- Style Boho barnyard guesthouse
- Setting Coastal Västergarn village
The couple behind Hotel Stëlor have taken an 18th-century farmstead and turned it into haven of offbeat rusticity, eccentricity and out-and-out charm on the sandy coast of Sweden’s largest island. Dine on classic Swedish dishes in the converted barn, cosy up by the open fire in the lounge, and set out to explore Gotland’s rugged coast.
Need to know
- Rooms Six.
- Rates Double rooms from $259.49 (SEK1,696), excluding tax at 12 per cent.
- More details Prices include a buffet breakfast of fruits, breads and Swedish cured meats.
- Facilities Gardens, massage studio, cinema screenings in the barn. In rooms: iPad, bottled water, fruit, original art, Oliv bath products. Some rooms have working fireplaces. Don’t expect TVs or fancy entertainment systems – that wouldn’t be very rustic.
- Check–out 11am, but flexible. The owners are used to arrivals at all hours, so check-in is flexible too.
Children Stëlor is best suited to older kids or babies – the stairs are a toddler-hazard and there are breakables in cruising range. Room 6 on the top floor has an extra bed, and there’s space for a cot in rooms 3 and 5.
- Hotel closed Never, although things quieten down in autumn and winter.
- Also Owner Karin’s mother Eva is a talented masseuse and has a studio in the hotel – just ask if you fancy a massage. Pilates and yoga classes can be arranged.
In the know
- Our favourite rooms Each room is inspired by a different archetype (writer, architect, soldier, etc), from the Strindbergian garret in the eaves (number 4) to the spacious, taxidermy-hung scientist-tribute number 5, which has a brass telescope for gazing over the countryside or up at the stars. We loved Room 3 – historically used for entertaining, but now a big bright space with windows on three walls, a chaise longue by the fire and some intriguing/borderline sinister modern artwork.
- Packing tips Don’t forget swimwear: Stëlor’s five minutes from a secluded beach and a 15-minute bike ride from Gotland’s well-known Tofta Beach.
- Also Save some case space for a Gotland lambskin; you’ll see plenty of examples all over the hotel. If you fancy one, just ask Karin; her aunt runs a sheep farm down the road, and she’ll happily bring you a bundle to choose from.
Food and drink at Hotel Stelor
- Hotel restaurant The Stëlor Kitchen occupies what was once the pig house – and is now an atmospheric, art-lined dining room with a handful of wooden tables and an open kitchen. The menu is rooted in Swedish tradition, making the most of Gotlandic produce to create balanced, fresh-flavoured dishes such as smoked salmon, lobster, lamb shank and fabulous home-made soups. Owner Bjorn’s wine recommendations are worth listening to.
- Dress code Golfing gear, rambling attire, something fancier, you name it – no one’s keeping tabs.
- Top table In summer, you can sit outside and gaze out over the garden at the resident sheep. Otherwise, get as close to the kitchen as possible so you can spy on the chef.
- Last orders In summer, the restaurant’s open all day until around 9pm (breakfast’s usually between 8am and 10am); out of season, mealtimes are arranged in consultation with guests, and breakfast can be served by the hearth in the cosy lounge.
- Room service You can arrange to have meals, snacks and drinks brought to your room – or to the hotel lounge until about 11pm.
- Hotel bar There’s a counter lined with bar stools set along one side of the restaurant. Wines and whiskies are particularly well represented.