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How to Book a Hotel in Hemsedal
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Hotels of Hemsedal
A hotel in Hemsedal is an establishment that provides lodging paid on a short-term basis. Facilities provided may range from a basic bed and storage for clothing, to luxury features like en-suite bathrooms. Larger in Hemsedal hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference facilities and social function services. Hotel rooms in Hemsedal are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room. Some Hemsedal hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. Hotel operations vary in size, function, and cost. Most Hemsedal hotels and major hospitality companies that operate hotels in Hemsedal have set widely accepted industry standards to classify hotel types. General categories include the following:
Upscale luxury hotels in Hemsedal
An upscale full service hotel facility in Hemsedal that offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and the highest level of personalized and professional service. Luxury Hemsedal hotels are normally classified with at least a Four Diamond or Five Diamond status or a Four or Five Star rating depending on classification standards.
Full service hotels in Hemsedal
Full service Hemsedal hotels often contain upscale full-service facilities with a large volume of full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and a variety of on-site amenities such as swimming pools, a health club, children's activities, ballrooms, on-site conference facilities, etc.
Historic inns and boutique hotels in Hemsedal
Boutique hotels of Hemsedal are smaller independent non-branded hotels that often contain upscale facilities of varying size in unique or intimate settings with full service accommodations. Hemsedal boutique hotels are generally 100 rooms or less. Some historic inns and boutique hotels in Hemsedal may be classified as luxury hotels.
Focused or select service hotels in Hemsedal
Small to medium-sized hotel establishments that offer a limited amount of on-site amenities that only cater and market to a specific demographic of Hemsedal travelers, such as the single business traveler. Most Hemsedal focused or select service hotels may still offer full service accommodations but may lack leisure amenities such as an on-site restaurant or a swimming pool.
Economy and limited service hotels in Hemsedal
Small to medium-sized Hemsedal hotel establishments that offer a very limited amount of on-site amenities and often only offer basic accommodations with little to no services, these facilities normally only cater and market to a specific demographic of travelers, such as the budget-minded Hemsedal traveler seeking a "no frills" accommodation. Limited service Hemsedal hotels often lack an on-site restaurant but in return may offer a limited complimentary food and beverage amenity such as on-site continental breakfast service.
Guest houses and B&Bs in Hemsedal
A bed and breakfast in Hemsedal is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and inclusive breakfast. Usually, Hemsedal bed and breakfasts are private homes or family homes offering accommodations. The typical Hemsedal B&B has between 4 and 11 rooms, with 6 being the average. Generally, guests are accommodated in private bedrooms with private bathrooms, or in a suite of rooms including an en suite bathroom. Some homes have private bedrooms with a bathroom which is shared with other guests. Breakfast is served in the bedroom, a dining room, or the host's kitchen. Often the owners of guest house themselves prepare the breakfast and clean the rooms.
Hostels in Hemsedal
Hemsedal hostels provide budget-oriented, sociable accommodation where guests can rent a bed, usually a bunk bed, in a dormitory and share a bathroom, lounge, and sometimes a kitchen. Rooms can be mixed or single-sex, although private rooms may also be available. Hostels are often cheaper for both the operator and occupants; many Hemsedal hostels have long-term residents whom they employ as desk agents or housekeeping staff in exchange for experience or discounted accommodation.
Apartment hotels, extended stay hotels in Hemsedal
Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized Hemsedal hotels that offer longer term full service accommodations compared to a traditional hotel. Extended stay hotels may offer non-traditional pricing methods such as a weekly rate that cater towards travelers in need of short-term accommodations for an extended period of time. Similar to limited and select service hotels, on-site amenities are normally limited and most extended stay hotels in Hemsedal lack an on-site restaurant.
Timeshare and destination clubs in Hemsedal
Hemsedal timeshare and destination clubs are a form of property ownership also referred to as a vacation ownership involving the purchase and ownership of an individual unit of accommodation for seasonal usage during a specified period of time. Timeshare resorts in Hemsedal often offer amenities similar that of a Full service hotel with on-site restaurant(s), swimming pools, recreation grounds, and other leisure-oriented amenities. Destination clubs of Hemsedal on the other hand may offer more exclusive private accommodations such as private houses in a neighborhood-style setting.
Motels in Hemsedal
A Hemsedal motel is a small-sized low-rise lodging establishment similar to that of a limited service hotel, but with direct access to individual rooms from the car park. Common during the 1950s and 1960s, motels were often located adjacent to a major road, where they were built on inexpensive land at the edge of towns or along stretches of highways. They are still useful in less populated areas of Hemsedal for driving travelers, but the more populated an area becomes the more hotels fill the need. Many of Hemsedal motels which remain in operation have joined national franchise chains, rebranding themselves as hotels, inns or lodges.
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Hemsedal is a municipality in Buskerud county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Hallingdal. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Trøym. Hemsedal lies on the Norwegian National Road 52 (Rv 52), the main road from Oslo to Bergen. Hemsedal is located 220 km (136.70 mi) northwest of Oslo and 273 km (169.63 mi) from Bergen.
Hemsedal: General information
The Old Norse form of the name was Hemsudalr. The second element is dalr, which means "valley" or "dale"; the first element is usually taken as the genitive case of the river name Hemsa (now Hemsil) of unknown derivation, although Sophus Bugge believed that it might derive from the Old Norse hemsa, hefnsa or hofn, meaning "going to pasture". The Norwegian word hems ("bed built in a small loft room") is named after the valley of Hemsedal.
The coat-of-arms is from modern times. The arms were granted on 2 October 1992 and were designed by Stein Davidsen. The arms show a gold lynx head on a red background.
See also: Coats-of-arms of Bygland and Hamarøy
Hemsedal: Early history
It is unclear how long there has been a settlement in Hemsedal, but the oldest houses are of very ancient origin. Charcoal found in many places in the valley testifies to iron smelting. The oldest charcoal that has been found has been dated to ca. 200–300 AD. Probably the first settlers made a living as hunters and gatherers; the area had a large population of wild reindeer in the past.
Hemsedal stave church (Hemsedal stavkyrkje) is believed to have been built between 1207 and 1224, and is first mentioned, as Ecclesia Aamsodal, in the accounts and diaries of the Papal nuncios sent to Scandinavia to collect tithes in 1282–1324. In 1327 it was also mentioned under the name Skodvinar Kirkja i Hemsudali; this refers to alternate names of the farm where it stood, Kyrkjebøen: Skodvin and Skadengård. The church was dismantled in 1882, when it was replaced by Hemsedal church (Hemsedal kyrkje) 1 kilometre (0.62 mi) away.
Hemsedal natives are known as hemsedøler. The local dialect is transitional between Eastern and Western Norwegian, with deep roots in Old Norse. The valley has traditionally had small and medium-sized farms that were widely scattered on the valley bottom on both sides of the river and along the slopes. Because of the high altitude, farming has concentrated for the most part on livestock and dairy, and use of summer shielings has been important for the farms, which could not find sufficient pasturage in the valley bottom. Most therefore had milking stations on the shielings.
In the 1647 cadastre there was only one farm in Hemsedal large enough to pay full taxes; there were 24 liable for half taxation and 15–16 assessed as disused. In addition, there were a number of enterprises that were not assessed tax. The estimated population was about 400 (the exact number is unknown). Until the mid-19th century, the population increased steadily. In 1845 there were 1,775 people in the village. However, the population declined again over the next 75 years, probably as a result of emigration to North America. In 1920 it had fallen to 1,358, before once more starting to increase. In 1897, Hemsedal was separated from the municipality of Gol to become a municipality of its own.
Hemsedal: Recent history
Aerial view of Hemsedal in winter
View of Hemsedal in summer from Tuv
Hemsedal's modern history can be said to begin early in the 20th century, when the first hotel in the village, the Skogstad Hotel, was completed in 1905. Before that, in the latter half of the 19th century, a road had been built through the village with the hope that it would become a major route to Western Norway. However, things changed dramatically with the opening of the Bergen Railway in 1909. Hemsedal once more became a detour, while upper Hallingdal took over as the main route.
In the 1920s, however, the first holiday cottages began to be built in the area. Outsiders bought huts in Hallingdal and moved them up into the mountains, at first to enjoy the fresh mountain air and hunting and fishing, not winter sports.
After the Second World War, new places to stay were established in the valley, such as Vangen Pensjonat (inn) at Tuv (1947) and Lykkjaheim Pensjonat (1953). A tourist agency was established in 1939 and in 1952 suggested building a ski lift in Hemsedal, but this did not happen until 1959, when Fossheim Pensjonat created the Tottenheisen, a 350-metre (1,150 ft) ski lift behind the inn at Ulsåk, serving the first piste in the village, Tottenløypa. However, this lift was torn down in 1961.
Hemsedal Skisenter (Ski Centre) opened at Holdeskaret in 1961, and a few years later, planning began for careful and controlled tourist development that has led to the nickname "Scandinavia's Alps". Over the five years beginning in 1980, a series of new businesses aimed at tourists were established, and the first chairlift, Olaheisen, opened in 1983. Tourism has continued to grow in economic significance for Hemsedal, which as of 2011 has approximately 500,000 guest nights over the winter season, divided between 6,500 available beds. More than half of visitors come from abroad. Hemsedal is now also popular in the summer season, due to good opportunities for fishing, hiking, climbing, cycling, golf and other activities and ample accommodations.
The municipality is bordered to the north by Vang and Vestre Slidre (both in Oppland county), to the east by Nord-Aurdal (in Oppland county) and Gol, to the south by Ål and Hol, and to the west by Lærdal (in Sogn og Fjordane county). Lakes in the region include Juklevatnet.
Hemsedal's economy is based on agriculture and tourism.
One of the first tourists in Hemsedal was the Norwegian polar explorer Fritjof Nansen, who visited in 1898 and stayed at the Bjøberg Fjellstue. Today Hemsedal is a popular destination, with Hemsedal Ski Centre the main attraction.
About 70% of all visitors come in the winter season (December–May) and most of the remaining 30% in the summer months. The main countries of origin of tourists are Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Russia, the Netherlands and the UK.
Hemsedal is the second largest ski resort in Norway. The ski centres in Hemsedal and Grøndalen were bought in 2000 by the Swedish company Sälenstjärnen, which changed its name the following year to Skistar. Skistar also owns Trysil Ski Centre, Sälen and Åre, Vemedalen and Hammarbybacken in Sweden.
From the museum farm Øvre Løkji, there are several trails up into the mountains. Hemsedal's cross-country stadium is located at Gravset and is the starting point for a large network of trails to Lykkja and Gol, including 10 km (6.21 mi) of lighted trails.
The Hemsedal Bygdetun is located at Øvre Løkji in the village of Ulsåk. The museum has houses and artifacts from the early 18th century to modern times. The farm is located in the middle of an agricultural landscape formed by old methods.
The waterfall Rjukandefossen, located in the vicinity of the village of Tuv
Every autumn, winter and part of spring tourists travel to Hemsedal for skiing.
In the summer, Hemsedal offers many activities such as hiking (Hemsedal Top 20), climbing, fell-walking, mountain biking, paragliding, and fishing.
Hemsedal: Notable residents
In November 1911 three male and seven female reindeer from Hemsedal were released at Ocean Harbour on the Barff Peninsula, on the northern coast of South Georgia forming the Barff herd which, by 1958, had increased to 3000 animals.
Josef Monsrud (1922 - 2009) was a Norwegian forester and resistance member during World War II. At the age of twenty he joined the resistance Osvald Group. He went through some initial training and was hired as a guard for the strictly illegal Communist Party of Norway which had a secret base in Hemsedal.
Kjell Venås (born in Hemsedal 1927) is a Norwegian philologist. He spent most of his career at the University of Oslo as a lecturer and as a professor (1971 to 1997), specializing in research about the Nynorsk language form
Ingrid Wigernæs (born in Hemsedal 1928) is a retired Norwegian cross country skier who won a silver medal in the 3×5 km relay at the 1966 World Championships
Erik Wøllo (born in Hemsedal 1961) is a Norwegian composer and musician, guitarist and synthesist. As a solo recording artist, he is most known for his electronic and ambient musical soundscapes
Hege Nerland (1966 – 2007) was a Norwegian politician for the Socialist Left Party. In 2003 she helped found the local party chapter in her native Hemsedal.
Geir Skeie (born 1980) is a Norwegian chef and restaurateur, who worked at the Skarsnuten Hotel in Hemsedal
Eirik Markegård (born in Hemsedal 1984) is a Norwegian footballer who plays as a striker for the Norwegian fifth Division side Jardar
Erik Solbakken (born in Hemsedal 1984) is a Norwegian television presenter. Solbakken was one of the hosts of the Eurovision Song Contest 2010
Hemsedal: Sister cities
The following cities are twinned with Hemsedal:
- Essunga, Västra Götaland County, Sweden
- Kalvola, Southern Finland, Finland
- Tõrva, Valga County, Estonia
"Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.
Geir Thorsnæs. "Hemsedal". Store norske leksikon. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
Haugen, Einar (1967) Norwegian-English Dictionary A Pronouncing and Translating Dictionary of Modern Norwegian (The University of Wisconsin Press) Buy book ISBN 978-0-299-03874-8
"Kommunevåpenet". Hemsedal kommune. Archived from the original on 22 December 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-07.(Norwegian)
P. A. Munch, ed., Pavelige Nuntiers [J. de Serone, B. de Ortolis, P. Gervasii] Regnskabs-og Dagböger, førte under Tiende-Opkrævningen i Norden 1282–1334, Christiania: 1864, OCLC 562932132 (Danish)
Håkon Christie. "Hemsedal stavkirke". Stavkirke.info. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
Sigrid Marie Christie, Håkon Christie. "Hemsedal kirke". Norges kirker. Retrieved September 15, 2016.