The story of Hotel Aak

Hotel Aak is located in the heart of Romsdalen.In the comfort of the hotel have mountain people found peace and courage for centuries. This is where Carl Hall waited for the weather to clear before he climbed Romsdalshorn in 1881. And where William Cecil Slingsby stayed while climbed Store Venjetinden the same week.

Hotel Aak located in nature with nice weather
It all started when the county agricultural school at Aak was closed down after manager Andreas Landmark was hired as Chief constable in the municipality. After the agricultural school period, Andreas and his wife Helene started a hotel business on Aak by utilizing the spacious dormitory building with a large kitchen, and by offering salmon fishing and trips in the beautiful nature. Hotel Aak is considered to be one of Norway's first tourist hotel in the country.  
In the first known guestbook from 1860, a Pastor AR Webster from Keswick in England wrote: 'We have found Aak by far the most comfortable Country Quarter we have met in Norway' . The pastor was not the only one staying at the hotel this summer. A total of 33 Englishmen and 9 Norwegians stayed at the hotel in 1860. Therefor the hotel capacity was considerably increased by building an annex next to the main building.

The Danish summit climber Carl Christian Hall came to Hotel Aak for the first time on the 16th of August 1880. He had a strong will to climb the 'unclimbable' Romsdalshorn. Together with local mountain guide John Venge, he made four unsuccessful attempts to reach the top of the Hornet that summer.

Carl Hall is back at Hotel Aak to make new attempts to climb Romsdalshorn. After two more unsuccessful attempts with John Venge, the 53-year-old local mountain guide did no longer want to take part. On the 31st of August, Carl Hall starts his seventh attempt to reach the top of Romsdalshorn, this time together with the local mountain guides Mathias Soggemoen and Erik Norahagen. The next day, September 1st, they finally get to the top - only to discover that two local boys had been up there more than fifty years earlier.

At the same time as Carl Hall made his sixth unsuccessful attempt to reach the top of Romsdalshorn, the English climber William Cecil Slingsby succeeded in the first ascent of Store Vengetind on the 24th of August together with Johannes Vigdal. Slingsby's starting point was also Hotel Aak.

William Cecil Slingsby stayed at Hotel Aak in the period 11th–22dn August. He then climbed Romsdalshorn with his wife Alizon and his brother-in-law William Ecroyd. After that, Slingsby wrote in the hotel book: "Even though this ascent was performed by a Lady, one must not be led to believe that it was easy." Slingsby also boasts of Carl Hall who had found this route up to Romsdalshorn.
Henry Overton Wills died on 4th of September at the age of 83. Aak Farm was taken over by three of his sons: George Alfred, Walter Melwille and Arthur Stanley. The fourth brother, Henry (Harry) Herbert, had spent a lot of time at Aak with his father, but he did not want to be an owner when his father died.
The former annex to Hotel Aak was bought by two young people in Åndalsnes to establish Aak Fjellsportsenter (Mountain sports center). The building was in very poor condition after it was closed as a retirement home in 1970. The building was restored, and already the following year the first climbing course was held there.
New young host moves to Romsdalen! The hostess' remembers her homeplace as her paradise! The dream is to be a place that is not like everywhere else, and the focus is on inspiration, activity and learning. Hotel Aak will once again be a gathering place for mountain people and our goal is that everyone that stays here gets to experience the fresh air and raw nature of Romsdalen. Businesses are also of course welcome. The goal is to be the optimal meeting place - maximum social and professional benefits - and memories for life!
The host family has become five and the staff, the Aak crew, has been extended. Six full-time employees and a varying number of seasonal workers throughout the year. It is a year-round offer with a good mix of companies, food-loving people and hikers. The hosts have got Hotel Aak up and running! From the start, they have been confident in their product and goal.

As the years have passed, the concept has developed little by little thanks to brainstorming with skilled colleagues and feedback from guests. Kristine and Odd Erik are still just as eager and several more ideas are buzzing. Wonder what will happen next?


Aak trollstigenSki collection on tourLady on a hike in the mountainsHotel Aak located in nature with nice weatherRomsdalseggen in nice weatherAak serving of foodHotel aak - kayaking