While Stockholm slipped from fourth to sixth place compared with last year, rival Nordic capital Copenhagen lost its crown as the world's best city to live in and nosedived from first to tenth place.
Monocle's annual Quality of Life survey ranks cities around the globe according to factors including climate, architecture, crime rate, environmental issues, food and drink, business and design.
While some of the data is scientific, other measures are more subjective and the magazine's editor in chief Tyler Brûlé suggested on Thursday that the list was less Scandinavian than ever due to a change in the metrics in 2015 which included how much influence the state has over everyday life in different countries.
“We’ve given extra marks to cities that limit their nannying and we’ve tried to give value to places where there’s something else we know is vital: freedom, grit, independence, a joy with life,” he was quoted as saying by the website Skift.
“We’re frustrated with city councils that are too quick to say no, places where parents never let their children run free and capitals that seem opposed to the odd late night out.”
Stockholm's green space kept it in the top ten. Photo: Ola Ericson/Image Bank Sweden
Stockholm was however highly praised for its access to nature both within the city and in the capital's huge archipelago.
“Nothing turns a day around like a lunchtime swim, and at the weekend a car-free island is just an hour away,” Monocle said in its video report on the rankings.
“Living here is enjoyable even when the days are short, thanks to top restaurants and a vibrant arts, music and design scene,” it added.
While Denmark's capital – which topped the list last year – was praised for its public transport, restaurants, culture and business, recent tensions in the country pushed it into tenth place.
Monocle noted the deadly shootings at a freedom of speech event and a synagogue in February and a decline in contentment ratings in the expensive city. The UN's latest World Happiness Report pushed Denmark from first to third place.
Perhaps the magazine has been keeping an eye on The Local Sweden, where we confidently argued that Stockholm is much hipper than Copenhagen earlier this year.
Police investigating the Copenhagen shootings in February 2015. Photo: TT
Oslo was the only Nordic capital to rise in the rankings, edging up slightly from 24th to 23rd place.
Tokyo topped the global rankings while Vienna was the highest rated European city, scoring well for the cheapness of its public transport and restaurants and for offering its citizens 160 international flight routes and 39 public libraries.