Iceland Mag

13 Reykjavik

Iceland Mag

Culture

One of the oldest stores in Iceland closed on Laugavegur street to make way for a hotel

By Staff

  • The end of an era The convenience store Vísir which closed its doors last weekend has been in business since 19015. The small black wooden building at the downtown end of Laugavegur street is one of the oldest in Reykjavík. Photo/From the Facebook page of Vísir.

One hundred years of history came to an end on last weekend when the small convenience store Vísir was closed. The store, which was operated under the same name in a small black wooden building at the downtown end of Laugavegur street, was originally opened in December 1915. A hotel is being built behind the store, requiring a part of the historic building to be changed and re-built.

Operators of neighbouring businesses told the local news site visir.is that they would miss the store, as will many Reykjavík residents who have grown up with the store and see it as an important and indispensable part of downtown Reykjavík. (It should be noted that despite bearing the same name, the convenience store Vísir and the online news site visir.is are in no way connected.)

A hotel is being built behind the house where the convenience store Vísir was located. As part of the construction a part of the house on Laugavegur 1, the part where Vísir was located, will be torn down and rebuilt in collaboration with the Historical preservation authorities. A new store, called Icemart, which will sell souvenirs and clothing from the clothing manufacturer Icewear will then be opened in the location. The hotel is being built by a company owned and operated by the same individual who owns Icewear.

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