Spotlight on: Hotel Rival

Hotel Rival, Stockholm, Sweden
Photography courtesy of Hotel Rival

Meet the Rival: a show-stopping hotel on pretty Mariatorget Square with a grand entrance and larger than life ambitions that have catapulted the property owned by ABBA’s very own Benny Andersson to nothing short of cult status – and did we mention it’s only ten minutes walking from Stockholm’s famous old town?

The stylish property, which was the first to bring boutique accommodation to the Swedish capital back in 2003, is located in the buzzing Södermalm neighbourhood, and its many entertainment options that leave guests amazed and enchanted have certainly contributed to the overall hype surrounding the area. But there’s much more to the Rival, still…


What’s the atmosphere at the Rival?

Thanks to just how lively the entire property is – there’s a cafe, a bar and a bistro in the building – there’s never a dull moment here. Locals pop into the Rival to enjoy its excellent food, drinks and music just as much as other tourists do, creating a vibrant and fun-filled atmosphere that sees people from all over the world mingle (and dance!). But don’t think it’s a disco: despite being hip, this is a four-star hotel with fabulous amenities and an elaborate, sophisticated events program on offer. Just pop into the on-site theatre for a concert or a comedy show to see what we mean!


What are the rooms like?

It’s impossible to sum up what the rooms are like in just one word. They’re modern, comfortable, bright and featuring unique artworks. Visitors can book anything from cosy single rooms to lavish suites, depending on their budget – though don’t think a smaller room is a compromise: even the singles come with stylish furniture, SmartTV, Egyptian cotton sheets and heated bathroom floors that will make your stay so much more pleasant if visiting during the winter months. Happy to splurge a little? The seventh floor Suite 706 offers a private terrace with hard-to-beat views of Stockholm!


Other than the rooms, why stay here?

Well, other than the chance of bumping into owner and former ABBA member Benny Andersson (imagine the look on everyone’s faces…), the Rival is quite simply one of the most diverse hotels in town. Want to party with your friends and have a good time? You can. Want to take your kids on an adventure and explore Swedish culture from a central location? No problem. Whatever it is you seek to do, the hip Södermalm hotel is an excellent place to base yourself in. In fact, we don’t think of it as a gateway to Stockholm, but very much as a destination in and of itself.


Something every visitor should know

While the Rival’s regular breakfast menu is a total treat, it’s at brunch that the hotel pulls all the strings – and quite frankly, spending a Saturday or Sunday afternoon stuffing your face with all that’s on offer here is a must if you ask us. Though if a cocktail menu sounds more intriguing to you, make your way to the 2018 opened Watson’s Bar, where each Friday and Saturday, a Stockholm DJ serves up some fine funk and disco tunes, much to the delight of hotel guests, locals and of course Watson – the hotel’s very own and very lovable Jack Russell. Like you needed another reason to stay here!