Fru Haugans Hotel
Fru Haugans Hotel has proud traditions with women owners taking good care of guests and wanting them to feel at home. These traditions go back to 1885, when Ellen Haugan moved north to Mosjøen with her three young daughters and took over the oldest hotel in Northern Norway.
Text: Edda Espeland / Translation: Linda Vikaune / Photo: Morten Eriksen
Fru Haugans Hotel is situated in the middle of beautiful Mosjøen town in Helgeland district in the north. The hotel’s history goes all the way back to 1794, but it wasn’t until Ellen Haugan took over that it started to flourish. Taking the hotel on without having seen it, she arrived to find a building in disrepair, with an earth floor and an open fire in the kitchen. This did not discourage her; she was a tough and hardworking lady and created a hotel which was soon renowned for the good food and service and its cosy atmosphere.
When she died, her eldest daughter Eli Haugan Jensen Hals took over. She was married but had no children, so when she passed away, her niece Eli Marie Jürgensen carried on the good traditions, took a course in hospitality and created a sound base for future development of the hotel. After her, another niece, Bjørg Jürgensen Johannessen, took the helm in 1991. Bjørg redecorated all the guest rooms, built a conference centre and two restaurants, a bar, a new reception area and a lift. She wanted to preserve the original style as well as introduce modern comfort, and received the municipality’s renovation award for her work. After she died, her husband Alf G. Johannessen ran the hotel with the help of female manager Bodil Fagerli. In 2014 Ellen Løvold Strand, Mrs Haugan’s great-great-granddaughter and the fifth generation woman from the same family, took over the running of the hotel. She is part of a long tradition of women hoteliers at Fru Haugans Hotel and runs it with her husband Sverre Strand. Last year a new hotel wing was opened with 36 additional guest rooms, course and conference facilities and a lovely terrace with steps down to the river.
Good food and good sleep
Food traditions and pride in the hotel has been a solid foundation for the business for more than 220 years. They say the hotel has the best caramel pudding in the world, a dish that has been passed down through the generations. Should the guests catch fish in the Vefsna river, they can have it cooked in the kitchen. The hotel is also a part of the Arctic Menu food association, a regional network of enthusiastic restauranteurs and food producers in Northern Norway and Svalbard island who are passionate about promoting the flavour of Norway’s northern areas. There is a wealth of produce and ingredients which are distinctly northern, such as whale, reindeer, king crab and dried fish – all scrumptiously prepared by expert chefs.
Ellenstuen restaurant, in the oldest part of the hotel, looks almost like it did in 1866, intimate and elegant with replica wallpaper from the era and customised mouldings. The Fruen Bar was renovated a couple of years ago, and the original timber walls in the bar contribute to the relaxed and cosy atmosphere.
The latest addition to the hotel is Hjørnet or Corner Bar and beer garden, a lively place with exciting cocktails and music – and a marvellous view of the beautiful hotel garden, the river and stunning Øyfjellet mountain.
Classic and elegant, the Hagestuen or Garden room is the main function room and a wonderful backdrop for all kinds of events and celebrations. This is also where breakfast and lunch is served.
Hotel guests can expect to get a good night’s sleep in one of the 129 wonderfully decorated rooms with fantastic beds. There are standard, superior and deluxe rooms as well as two suites, one modern and one historic. A lot of care and work has gone into preserving historical details all over the hotel.
Fru Haugans Hotel is of course also suitable for courses and conferences. The brand new conference centre was opened in 2015, and the historical buildings were renovated at the same time.
The long and exciting history of the hotel is reflected through old photographs on the walls, books and interior details.
Go north and travel back in time …