The current Swedish government decided that a selection of State run museums would have free admission. Debate about the reasoning behind the decision, and whether it achieves it’s aim of making culture more accessible, can be had elsewhere. Its a fact.
One of the museums included in the section is on that I love and have gladly paid many times to visit: Hallwylska museet(The Hallwyl museum) at Hamngatan here in Stockholm.
If it’s your first visit I do however recommend paying for the guided tour as it let’s you into rooms not open to unattended visitors.
I’ve taken the tour(more then once) but my memory is a bit blurred: I tend to let my eye wander and focus on beautiful objects instead of listening to the tour guide. Basically it was built as a private residence by Eleonora Von Hallwyl and her husband. She had the money and thus the last word about design and interiors. It’s very classic but was also one of the first houses in Stockholm that had a telephone line. Eleonora Von Hallwyl is also another example of “You are not a hoarder if you stuffs in order”; she had these huge logbooks where everything(but everything) owned and used was recorded.
As it is an old house admission is restricted to 120 people at one time which means that you might have to stand in line if you visit on a Sunday afternoon but when inside it is never crowded and you can really look at things. It’s like walking around in the set of Downton Abbey or an novel by Henry James(in fact they had costumes from Downton Abbey on display once, and have had other fashion related exhibits. Another reason for me to love it and continue to visit).
I will probably make one more visit before the year is over; around Christmas they deck the place out like it would have looked “back in the day” with a huge Christmas tree and lots of lights. It’s just the kind of thing to get me into a seasonal spirit.
You can find out more here.