Places We Stay: Langholmen-Hotel, Hostel and Former Women’s Prison

We impulsively booked our trip to Sweden, Denmark and Iceland based on an excellent airfare sale through Icelandair. Once we locked in our airfare, however, we realized lodging in these countries would be at a premium. We managed to find a great and reasonable hotel in Copenhagen, then tried to find an equally wonderful place in Stockholm. My husband worked his magic and found a room to fit the four of us, at a reasonable rate, AND with breakfast included. The catch? Langholmen is a former women’s prison.

Closed in 1975, the prison on Langholmen Island was renovated and reopened years later. It now features a hotel, hostel, restaurant, conference center, and museum. Admission to the museum was included with our hotel stay, but we weren’t ever on the property during operating hours.

The hotel was clean, comfortable and roomy. It appeared that in the renovations, two cells were combined to create the sleeping space and the bathroom. Every other cell door was false to accommodate this update. The windows let in a lot of natural light, but were pretty high (presumably to prevent escapes).

It was very well renovated and didn’t really feel like a prison, with the exception of the details that played up the history. Otherwise it just felt like a uniquely designed hotel.

The breakfast was very large and had indoor/outdoor seating.

One of the nicest features of Langholmen was the lake/beach. The water was very cold, but I’m told it was refreshing. Sitting on the beach was a nice, quiet diversion from busy travel.

While it’s in the center of Stockholm, this hotel felt set aside and peaceful. Getting to city center was about a 30 minute walk, so besides the one time we made the walk, we used public transportation. That in itself was a 7-10 minute walk. Turning in the other direction led us to a large, open park with a wonderful playground.

We enjoyed our stay and Langholmen and were glad for the opportunity to stay in a unique hotel. I’d have loved for it to be a tiny bit closer to public transportation, but it didn’t ruin our time there. It was definitely a place to remember!