The Bed: Hotel Budir, Iceland
We have personally laid our heads on these beds, and cozied up with these books…
A volcanic wonderland with fluorescent green moss draped over black lava fields surrounded by snowcapped glaciers and ubiquitous waterfalls, the west coast of Iceland is an escape into nature unlike any other.
Two hours from Reykjavik, perched on the Snaefellsnes peninsula, the tiny village of Budir boasts all of the above and the exceptional Hotel Budir.
Stark yet stunning architecture opens up to reveal cozy Icelandic interiors replete with modern art, a stag’s head and a vintage telescope for scenic viewing.
If you’re lucky the clouds will dissipate and the sheer magnificence of the glaciers will appear when you awake.
It will be difficult to leave your room, but everyone must eat. The hotel restaurant is a temple to elegant Icelandic cuisine, and is likely the most romantic dining room on the 40,000 square-mile island located just outside the Arctic Circle. Feast on monkfish with mussels, tomatoes and bacon, or cod with kale and almonds, all sourced locally.
Our favorite moment: Playing the card game Word Thief downstairs by the fire, sipping brandy.
The Book: “The Atom Station” by Halldor Laxness
When you can lay your head in a bed frequented by Icelandic Nobel prize winner Halldor Laxness you should certainly curl up with one of his books. Laxness was a frequent guest who spent many contemplative mornings gazing out at the 700,000 year old Snaefellsjokull volcano while he produced his masterful novels.
The Atom Station is a comic farce that satirizes Iceland in the years post WWII. The quirky characters we met in the book we also met on the roads of Iceland.