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HOW TO SPEND $15K IN ICELAND IN 24 HOURS

King Suite 5

HOW TO SPEND $15K IN ICELAND IN 24 HOURS

A whirlwind tour of Reykjavik, but extra.

By: Katie Becker
Photography: Alec Kugler

In the last five years, Iceland shot to the top of everyone’s Must Travel lists. Maybe it’s that Icelandair started offering free stopovers between Europe and the US, or that the island’s waterfalls and lagoonsmake for Instagram gold, or that the tiny 120,000-person city of Reykjavik has enough shopping, restaurants, arts, culture, and cafés to keep even a New Yorker super busy. Whichever it is, it’s a dope trip.

We, of course, decided to kick things up another notch: What would the *most* luxurious 24 hours spent in the capital city of Iceland be like? Luxury-loving celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow and Beyoncé have been among its 1.7 million-person annual tourist influx, and when we went recently, we got a taste of what it’s like to max out; we’re talking shopping, a private chauffeur, helicopter tours, and a seafood tasting menu paired with wine for each course (obviously!). See below for our extremely extra day in Reykjavik.

 

LUXURY CHAUFFEUR

8:00 AM – 9:00 AM: Head straight to the Blue Lagoon with Servio car service, which employs a fleet of Mercedes that have their own WiFi and, potentially most crucial, heated *everything.* (Even the armrests in the doors are heated, friends.) Should you not be staring out the window at the otherworldly landscape, you can use your remote for your own private TV in the back seat, but don’t hesitate to ask for a tour from your driver: Our chauffeur, Berta, knew the area like the back of her hand.

Price: $400 (Extra if you want to hire private security, too.)

 

BLUE LAGOON

9:00 AM – Noon: Even Beyoncé didn’t skip the Blue Lagoon when she visited Iceland, which is about 40 minutes outside the city. To make your experience Bey-worthy, we recommend booking the Luxury package, which includes a private changing room with a fireplace and personal attendant, and a door straight into the lagoon. Add to that an in-water massage up to two hours long, and you’ll feel like a Nordic goddess in no time.

Price: $350

 

HELICOPTER TOUR

Noon – 4:00 PM: Fun fact: As long as the winds aren’t too strong, you can get picked up from the Blue Lagoon in a friggin’ helicopter with Reykjavik Helicopters. Sure, some people might go straight to Reykjavik, but why not make your way there with a private tour of the southwest corner of the island—over the famous glaciers, volcanoes, and waterfalls—and even make a pit stop for a picnic lunch on top of a glacier?

Price: $7,000 for a private tour.

 

AFTERNOON SHOPPING

Yeoman: A boutique owned by designer Hildur Yeoman, Yeoman sells brands like Maison Martin Margiela and Icelandic shoe designer Kalda, but is best known for Yeoman’s own print-heavy designs, like this suit set we can’t stop thinking about. Thankfully, some of her collection is available online.

Price: $1,050 = three Yeoman pieces at about $350 each.

 

JS Watch Company: Celebrities love JS Watch Company—Katie Couric, Jude Law, Yoko Ono, Tom Cruise, and Dennis Quaid are a few—and even the Dalai Lama wears one of their watches. Who knew you could get a tiny slice of Switzerland in Reykjavik? Or rather, a tiny slice of nearly every major European country, as each of these custom timepieces uses hand-selected parts from around the continent. They do make women’s watches, but we’re partial to one of the men’s.

Price: $3,500

Geysir: This popular store is considered a must, and we agree. Famous for their wool, especially their capes, Geysir can outfit you head to toe with everything you need to look Iceland-chic in every Instagram post.

Price: $765 for cape, blanket, and sweater.

 

FISH MARKET TASTING MENU

8:30 PM Dinner: Reykjavik may be a small city, but the food scene is huge, with Fish Market, known locally as Fiskmarkadurinn, arguably at the top spot for most coveted reservation in town (though, insider secret: a small sushi bar downstairs is walk-in-only). Chef Axel Björn Clausen creates the nine-course tasting menu, including things like arctic char and grilled bluelink, with a special Icelandic wasabi on the side. Yummmm.

Price: $312 for tasting menu and wine pairings for two.

 

SAND SUITE AT SANDHOTEL

Overnight: The newly opened Sandhotel is right in the center of town, but tucked away down an adorable little alley. In the top floor, down a windowed walkway, is the Sands suite, which is essentially its own apartment. If anything makes it worth the splurge, it’s the epic bathtub where we would spend the rest of the night warming up, sipping champagne, and looking out the skylight to the northern lights.

Price: $1,500 per night

 

SANDS BAKERY

7:00 AM: Walk right across the alley from the hotel to the most decadent grab-and-go café before you finish up your 24-hour extravaganza. Sandholt Bakery’s OCD-perfect pastries are fresh out of the oven (the proof is in the window-encased kitchen bustling with bakers) and include mini pies and croissants that truly rival France’s. The lattes are cloudy cups of heaven—exactly what you need to hit the road to your next epic trip.

Price: $25

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  • Guest Review Awards 2017

  • The location is perfect

    The bed was very comfortable, the location is perfect. It was nice to receive a mobile phone with internet access for the duration of our stay, we could check google map while walking through the city. The staff was nice.

  • The front desk personnel at this hotel were amazing

    The front desk personnel at this hotel were amazing. We were only put up at this hotel on short notice by our airline when our flight got delayed, but they went above and beyond to be helpful in tracking down information on when our flight would leave. The room was wonderful, including the pack n play for our 3 year old.

  • A beautiful, luxurious and stylish option

    The hotel is next to the Sandholt Bakery, which is one of the best bakeries I’ve ever been to (and I had just spent 5 weeks in France!) where I met friends for croissants or sandwiches many times during the stay. The hotel is on one of the main streets in the midst of the action, within easy walking distance of amazing restaurants, shopping, the Hallgrímskirkja and the Harpa Concert Hall square. The Sandhotel is a beautiful, luxurious and stylish option for a stay in Reykjavik.

  • This hotel is in a great location

    This hotel is in a great location, its right on the main shopping street. You can walk around the city of Reykjavik. The hotel also gives you a cell phone that you’re able to use to look up restaurants, happy hour, and you can also use it for navigation if you’re renting a car and traveling to a site you want to see.

  • Definitely will return

    The hotel staff was AMAZING!! I would give them ten thumbs up. Definitely will return and stay here again.

  • Enjoyed every minute

    We stayed three nights in this amazing hotel and enjoyed every minute. Sometimes when entering a room, you can feel that someone has put a lot of thoughts and love in its creation and this was my exact feeling when entering the hotel and our room in particular. The room interior was fantastic. The rooms have a good size and have everything you need to feel at home in a foreign environment: a place to put your luggage, some chairs, a closet with hangers, free WIFI & a smartphone (!!), and a coffee machine with an excellent selection of coffees. The bed is extremely comfortable. The bathroom is also of well-thought size with a comfortable shower. The icing on the cake are the offered beauty products from a local Icelandic brand. The staff is extremely friendly and helpful. In particular, our nightly check-in was handled perfectly. I highly recommend this place.

  • Definitely one of top 3 hotels I have stayed in

    Excellent service, impeccable design, bed and duvet were heaven! Amazing modern art everywhere, delicious & beautiful food, home made soda and atmosphere in every detail beams a beautiful philosophy of life, history, art and culture. Definitely one of top 3 hotels I have stayed in.

  • Beautiful design all over

    The breakfast was excellent, delicious and fresh. The beds were the most comfortable and the room was really nice, beautiful design all over with the Icelandic art all around the hotel. The concept is brilliant!

SANDHOTEL

Tel: +354 519 8090

Laugavegur 34

101 Reykjavík

info@sandhotel.is

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