Solstad Kafe – where the sun shines
(Norwegian version) Solstad Kafe is located in a place where the sun shines even on winter days – nice for cafe guests.
Text: Per Erling Bakke
Adapted and translated into English by Ivar Teigum
The modest start took place in the 1950s. the owner family offered guestrooms. Today’s Thon Hotel on the street Ola Dahls gate would let them have their surplus guests. The café was opened officially on 1. July 1960.
Solstad Kafe in the 1960s. The first generation, Otto and Olga Lorås, had five rooms to let on the first floor.
By the 50. anniversary in 2010 the second generation had taken over the establishment. And like so many others at Otta, Solstad Kafe is a family enterprise where the third generation is also involved in the business.
The family moved to Otta in the 1950s, where the husband worked as a plumber. Before the end of the decade they had bought the Solstad property. At first they welcomed guests when the neighbouring hotel had no vacancies left. Little by little the thought of running a café dawned, which meant contribution from the whole family, and which included both the hostess’ two daughters and her sister.
After some years the space was widened, and a terrace for out of door service was added. Home atmosphere was given priority with among other things, a collection of Otta photos on the walls, and many people made Solstad their regular café. Popular is the menu containing differing warm dishes for every weekday. In the guestbook many people have given their warm approval of the service, the food and the atmosphere.
Otta's first taxi centre was established at Solstad in 1959 with its entrance from the side street Engbret Hougens gate. The taxi to the right was a Russian Volga model 1959. and the car on the left was probably a Plymouth model 1956.
Approval from a TV team
On their way from Trondheim to Oslo, at a distance before Otta the photographer exclaims: - We have to visit Solstad Kafe. It’s a long time since I was there. – Solstad, where is that? The somewhat animated reporter asks. – You just wait and see, is the answer. Half an hour later the reporter has got the promise confirmed, and there is no regret. – Thanks so much for the coffee, the sandwich and the agreeable company, the questbook confirms.
Grand Hotel stood on the property
On the same location the original Grand Hotel at Otta was destroyed in a fire in 1909.
Grand Hotel was built in the 1890s in the location wherer Solstad café stands today.
The hotel burned to the ground in 1909 and the new building was moved tothe other side of the street.
The Jugend building represented the dominant style at the time.
Solstad Kafe in 2010.