10 of the best hotels in Reykjavik

In the last decade, visitor numbers to Iceland have grown by 500 per cent as appearances on Game of Thrones have spread news of the wonders of this isolated island nation, which is home to otherworldly landscapes, steaming hot springs and waterfalls around every turn. That boom in visitors has also led to a boom in hotels, with plenty of comfortable, stylish options at a variety of price points. 

Here are the top hotels in Reykjavik. 

Best for a social scene: Kex Hostel

Neighbourhood: Miðborg 

Kex is branded as a hostel, but this renovated biscuit factory offers a range of stylish accommodation options, including private doubles with en-suite bathrooms and ocean views. Ample communal space – a guest kitchen, gym, barber shop and heated outdoor patio that fills up when the weather’s nice – creates a buzzy atmosphere that encourages mingling; and the gastro-pub Sæmundur attracts as many travellers as it does working locals who come for WiFi, coffee and craft beer. 

Doubles from kr24,600 (£155)

Best for luxury: Hotel Borg

Neighbourhood: Miðborg 

Located in the heart of downtown, the 99-room art deco Hotel Borg has set the standard for Reykjavik luxury hotels since it opened in 1930. It’s since been renovated, though many original fixtures, vintage accents and black-and-white photos of Reykjavik remain. Rooms feature lacquered tables, heated bathroom floors, high ceilings and stylish Bang & Olufsen TVs. There’s an onsite Jamie’s Italian and a spa with a steam bath, sauna and hot tub. 

Doubles from kr31,290 (£197

Best for a clean conscience: Eyja Guldsmeden Hotel

Neighbourhood: Hlemmur

Set a few steps off Laugavegur, the city’s main shopping street, is the 65-room Eyja. It’s part of Guldsmeden Hotels, a Danish group with a focus on sustainability. It’s also the only Icelandic hotel to be Green Globe Certified. Rooms feel earthy and organic, with rough-hewn-wood four-poster beds, sheepskin throws and natural fabrics like cotton, wool and leather throughout. Eyja uses at least 90 per cent organic produce in the food it serves and employs a 360-degree sustainability management system with an emphasis on environmental responsibility. 

Doubles from kr27,300 (£172)

Best for dining: Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina

Neighbourhood: Harbour 

The nautical-themed Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina is set on the edge of the downtown harbourfront, and is home to the chic bar and restaurant Slippbarinn, a perennial favourite among locals. Serving breakfast, brunch and an all-day menu of modern Icelandic fare, such as langoustine flatbread and soup with the day’s catch, it’s a popular spot any time; but especially during happy hour when its creative cocktails, like the bourbon-based Whiskey Sour Par Excellence, are half price. 

Doubles from kr18,500 (£117)

Best for Icelandic culture: Canopy by Hilton Reykjavik City Centre  

Neighbourhood: Miðborg

Composed of six interconnected houses that were part of a furniture factory from 1937-1963, the Canopy by Hilton Reykjavik City Centre has been fully renovated, but still nods to its past – and Iceland’s unique natural setting. Rooms are decked out in muted versions of the country’s natural colours: slate grey reminiscent of volcanic rock, pale blue the colour of the sea and pastel green like the moss-covered countryside. Local artwork lines the walls, the snack shop sells Icelandic artisanal chocolate and the library is stocked with books from Icelandic authors. 

Doubles from kr25,175 (£158)

Best for a view: Hlemmur Square 

Neighbourhood: Hlemmur 

Most of Iceland’s buildings are only a few storeys tall, which means you don’t have to climb high for a great view. The King Terrace and Deluxe King Terrace rooms at Hlemmur Square are only on the fifth floor but offer spectacular views of the city, bay and mountains from private balconies and expansive windows. All rooms have king-sized beds with Lissadell linens, flat-screen TVs and fully-stocked minibars. There are upscale dorm-style rooms on the third and fourth floors and a craft beer and cocktail bar in the lobby. 

Doubles from kr23,000 (£145)

Best for business: Radisson Blu 1919 Hotel

Neighbourhood: Miðborg

The 88-room Radisson Blu 1919 Hotel is set in a century-old building in the heart of downtown, within easy walking distance to visitor attractions like the Harpa concert hall and Reykjavik Art Museum, as well as Reykjavik City Hall, Parliament and the Prime Minister’s Office. Rooms offer all the modern trappings, and there’s a fitness centre, three meeting rooms and the 1919 Restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

Doubles from kr21,500 (£135

Best for history: Sand Hotel

Neighbourhood: Miðborg

The 67-room art deco-style Sand Hotel is built around three historic buildings on Laugavegur Street. Sandholt Bakery and Gudsteinn Eyjólfsson men’s clothing shop, which have been serving Reykjavik for more than a century, are on the ground floor; the former provides the hotel’s continental breakfast, while the latter offers in-room shopping with delivery to the hotel. Out front, a small plaque commemorates the most important historical aspect: behind the hotel sits the small house where Nobel Prize-winning author Halldór Laxness was born in 1902. 

Doubles from kr25,500 (£160

Best for a home-away-from-home: Reykjavik Marina Residence

Neighbourhood: Harbour 

Located next to the Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina hotel, the Residence offers a homely environment with all the conveniences of a hotel. Set in a 20th-century townhouse, it includes one two-storey suite and six one-room Residence Suites, each with balcony, mini-bar, Sóley Organics Icelandic toiletries and Lin Design linens. Breakfast is included and all suites share access to the Residence Lounge where complimentary refreshments are offered every evening. 

Doubles from kr62,050 (£391

Best for budget travellers: Loft 

Neighbourhood: Miðborg

Another genre-crosser, Loft offers both hostel and hotel accommodations. The Double Deluxe Rooms are basic but cosy, with large windows overlooking Laugavegur, soft beds and small-but-functional tiled bathrooms. Guests also have access to the top-floor balcony café for breakfast and light bites, and a self-catering kitchen to save even more on the high cost of dining in Reykjavik. 

Doubles from kr17,750 (£111)

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