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Hotel Diplomat Hotel 4 star
Easyexperts
Strandvagen 7C, PO Box 14059, Stockholm, 10440 Stockholm, Sweden -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

The Diplomat is a perfect reflection of the city in which it has been at the top of its game for over 100 years. The setting, in this case a beautiful historic Art Nouveau building, acts as the backdrop for a relatively contemporary interior where tradition and modernity fuse effortlessly in the most laid back yet sophisticated of atmospheres. But it is not only Stockholm itself which is recalled in the style of the property, it perfectly mirrors its population too - well presented, classy but at the same time approachable and without pretention. If you do not believe us just take a look at the throngs of punters in the restaurant or on the terrace - it paints a telling picture. In terms of accommodation the Diplomat offers generously-proportioned, sleekly-appointed guestrooms and suites, many with fabulous views of the city or the water. With its smart public spaces, comfortable, civilised and buzzing dining room, faultless service and prime location, the Diplomat is one of our top picks in Stockholm.

Simply put, the Diplomat is one of the finest hotels in Stockholm and is definitely somewhere you should stay if the finances allow

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    • Hotel Diplomat

      Diplomat   -   © Igor Lubinetsky / EASYVOYAGE

    • Hotel Diplomat

      Diplomat   -   © Igor Lubinetsky / EASYVOYAGE

       
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    Location 7.37 /10

    It will come as no surprise that the Diplomat enjoys a prime location on Strandvägen, right in the heart of Stockholm opposite the water and close to much of the action in terms of restaurants, bars and shopping. In terms of transit you could not be in a better position with a bus stop, tramway stop and a subway station all within a five-minute walk of the hotel. But best of all is the ferry port right opposite the hotel with several routes including to Nacka Strand, Djurgĺrden and Gamla Stan (the old city). Just the other side of the small bay is another ferry port from where you can pick up different routes. Reaching the central station will take around 15 minutes on foot while Stockholm Arlanda International Airport is 26 miles away.

    Accommodation 8.70 /10

    The 130 guestrooms and suites at the Diplomat have been conceived by a renowned local architect using overwhelmingly soft shades and simply shaped yet highly refined furniture pieces in teak. While some rooms give onto the interior courtyard (and are therefore pretty quiet), others have some stunning city and/or water views with some even enjoying a balcony (although it is possible to hear the road traffic from some of these rooms). The standard rooms, and even some of the superior rooms, are a little on the pokey side, with several having illogically large entrance halls which could have perhaps been knocked through to create larger bedrooms (or bathrooms). No such complaints though regarding the décor with DUX beds, Ljungberg textiles and Per Öberg-chosen furniture. Most rooms are carpeted or at least have a large rug hiding the parquet flooring while the walls are painted white but are animated with black and white photographs of Stockholm. The queen or king beds are dressed in smart white linens and have both bed skirts and plaids as well as fabric covered headboards. The bedside tables have a cordless telephone and some books while opposite on the writing desk is more reading material and a drinks and snacks tray, with the minibar integrated into the cupboard below. Above are a couple of wall lamps either side of a large round mirror which could serve as a coiffeuse. Where there is enough room an armchair and occasional table has been added for extra comfort while other amenities include a flatscreen television, safe, bathrobes and slippers, air conditioning and, just outside the windows, flower boxes to distract from the courtyard view.

    The bathrooms are tastefully appointed, again with teak furniture and beautifully contoured vanities and fixtures. Another large mirror has lamps attached to it although there is also a make-up mirror to one side in addition to the heated towel rack and of course a shower cubicle or bathtub. Toiletries are from L'Occitane.

    If you feel as though you need a little more space, which is probably the case if you are staying for more than a couple of nights, then opt rather for an executive deluxe room or one of the suites. Not only do they afford more living space but they also boast some fine pieces of furniture in the lounge and dining areas. Some of the rooms are located in the hotel's 'towers' meaning that the bedrooms are circular in shape and therefore have further ranging views from the windows. There rooms also have additional amenities such as iPod docking stations and luxury touches like dyed silk wall coverings.

    Overview 9.20 /10

    The quasi-symmetrical Diplomat hotel stands proudly on Strandvägen, the Swedish, British and American flags standing to attention from the first floor balcony. The entrance is discreetly hidden at the bottom right-hand corner of the façade, just next door to an upmarket men's clothes store. The elegant entrance hall one comes into at the top of several carpeted steps is more worthy of the apartment block this used to be than of the world-class hotel it is today, not in terms of features but due to its small size. An old-fashioned elevator which glides up through the middle of the winding staircase is calling out to be ridden while the fireplace set-up with flowers, gilded mirror and pair of armchairs looks ready for a photo-shoot. To the left is the reception area where the politest of staff will check you in at one of two iMacs behind a light wood welcome desk adorned with a blossoming flower arrangement. Also greeting you is the chatter and clinking from the hotel's restaurant and bar (see 'Food and Drink') which is just behind the reception and which plunges you straight into the hotel's refined vibe. The only element which we found to be awry was the light pop music in the background which does not really become the surroundings.

    Although we love atmospheric lobbies where guests can hang out at any time of the day and watch the comings and goings of guests and visitors, we are also big fans of alternative public spaces and the Diplomat has a couple of gems. The first of these is the library, accessible 24 hours a day and the ideal place for guests to come and unwind in a scholarly setting. Wood-panelled walls, parts of the Malmström's private art collection and of course a selection of books await flaneurs looking to escape the hubbub of the outside world. If you are more arty than literary then head to the lounge area, a mini gallery hosting temporary art and photography exhibitions where you can also relax by the electric fireplace.

    And the artwork continues along the hotel's elegant corridors where more contemporary pieces by Swedish artists are displayed between the guestrooms doors. If you choose to take the staircase to your rooms (there are also elevators) then you will notice the pretty stained glass windows and the intricately carved gilded arched structures placed before them.

    While the Diplomat does not offer a full-service spa, it does have a comprehensive fitness room as well as a space known at the retreat. The former is found in a brick-walled space and contains plenty of top quality machines (both cardio and muscular) although no natural light. A stretching room is also at the disposal of guests. The retreat, which comprises a sauna and jacuzzi, is fitted out with marble and teak and offers various drinks, fruit and towels to the users. There are also bathroom facilities including a huge walk-in shower.

    As you might expect, great care and attention is taken with the hotel's appearance. We found it to be spotless and extremely well maintained throughout. The passage from check-in to the guestrooms is pretty simple although we did not see any room number directions to help with finding the rooms once on the right floor.

    Food and drink 8.20 /10

    The Diplomat is justifiably known for being one of the top hotels in Stockholm amongst travellers, but its T/BAR brasserie is also highly regarded amongst the city's locals. The place is packed all year round and in summer a spot on the terrace is as prized as the sunshine that brings the crowds onto the pavement. The open plan space is, like the rest of the hotel, that perfect mix of sophistication and casualness, with panoramic windows giving onto the two streets which border the hotel, extravagant flower arrangements and Kĺlmĺrd marble detail. Window seating, banquettes and sleek armchairs pulled up to neatly laid tables serve as the backdrop to reassuringly boisterous (yet not invasively so) chatter and some top notch grub served by the most courteous of waiting staffs. As well as the main room there are several slightly more private areas to one side which could be used for small get-togethers or for informal business meetings. Given the popularity of the restaurant, we suggest you secure a reservation to avoid disappointment, both at lunchtime or at dinner.

    A continental breakfast buffet is laid out each morning for guests in the restaurant although it is also possible to order some hot dishes ŕ la carte. For those on a special diet, know that there are plenty of healthy options in the morning, although the choice at the buffet is perhaps not as extensive as some of the other hotels we visited. In the afternoon and evening T/BAR offers a pretty extensive ŕ la carte menu featuring a take on traditional Swedish cuisine using local and seasonal ingredients as far as possible. The decision has clearly been made to keep the menu simple but to do things extremely well and this is exactly what has been achieved - no flashiness necessary. In the afternoons a traditional tea is served which includes the hotel's own blend of eight different types of tea.

    If you are looking for a spot for pre- or post-dinner drinks then head upstairs to the quaint cocktail bar. With enough room for just 20 clients, the joint serves not only cocktails, but also 16 varieties of the Swedish whisky Mackmyra. It may not look especially glamourous but it has been the venue of choice for some prominent figures down the years. The bar is open at weekends during the winter.

    To know

    The beautiful Art Nouveau building which houses the Diplomat was built back in 1907 in an area which had been, only a couple of decades earlier, a marsh area used to dump waste. Owned for almost 100 years by the Malmström family, the edifice was originally an apartment block with just 2 accommodations per floor, however, during the 1930s depression, many of the residents were forced to relocate and Strandvägen 7 became home to several embassies including those of Romania, Chile, Iran, Hungary, Italy and Canada. By 1966 they were gone and the hotel had taken over the whole premises and was named Diplomat in reference to the building's history. Today many of the original features have been kept and sit alongside more modern elements, the brain child of Per Öberg.

    Equipment

    • Car park
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Spa

      sauna, keep fit, beauty salon, massage, Turkish bath, spa

    • Sports equipment

      fitness, gym

    • Animals allowed
    • Whirlpool bath
    • Safe
    • Non-smoking rooms
    • Meeting room

    advantage

    • Waterfront location
    • Décor/design
    • Comfortable, spacious rooms
    • Dining possibilities
    • Service

    disadvantages

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score nc/10
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