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Festningsgata, 9950 Vardø
Vardø’s central area around Øster- and Vestervågen contains characteristic buildings from several eras, including the old Grand hotell. This was probably the first concrete building in Finnmark, built during the period 1912-1914. Together with the Town Hall, it is clearly visible when emerging from the tunnel to Vardø. This tall, erect concrete building, with its slate-tiled hipped roof, has undergone many changes over the years, but its size, form, exterior surfaces and windows in the topmost storey remain as they were at the time of building.

Since it ceased to be run as a hotel the building has been used as a library, for teaching purposes and as club premises. It has also been partly used as a gallery. The building is in private ownership.

Once a permanent steamship route had been established between Arkhangelsk and Vardø in 1875, circumstances were well suited for transit trade and for tourism. The first Grand hotell, which opened during the 1890s, was built especially to cater for well-off Russian tourists. For the Pomors, Vardø was a popular place to trade goods such as clothing, food, fishing tackle and wine. Businesses in the town adjusted the selection of available goods according to demand, and it was not unusual to see shop signs in Russian. Vardø also had its own Russian consulate. When the present-day building was completed, in 1914, the Russians were still a strong visitor group
the Russian Revolution put a stop to this state of affairs in 1917.

Year of construction



Grand hotell

Building Type


Construction System / Materials

Rendered concrete


Gamle Grand hotell
Gamle Grand hotell
Gamle Grand hotell