ION City Hotel
What We Love
- The natural light that floods the rooms (especially during summer's 22-hour days)
- The hallway walls, which are lined with cool motion-controlled lighting that appears in angled lines
- Complimentary minibars stocked with beer and wine
What To Know
- Junior suites have balconies with private saunas
- The hotel fronts a busy street, so request a room at the back
- Free WiFi
- There's a very small workout room in the basement
- Free WiFi
It’s all about the details at ION City Hotel, the sister hotel of ION Adventure Hotel—both designed by California-based firm Minarc. Take the façade, patterned in textured aluminum panels modeled after a traditional Icelandic wool sweater. You can buy those sweaters, woven by the owner’s mother, in the hotel, a pleasing bit of symmetry. Showcasing Iceland’s makers is part of the hotel’s mission, and the Scandi-hip rooms (some on the small side) even have bathrooms with local sand and moss in the walls. Oversized windows invite city and mountain views in, while the suites with saunas are the most coveted. Splurge on the premium Panorama suite and you’ll also get a chef on call for when you want to entertain. The hotel has a sweet location in the trendiest neighborhood in town, so it’s not likely you’ll be spending too much time inside, but the Sumac restaurant’s North African cuisine is a must-try. Service throughout is impeccable.
In the Area
Laugavegur is one of the hippest streets in the city, so you’ll be well-positioned to indulge in the first-class restaurants, bars, and shops nearby. It’s a five-minute stroll to Dill, the first Michelin-starred restaurant in the country (book waaaaaay in advance), where you’ll find deceptively simple dishes like Arctic char and fennel that make a disproportionately big splash. A couple of blocks away is the very hip Kaffibarinn, which has tip-top beer and late-night DJs. Hallgrímskirkja, an imposing Lutheran church that’s a city landmark, is just a six-minute walk from the hotel. If you want to go puffin spotting or whale watching, head to the harbor, which is extraordinarily picturesque with its fishing boats floating in front of snow-capped mountains. This area is getting better known for its restaurants and nightlife, too. Hotel staff are universally warm and friendly and have good, insider-y tips for where to go; run your evening plans by them before heading out to get the seal of approval.
How to Get There
Not sure I would classify this hotel as a 4-star. The central location and adjoining restaurant is nice and the rooms do resemble a "W Hotel" feel but the price isn't worth it. Downtown Reykjavik is quite accessible to other more cheaper hotels who really offer similar services. I did have issues with their Marriott Bonvoy pontificated stance, don't expect anything from the loyalty even at a minimum getting points for the stay (I heard that is going to be a battle). The excuse I got from hotel staff on them not making up my rooms or the ability to open a window or get a fan so I can enjoy the cool weather, were "well this is Iceland, we are having a few problems on the island." The hotel staff, well one person, was very nice to me and my stay so will give credit to that person - she should be promoted.
Great location, lovely room design, small boutique feel. The concierge was so helpful and friendly. It was so nice being next to one of the top restaurants in Reykjavik, Sumac. The only thing that was a bit difficult for me at the Hotel, was the air circulation/ no AC. I went mid-july and although it is in the 50's outside the small window doesn't allow for much cool air circulation in the room - and effected my sleep. The concierge brought me a fan, which helped a bit. I'm sure this is not a problem in the winter lol!
Ion City is a small boutique hotel right on one of the main streets - close to shops and restaurants and walking distance to Reykjavik attractions. The room was comfortable with standard amenities. The staff at the front desk were exceptionally friendly and helpful. No views and a bit noisy on weekends, but the location cannot be beat.