NEW YORK -- The 101 Hotel, a boutique property set to debut in
downtown Reykjavik, Iceland, in July, promises to bring urban
sophistication and service standards to the country's tiny -- but
notoriously trendy and pricey -- capital.
As in much of Scandinavia, hotel service and amenities in
Reykjavik often do not keep pace with relatively high rates, but
the 101 -- a Design Hotels group affiliate -- aims to stand out
from the Nordic crowd, said director and general manager Thorvaldur
"Certainly when it comes to accommodations in Reykjavik, there's
little price difference between staying at a supposedly three- or
four-star hotel and a guesthouse," he said.
"But I think you'll see in the 101 a great departure from the
hotel culture here," Skulason added. "Even on the wider
Scandinavian market, we will be pretty new and unique."
With nightly rates ranging from $180 to $400 depending on
season, the 33 rooms and five suites at the 101 will feature
amenities such as CD players, satellite television, disposable
cameras, umbrellas, private libraries and branded T-shirts and
The hotel, housed in the former 1935 headquarters of a local
political party, also will boast a bar lounge, business center, a
15-person meetings room, a spa, a gym and a restaurant serving an
Icelandic-Continental fusion cuisine. For all the frills, the 101
will stick to one Scandinavian staple: a casual atmosphere.
"The 101 Hotel is supposed to be a relaxed place, but in terms
of amenities and services, you'll see a difference qualitywise,"
said Skulason. "We'll offer first-class service in somewhat stylish
surroundings that are not too imposing."
Skulason cited business travelers, small incentive groups and
sophisticated vacationers as ideal target markets.
Named for the city's oldest postal code and decorated by
interior designer Ingibjorg Palmadottir, the 101 is located in
downtown Reykjavik at Hverfisgata 10, next to the Icelandic Opera
House and a few steps from Laugavegur, the city's main shopping and
"I think we're part of the 'Scandinavian design' trend. ...
We're obviously tagging along on that aspect," said Skulason.
"There's a greater awareness in the U.S. of Iceland as a trendy
destination; or at least I don't think Americans are asking anymore
if we have cars up here."
The 101 Hotel will pay travel agents between 9% and 10%
commission and appears to already be attracting interest from the
"We've already gotten requests from travel agents whose clients
have heard of the hotel and want rate information," said Skulason,
who began taking reservations for middle July in late May.
For information on the 101 Hotel, call (011) 354 580-0101 or
visit www.101hotel.is or www.designhotels.com on line.