This pearl of a hotel is just one hour´s drive by car from the city of Bergen and is well worth a visit. It sits in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by stunningly beautiful nature. And the best of it all - it is haunted! Supposedly so. Be sure to ask for a room in the old part of building, and even if you´re not that interested in ghosts, just lie down and listen to the silence - sometimes broken by the creaking of the walls or the seagulls outside your window. The hotel is over a hundred years old. Much of the decoration is from the previous century, and if you really want a great experience, make an upgrade to one of the suites, where Norwegian writers, composers and royals have gathered inspiration and peace of mind for decades. Simply by existing, the Sandven Hotel captures some of the essence of Norway: Tradition, culture and the old viking form of stoicism.
During later years it has become a member of one of the cheap, Scandinavian hotel chains, which really is incompatible with the style and stylish grandeur exhibited here. Especially I find the new conference section a disgrace to the original architecture and style. The check out is slow, the restaurant mediocre and there is very little going on in the surrounding town. Nevertheless, the Sandven receives a full score in my book, just for what it is, for what it has been and for the fabulous job that has been done to keep tradition alive here.
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