This Stockholm Cinema Has Been Transformed Into A Beautiful Italian Restaurant

The olive tree stands majestically at the center of LAvventura restaurant
The olive tree stands majestically at the center of L'Avventura restaurant | © L'Avventura / Millimeter Arkitekter
Issy Häggström

Hub Writer

The thing about old cinemas is the stardust hanging in the air is still tangible. The heavy red curtains, the ambiance and the stillness, like a bated breath, are a wonderful experience just within your reach. Not too foreign is the experience of walking into an excellent restaurant, the anticipation of great food and inviting ambiance.

Combined in this new Italian restaurant is the joy of both these experiences. The old cinema with its six-metre-high ceilings and gorgeous interiors is the ideal home for this next-level concept Italian restaurant. The adventure of a night out, new sensations and impressions and the magic of relaxing into an evening while the film – or the meal, in this case – takes you on a journey.

1. L'Avventura

Bar, Restaurant, Italian

L’Avventura opened its doors in late January 2018 and the restaurant was very well-received and reviewed in Swedish newspapers and Swedish ELLE magazine. Stureplansgruppen is behind the Italian restaurant with a new concept for the Swedish diner, which is a labour of love for Karl Ljung, restaurant owner and chef. The goal is to take the Italian dining experience to a higher level in Stockholm. Married into an Italian family, Ljung is inspired by the social aspects of dining the Italian way. So what is the difference between your out-of-the-box pasta and homemade sauce and real Italian dining? Think about a relaxed, multi-course meal with large starters to share and entrees featuring homemade mozzarella cheese. A plethora of fresh tastes and the comfort of a rich culinary tradition. The joy of a shared meal, excellent flavours and the elegance of well-designed interiors are matched with the culinary expertise of chefs Laura Marino, Jens Bergstarnd and Karl Ljung. Sounds like a recipe for success. Plan your visit between Tuesday and Saturday nights as the restaurant is closed on Sunday and Monday. Need even more incentive to try a fabulously rich dining experience? L’Avventura is housed in a converted old cinema between Odenplan and Birger Jarlsgatan.

L’Avventura restaurant at home in the 1920s cinema with interiors designed by Millimeter Arkitekter, 2018

History of the Cinema

The construction of the cinema began in the 1920s and it opened its doors to the public in 1927. Well-recognized artists and archetects are behind the building’s decadent stylised features, stucco ceilings and painted murals featuring Romanesque figures. The cinema remained open until 1985. The building interiors have thankfully been restored in recent years, during its use as a conference facility. The Scandinavian firm responsible for the conversion and refurbishment of the neglected cinema is Millimeter Arkitekter. In keeping with the original decadence of the Belle-Epoque concept and themes, the firm chose to use glass shelves so that the restaurant’s two bars don’t hide the artwork on the walls, and they placed the kitchen where the screen used to be. The olive trees used in the decor of L’Avventura are integral to the restaurant ethos and the original design of the cinema. The red velvet chairs an homage to the silver screen’s curtain.

The bars with glass shelves show off the original murals painted in the 1920s by Swedish artist, Nils Asplund
Cinema interior of Metropol Palais building, Sveavägen 77, circa 2012. Walls painted by Swedish artists, Nils Asplund and Jöns Thulin
Metropol Palais cinema wall murals by Swedish artist, Nils Asplund, photographed in 2012
Metropol Palais original 1920s lighting features photographed in 2012
L’Avventura restaurant at home in the 1920s cinema with interiors designed by Millimeter Arkitekter, 2018

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