”Reykjavik seems fast asleep, but look in the right places and it’s full of life”
FANNAR PÁLL AÐALSTEINSSON
On Lush nightlife and tranquil day treks in Reykjavik
April 28, 2023
Who are you?
— I work at 66°North as Head of Marketing and has spent some time in London where we recently opened a store. I studied in Copenhagen and started working for the brand quickly after I graduated around 11 years ago. 66°North is almost 100 years old and Iceland’s oldest clothing manufacturer still operating today.
For someone who hasn’t been to Reykjavík, how’d you describe it?
— The northern-most capital in the world providing breathtaking nature just outside every locals’ backyard. It may look like it is fast asleep but if you look in the right places you will learn that it’s full of life.
Photography: Boris Hadjur
My favourite thing that makes me proud of Reykjavík:
— I have to mention the nature again, the fact that people go out no matter how harsh the weather conditions are. One of my favourite things during winter is being outside, whether it is skiing or watching the northern lights from my balcony. The peace and safety in Iceland is also something that makes me proud. Something I also value highly is our sustainable mindset and respect for nature.
Photography: Giuseppe Mondì
My favourite weekend routine:
— A slow morning at home with a coffee, good music, and something to read, ideally after a light jog to start the day. After that, I go out to brunch with my other half and dipping into a local swimming pool.
My favourite place for a creative or business meeting:
— Kjarval and Perlan. Kjarval is a swanky place right downtown offering a view of Iceland’s parliament and turns into a lounge during night. Perlan is a glass dome that offers a 360 view of the Reykjavík skyline.
My favourite cultural spot:
— These local swimming pools are really something I encourage everybody visiting Reykjavík to check out. We of course have hot springs and spa’s but the pools are really a hidden gem that not many tourists know of. You will find them in every neighbourhood and town all over Iceland.
My favourite place for dining out:
— The Fishmarket, because it offers a vide range of local sea food served in a unique environment. They also serve some of the finest sushi Iceland has to offer. Other places to mention are Sumac, where Icelandic ingredients meet Lebanese cooking in a unique way, and BakaBaka, which is a bakery at day and Italian restaurant at night. Perfect for carbs and nature wine.
My favourite breakfast place:
— Being 100 metres walk from my place, Brikk bakery is often a first choice, known for their sourdough bread and toppings. It’s a must to try the tuna and cheese salad to go with the sourdough. They also have delicious ’snúður’, an Icelandic take on a cinnamon roll.
My favourite excursion:
— To go out of town travelling in Iceland. My favourite spot is Westfjords, I’ve been on a running and sailing trip there. A mix of activities and exploring the country by car is the perfect way to get much out of a weekend.
Photography: Tamara Bitter and Julien Leclercq
My favourite local entrepreneur or creative I want to promote:
— Fischersund is a family-run perfumery and art collective located in the heart of Reykjavík that offers a unique scent experience. They sell fragrance products inspired by the clean, unique nature of Iceland using herbs and oils harvested in the Icelandic wild via the most environmentally friendly solutions and materials for the modern lifestyle. Their store in Reykjavík is a must visit!
My favourite hotel for a staycation:
— Edition and Exeter hotel for both being superior when it comes to comfort and luxury and both located close to the harbour area and al thel best spots in Reykjavík. My go-to hotel a little bit outside Reykjavík is the Hotel Geysir, which has amazing atmosphere and next to the Geysir hot spring.
My favourite route for a run or walk:
— My neighbourhood Kársnes and go out running in Heiðmörk is a great escape into nature and lava fields, only 10 minutes outside the city. For hiking in the capital area, it would be Helgafell and Mount Esjan.
My favourite place for fashion:
— I obviously have to mention 66°North being the leading clothing manufacturer brand in Iceland. Otherwise, Hurra Reykjavík is offering some of my favourite Scandinavian brands. My latest purchase in Iceland were pants I bought at the store Nebraska which also happens to be a very good restaurant.
My favourite space for great design:
— Gallery port always has a fresh selection of works from young and up and coming artists. It is also always worth to visit Kjarvalsstaðir and Ásmundarsalur for exhibitions. Rammagerðin, downtown Reykjavík, is a store to check for variety of products to discover Icelandic designers.
My favourite example of tech innovation in Reykjavík:
— There are several companies that come to mind when thinking about tech innovations from Iceland who are now operating globally. A few examples are Össur, Carbfix, Marel, and Controlant.
My favourite thing at home:
— A painting by the Icelandic artist Georg Óskar and my Bang & Olufsen speaker which is constantly turned on, playing music based on mood, weather, and season each time.