Reval Hotel Olümpia turns the clock back thirty years06.04.2010, 14:55
Today, 6th April, Reval Hotel Olümpia will travel thirty years back in time and exhibit interesting events, photos, and recollections from the past three decades. A special exhibition composed of archival images will be opened in the hotel, and the hotel restaurant and cafés will serve a "retro" menu. The menu will include Olümpia's legendary "Kikerikii" salad, ham and cheese-filled pancakes, a cake called "Pidupäevasai", and tarte called "White Roses" (Valged Roosid in Estonian).
The opening of the Hotel "Olümpia" to honour the XVIIth Summer Olympics Yachting Regatta was a top event for the Soviet Union. Arnold Green (the Deputy Premier and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic (ESSR), the organiser of 1980 Olympic Games Yachting Regatta in Tallinn), Bruno Saul (the Deputy Chairman of the ESSR Council of Ministers), and Karl Vaino (the Chairman of the ESSR Presidium of the Supreme Council) participated in the inauguration ceremony. The festive opening of the hotel was organised by Fred Raudberg, the legendary movement director of the Estonian song festivals and the head of the Leisure Parks Direction.
When the hotel was opened 30 years ago, guests could use 405 rooms, the Restaurant Olümpia, and cafés and bars on 2nd, 14th and 26th stories. Guests were entertained by the famous variety group "Olümpia", in which Anne Veski, Ivo Linna, Tarmo Pihlap, and others once performed. A night in the new hotel cost 9 roubles and 80 kopecks; the price for a night in a suite was 14 roubles and 40 kopecks.
During its three decades of activity, the hotel has undergone large-scale renovation and the 405 rooms have been reduced to 390 rooms. When the hotel was opened in 1980, there was no need for any conference rooms, because all party meetings had to be held outside the hotel. Today, the hotel has a modern conference and banqueting centre. In 1980, the number of hotel staff was 600; today the personnel of the whole hotel comprises 200 people, of whom six have worked there since the hotel was first opened.
Over the last 30 years, many world-famous people have stayed at the hotel. In addition to the most important heads of the Soviet Union and today's top politicians, the hotel has also accommodated stars such as Alla Pugacheva, Aleksander Rybak, David Copperfield, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Boney M, Montserrat Caballé, The Prodigy, Apocalyptica, Rammstein, and others.
Until 1991, the hotel was under state ownership. The hotel was managed via the Tallinn Hotel Group and Tallinn Catering Trust. In 1991 the hotel was privatised and the Estonian Ministry of Finance, Inn Grupp, Mercury Asset Management, and the Baltic Republic Fund became the new owners of the hotel. In 1997, the hotel was purchased by the Reval Hotel Group, and since 2002 the hotel has belonged to Linstow AS.
To mark the thirtieth anniversary of the opening of the hotel, a special site has been created on the hotel homepage which provides information about topics related to the birthday celebrations - the exhibition and retro menu, as well as a forum where everyone is welcome to write their own memorable moments related to the hotel.
The 26-storey hotel is one of the most conspicuous buildings in Tallinn. The hotel boasts 390 rooms and 13 conference rooms, the total area of which is over 900 m2, banquet halls, the "Senso" Restaurant and the "Café Boulevard", a health centre on the 26th storey, the "Bonnie & Clyde" nightclub, and several beauty salons. The Reval Hotel Olümpia together with nine other hotels belong to Reval Hotels, the leading hotel chain in the Baltic countries, and last year the group opened another hotel in St. Petersburg. The owner of Reval Hotels is the most well-known real estate company in Norway, Linstow AS. Linstow AS is an affiliated company of A Wilhelmsen AS, which also owns the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, the world's second largest luxury shipping company.