This was our second visit to Iceland. We stayed at the CenterHotel Arnarhvoll as part of a Secret Escapes mini-break in mid-December. We were pleasantly surprised. The hotel has really stunning view across the bay and harbour and is just a short walk to the main shopping area and numerous restaurants.
It's a small hotel but seemed to provide mostly everything you'd need. The nordic modern style, was functional with no 'coziness' but there was still a relaxed, warm feeling to the place. The website photos are pretty accurate.
We were hoping to upgrade our room on arrival but they were fully booked due to other tourists and locals staying over for Christmas parties, etc. As it happened our room was actually fine, clean and with everything we needed. At first we thought it would be cold as there was no carpet, but it was really comfortable and later it became clear why carpet would not be ideal when we clomped in and out with wet, dirty shoes. There were nice big windows, a tv with some English language channels and a clean 'efficient' bathroom with a shower. We were very comfortable and slept well. They don't seem to be big on in room tea/coffee making facilities in much of Europe but you could get a nice coffee down at reception or from the Sky bar upstairs. A room on a higher floor would have had a better view but we were hardly in the room anyway and the views from the Sky bar are amazing. We even got some nice shots of the Northern Lights from up there.
Breakfast is served in the Sky bar so you get the views then too. Breakfast included a good, but limited variety of hot and cold buffet style offerings. Nice selection of breads and rolls. We also tried a few of the bar snacks and drinks, they were pricey but at least they were not dissappointing. Particularly good value was the nachos – a huge bowl and very tasty.
The reception staff were friendly, the restaurant staff were variable, but overall everyone offered very good service. The reception desk has handy printed maps of the area which were really helpful and the staff were very willing to make suggestions on where to shop, eat, etc. One of the places we really enjoyed eating was suggested by one of the receptionists – really delicious, no frills seafood and definitely worth a visit – The Sea Baron.
We hired a 4x4 so it was great there were several parking spaces to the side of the hotel so we could park there very easily for free (may be a different story in the summer).
We did not get to try the Spa and sauna with everything else going on but it seemed popular.
We would stay here again if we return to Iceland. Nothing really to complain about. Our last trip was 12 years ago and things have certainly changed a lot! So many more people, cars, buildings, etc. not near as authentic as it was last time but still worth a visit – it the most amazing country.
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- Also Known As:
- Centerhotel Arnarhvoll Reykjavík
- Centerhotel Arnarhvoll Hotel Reykjavík