Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A sexy boutique hotel with a music-inspired theme and a focus on business travelers
The Clarion Collection chain is geared toward business travelers, and many of its regular customers spend the majority of the year in hotel rooms. With that in mind, the Clarion Collection Hotel Grand Olav has a number of extras designed with business travelers in mind: a DVD library and in-room DVD players for those lonely nights on the road, organized activities to help guests mingle, and most notably, free breakfast, afternoon waffles, and light evening buffet -- which is not only convenient for business guests, but a major value add considering the price of dining out in Norway.
The hotel is located in the same building as the Olavshallen concert hall, and has a distinct music-inspired theme. Numerous musical artists have stayed here, and some of the rooms are themed for the hotel's famous guests, such as Norwegian notables Mia Gunderson Lelianhof and Di Derre. There's also a jukebox in the lobby with music donated by past guests, and live piano music several nights a week (the performers are usually students from the Trondheim School of Music and the Performing Arts).
Central location near an airport bus stop, and within walking distance of Bakklandet
The Clarion Collection is located in the northeastern corner of Trondheim, a quieter area that's a bit removed from the city center but within easy walking distance of popular sights. The airport bus stops right across the street.
Trondheim is a historic city -- it was founded in 997 A.D. -- but one might not guess it upon first glance. Fires have ravaged the city regularly over the years, and today, many of the buildings are modern, though cobblestones on some of the oldest streets and the iconic Nidaros Cathedral -- its spire is the most prominent feature of the city skyline -- give some sense of its true age. To feel immersed in the city's history, visitors should head to the Old Town Bridge, which faces a colorful row of wharves (some of which date back to the 18th century), and the Bakklandet area, a revitalized shopping and cafe hub with charming wooden buildings that were once worker's houses.
Trondheim also has numerous cultural attractions. It's a university city (one in six residents is a student) with a lively nightlife scene, and there are many musical performances and festivals held here. Though this is the third largest city in Norway, the downtown area is compact and easy to explore on foot.
Contemporary boutique style, rich colors, and marble bathrooms
The room decor is bold and glamorous, though individual details and layouts vary between rooms. Expect details such as blue striped carpets, plush fabrics in rich reds and purples, retro-modern furniture, and gold gilt detailing on headboards. Some rooms are themed after famous Norwegian musical artists.
Most rooms are large for the area, and rooms types include Standard, Superior, Junior Suites, and Executive Suites. The main difference between categories is size and bed configuration, though Superior Rooms and above also have extra amenities -- namely, Nespresso coffeemakers, bathrobes, and bathroom toiletries. All rooms are non-smoking.
Marble bathrooms come with shower/tub combos with both handheld and standing showerheads.
Free breakfast, afternoon waffles, and a light evening buffet
The Grand Olav offers not only a free breakfast with hot and cold items, but free afternoon waffles and a free evening buffet. This adds major value to the hotel, especially since restaurant prices in Norway are so expensive.
Coffee and tea are offered free in the restaurant area throughout the day. The hotel also has a lobby bar serving light meals and drinks.
Two small meeting rooms
The hotel has two small meeting rooms, one that can fit 12 people and one that can fit 10. One is an Executive Suite that can be connected to a guestroom.
The hotel is geared primarily toward business travelers, and has numerous business-friendly amenities including free Wi-Fi and free breakfast and dinner buffets.
This business-oriented, 106-room boutique hotel is located in the same building that houses the Olavshallen concert hall, and has a unique music-inspired theme. It also has numerous freebies -- a DVD library, rental bikes, and most notably, free breakfast, afternoon waffles, and a light evening buffet -- all of which make this a serious value, especially in a country as expensive as Norway. Decor is sultry and sophisticated, with plush fabrics in jewel tones, and rooms come with good-sized flat-screen TVs, DVD players, and marble bathrooms.