There are two dining areas at the Hotel J, as well as the honesty bar mentioned above in the living room area of the entrance hall. The first of these is known as Tornvilla, originally the summer house of the building contractor Erik Fredlundh who built the residence in 1889. After changing hands several times and being converted into accommodation for several families, it was abandoned in the early 1980s before being restored in 2011. Today the ground floor is used as the hotel's breakfast room. The long room has a lot of character with its creaky wooden floors, Persian rugs, floral wallpaper and porcelain hanging on the walls. A buffet is laid out in one corner where guests can enjoy both a continental offering as well as a few hot dishes. The windows give on to the water below but for the finest view head into the conservatory-type terrace where there is one long communal table where guests can mingle.
Restaurant J has an unrivalled location right in the Nacka Strand marina with spectacular views across the water to Djurgården and beyond. The main building, which has tall ceilings and beams, portholes and boat pictures around the top of the walls and a large square bar in the centre of the room, has space for 90 diners in a closely arranged set of tables and chairs. But the real pull of the restaurant is the huge terrace which extends out on to the water and which can accommodate up to 250 guests. Open in the summer only, people come from far and wide to eat, drink and take in the unique setting.
We were lucky enough to get a spot on the sought-after terrace between lunch and dinner time and despite the strange hour it was heaving. In spite also of the number of people taking in the sun that day, our food arrived within a reasonable time frame and the service was friendly and efficient. We enjoyed dishes such as the well-presented and original steak tartare with horseradish sauce and cress for starters, a simple, light yet highly flavoursome fish casserole for mains and a delicious crème brûlée for dessert.
With foot-tapping inducing music, a good looking crowd and a dreamy setting, Restaurant J is the perfect place to while away the long summer evenings with a drink and good company.