Opulence by the Fjord: First Hotel Grims Grenka

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As Grand As It Gets 

I suppose there are downsides to being a world-famous rock star-- bad road food, tiffs with band mates, inept sound guys, etc. But one definite upside is that after the show you get to come home to a hotel like the First Hotel Grims Grenka in Oslo (one such famous band was staying there while I was in town). In a city dominated by a royal palace and flush with 19th-century coffee houses, Grims Grenka stands out, offering its jet-set clientele sensual, plus-sized suites that are perfect for the pre-party, the after-party or a simple, low-key night of living luxuriously.

Oslo’s only Design Hotel, the Grims Grenka's interiors can only be described as hypermodern, featuring floor-lit catwalks, beds by Jensen and a mood-based lighting system (There's no "on" or "off" here. You set your lighting switchpad to "work," "play" or "sleep").

If you venture to the roof of Grims Grenka, you’ll find Q Lounge, a casual cocktail bar with views of Oslo city center to one side and Oslo Fjord to the other. Downstairs is Madu, a high-end joint that marries the cuisines of Asia with fresh Norwegian ingredients harvested from the farmlands and fjords.

After hitting up those spots, you can return to your room and enjoy a glass of sparkling Norwegian water in the your giant tub, which in my case was located on a stage in the middle of the room. Guests optional, of course.

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