Each of the world’s great cities have a centrepiece hotel and this is Gothenburg’s. Housed in a grand neoclassic edifice dating back to the late 19th century, great care has gone into preserving the hotel’s original features. Tread on elaborate mosaic floors as you admire rich, dark-wood panelling and stucco arches – carved from imported Italian marble. It’s also centrally located in the city’s downtown, just 700m from both the harbour and the train station.
The hotel’s Swea Hof restaurant, set in the former garden, is framed by a grand glass roof that rises 20 metres above its stylish furnishings and art deco geometric tiles. Its modern open kitchen serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with a focus on seafood, locally sourced from Sweden’s west coast. Think oyster entrees and shellfish platters comprising mussels, prawns and lobsters and accompanied by three different types of mayonnaise and bread. And, if seafood’s not your thing, perhaps sample the dry aged beef, dressed in a red wine sauce. Round off your meal with a crème brûlée or chocolate truffle.
Each of the 135 rooms and suites are individually designed with a different palette of colours and textures. However, they all share a certain timeless elegance, imparted by elevated ceilings, richly upholstered furnishings and an effortless sense of space. That’s not to say that this Elite Plaza offering is stuck in the past. Shades of cherry and lime pop on the fifth floor suites while velvet sofas are cast in imperial purple and oversized works of art bridge the gap between the contemporary and the hotel’s heritage. Complimentary amenities include a delivered morning paper, cable television and wireless broadband; suites even come with a bottle of wine and a bowl of fresh fruit.
After dinner, head to the adjoined Plaza Bar where you can sink into an armchair to enjoy a wide selection of spirits, premium beers and vintage wines. There’s even a Martini menu. Alternatively, head down into the cellar where you’ll find the Bishop’s Arms, a Swedish take on an English country pub. For more wholesome recreation, make your way to the gym and sauna or simply take yourself on a walking tour of friendly Gothenburg’s canals, parks and boulevards. In terms of services, there’s laundry, in-room dining, babysitting and a concierge, happy to advise on sightseeing and transport links.