Holmenkollen offers a room with a view

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The ski association responsible for operating Oslo’s Holmenkollen Ski Jump has resorted to a new means of promoting the landmark, which has a history of high costs and huge budget overruns. Skiforeningen has now agreed to open the ski jump’s tower for two nights of lodging at no charge through the social media marketplace Airbnb.

Oslo's new Holmenkollen Ski Jump is at the center of the upcoming "Ski-VM 2011," as the Nordic World Ski Championships are called locally. "VM" stands for "verdens mesterskap," which translates to "world championships" in Norwegian. PHOTO: Views and News

Oslo’s Holmenkollen Ski Jump will open later this month for two nights of lodging in its tower, part of a new promotion of the tourist landmark that has generated huge budget overruns for the city and high costs for its operator, the local ski association Skiforeningen. PHOTO: newsinenglish.no

Jeanette Hansen, in charge of operations at Holmenkollen, calls it “a crazy idea that became a reality.” While ski association members may question the wisdom and extra costs of putting up guests for two nights for free, Hansen claimed the project was “a fun and different means of promoting the popular tourist destination.”

There’s little doubt the project will result in a unique room with a view, if only for the nights of March 26th and 27th. A local designer already has furnishings ready to outfit the tower’s 40-square meters with a double bed and chairs, lamps and a dining table meant to also promote Norwegian design. In the meantime, the tower will be used by ski jumpers for the annual Holmenkollen Ski Festival and World Cup competition that runs from March 13-15.

PHOTO: Felix Odell/Airbnb

The  tower of the Holmenkollen Ski Jump can offer a room with a view, when it’s not foggy.  PHOTO: Felix Odell/Airbnb

Skiforeningen will serve as host for the lodging project, with Hansen saying the association will even serve dinner to the guests chosen to spend the night atop Holmenkollen. If the weather is clear, which can never be guaranteed, guests can enjoy panoramic views over Oslo, the fjord and the surrounding hills and forests. Hansen said they’ll also be offered a course in skiing techniques and a chance to test their shooting skills as a biathlon skier. If there’s still snow around the ski jump, which can never be guaranteed either given the recent rash of mild winters, the guests can use conventional skis. If not, they’ll be offered roller skis.

Guests will be chosen based on written statements submitted through Airbnb as to why they’d like to spend the night atop Holmenkollen. Hansen told newspaper VG the ski association is hoping for one couple from Norway and another from abroad. They’d best be somewhat sporty, since guests will be expected to depart via the ski jump’s “zipline” attraction, installed to help boost business for the ski jump during the summer months.

newsinenglish.no staff