I spent the previous week in Malmö at ESC. Eurovision was fantastic. And part of what made it fantastic was Malmö. It’s a fantastic city.
Let’s start with what wasn’t perfect:
- Almost everyplace serves beer cool instead of cold.
- And, uh… that’s it.
The people there are terrific. I think the Swedes are some of the nicest people on the planet. Every person I met was pleasant. And helpful. Anytime I was trying to find something the first person I asked took the time to help me out. I think it’s illustrated best by the response to a question. Where an American will answer with “yes,” most in Sweden answer with “yes, of course.”
It’s a very pretty city. A lot of downtown is building that have been around for hundreds of years. They’re nicely designed. And they have a pedestrian street that goes on for over a mile, with several large beautiful plazas along it. But they’re working buildings, not a museum or tourist city. That makes it even nicer. The Eurovision Village at the Gustav Adolfs torg plaza was awesome, both the layout and what was presented there.
They also have a great transit system. The train has 2 stops in Malmö and the next one South is the Copenhagen airport. A ton of bus lines. And bike racks everywhere. I think if I lived there I would not own a car – the train/bus would always be faster.
The arena complex, where Eurovision was held, was perfect. Any smaller and ESC would have looked cramped in it. Any larger and not as good a show for people further away in the stands. I think Sweden made the right choice holding ESC in Malmö.
- I stayed at the Mayfair Tunneln Hotel. Super nice. The building is 700 years old yet it’s as nice as a new hotel. Great free breakfast. And super-helpful service.
- The Mando Steakhouse has the best pepper steak I have ever had – anywhere. And they serve their beer cold!