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Travel Blogs from Stockholm
Tauck takes good care of us. Victoria and a good-looking young driver pick us up at 7:30 for our drive to Sheremetyevo Airport that takes from one to three hours depending on traffic. Our route takes us up a beautiful broad thoroughfare that Victoria explains was widened in the 40's literally by moving all of the buildings intact back 14 meters, to …
Early start for me; couldn't go back to sleep after waking at 6am, so got up to add some pics to the blog via Cait's Mac. Boy, I find it hard to use! Broke our fast and headed into Gamla Stan for some potential shopping. Disappointed to find that the Place Cait wanted to check out was closed. No probs - another time... Up to the Nobel museum, and spent a really good hour or so checking out their Peace Exhibition; a collection ...
... my backpack to disappear just before we get to New Zealand. Need to get new clothes, before I get to meet the family, you know.
Five- copy, copy, copy
All travel pages advise you to bring a copy of your passport and other docs and to have one on your mailbox. Same goes the other way around- upload all pictures to Picasa or any other web provider. Risk loosing 3 months worth of pictures? Naaaah, thank you very much.
Anything I forgot?
... and at the entrance there is something called THE WISHING TREE. It is a live tree and a tablle sits in front of it with pieces of paper. pens or pencils and string. The idea is to make a wish, write it on the paper then tie it to the tree. I won't say what I wished for.
The exhibits inside were alright. A few Warhols and other famous artists. I was wishing Dean was with me to give me an artist's perspective ...
... and was playing my “Classics for Reading” album at the top end of the volume range. It didn’t work! The wailing, shouting, crying, sliced through my noise shield like a diamond-tipped scalpel.
Somewhere over Ireland I gave up. Like many around me, I opted to read or watch a movie rather than stew behind my eyeshades. I landed in Amsterdam having logged a personal best in the category "longest flight without any sleep".
In Amsterdam, ...
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TravelPod Member ReviewsGrand Hotel Stockholm
The hotel sits right on the waters edge convenient to the main tourist area. The lobby and entrance are ok but the staff more than make up for it with their helpful ways and great attitudes. The food in the restaurant is very good and the rooms are over the top with comfort and amenities.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Grand Hotel Stockholm
The grand dam of Scandinavia
The grand old lady is in top shape. Some remodeling still being done, but most of the hotel is near perfect. Applause to the management. A tip: if you want a harbor view room ask for it on check in, often they can assign you one. Even the rooms a the back of the hotel are truly posh, but a bit of a walk to elevators. This hotel is worth every penny, even US pennies. But do price shop (including hotel direct) as prices are all over the board. Get breakfast included, it's great.
I stayed in the Grand Hotel during christmas of 2003 as a special treat. I have to say that that building itself is highly impressive with an amazing location across from the palace. The hotel has a great bar and restaurant (I would reccomend the soiced reindeer) where you can sit and soak up the hotel's atmosphere. It also has a great Swedish sauna and steam room.
Despite loving the look and facilities of the hotel I was a bit dissapointed with the room. I had a double with a palace view which was very spacious with a large bathroom - but it was slightly tatty. These small things are enough to take the edge off the experience.
However, overall I would recommend this hotel but it is not quite up to the same standard as some of its other Leading Hotel of the World partners (such as the NY Plaza).
Overpriced establishment resting on its reputation
Having just returned from a 3 day weekend in Stockholm, I'm sorry to say that staying at the Grand was not the highlight of the trip by a long way, despite coming at a cost which raised legitimate expectations (about £200 excl. breakfast).
We arrived very late in the evening just to face a borderline unfriendly receptionist and were offered no help with our luggage. The room was not particularly big and, although recently refurbished, it was in a non-descript, very bland and cold style(whiteish walls and dark chinese inspired furniture with prints of kimonos on the walls - don't ask!!).
The public areas are nothing special either - grand, but a little tired too.
One thing is definitely worth sampling at the Grand, but you don't need to stay there to do so: it's the lunchtime Swedish smorgesborg. An incredibly varied selection of fish and meat dishes (and some desserts too). I might go back to the Grand for that but will try and stay somewhere else.
I'd strip them of their fifth star - they should try harder to really deserve it.
Wonderful Hotel (we had a great room)
This is indeed a beautiful, well-situated hotel in
a lovely city. As members of the "Leaders' Club".
we reserved a "superior double" and were upgraded
to a very large corner double, #465. While at the
back of the hotel, not facing the harbor, there was no view to speak of. But, the windows on each side
made the room very bright and airy, and it was quiet enough to leave the windows open. The furnishings were lovely, bed was great, and wonderful linens and duvets. Bathroom was large
and well--appointed, bathrobes available upon request. Lobby is elegant, breakfast buffet marvelous, and service overall very attentive. Like at all hotels, your experience is shaped by the room you get. I was glad that other reviewers who
were disappointed were able to get better rooms when they complained; this seems to be the kind of hotel that really tries to keep people happy (but
why do they try to pawn off the crummy rooms???)
When this happens, your best hope is to politely
state that you are disappointed, and could you see
another room, similarly priced?
I would advise readers who travel frequently to try
to attain "Leaders' Club" status (stays at five of Leading Hotels of the World properties in 2 years).
From our experience, they really do try to give you better rooms.
Reserve something better than the "Classic" room
My teenage daughter and I just returned from 5 nights at the Grand Hotel, Stockholm. I was looking forward to this legendary five-star property whose location in the heart of Stockholm is beyond compare. I reserved the lowest grade of room, a Classic Double. The first room that I was taken to on the 6th floor has to be one of the worst hotel rooms I've seen. While not terribly small by European standards, it was dark with low ceiling and the furniture was appalling. The fabric on the arm of the armchair was worn down and the painted wooden furniture was something that K-Mart would be ashamed to sell. I asked if they might have something a little better and was shown to a room on the 4th floor which was brighter but also smaller, and the bathroom in this room was the size of a broom closet. We took the room as I had my doubts by this time as to whether they had anything that would be acceptable. The next morning, however, a guest relations person was sitting at the desk in the lobby and I went by and chatted with her about my concerns. I told her (very nicely) that I had stayed at many 5-star properties in Europe and that the Grand was certainly not 5-star according to what I had seen. She was very pleasant and insisted that I should be moved yet again. She said that many American clients had problems with the size of their rooms, although I had told her that my complaint wasn't with the size; it was with the horrible and depressing furnishings. This time we got a very nice, large room which had been renovated only the week before--the kind of room that you would expect of a 5-star property. Upon checking out, I learned that it was a "Superior" room. The lesson to be learned here is that if you want an acceptable room at the Grand, don't reserve the lowest grade room, as I don't think I would have been moved up a catagory if I had not been staying 5 nights. Other than that, the experience at the Grand was nice but nothing that special. The first night, my daughter and I went down for an early dinner at the Veranda restaurant and we were turned away for dress code violation because we both had open toed sandals on (so we just went upstairs and changed) but my daughter had on a nice skirt and I had on kakhis and Mephisto sandals--no levis. This was right after being shown the worst hotel room in my life so it gave me a real chuckle. The people in the Veranda, the less formal of the two restaurants, do seem to be dressed somewhat formally (most of the men have on blazers) so be forwarned and take your closed toed shoes if you want to eat in there. The food is really excellent and the buffet breakfast is served there. Overall, I would go back to the Grand because of its location and because there really aren't any reasonable alternatives in Stockholm--but I would reserve a better room than the Classic. I checked out the Berns and Diplomat while there and they seem like they would be a step or two down from the Grand. Stockholm is possibly the most beautiful city in the world and I hope to return there one day soon.
If I Win the Lottery, I'm Moving Here
When we arrived, I told the desk I wanted quiet - an inside room, preferably. The room was so quiet that a faint hum from the emergency alarm box was barely audible. I mentioned this to the concierge while making a reservation, and by the time we got back to the room an engineer was swapping boxes. That evening the bar was busy, so my wife and I ordered one round of drinks, then went to bed. The next evening the waiter came up and said, "The Nils Oscar Farm Ale and a strawberry in the champagne?" Everything was within an easy walk, the staff offered several great jogging routes, and we're still talking about the breakfast feasts.
A luxury palace
I stayed at the Grand for 3 nights during end of past July 03 with my husband and our 2 young girls (6 yrs 1/2 and 10 months). We choosed this place after 4 days in a little island near Stockholm where we had rent a house with an other family (horrible holidays there... but this is an other subject). This hotel had been recommanded to us by the Leading Hotels in the World (which is the only one they have in Stockholm... ) and I can say : this palace is absolutely gorgeous!
Check in was ok with the receptionnist who agreed to upgrade us into a large suite (we made the reservation and paid for a superior room only.... thank you leading's membership!!). We had a huge two rooms suite which was really very convenient with our children. My oldest daughter loved her room and more again her large bathroom ! The only low point (but very little) is there is no shower separated from the bath tub and toilets are IN the bathroom. For this standard, it could have been separated but I understood that is not in sweedish customs.
The staff was wonderfuly efficient and really helpful for whatever I needed for my baby. They obeyed at the minute for what I had ordered.
And trust me, my husband and I are very exacting clients !! In this hotel, people do really love children and make anything they can to make your stay the most comfortable and easy, whatever you ask for !
The decoration and the amenities of the suite was typically in the sweeden style and it made a very cosy atmosphere. The bathroom (even though the low points Cf. supra) was large, all in dark and white marble, and fully furnished. I loved the big and comfortable bathrobe and towels. The buffet at breaksfast was very good, you eat for all day ! Staff and service was very good too. You are just in front of a large window from there you can admire the Old Stockholm. Next time I should go back in this city, I shall definitively return there. This is the best hotel in Sweeden.
Grand time at The Grand!
Centrally located hotel allowing us an easy stroll to all the main sights and to the tour boats. We had a room on the 6th floor, although it was a little small, it more than made up for the fantastic view looking towards Gamla Stan, the bridges, the Royal Palace etc. The room was clean and comfortable and even though it faced over the boats, the room was very quiet! The staff were fabulous - extremely friendly and courteous. Good buffet breakfast meant that there were a lot of people at breakfast time, and I also recommend you make a reservation for evening dining (and the staff were accommodating and made sure we had a table to ourselves, rather than be squashed with another couple).
However, the amount of cigarette smoke there was in the public areas/lobby marred an otherwise very pleasant stay.
The best in town - if you get a good room
The Grand is still the best positioned and most luxurious option in Stockholm. You can't beat walking out of the door and having the palace and parliament opposite you, and the tour boats moored outside. Despite small public areas, it does exude a glamour rarely found today.
However, many rooms have not been refurbished in years. My 'Deluxe Harbour View' room was, apart from an antique grandfather clock, of a poorer quality than the average Holiday Inn. Very old furnishings (and I don't mean antique!) and a very tired and badly lit bathroom. Heaven knows what a cheaper 'Standard Double' or 'Superior Double' would have been like. Complaining to reception (who did not seem surprised that I was not impressed, and I later saw another couple also complaining and being moved) got me room 389. This was a stunning double, very large with a beautiful modern bathroom (kidney shaped bath and double sinks) and a huge canopied bed. If you plan to stay here, ring them and ask how you can guarantee a refurbished room. Alternatively, arrive early (2pm) so you can change your room before other guests check-in. I ended up with one of the best hotel stays I have had, but it could have been very different.
We loed the Grand Hotel in Stockholm
We spent some time in Stockholm and stayed at the Grand Hotel. It lived up to its reputation. We had impeccable service and wonderful food. The breakfast buffet was just fabulous - loved the interesting array of food. Rooms were wonderful - light and airy. We would definitely stay there again.