Internship Skjolden hotel


A little bit about Skjolden hotel

 Skjolden hotel is located in Luster at the very bottom of the fjord in the world's longest fjord, the Sognefjord. It has been a place to stay since 1908, when Skjolden was an important trading post. Owners Siri and Aslaug Dalehaug bought Skjolden hotell in 2015, along the way they renovated and arranged. Today, the hotel has 41 rooms, bar, terraces, garden, own microbrewery and restaurant. Focus is on local foods. It has a great location, which makes it a good starting point for activities and experiences. There are conference facilities for up to 40 people. The bar/lounge serves an a la carte menu and the restaurant serves the evening's 4-course menu with accompanying wine recommendations. All guests staying at the hotel have access to the swimming pool and indoor sauna. Free parking and possibility of electric car charging. You can also get help with transport. At this hotel, they focus on the gastronomic dining experience, using local food suppliers.

They do not offer activities per se, but there are several, different activity offers around the hotel itself, which makes it extra attractive. Great scenery too. At Fjordstova right next to the hotel there is a climbing wall, sauna and swimming pool. In the local area, there is the opportunity to go for a walk to various waterfalls, a RIB boat, and a llama safari, among other things. 

All in all, Skjolden is a comprehensive and good tourism product. Skjolden Hotel is dog-friendly. The dog can walk quite freely, but not in the restaurant and the food areas in terms of hygiene and bacteria. 

My expectations before I got there

I was very stressed because I had never worked in tourism, and knew nothing but my experiences as a guest. But I did have some experience with service in relation to people, as I am a trained healthcare worker and have worked as such, but never in the form of anything related to travel itself. Talked that I should be involved in breakfast, housekeeping, hostess, reception, as I wanted slightly different tasks and preferably start the day early. My goal was to learn as much as possible in the 4 weeks I was going to be there.

The practice 

I was very stressed, both pleased and terrified. Today the aim was to get to know the place, the hotel and the staff. Luster is a wonderful, beautiful place with a view of the fjord, where the hotel itself, Skjolden, has a soul of its own. It is a place that gives peace of mind, for those who are not going to have their first day in practice. I was welcomed by a nice lady, who was the hotel manager herself and who was to be my supervisor for these four weeks. I was allocated a hotel room where I was lucky enough to stay during most of my internship. I thought I had got the wrong room because it was so big and great for just one person to stay in. I was asked to dinner at 16, because then all the employees eat dinner together every day. The other employees are from different countries, such as the Czech Republic, Spain and Norway, so I really get to work on my English. 

Tomorrow I will start working on cleaning and serving breakfast, as well as housekeeping. I got to sleep in a few different hotel rooms during my internship. Here are some pictures. Large, clean rooms, with ritual soap, and animal pictures. 

There are also separate dog-friendly rooms in the hotel, and in the corridors there are pictures of different types of dogs so that they too can feel welcome. Here is an example of a dog-friendly hotel room.

Pictures from inside the hotel, reception, bar and the venue. 

The nature in the immediate area is absolutely fantastic. Here are some of my photos. 

My tasks at the hotel


Here I helped by asking if the guests wanted bacon and eggs for breakfast, then informing the chef in the kitchen about this, and delivering this to the guests when it was ready. It's a buffet, so people can help themselves, but they make eggs and bacon so that they will be hot and good when the guests arrive. Other tasks include filling up water, juice and coffee before it is empty, as well as glasses, plates, cutlery and other things. When the guests have eaten, the table is cleared and covered with a cloth and new cutlery and napkins are placed there. When you have time, you wash the dishes, clean the glasses and cutlery and put them where they should be. Cleans out of dishwasher and more. When breakfast is over and the guests have left, it was time to clean and vacuum the entire room, as well as cover for any lunch and or dinner.

Challenges: When many guests arrived at the same time, it could be difficult to remember who should have what. You have to remember the faces, the number of eggs they have, for example, ordered etc. So a bit of stress, but got better and better as I got to try myself. 

Opportunities: Have had to learn everything from setting the table, making coffee, chatting in both English and Norwegian with the guests and more. So a steep learning curve, but has been exciting and interesting and I have felt that I have learned a lot. This was something completely new. 


The guests who often come for lunch are not only guests who stay at the hotel, but the visitors who stay on cruise ships that dock in the fjord. I have been involved in serving Australians, Americans and Norwegian guests, among others. 

Start by setting the tables, if it hasn't already been done. Welcome the guests and show them to the table. Tell the cooks that the guests have arrived. The food is presented to the guests before it is served, often in English. Refill water, ask them if the food tastes good, then clear the table before dessert arrives. When the guests are fed, we clean and wash again. Then vacuums the room and puts things in place, and covers and gets ready for dinner. 

Challenge: I'm not incredibly good at English exactly, and have a rather poor memory, so I had to ask several times what this and that is in English. But I got the word's and managed to present it. One must remember to present all the food also due to allergies. 

Opportunities: Got to see how to help with lunch, practiced presenting the food, how to clear plates and glasses when the guest is still present, etc. Chatted with the guests, put the user group to the hotel. 


Here you learn everything from how to clean bathrooms, rooms, how much toilet paper should be in each bathroom, making beds so they look nice. Empty used towels and bed linen, put on new ones. Throw away rubbish, wipe dust. Everything should look nice and clean and new. I have cleaned out the linen cupboard, put in new towels and cloths, as well as bed linen etc. Put the used stuff back in boxes. They are picked up every Wednesday and washed with a company before delivering them back freshly washed. Everything is clean and tidy, and it must be of good quality. They even have ritual soap in the shower so they focus mostly on quality in their hotel.

Also cleaned the guest toilet and mopped the stairs, as well as vacuumed a lot both in reception, the restaurant premises and the rooms by housekeeping. 

Challenges: My asthma! Found that changing the sheets especially wasn't so good for my allergies and asthma. During my internship I had to go to the emergency room when my asthma got much worse. Wasn't just because I was dealing with bedding, but it didn't exactly help. Had and still have regular contact with a pulmonologist in Bergen, so I will try and fix it, but it will take some time. 

Opportunities: Learned a lot, even cleaned a few rooms all by myself. Learned that quality is important in things that we might take for granted. One does not think about how often, for example, bed linen and towels in a hotel must be washed and therefore withstand a lot of wear and tear. Having ritual's soap in the shower also helps to increase the quality. 

How I think it has been with practice 

What has been difficult: 

To be completely honest, I was extremely nervous, struggling with my stomach when I dread things so I sometimes throw up or have to run to the bathroom. I'm always a little afraid of not reaching or doing a bad job. So I try to give of myself and do my best, as best as I can. It was my very first time in a tourism company as an internship candidate, so I was perhaps a little extra nervous, since it was so new. But everything gets better with practice, fortunately. At the start I felt that I didn't know anything and was a bit in the way, but I was told what to do, had the opportunity to ask questions too, so eventually it got easier. I also struggled quite a bit with the asthma, but unfortunately I couldn't do much with that, so it was a bit of a waste in relation to the fact that I couldn't help change the beds later on, as it made me a little extra tight. There is also a lot of walking so your legs can get very sore, so if you are going to work in a hotel remember to wear good shoes! Very important! 

What has been very good: 

With working at Skjolden hotel, or having my internship there, is that I have gained a lot of new experience as I have been able to do different things. Everything from looking after the guests at breakfast and lunch, to housekeeping how to make it most comfortable for the individual guest. Ensure good quality. As well as seeing how the different types of guests were, here there were both American and Norwegian guests as well as guests and staff from other countries again. So got to practice my English too, which was good. The manager at the hotel takes good care of his employees, including me during the internship. If I wanted and there was room for it, I was allowed to stay at the hotel so that I didn't have to commute, we could have breakfast/lunch from the buffet, and we had dinner. The boss is good at praising, facilitating, explaining and guiding. She makes you feel well looked after and you feel safe. You also experience a sense of mastery, since you get responsibility and positive feedback on the work you do. 

For those who want to take a look at the hotel, you can click on this link here  Highly recommended! 

Here is a bit for those who want to know what a gastronomic dining experience is and what it was like at the hotel.

Is the doctrine of the connection between food, tradition and culture. Gastronomic tourism, also called gourmet or culinary tourism, is a type of tourism that uses the combination of food and travel to discover the history of a particular area or time. Guests began to be concerned about the quality of service provided as the rise of mass tourism began in full swing. This meant that those who sold travel began to collaborate with the local places the tourists were going to, and create a tourist offer where food became one of their standard components (Wikipedia, 2023). Food and drink have been important throughout history because you need it to survive, and it is something that can make the company reach new heights, and create a very special experience (Novelli, 2011, pp. 73-75). It primarily focuses on food products, food festivals, restaurants and areas where the main focus is on the gastronomic. With wine, it can be vineyards, where they have a wine show, where the guide tells a bit about the history of the area around where this wine is made and about how the product is made. You also get to taste the farm's wines, to show off the product and arouse interest in buying. There are also beer breweries, where it takes place in the same way as wine. Here, the type of drink is decisive for the choice of location. At the Skjolden hotel they sell local wine and beer in the bar. In addition, they use food from local suppliers. Using local raw materials only brings good benefits in terms of the environment, economy, society and health. Local ingredients provide short-traveled food that saves the environment in terms of less pollution and carbon emissions, and there are also completely fresh products. Short-traveled food provides fresh products that do not need to be frozen, which makes them more nutritious. By buying locally, it gives you access to products they don't have elsewhere, so you get to know new foods. It can be a bacon sausage with, for example, blueberries, moose and aqua white. And last, but not least, when you buy local food, your money will probably continue to circulate in the local economy and thus contribute to increased employment and income in the local community (Salgslaget, 2022).

Here at Skjolden hotel, the food comes from local suppliers and producers. Same with beer and wine. When we serve lunch, for example, we will start by using Storytelling, a bit about the history of the food, that it is local from, for example, the fjord. Storytelling is used when the experience is structured as a story, so that the guests immerse themselves in the story and become part of it (K.S. Schmidt, 05 Storytelling light, 15 February 2023). After this gastronomic food experience, the tourists will process and gain an understanding of the experience itself by telling it to others. In this way, the story will become an understanding framework for the experience and helps to give a sense of coherence and an experience of wholeness. The fact that the staff are also trained is important, in the specific and different roles they must have in order to create a whole. In order to provide a good experience, one should think about what is happening visibly or what should be hidden from the tourists. The story affects emotions, provides knowledge, and stimulates imagination and dreams. In addition, stories can provide a sense of calm and community. The business differentiates itself from other competing businesses by focusing on local food and allowing dogs in the hotel. Creates authentication in the form of food products, which makes more people want to visit and taste the good food (K.S. Schmidt, 05 Storytelling light, 15 February 2023). There are four P's in storytelling, product, price, place and promotion. Skjolden hotel is a separate product where they offer accommodation, the surrounding area is also very good in terms of activities and experiences. Here, local food and local beer are sold in the bar, among other things. Selling products helps to tell the story further (K.S. Schmidt, 05 Storytelling light, 15 February 2023). 

You can find activities in the immediate area at:  and search for activities near Skjolden hotel such as Lama Safari or SUP. 

Sources I have used are

-  My Own experiences. 

- Novelli, M. (Ed.). (2011). Nice tourism contemporary issues trends and cases. Routledge 

- SALGSLAGET, 2022. Retrieved from:

- fantastiske-fordeler-ved-a-spise-lokale-produkter/ - Wikipedia.2023. Gastronomy. Retrieved from: Wikipedia.2023. 

- Kjell. Sindre. Schmidt, 05 Storytelling light, 15 February 2023. Taken from the Storytelling presentation. 

Picture sources: 

-  Took all the pictures myself.