Old time splendor at Oslo’s Grand Hotel

Grand Hotel, OsloOslo’s Grande Dame of a hotel, the Grand Hotel, was built in Norway’s capital in 1874 – back when Oslo went by the name Kristiania.

It is located centrally, on the main shopping street of Karl Johans gate, between the Norwegian Parliament and the Royal Palace.

I love old hotels like this, full of charm and stories to tell … if only the walls could talk.

The Grand Hotel continues with traditions – it is where the Nobel Laureate for the Peace Prize stays before being bestowed the award each year in Oslo’s City Hall.

Grand Hotel, osloThe Hotel has a fabulous lobby bar/lunch room oozing art deco charm and – incongruous for chilly Norway – potted palms.

Its breakfast room, which also serves dinner, is the Grand Cafe. This is where the famed Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen would be headed when he walked each day from his home (now on the street renamed Henrik Ibsens gate) to the cafe where he would eat his daily lunch and dinner, and spend time with fellow artists and intellectuals, including Norwegian painter Edvard Munch.

Grand Hotel, Oslo, NorwayThe cafe has recently been renovated, but sadly seems to have been stripped of its Old World charm as glimpsed in this old photo at right.

At the time of its construction in 1874, it was Oslo’s only ‘modern’, European cafe. Still, even with the changes,  it’s an impressive place to go.

Make sure to visit (or stay in) Oslo’s Grand Hotel on your next visit to the city. For more tips on what to do in Norway’s capital, see my earlier posts on the National Museum of Art, the Nobel Peace Prize Museum, Oslo’s opera houseOslo’s City Hall and jogging in Oslo.

Grand Hotel, Oslo, Norway

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