Double Bed Room at 101 Hotel, IceLand

101 Hotel

The 101 Hotel’s thirty-eight rooms, including five suites, look like the definition of hip Scandinavian design: everything, from bed and desk to open closet and shelves, is angular and geometric; the sink is a bowl that’s part of a freestanding vanity in the bedroom; the shower stalls are lined with mirrors; color is nonexistent. Conceived by Ingibjörg S. Pálmadóttir—a Parsons graduate and, according to our guide, the richest woman in Iceland—the 101 is one of those rare breeds of design hotels that not only look good but are functional too. Except for a few missteps—the black stone floors in the shower got dangerously slippery when wet, and the massive doorknobs on the heavy doors were hard to turn—the in-room details worked well and made for cozy retreats at the end of a long day of sightseeing. Pálmadóttir has assembled an impressive and eclectic collection of Icelandic contemporary art throughout the hotel, including sculpture, paintings and installations, and even designed the unique façade at the rear of the building, visible from the breakfast room, made of white stone mounds.

Request a deluxe room on a high floor with a shower and a claw-foot soaking tub that’s positioned in the middle of the room. Just as at the Borg, if you value sleep and are staying over a weekend, ask for a room that faces the more tranquil back of the building, as the neighborhood around the 101 turns into party central (popular bar Islenski Barinn is right downstairs). The hotel itself is home to one of the most fashionable see-and-be-seen lounges in Reykjavík, decorated like a stylish living room with cozy seating nooks with fur-covered armchairs, a gas fireplace, long tables stacked with photography books and the requisite crowd of beautiful people who are dressed to the nines and don’t blink at the $20 cocktails. It’s a great spot to watch Iceland’s beau monde kick off their evenings.

There is a small, but adequate gym in the basement as well as a sleek steam room and Jacuzzi.

Facade - Apotek Hotel, Iceland

Apotek Hotel

With an ever increasing demand for hotel rooms in Reykjavik, the owners of the popular Borg Hotel acquired the beloved landmark known as the Reykjavik Apothecary and have transformed it into a sister hotel next door. The five-story building, which was designed by legendary Icelandic architect Gudjon Samuelsson, now houses 45 guest rooms as well as a trendy all-day restaurant called Apotek Kitchen & Bar. The interior design mixes historic touches like sculptures by Gudmundur Einarsson with Scandinavian style furnishings, hardwood floors and all white tiled bathrooms. Room sizes range from small standard singles to junior suites and one very memorable Tower Suite (though the bathroom layout in some rooms is odd).

Living Room at Black Pearl Apartments, Iceland

Black Pearl Apartments

Opened in 2013, the Black Pearl Apartments occupy a modern-style tower across from the Reykjavík Art Museum and near the port.  Located slightly away from the bustling city center (good for nighttime noise levels), all of the city’s restaurants, bars, shops, and sights are still within easy walking distance.

Originally built as luxury apartments, as opposed to a hotel, The Black Pearl has only a small reception area. However, the no-frills lobby has no bearing on the generosity and capacity of the hotel staff who can do everything from hiring a babysitter to booking a helicopter tour.

The apartments fall into three categories: standard suite, deluxe suite, and penthouse suite. The standard suites are just over 800 square feet and can sleep 2–4 adults, using a sofa bed with a high quality mattress. The deluxe suites are over 1,200 square feet and can sleep up to 4 people.  From the balconies of the deluxe suites, guests enjoy views over downtown Reykjavík all the way to the Hallgrímskirkja church. The Penthouse suite, which combines two deluxe suites for over 1,500 square feet, sleeps up to 6 people.  All accommodations are decorated with sleek furnishings in dark grays, plums, and cheery whites.  The kitchens are fully equipped with state of the art appliances, and meals (whether self-catered or prepared by a professional chef provided by the hotel) can be enjoyed in the spacious dining room or alfresco on the balcony. Bathrooms are large, but equipped with showers only.

Note: The hotel is planning to add a gym, spa, and hot tub in the near future. In the meantime, guests have the possibility of using a gym in town and the concierge can book in-room spa treatments.

Unknown image

Canopy Hotel 

%%excerpt%% A review of the hip Canopy Hotel in Reykjavik, Iceland, which features quintessentially Scandinavian design, with bright and lively common spaces and minimal yet comfortable rooms.

Editors' Picks
Indagare Plus
Lounge at  Hotel Alda , Iceland

Hotel Alda

Most hotels in Reykjavik try to embody Scandinavian style, with varying degrees of success. At its most design-forward, the aesthetic can be a little aggressive; conversely, it can resemble an Ikea catalogue with a more laid-back, apartment-style sensibility, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

This is where Hotel Alda comes in. It’s design-conscious enough while still feeling accessible, but you won’t mistake it for a pied-a-terre. Located on the main shopping street, the hotel has 64 rooms spread over four floors. On the top floor, the “Attic” rooms and suites share a large balcony with expansive views over Reykjavik and the snow-capped mountains in the distance. Everything feels fresh and new (the hotel only opened in June 2014), and all of the rooms feature a monochromatic palette with blond wood and one or two whimsical accent pieces like a red chair or a gold cage lamp.

What makes it special though is that the hotel elevates the experience by adding delightful features that engage the guest beyond appreciating well-appointed accommodations. These include a barbershop and chocolate store in the lobby, a vinyl record player in the breakfast room, and a cell phone programmed with local apps and maps provided to every guest at check-in.

The hotel is popular with locals who come for a cocktail in the lounge. There is also an outdoor hot tub –an integral part of the Nordic experience—and Hotel Alda is the only hotel in its tier that offers this.

Suite at Hótel Borg, Iceland

Hótel Borg

The Borg, well located in downtown Reykjavík within walking distance of all the shops and most restaurants, is an authentic Art Deco property (I met a young American woman whose grandparents were married in Iceland during World War II and who came to the Borg for Champagne and dancing to fête the occasion). Opened in 1930, the Borg has an old-world feel that’s missing from most other hotels in Reykjavík, like the 101, which go for a more cutting-edge design scheme.

The hotel’s fifty-six rooms, housed in the original white façade building and new addition, were all redone in 2007 and feature parquet floors, black marble–clad bathrooms and gray-painted walls. Standard double rooms are small—I overheard one couple complaining that there was not enough room for both of their suitcases, so one ended up on top of the desk during their stay—so go for a suite. The best is the Tower Suite, which occupies the top floors, with a cozy sitting room that has spectacular views across Reykjavík. Don’t expect five-star amenities, though: there’s no turndown service, and room service ends at 10 P.M. during the week and 11 p.m. on weekends.

Indagare Tip: If you’re staying at the Borg (or any hotel in downtown Reykjavík, for that matter) over a weekend, request a room facing the back. The capital is known as a party town, and rooms on the lower floors at the Borg that face pretty Parliament square get a lot of noise, especially on Friday and Saturday nights.

Exterior View - Hotel Kvosin, Iceland

Hotel Kvosin

The Hotel Kvosin is the kind of place that makes you feel at home right away.  Instead of a formal check-in, guests are welcomed into the cheery café/gourmet grocery/gift shop on the ground level and offered a cup of coffee before getting shown to their room or suite. Another sign of home are the kitchenettes, which are standard in every room and make it possible to self-cater (whether that means cooking a full meal or just opening up a bottle of wine and finding the perfect dishes to arrange some cheese and crackers.)

The interior design of the rooms is elegant, modern, and playful.  The predominantly gray, white, and light-wood décor is enlivened by a smattering of fun flare like a set of small wooden animals on a bookshelf or a brightly colored throw pillow in the shape of a giant Gordian knot.  Everything is stylish, comfortable and user-friendly.

The largest suite, located on the hotel’s top floor, boasts an impressive outdoor deck space.  In summer, when the days are nearly endless, one could imagine spending ample time enjoying the view and the fresh air from this prime and private vantage point.

Unknown image

Konsulat Hotel

A product of Reykjavik’s burgeoning design scene, the Konsulat Hotel is a stylish reflection of Icelandic tradition. The 50-room property, part of Hilton’s Curio Collection brand, is centrally located on the site of a former department store. The sophisticated décor fosters a gentleman’s club ambience, with bronze fixtures, herringbone headboards, vintage steamer trunks and tufted-leather upholstery. As a quirky local touch, the tiles in the bathroom recall the star motif of a classic Icelandic wool sweater.

After a day of outdoor adventure, guests can retreat to the hotel’s bath house—which includes a sauna and hot tub as well as a gym—located one floor below street level. The hotel is also home to Gott, a family-owned restaurant with an additional outpost on the Westman Islands.

Families should note that there is only one twin-bedded room, though connecting rooms can be reserved. Those traveling with little ones can also book a Deluxe Room, many of which have pull-out sofa beds. The most spacious accommodation is the Diplomat Suite, a corner option with a separate living room and private terrace.

Editors' Picks
Exteriors - Marina Residence, Iceland

Marina Residence

Located on the harbor of Reykjavik, these seven luxury apartments bring a new level of personal attention and hipster chic to the city. Connected to a three-star hotel called The Marina, the two private houses, with views of the shipyard and the North Sea, have been turned into an oasis for those looking for comfort and privacy. Guests check in at the sister property next door and have access to its front desk and concierge staff while staying at the Marina Residence, which includes a large ground-floor kitchen and sitting area where guests can gather for breakfast or drinks around a central fireplace. Upstairs, the apartments range from 440 square feet to one jumbo apartment (at over 800 square feet), the Adaljborg, which includes a loft bedroom perfect for kids.

The décor in each apartment mixes a vintage vibe (Oriental carpets, needlepoint upholstery and oil paintings) with a modern edge that evokes a Brooklyn chic. The quirky layouts—one bedroom is tucked behind a wall for a ship cabin effect—add to the hipster appeal, as do the convenient touches like small kitchen areas and state-of-the-art entertainment systems. While the apartments offer the privacy of a true residence, the sister hotel next door allows guests access to a gym, in-room dining and such services as babysitting. There is also a charming coffee shop right next door called the Kaffislippur, so guests can tap into the neighborhood buzz if they want to leave their oasis.

Lounge at Radisson Blu 1919 Hotel, Iceland

Radisson Blu 1919 Hotel

Near Reykjavík’s main port, the city’s new opera house (Harpa), and just steps from all of the restaurants, shops and bars of downtown, this well-situated 88-room hotel occupies a former fishing company headquarters, originally built in 1919. Rooms are comfortable, modern and decorated in a neutral palette of whites, beiges, and grays with shiny hardwood floors. The most interesting interior design elements, however, are left over from the original building.  For instance the elaborate ceiling moldings in room 201 (a bright and spacious junior suite), give the impression of a classic Parisian apartment. The largest suites, which occupy the top two floors of the hotel, feature skylights, an open sitting area, and a private Jacuzzi.

In addition to a comfortable lobby lounge whose clubby leather chairs and round porthole-style windows give the space a vaguely nautical vibe, the hotel has an elegant in-house restaurant, a large bar/lounge, several meeting rooms, a business center and a small gym.

Indagare Plus
Unknown image


Opened in June 2018, the modern Sandhotel is one of Reykjavik’s newest properties and boasts a central location on the hip Laugavegar street.
Unknown image

The Retreat at Blue Lagoon

This sleek and luxurious spa resort was built into Iceland’s volcanic frontier and offers exclusive access to the famous Blue Lagoon.
Editors' Picks
Unknown image

Tower Suites

Commanding the top floor of an office building on the outskirts of central Reykjavik, Tower Suites is the most luxurious boutique hotel in town.
Editors' Picks

All Results


Indagare employees walking up stiars

Enjoy 30 Days On Us!

Start your Self Planner
membership trial today.

Unlock access to 2,000+ first-hand hotel reviews, 300+ Destination Guides and the most up-to-date travel news and inspiration.

Already a member?

Welcome back,
log in to Indagare

Not a member?

Forgot Password

Enter your email and we’ll send you a link to reset your password.

Type the first 3 letters to begin