This is an elegant and cosy establishment and the perfect example of a hotel where you will feel at home; the only difference being that it's cleaner and tidier and the interior is rather more classic. However, its perfect location at a short distance from the harbour and town centre is overshadowed by a three-lane street that runs past the hotel. You will have to wait until 2012 to see it disappear!
The hotel is located between the city centre and the harbour, only a 5-minute walk away from the bars, restaurants, museums, art galleries and the Opera. Ten minutes on foot will take you from the hotel to the station.
The three-lane street is to make way for a park in 2012, which will make the hotel a lot less noisy.
The establishment opened in 1996 and was entirely renovated in 2009 (except for the Deluxe rooms and the suites). It occupies a pretty eight-floor building constructed in the style of the local architecture. Once inside, you will enjoy the warmth and comfort of the setting. In fact it's cosy enough to make you feel at home. It is not the kind of hotel, for example, where you are made to feel that your very presence is a nuisance. Lots of the guests sit around in sofas, the coffee is always warm, the television is always on, there is a fire going in the winter and the Internet stations are popular; indeed, everyone can carry on with their own activity in a calm and convivial atmosphere. The ground floor is totally open. The restaurant is in a glass structure adjoining the lounge area, the reception desk and the bar, while the television area is next to the Internet area and the library. There are also large armchairs set around the fireplace in which to sit and enjoy a good book. This all takes place in a classic setting with parquet floors, dark furniture, wallpaper, old-fashioned lighting and paintings of wild animals that you would only find in Norway. Nearly everything happens on the ground floor! Only sporting activities are confined to the basement: guests may try out some of the fitness machines, a large bubble bath and a tanning bed so that they can bring a tan back from their Oslo holiday (for a fee).
66 of the 95 rooms have been renovated. Most of them have two single beds, which is a pity for couples! Unlike the rather more classical style of the communal areas, the rooms have big windows, a colourful interior, mirrored-top desks and tasteful furnishings. The old-school television stands out in the room a bit but we were given every reassurance that flat screen televisions were on their way to take their place among the facilities that already include a minibar and an ironing board. Most of the bathrooms are narrow and they are equipped with a shower, a toilet and a hair-dryer - nothing too outlandish, but the bare necessities to get pampered up, nevertheless. Whatever their size, the rooms are very comfortable - apart from the fact that the proximity to the street makes it impossible to open the windows - there is nothing to complain about in terms of the interior and level of comfort. The Deluxe rooms and the suites, however, which have not been renovated, could do with a little touch-up.
Interestingly, the beds in some of the standard rooms have remote controls to adjust the position of the head or feet, or both!
The reception area opens onto the restaurant which is inside a glass structure. The decor is classical, yet modern, with its soft benches and flowery wall-paper. The decor is not everything, though, what really interests us is the food! In that respect, you will be far from disappointed; a copious breakfast is served until 11:00am during the weekend and the month of July, which means you can have it as a brunch. Freshly pressed orange juice, scrambled eggs and bacon: the dishes are delicious and there is enough choice to please everyone. In the afternoon, sandwiches and waffles are available for the guests, who can prepare their own waffle between 3:00pm and 6:00pm. Then from 6:00pm till 9:00pm, guests can enjoy a buffet dinner, with starters and main courses, all of which are included in the room price. Unbelievable but nevertheless true! However, if you'd rather eat out and be properly served at a table, the hotel has many good places to recommend in town.
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Mark out of 10 for geographical location