to increase the Stockholmers’ interest in delicatessens. This is also where Sweden’s very first female charcutier is hired.

Fredsgatan 13
The Russian Czar dies in 1855 and shortly after, the Russians capitulate in the Crimean War. Although Sweden has kept a neutral stand in the Crimean War, there is a certain loyalty to France because of the Royal family’s connection. Therefore, the French triumph is celebrated in every possible way and business is good for Cadier. At this time, Régis and Lilly Cadier moves to a big, beautiful apartment at Fredsgatan 13 where they also have their first daughter, Olga. 

Gustav Adolfs Torg 12
A scent of Paris has reached the Nordic capital. In 1857 Cadier opens the first restaurant in Stockholm that bears a truly French stamp. He also borrows the name Trois Fréres Provencaux from his old workplace in Paris, and it rapidly grows into an absolute favourite amongst the city’s gastronomes. Fun fact is that at this restaurant, the Stockholmer’s for the very first time get to experience being served one table napkin each as they are seated.

Hotel Rydberg
At the Gustav Adolfs Torg between Malmtorgsgatan and Regeringsgatan, Régis Cadier takes his first steps into the hotel business. During spring 1859, he takes over what at the time is the leading hotel in Stockholm - Hôtel Rydberg. When Cadier is finished with his touch on the hotel, it’s not like anything the Swede’s have ever seen before. It has even been said that not even the Royal Palace can compete with its luxury.

Pohlsro
For a long time Djurgårdsslätten has been the city’s favourite venue for summer entertainment. Cadier buys an old café once opened by court confectioner Johan Fredrik Pohl. Cadier has wanted to offer his guests something as a complement to the Hôtel Rydberg, and therefore develops the café into a successful restaurant. Two years later his good old friend Francois Vasseur takes over. Monsieur Cadier has set his eyes on his next goal.

Blasieholmen
In 1860, Stockholm is promoted as the “Paris of the North” and it is obvious that one deluxe hotel simply isn’t enough to accommodate both international and Swedish guests in the capital. Cadier has regularly visited his hometown and recently witnessed the uprising of Paris’ Grand Hôtel – with 800 rooms and 250 servants. No other public building in Paris represents the city at this time as magnificently as this. And Cadier returns to Stockholm, immensely inspired. He seeks out three significant lots, located at the Södra Blasieholmshamnen, where he aims to establish his most important project so far. Two of the lots are sold to Cadier shortly, for 230 000 Swedish kronor. He turns to architect Mr. Axel Kumlien and in March 1872, the work has started to raise Stockholms first grandiose hotel. 

Sunday, 14th of June 1874, King Oscar II and three of his sons arrive to the newly built Grand Hôtel. Cadier himself gives the Royal family a guided tour. The day after, the official opening takes place, and the news reaches not only Sweden and Europe, but also the US. The newspapers report about the “magnificent hotel containing 314 rooms” and that the price of these rooms will be “four to seven and a half kronor per day”.

Tivoliparken, Solna
When King Charles XV dies, Cadier is offered the leasehold of “The Russian Villa”, a holiday house in Bergshamra that used to belong to the ambassador family. This becomes a true source of joy for the Cadier family, as they can escape the city and allows them to cope with the hectic work at the Grand and the Hôtel Rydberg. Cadier decides to establish a model farm with a large Pig Sty, and a horticulture farm to supply his hotels with fruit and vegetables all year around. The remains of this can still be seen at the terraces next to Tivolibergets slope towards Brunnsviken.

Bolinderska Palace
15 years after its opening, the Grand Hôtel holds an indisputable position as the leading hotel in Sweden with an international status. Cadier is still keen on a chance to add the third connecting lot to the Grand Hôtel though, that now is owned by the Bolinder brothers. They have made it their mission to transform the building on this lot to the most elegant one in Stockholm, inspired by classic Venetian renaissance style. Sweden’s most foremost architect Helgo Zetterwall is hired for the project, and master-builder Thavenius is responsible for the decorative details, and asks artists like Mårten Eskil and Hanna Winge, Carl Larsson and Gotthard Werner to paint and design the interior. When this is accomplished, Bolinder agrees to sell the building to Cadier. Cadier, Lilly and their children moves in to the second floor, into a 13-room apartment, and Cadier incorporates the rest into the hotel. Nowadays, conferences and banquets are held in these very rooms, named after their designers.

Skansen
Régis Cadier is a true friend of animals and decides to build a large aviary in the main entrance of the Grand Hôtel, where hundreds of small birds fly about freely inside the cage which can be observed also by passers-by on the street. Unfortunately, the twittering causes such a nuisance to the guests that in the end, Cadier removes his winged friends to Skansen, Stockholm’s zoo. Birds are not the only animals living at the hotel at the time, though. Once, Cadier receives a wooden box from St. Petersburg, containing two bear cubs. During their first months, Cadier let the brown bears romp and roll in the hotel lobby to the great delight of his guests. But the bears grow and become more unruly in their frolicking and finally Cadier has no choice but to send them to happier hunting grounds.

Malmstensbutiken
Cadiers niece Carl Malmsten is one of our most beloved designers, and his work is still immensely popular. His shop is located on Strandvägen 5B and was opened officially by Carl Malmsten himself in the 40’s.

The Northern Cemetery, Solna
Régis Cadier dies at age 61, on March 5, 1890 after a short period of illness. The family Cadier has by then lived in the Bolinderska Palace for only one year. The whole of Stockholm is in sorrow. Cadiers closest family takes over the responsibilities for the hotels and Cadiers other businesses he’s developed throughout the years, but only for a short while. When Régis Cadier is dead, and the Grand Hôtel a couple years later is sold, it marks the end of the first, most important stage of the development of the Swedish hotel industry and a new stage is about to begin, in a new century. Régis Cadier is buried in grave no 437 in the ninth section at Solnas churchyards cemetery.

 

Vintage shopping in Stockholm

16/7-20

Image: Tove Freij/mediabank.visitstockholm.com

The Vintage trend is here to stay - and Stockholm has its given place on the international vintage scene. Here comes the list of our Stockholm Vintage favorites – amazing spots for both your personal style and for a sustainable world. 

Arkivet
Vasastan: Norrtullsgatan 33 Östermalm: Nybrogatan 44
Arkivet first opened their store in Odenplan and has now opened a branch in Östermalm. They offer a wide assortment, focusing on sustainable clothing. Strolling around in their airy shops is a truly joyful experience. Check out their Instagram account for the latest arrivals. 

Boutique Finest
Sibyllegatan 59
Here you will probably find Stockholm's best second-hand range of international high-end brands. Their assortment includes clothing, as well as shoes and accessories from exclusive fashion houses such as Prada, Moschino, and Gucci.

A. Marchesan
Odengatan 100
Awarded best vintage store for men in Europe. At first glance this beautiful store looks like a store offering brand new clothes. Visit them and find everything from tailor-made gentlemen wear, expired collections from the 1920s to shoes and accessories. 

Judits Second Hand
Hornsgatan 75
The Judits travels around Europe themselves to handpick their carefully selected items. Search among exclusive pieces and bags of high quality. Have a look at their Instagram account and feel the inspiration!