Ett Hem – At home
DANIEL SCHEFFLER visits a magnificent Swedish ‘home away from home’
Ett Hem, meaning ‘At Home’ in Swedish, is, as its name suggests, a home. But in this case it’s also a small, exquisite, very intimate hotel located in Stockholm. Here, the word ‘home’ is what prevails – it’s personable, comfortable and gives a whole new meaning to true luxury. Ett Hem is designed to be an appreciation of all that is truly beautiful without any of the restrictions. Here, simplicity and authenticity reigns and luxury is expressed through personalisation.
The house is glamorous in the most sophisticated sense of the word and generously casual. Quality and craftsmanship is what knits the place together. That, plus the fact that the owner, Jeanette Mix innately warms the 20th Century building from deep within.
Originally this Stockholm home belonged to a government official and his wife, an avid collector of Swedish textiles, furniture and objects. Today the house has been transformed with Jeanette’s careful eye and the creative direction of StudioIlse, a London-based design company owned by Ilse Crawford, which is famous for its discerning taste.
Architect Fredrik Dahlberg redesigned the space, which was first built in 1910, and its masculine edge is evident in the brick exterior and dark timber-lined rooms inside. Jeanette has added a more feminine touch in the sleeping and family spaces using “Carl Larsson’s super Scandinavian interiors”. Ett Hem is, she says, “a container for beautiful things” and as you explore the house, you will understand what she means. There’s beauty everywhere – in the personal art collection, the hand-picked magazines, the leather railings on the staircase and the small Japanese-inspired stool in the light wood sauna that is placed just so for you to wash your feet.
Furniture, objects, remarkable and extraordinary items are seemingly scattered around, but in fact they have been placed with special care and attention. The stories they tell, the adventures they have experienced and the comfort they bring is what makes this home so special. Jeanette has also filled the house with fragrant flowers from the garden and home-made treats from the kitchen downstairs. The smell of candles lingers in the air, a remnant of long, luxurious dinners and relaxed conversation.
The beds, are covered in the finest linen, and as comfortable as nests, and gleaming bathrooms offer luxe Kiehl’s products. Even the soap wrappers have been carefully removed, so that guests don’t have to fuss over anything. Materials like cane, wood, leather and velvet prevail in the bedrooms… The devil, as always, is in these details – and here they create a heaven in the middle of Stockholm.
The home, which is situated on many levels, offers only 13 bedrooms, including a stunning suite and a duplex suite. There’s a leisurely lounge with enormous fireplace and sofas to sink into, where guests can play Scrabble, read or enjoy a leisurely drink. Outside is a glass conservatory where one can enjoy tiny tartlets and treats with coffee. There’s also stacks of books to read while enjoying the peace in the conservatory.
Here, guests really are ‘at home’. They’re “treated as friends of the family” and become part of the experience. Luxury can be smelt, felt, touched and inhaled throughout.
“Guests are like special friends and can help themselves to goodies in the fridge, open a bottle of wine, take the dog out for a walk and even borrow the car,” says Jeanette. That’s luxury unbound?