The Exeter Hotel enjoys a coveted location on Reykjavik’s old harbor in a mixed-use neighborhood of retail, restaurants, cultural spaces and local residences. Though the hotel is housed in a restored 1904 building, its vibe is decidedly contemporary while paying homage to the era when fishing and trade were the predominant industries on the site. Inside, an open floor plan and high ceilings lend a sense of spaciousness in the lobby. Superior rooms have en suite bathrooms with walk-in shower and hair dryer, writing desk, complimentary Wi-Fi, smart TV, telephone, safe, mini fridge, coffee- and tea-making facilities.
Central to the Exeter’s identity is its ultra-green construction and operations. Design and decor incorporate industrial elements that support the hotel’s deep commitment to environmental sustainability, including extensive use of locally sourced concrete that aids in fire and earthquake protection, reduces the use of paint, and saves energy in maintaining a comfortable temperature within. The Exeter is powered and heated exclusively by geothermal and hydropower sources, and its cold water comes from a natural local well. Iceland-produced Rockwool insulation—a stone-based fiber product--is used for sound absorption, while a multitude of other environmentally friendly materials – many of which are recycled – are incorporated throughout the hotel’s construction. Bath amenities are plastic-free (including toothbrushes made of bamboo), and even the Nespresso coffee pods are recycled via a special bin in the guest rooms.
Hotel Vik i Myrdal
From a vast, open setting in the Mydalur Valley on Iceland's south coast, just a few minutes' walk from the beach, Hotel Viky i Myrdal offers views over the sea and Reynisdrangar Pillars, three columnar basalt sea stacks protruding from the North Atlantic. Incorporating elements of concrete, basalt and wood, the new hotel's ambience reflects its striking natural environs. Extensive use of glass and natural light bring the outside in, while the serene color scheme—gray, taupe, beige, dusky blue and aqua—evokes the natural realm beyond. The rooms in the main building have been exquisitely designed and furnished by Icelandic architect Gudbjorg Magnusdottir, whose vision was inspired by the nearby surroundings of sea and beach. Guest rooms have views of the ocean, sea stacks or mountains. All have king-size or twin beds with lofty cotton duvets, hardwood floors, free Wi-Fi, flat screen satellite TV, phone, desk, coffee and tea facilities, and a large bathroom with walk-in tiled shower. A spacious lounge, restaurant, contemporary bar and small fitness center comprise the common facilities.
This family-run hotel on a working farm on Iceland's south coast offers large, bright rooms with sweeping views over the rugged mountain backdrop or the pasturelands rolling down to the ocean. As with most accommodations in rural Iceland, furnishings and decor are simple, with clean, spare lines. Rooms have hardwood floors, wood wainscoting, two twin beds that can be joined to form one king, two chairs, flat screen TV, Wi-Fi and a bathroom with modern Euro-style shower and hair dryer. Large leather pincushion sofas invite relaxing in the lobby lounge. Guests enjoy a generous breakfast buffet in the homey dining room accented with antique skis and snowshoes. Complimentary tea and coffee are available 24 hours a day in the restaurant.
Country guesthouses are the most common form of accommodation in Iceland's rural regions, offering simple, comfortable furnishings and warm hospitality. Fjalladyrd Guesthouse enjoys a remote location in Modrudalur, the highest farm in Iceland at 1,539 feet and one of the earliest settled areas in the country. The name "Fjalladyrd" means "mountain beauty," and it's an apt description its location in the highlands north of Vatnajokull Glacier, with the snowy summits of the Kverkfjoll Mountains visible on clear days. Though simple, our accommodations offer a peaceful setting and authentic taste of rural Icelandic life, not to mention proximity to the nature sights we visit in the region.
Two separate houses with traditional sod roofs accommodate seven guests each in single and double rooms with private bathrooms and showers. Knotty pine walls and rustic country decor lend a cozy ambience, while a log fireplace in the living room invites relaxing. Fjallakaffi is the guesthouse's coffee house and restaurant on the premises, whose traditional specialties include home-baked cakes, Icelandic donuts called "kleinur," and the hearty lamb and vegetable soup that is an Icelandic favorite. On the surrounding farm, guests may see elements of traditional Icelandic rural culture, including turf houses, grazing sheep and sustainable, low-tech farming operations.
Lake Myvatn, Iceland
This modern hotel's hillside location overlooking Lake Myvatn offers the ideal location for exploring this volcanic area rich in geological wonders and migratory birdlife. Built in 2017 and designed by award-winning architects, Fosshotel Myvatn features almost exclusively low-environmental-impact materials. The low-rise building is clad with larch wood and a sod roof, creating harmony with nature. Interiors blend natural fibers in gray, taupe and orange with warm woods to create an aesthetic that is contemporary yet cozy. Furnishings include mid-century modern chairs and button sofas, and beds have heavy cotton-clad European-style duvets keep guests warm at night. Rooms have free Wi-Fi and flat screen TVs. Bathrooms have glass walk-in showers with overhead rain showers and handheld showerheads, as well as towel warmers and hair dryers. Floor-to-ceiling windows in the restaurant offer views over Lake Myvatn and the surrounding lava fields.
Centrally located in this small port town that is the commercial center for the Westfjords, Hotel Isafjordur offers simple, modern, clean-lined accommodations with a minimalist Scandinavian aesthetic. A light neutral palette of gray, beige and white provides tranquil surroundings. Rooms overlook the inner harbor or offer a view north across the bay of Isafjardardjup. Room amenities include showers, hair dryers, television, telephone, free Wi-Fi and coffee maker. A deluxe continental breakfast includes a wide selection of cheeses, cold meats, bread, hard-boiled eggs, cereals, yogurt and juices.
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