In late 2012 interior designer Ilse Crawford of Studioilse completed the redesign of Ett Hem, a hundred-year-old Stockholm house-turned-hotel. Located in the city’s upmarket Larkstan neighborhood, Ett Hem—literally translated, A Home—is a 12-room boutique hotel that offers guests the unique experience of being treated like a member of the family during their stay.
Originally the single family residence of a government official and his design-minded wife, Crawford sought to maintain the feel of the home by creating a comfortable, familial environment with open, communal spaces and a focus on informal group dining, particularly in the kitchen, where guests can help themselves from the well-stocked fridge and wine cabinet and take their meals wherever they like—at the large wooden kitchen table, in the library by the floor-to-ceiling bookcase, by the fireplace, in the glass conservatory, or outside in the garden. Guests can even borrow the car or take the owner’s dog for a walk.
“The idea is a comfortable cultured house you can enjoy as if it is a friend’s,” says Crawford.
“Sit in the kitchen, have a drink in the sitting room, pick up a book in the library or snuggle down by the fireplace. We hope that people who travel a lot will feel so happy there they wouldn’t want to stay anywhere else.”
And when you don’t feel like being part of the group, you can retreat to your gorgeously appointed bedroom, each complete with a brass cocktail cabinet. If you feel like a late night snack, a seasonal menu is available around the clock—or better yet, grab a plate from the shelves and help yourself to a bounty of midnight snacks.
Editor’s note: Amidst the overwhelming number of positive reviews for Ett Hem on travel sites, we did manage to find one that gave us reason to pause:
“The Monocle article emphasized the ‘unhotelness’ of Ett Hem and said guests could ‘help themselves to the fully stocked fridge at any time of day or night.’ Well, you couldn’t actually help yourself and to find the coffees and teas we had been offered as we arrived ‘home’ itemized on the final bill was a bit ‘unhomely’ considering the exorbitant price paid for the room.” (from TripAdvisor)
We suppose it should come as no surprise that extras, like nipping downstairs for an extra pour of wine or a bit of nighttime gnosh (or in this case extra cups of coffee and tea), come at a price, but we can’t figure out if that means a staff member is always watching and quietly keeping an itemized list of your indulgences? It doesn’t detract from the beauty of the space, but something to know up front, nonetheless.
Photos by Magnus Mårding