EUROVISION, can’t help but to love it

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EUROVISION song contest 2018 will be held this Saturday, May 12th.

It is the world’s biggest music show and is held every year, usually in May. The contest has been broadcast for 62 years or since 1956 and is one of the most watched non-sporting event in the world. The show is always held in the country that won the previous year and this year it is held in Lisbon, Portugal.

Eurovision is a great exposure and stepping stool for participating artists and  several winners of the Eurovision song contest have had successful careers after the contest such as Abba, Céline Dion, Cliff Richard and Julio Iglesias.

Icelanders are generally very enthusiastic about Eurovision and particularly since Iceland started participating back in 1986. Some Icelanders would beg to differ but that is probably because they are closet fans and too embarrassed to admit that they love Eurovision. 

In fact there are few things that bring out extreme patriotism in Icelanders, the success of the national football team is one of them (Duhhh) and Eurovision is another. The contest unites Icelanders every year with its glitz and glamour, over the top outfits and of course with it’s (debatably) great song performances.

CENTERTAINMENT will host a Eurovision party at Centerhotel Plaza on the evening of May 12th for our Eurovision loving guests. The show will be broadcasted on a big screen, the bar will offer extended Happy Hour and Portuguese tapas, and to make things even more exciting there will be score cards for guests that would like to participate in the fun.

Free event so give in to your guilty Eurovision pleasure and join in on the fun.

Eventful March

Posted on Categories Culture, Events, Food, Iceland, Music, News Feed, Reykjavik

The days are finally getting longer in Reykjavík with more sunlight, and the city is as vibrant as ever, offering two spectacular events this weekend.

 

Design March

Design March is Iceland’s most important annual design event and celebrates it’s 10th anniversary this year. The event will take place March 15-18th and will be the largest and most significant yet.

Design March offers a unique chance to see and experience Icelandic design, spiced with a handful of the most interesting international names.
From fashion to furniture, architecture to food design, the festival showcases the best of the local design scene alongside exciting international names.

So for four days, Reykjavík, the most northern capital in the world will host dozens of openings, exhibitions, workshops and other events. There are over 100 events-exhibitions, workshops, seminars and parties spread across the city. Usually, these sort of fairs are only open for professionals, however we Icelanders like to have fun, so everybody is invited to join in.

 

Sónar Reykjavík

Another event that is taking place this weekend AND celebrating it’s anniversary is Sónar Reykjavik music festival which will take place for it’s 25th executive year on March 16th and 17th at Harpa music hall.

Sónar is a well known music festival featuring mostly electronica, hip hop and advanced music both from the vibrant Icelandic music scene as well as international talent. The festival will be spread out across 4 different stages, all located indoors within the walls of the beautiful Harpa Concert House and headlining the SonarClub stage will be long-standing electronica innovators Underworld.

If you’re planing to going to Sónar Reykjavík, remember that SKÝ Restaurant & Bar is located right across the street from Harpa concert hall at CenterHotel Arnarhvoll and is the perfect place to grab a pre show dinner or a cocktail while enjoying a spectacular view over Harpa and the bay. And the best part is that CenterHotel guests receive 10% discount of the a la carte menu. It’s a win win win.

 

Harpa, Reykjavík Concert Hall

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If you’ve been to Reykjavík, it is rather unlikely that you haven’t noticed the large glass building down by the harbour. The building is called Harpa and is one of Reykjavík’s greatest and most distinguished landmarks. It is also the cultural and social centre of Reykjavík and offers the best facilities for concerts and conferences in Northern Europe.

Harpa’s design was influenced by the Icelandic exceptional and dramatic nature. It even lights up at night with a light show resembling the Northern Lights.  The distinctive glass facade which was designed by visual artist Ólafur Elíasson changes Harpa into a great canvas where all sorts of color can be displayed upon it, giving Reykjavík and the old harbour a certain oomph especially during the dark winter months.

There are various cultural events, concerts and shows almost every day all year round at Harpa ranging from electronic music festival (Sónar), to Reykjavík Jazz Festival, to heavy metal concerts to being the home to the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the Icelandic Opera. Guided tours of the building in English are also available daily.

 

For those who are interested in seeing a show at Harpa and learning about Icelandic culture in one shot, check out the following shows:

The Pearls of Icelandic Song series:  A popular concert series in Harpa with classical Icelandic music consisting some of the most beloved Icelandic songs, fold-songs and hymns.

How to Become Icelandic in 60 minutes:  The entire show is in english and is not only hilariously funny but it’s a great way to get a little insight on Icelanders and the Icelandic culture. You will laugh and learn and at the end of the show leave the theatre feeling 100% Icelandic.

Icelandic Sagas The Greatest Hits:  A funny and interactive theatrical comedy show featuring the old Icelandic Viking Sagas. The entire show is in english and is not only hilarious but also informative about Icelandic history.  A great way to get a glimpse through Iceland’s literary heritage.

 

You can get tickets to all these shows plus many more right at the front desk at your hotel and prior to the show be sure to try the delicious Pre-Show menu available at SKÝ Restaurant & Bar located right across the street from Harpa at CenterHotel Arnarhvoll.

 

CenterHotels Off-Venue event at SKÝ November 4th

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Our third and final Airwaves off-venue event this year will be held on Saturday, November 4th at the rooftop restaurant and bar SKÝ located at CenterHotel Arnarhvoll.  Three mind blowing artists will be performing: Blindur, Hekla and Indolore.

 

Blindur – 17:00-18:00

The evening starts with the Italian band BLINDUR. Blindur is a musical project; a collective; a crossroad of artists; an idea; an hallucination; a confession; a clear demonstration of fidgetiness; a mix of beautiful and ugly things, artless and articled things, and for all these reasons, sincere things.

 

Hekla – 18:00-19:00

Hekla plays electronic music out of thin air. The music is centered around layers of theremins that interlace with one another creating a cinematic sci-fi atmosphere. Theremins come disguised as voices and other times vocals are disguised as theremins.

 

Indolore – 19:00-20:00

Last on stage is INDOLORE.  Exploring pop/folk-based influences like Nick Drake and Damien Rice, french indie-folk musician INDOLORE began his career in London in a band called Shine, opening for Sia and Morcheeba and working with British rock legend Terry Reid. His debut EP “Positive Girls” got hundreds of streams. He was invited to SXSW in Austin, Texas in 2016. INDOLORE is back to Iceland where he recorded his new EP “Love Letters From Eylenda” in the studio of the magic Sigur Rós last summer. It’s out now on all digital platforms.

 

SKÝ Restaurant and Bar will be offering Happy Hour prices during the event as well as special Airwaves food & beer combos.  Be sure to ask for the Airwaves Cocktail, it’s a good one this year.

Check out our other two off-venue events here.

 

Can’t wait to see you Friday!

CenterHotels Off-Venue event at Ísafold November 3rd

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Our second Airwaves off-venue event this year will be held on Friday, November 3rd at Ísafold/CenterHotel Þingholt with three great bands: Ylfa Marín, Keto and Ingunn Huld.

 

Ylfa Marín – 17:00-18:00

The musician Ylfa Marín starts the show with her smooth and sweet voice. Ylfa is passionate about diverse genres of music and has participated in various projects that mostly have gained popularity abroad. Earlier this year she released an electronica record and since then she has been working on a solo project.

 

Keto – 18:00-19:00

Second on stage is Keto. Keto bring their own style of lo-fi folk, likened to Cat Power and Elliot Smith, with audience members describing it ashypnotic. Playing shows alongside Lower Dens, Eaves, and getting the chance to sing with Sun Kil Moon in Hackney, Keto has gained support from 6music, Drowned in Sound, Clash Mag, and John Kennedy, with her single ‘Change’. 

 

Ingunn Huld – 19:00-20:00

Ingunn Huld is a singer-songwriter that studied jazz singing and released her debut album, Fjúk in November 2015. She has performed at various cafes and smaller venues in and around Reykjavík. Despite her studies as a jazz vocalist and her interest in jazz, she mainly performs pop and folk music. In October 2017 she released her song Splendid along with a music video. In the off-venue concerts she will be accompanied by the bassist Árni Magnùsson and together they will play new songs in English along with a few songs from the album Fjúk.

 

Ísafold Lounge will be offering Happy Hour prices during the show and 10% discount will be off the a la carte menu at Ísafold Restaurant.  Be sure to try the Moscow Mule, our official Airwaves Cocktail this year.

Check out our other two off-venue events here.

 

See you Friday!

Iceland in the World Cup

Posted on Categories Events, Football, Iceland, News Feed, ReykjavikTags

After Iceland’s incredible achievement last year making it into the quarter finals at the 2016 Euro cup with an epic win against England, the football team became one of the most talked about teams of the year.  And with it’s indomitable team spirit and character the team became a favorite of many in the world.

Now, a mere year later the team beats the odds again by not only qualifying the World Cup finals but by winning their Group outright. And with that proving that they are no one hit wonder.

Fireworks lit up the sky and the crowd went wild at Laugardalur stadium in Reykjavík last Monday night when the Icelandic football team won a very important match against Kosovo and became the smallest nation ever to qualify for the FIFA World Cup finals. This was a remarkable achievement for Iceland, a country with a population of only 334,000.

Despite the teams success, Heimir Hallgrímsson the Icelandic football coach continued his small town tradition by approaching fans at a neighborhood sportsbar close the stadium 2 hours prior to the match. Sharing some inside details about the match and getting fans pumped up for the game.   

After the win thousands of fans flocked downtown to Ingólfstorg square where they continued celebrating this historical achievement in Icelandic sports history. Fans were greeted by ‘strákarnir okkar’ (our boys) on a big stage, singing and dancing and of course doing the viking ‘HUH’, the communal viking handclap that gives everyone the chills down the spine.

Áfram Ísland!!

Bun Day

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Many people don‘t like Mondays but Monday next, February 27, is surely an exception since it‘s Bun Day and if you have a sweet tooth you‘re going to love it.

The tradition of eating choux pastry buns filled with jam and whipped cream, topped with chocolate glaze came to Iceland from Norway and Denmark and marks the start of Lent.

The weekend before Bun Day bakeries and grocery stores start selling buns and many locals will bake their own buns and invite their families and friends over for a treat. These days you can get all kinds of exotic buns with a variety of different fillings and toppings, making it hard to choose which ones to sample.

Before Bun Day it‘s quite common that children in kindergarten make sticks decorated with colorful paper strips that they use to spank their parents and say bolla, bolla, which means bun, bun  and then their parents have to give them some sweet buns.

You will be able to taste these sugary and sweet buns at our restaurant Jörgensen Kitchen & Bar on Monday since we’ll be offering complimentary buns with all dishes served during lunch hour.   So if you’re in the mood for some sugar and sweets come join us at Jörgensen.

And the last but not least – Have a nice Bun Day!

And the Beat Goes On

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Music lovers can certainly rejoice this week as the Sónar music festival takes place in Harpa concert hall February 16-18.

Many of the most popular Icelandic musicians and DJs are playing at the festival, for example Gus Gus, FM Belfast, Aron Can and Emmsjé Gauti. Some famous foreign bands will also make an appearance such as Fatboy Slim and De La Soul.

The festival will take place at Harpa Concert Hall in three different concert halls and a part of the underground car park that will be transformed into a night club where local and international DJs will keep the party going until 3 am.

Harpa Concert Hall is located right opposite CenterHotel Arnarhvoll and SKÝ Restaurant & Bar and therefore ideal to stop by at SKÝ to enjoy seeing Harpa concert hall from the top floor restaurant for a drink or two before or after the concert.

So join the party, enjoy the music and dance.

For more information and tickets click here

Love is all around us at CenterHotels

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Love and romance will be our main focus at our restaurants on Valentines day and therefore an ideal venue for all your lovebirds out there that would like to enjoy each others company in a cozy atmosphere with tasty food and wine.

Our chefs at Ísafold Restaurant have put together a delicious 5 course meal that they’ve tailored made for this romantic day of the year.  The food at Isafold is locally sourced made from quality ingredients and the restaurant itself is beautifully designed – perfect for romantic evenings.

At SKÝ Restaurant & Bar our chef’s have put together a tasty three course dinner with a dash of romance hence you’ll find there delicious food, cozy atmosphere an the most spectacular view over Faxaflói bay and down town Reykjavík.

Love will be all around Jörgensen Kitchen & Bar as well since the Jörgensen chef’s will be giving the first 14 tables that book at table on Valentines day complimentary licorice cremé brulée á la Jörgensen.

And so – romance, love, happiness and excellent food is what you may expect when visiting our restaurant during Valentines day.

Welcome!

Opera in the heart of Reykjavík

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Fancy to add a little bit of music and culture to your stay in Iceland? If so, how does the wonderful opera Eugene Onegin by Pjotr Tchaikovsky at the Icelandic Opera sound? This wonderful opera is Tchaikovsky’s most loved opera. It is based on Alexander Pushkin’s verse novel and is extremely romantic and beautiful. Really something you shouldn’t miss out on.

The opera will be performed at Harpa concert hall on October 22nd and 29th 2016.

We are working closely with the Icelandic Opera and so we are able to offer tickets to Eugene Onegin in premium class seats along with a three course chef’s choice lunch or dinner at Ísafold Restaurant and after show drinks at SKÝ Restaurant & Bar.

See further information about the Eugene Onegin package we’re offering here .  For more information or for booking please contact us at reservations@centerhotels.com or call us at +354 595 8500