Scandinavian modern design: three words that are music to many people’s ears! Timeless and classic reflecting real comfort and hospitality, I suddenly wondered why I had never looked to the chic hotels of Stockholm for inspiration of my own projects. And then along came Nobis Hotel in the heart of the Swedish capital. Created from two 19th century townhouses, the Swedish interior design firm of Claesson Koivisto Rune preserved the heart and soul of the old spaces and injected fresh life by way of the lounges, restaurants and suites. The result certainly has to be one of Stockholm’s most inspirational hotel interiors.
Great contemporary design hotels grab you the moment you walk through the doors. At Nobis, the lobby is refreshingly bright and airy with low slung leather sofas and fir trees potted in burly canvas sacks – I guess this is the Swedish equivalent of Miami’s potted palms? But the real stunner is the mix of lighting – large paper lanterns hang in various groupings to create a collision of glowing orbs. I love the mix of textures and sizes and if I had a client with the ceiling height and a sense of adventure, I would definitely try this in a huge great room. Keeping everything white also helps maintain consistency and allows the varied textures to stand out.
The restaurant offers guests the perfect setting for an incredible meal. The rich chocolate brown walls act as a backdrop to crisp white linens and Hans Wegner chairs. And above it all, a fabulously organic cloud-like light fixture snakes across the room. One thing I noticed about this chic design hotel compared to others I have recently talked about, is that there is no art on the walls in any of the spaces. The designers Claesson Koivisto Rune cleverly use mixed lighting and textures on walls and furniture to decorate the space so completely that you don’t miss art on the walls at all. A great tip to new homeowners – don’t rush into filling your walls with art just for the sake of having something over the sofa.
Rooms at Nobis offer a mix of styles – all fresh and modern, but some retain elements of the buildings past life. In the image above, a wall of windows looks out onto Stockholm. A mix of lighting from a cool arc lamp to a Foscarini Urquiola pendant bejeweled lamp, are the scene-stealers. And who doesn’t love a good poof? These are a great addition to any room and help lighten the space by keeping it from becoming too serious. The bedroom below is clearly in one of the hotel’s 19th century rooms – but you scarcely know it because the wood paneling and ceiling serve only as a backdrop for clean-lined contemporary furniture. The bed is a wonderful example of how a traditional four-poster bed is updated with simple lines in chic black lacquer. The patterned carpet also plays off the original parquetry floor to great effect. If you are lucky enough to have a home with wonderful period details, work with them to enhance your modern space, but don’t let them dictate what your style has to be.
Nobis hotel in Stockholm is a perfect example of what a great contemporary design hotel should look like. Seamlessly fit into the city to which it belongs, it draws on Scandinavian modern design and updates it with contemporary touches to let you know that Swedish designers are still major players in the world. A chic hotel to inspire your own design at home. Isn’t it worth checking in to?
richard rabel: interiors + art
interior design and art advising
new york city
image credits: Nobis Hotel, Stockholm
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