Clarion Collection Havnekontoret Bergen, TripAdvisor #1 hotel for Bergen, Norway is where I stayed several nights this past week. The location is beside the Bryggen UNESCO World Heritage Site and across the street from the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, Bergen. These two hotels are the last stop on the Bergen Airport Express bus for 90 NOK door to door service.
Bryggen, Norway is the old Hanseatic League wharf. Clarion Collection Havnekonteret is the large building on the left.
My first impressions of the hotel were the historic building environment. I did not learn anything about the hotel building’s history. Walking around the hotel let me take it in.
This was the view at the bottom of the stairs for the six floor hotel. My room was on the sixth floor, but I generally took the stairs for the view and feel of the older hotel building.
Another reason why I passed this room frequently is when I did take the elevator, there was a less frequently used elevator here, away from the reception desk.
The stairwell offered historical photos of Bergen to view.
Above the sixth floor is a clock tower where guests can access a panoramic view of Bergen.
The tower room is just one of the places in the hotel to chill out.
And on a sunny day, the tower is a great place for views, photos and sun.
The lobby of the hotel offered several places for seating. This seemed to be a popular hotel for bus and cruise tour guests. This was the only hotel I stayed in Norway where there were several other Americans.
Aside from meal times, there generally were few people hanging around the hotel.
There is a small computer room off the lobby with two stations.
One of the good value features of the hotel is a complimentary bike rental. I was told there are two bicycles for loan. I checked one out and went cycling my first full day in Bergen. I was wary of riding without a helmet. There are plenty of cobblestones and light rail tracks in the city. There are also miles of cycling paths.
If you are in town for only one night, then the location beside Bryggen is ideal and the historic Bergen fish market is less than five minutes walk.
The hotel has won several awards from TripAdvisor and was named Clarion International Hotel of the Year for 2012.
The breakfast service featured a hot grill for frying up your own bacon and eggs. The usual yogurts, fruits, vegetables, breads, meats and cheeses and cereals were offered from 6:30-9:30am on weekdays and 8-11am on Saturday and Sunday. Pancakes with fruit toppings were set out from 3-6pm for making your own pancakes. Fruit was available all day. In the evening there was a light buffet that changed daily for the hot item. Burrito night was interesting in a way I appreciated for the Norwegian take on burritos. No rice and kidney beans were a different take on the Mexican food concept.
The dining room was sufficient size for the large groups, although getting to the food and especially the coffee in the corner at times required a wait.
Breakfast room with the serving area in a small space in the back.
A bit crowded when there were 50 people trying to move through the area. Must be a crazy space on a full night in mid-summer.
The hotel does not have regular restaurant service. There is Filini, part of Radisson Blu Royal Hotel across the street. There are several restaurants within five minutes walk. Best of all is a supermarket next door to the hotel.
Since there was so much food available for 9 hours a day, I only purchased on can of chile-spiced tuna to eat on one of my hikes during my six days in Bergen. A couple of days I came back from a hike and cooked up a pancake for a snack.
The ability to dine at the restaurant was a great money saver, albeit limited selection of foods. Most places around Bergen charge $15 to $20 for a basic meal with beverages extra.
Clarion Collection Havnekonoret cost 16,000 Choice Privileges reward points per night or room rates start at around 1,700 NOK per night ($280 USD) for one person Standard Room to 2,400 NOK ($400 NOK) per night two persons, Deluxe room. I stayed in a Deluxe Room with balcony for 16,000 points per night.
Part Two of Clarion Havnekontoret will be photos for a couple of room types and the Compact Gym and sauna.
Ric Garrido of Monterey, California is writer and owner of Loyalty Traveler.
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