Choice Hotels Opens Clarion Hotel The Hub in Oslo, Norway, Marking Largest Hotel in Portfolio

USA, Rockville, Maryland. April 30, 2019

Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) is pleased to announce the opening of the largest hotel in its portfolio - the Clarion Hotel The Hub in Oslo, Norway. The hotel offers 810 rooms, unique design, two bars, and a premium rooftop restaurant with stunning views in the heart of Norway's capital city.

"Clarion Hotel The Hub is a destination for those seeking creativity, inspiration, and enriching experiences in the center of Oslo. This is the largest hotel in the city, but it still curates a warm atmosphere, with people who are passionate about diversity, sustainability and going the extra mile for guests," said the hotel's General Manager Andre Schreiner.

Sustainability in its DNA Sustainability is an important part of the property's profile, as evidenced by its selection of energy efficient materials, systems and daily operations. For example, the hotel is the first in the Nordic region to use smart elevators. It is also home to the biggest rooftop meadow in Scandinavia, encompassing 200 square meters, which has been named GrowHub; the vegetables, herbs and edible flowers from the meadow are incorporated into the Clarion Hotel The Hub's food and beverage offerings.

A living collection of art and culture

Thoughtful design, art and architecture differentiate the Clarion Hotel The Hub. Prior to opening, the hotel collaborated with art curator Sune Nordgren to source artwork from numerous renowned artists including Hamish Fulton, Eric & Heater ChanSchatz and Anne Karin Furunes. The artwork is displayed on the hotel's walls and ceilings and enjoyed by both guests and community members. The hotel also entered an agreement with the Munch Museum to collaborate on future art exhibitions and events, and the hotel lobby houses a library as part of its relationship with Deichmanske Folkebibliotek (the Oslo Public Library). The library features local authors and stories that celebrate Oslo's art, culture, design, history or daily life.

The Clarion Hotel The Hub is one of 20 Clarion hotels open in Scandinavia, all of which are owned by Nordic Choice, Choice's Master Partner in the Scandinavian region who develops, markets and supports Choice's brands in their territories. They currently own, manage or franchise more than 180 properties representing more than 30,000 rooms. Their portfolio consists of Comfort, Quality, Clarion and Ascend Hotel Collection-branded hotels, and the company has plans to open several other hotels under the Choice Hotels umbrella throughout the region in the next year.

"Our focus has always been forging long-term relationships with high-quality developers and operators to grow our international footprint through proven brands," said Mark Pearce, senior vice president, international division, Choice Hotels. "We've been fortunate to work closely with Nordic Choice for many years to bring several outstanding hotels to fruition, and we know the Clarion Hotel The Hub - a true jewel in our family of Choice Hotels - is yet another outstanding addition to the Scandinavian market."

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Coming up in August 2019...

Food & Beverage: Millennial Chefs Lead the Way

Led by Millennial chefs, hotels continue to foster sustainability, sourcing and wellness within their dining rooms and banquet spaces, and by all measures, this is responsible for an increase in their revenues. In many hotels, the food & beverage division contributes 50 per cent or more to hotel sales and they are currently experiencing double-digit growth. As a result, hotel owners are allocating an increasing amount of square footage for F&B operations. The biggest area of investment is in catering, which is thriving due to weddings, social events and business conferences. Hotels are also investing in on-site market or convenience stores that offer fresh/refrigerated foods, and buffet concepts also continue to expand. Other popular food trends include a rise of fermented offerings such as kombucha, kimchi, sauerkraut, tempeh, kefir and pickles - all to produce the least processed food possible, and to boost probiotics to improve the immune system. Tea is also enjoying something of a renaissance. More people are thinking of tea with the same reverence as coffee due to its many varieties, applications and benefits. Craft tea blending, nitro tea on tap and even tea cocktails are beginning to appear on some hotel menus. Another trend concerns creating a unique, individualized and memorable experience for guests. This could be a small consumable item that is specific to a property or event, such as house-made snack mixes, gourmet popcorn, macaroons, or jars of house-made jams, chutneys, and mustards -all produced and customized in house. One staple that is in decline is the in-room minibar which seems to have fallen out of favor. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will document the trends and challenges in the food and beverage sector, and report on what some leading hotels are doing to enhance this area of their business.