Stockholm's best party is on the water
Published: 30 Jun 2010 14:05 GMT+02:00
Updated: 30 Jun 2010 14:05 GMT+02:00
In Stockholm, locals looking for a spectacular place for a corporate lunch, an intimate wedding or dancing until dawn after blowing out the birthday candles know that the best place to look is out to the water, writes Elizabeth Dacey-Fondelius.
The crew aboard each of Strömma Kanalbolaget's 29 boats is devoted to creating the perfect dining and sightseeing conditions for you and your guests. A chartered event on a Strömma Kanalbolaget boat is a one-of-a-kind Stockholm experience which capitalizes on Stockholm's greatest and most glorious resource: the sea.
The fleet of Strömma Kanalbolaget includes classic pearls from the early 20th century, including two authentic steamships, S/S Stockholm and S/S Drottningholm, and the world's oldest passenger ship, the M/S Enköping from 1868.
Of the 29 vessels, nine lovingly preserved and restored ships are over 100 years old. These classic beauties on water contribute to the picturesque seascape of Stockholm and its surrounding archipelago.
To native Stockholmers, the older boats are like those familiar neighbors you often seen out and about on the town. If you or your guests have a special interest in these ships, mention your interest to visit the engine room or bridge when arranging a charter and the ship's proud captain will gladly arrange a tour.
"We're a big company, but when you're on board you're greeted by a homey feeling," Cecilia Sandberg, who is responsible for Strömma's charters, told The Local.
Thanks to the extensive range of its fleet, Strömma Kanalbolaget can help you entertain 20 to 400 guests for any event well suited to your needs and preferences. Among a number of other arrangements, they can coordinate guides, decorations and entertainment.
If your guests are visitors to Sweden or just helpless romantics warmed by the charm of Swedish culture, a troubadour singing traditional folk songs by Evert Taube or Cornelis Vreeswijk might set the proper mood.
Or you may want to relive an old-fashioned pier dance. The pier dance is a return to a bygone day of dancing on the dock while the orchestra plays from the ship. It's a barn dance down by the water. The perfect event can be created however you picture it and it is easy to do.
"You order it, we arrange it," as Sandberg put it.
Fine dining afloat
Chartering a Strömma Kanalbolaget ship is literally sightseeing by mobile restaurant. Passengers, impressed by the quality of the food, are most often astonished to learn that all meals are prepared onboard and not catered.
Every ship's galley, no matter how cramped, is where the chef and staff prepare fine dining-standard meals. In fact, each ship has its very own permanent captain, crew, wait staff and head chef who run the ship as if it were their own restaurant on land.
"When they have their own ship, they feel they have something which belongs to them, something to care for," explained Sandberg.
Stockholm is the link between the charm of the Stockholm archipelago in the Baltic Sea and the ancient settlements of Birka and the residences of Sweden's royalty off the freshwater lake of Mälaren.
Charter tours can keep to one or traverse the water locks and access both bodies of water. A chartered event combines excellent food, spectacular sightseeing and Stockholm's nature. Best of all, you can get all that for "not more than a restaurant bill per person," said Sandberg.
The fleet can also be chartered without meals. The ships are equally popular as charters for milestones such as weddings.
Wedding guests can be transported between the church and the banquet hall or taken on a short tour while toasting the newlyweds with bubbly. The captain of a ship can even serve as the wedding officiator if the bridal couple wishes to be wed at sea.
Seeing Stockholm and its surrounding islands from the water is a stunning experience. Combined with fine restaurant dining in the caring hands of a crew that is proud to have you aboard their ship complete with entertainment, you have the a makings of a Stockholm memory which your guests will take with them - even after they recover their land legs.
Contact Strömma Kanalbolaget for more information and pricing at +46 12 00 40 00 or email@example.com