Martin Andersen has recently been hired as Commercial Director at Amerikalinjen, Oslo’s new luxury boutique hotel. Opening in March of 2019, the old Norwegian American Line building is being transformed into Amerikalinjen. The passion for maritime travel combined with the rich history of Oslo will create a strong foundation for this iconic building’s renaissance- transporting it from the 19th Century to the 21st and beyond.Yet, with all the historic details that are planned for this iconic buildings rebirth, the hotel aims to be a contemporary sanctuary for the experienced traveler. With 122 elegant rooms, the Atlas Brasserie and Café, the Gustav jazz club, and Pier 42, the classic cocktail bar, Amerikalinjen is set to become the essential part of Oslo’s 21st century hospitality identity.
Martin is born in Oslo but has lived the last 16 years abroad where he has gained education and experience from some of the most iconic hotels in Zurich, New York, and Los Angeles. He is truly excited to be back in Norway and use his background to build the brand Amerikalinjen.
Q: What does a day at work consist of for you?
A: I have just started my new role as Commercial Director for Amerikalinjen, and with only 9 months left to go to opening day of Oslo’s long anticipated luxury boutique hotel concept, we are focusing all our energy on establishing the brand, strategically planning the concept and telling the world the story about Amerikalinjen.
Q: What’s the best part of your job?
A: Every day brings something new. During pre- opening it is the perfect time to create bonds with suppliers and clients and take home valuable experiences. It doesn’t matter if this is the 1st hotel you open or the 10th, no projects are the same. Once we are open the best part will be to interact directly with our guest and create a unique journey for them at Amerikalinjen.
Q: Do you have anyone you’ve looked up to?
A: In order to be flexible and adaptable in today’s society, I think it is imperative to have several role models. Use each unique strength from your role models, both for personal and personal life, and live by it. As I have excelled in my career I have been very impressed by my dad’s entrepreneurial skills. Within 20 years, the company that he founded, has grown to employ over 40 employees. This takes courage and patience above all.
Q: Do you have any nice traditions at your office?
A: Our office is only 7 months old so its a bit premature to call it traditions, but every Friday our General Manager Wilhelm spins some of his favorite records from the week that has past. He kicks off the weekend the right way.
Q: How long have you been a member of HSMAI?
A: I have attended a few events when I worked in New York, but became an official member once I moved back to Oslo. It was high- priority for Amerikalinjen to become a member hotel as we truly value the strong network HSMAI represents.
Q: What do you think is the best thing about HSMAI?
A: I find great value in the breakfast meetings and panel discussions which stimulates new, organic ideas instantly. It is also important to give credit where credit is due and the annual awards shows is an important stage to promote the best of the best.
Q: Are there any activities or projects you think HSMAI should start up?
A: Keep up the good work!
Q: Describe your perfect weekend
A: In our industry, with the 24/7 demand, it is crucial that you set aside ample time for the family. The weekend is the perfect time to spend time with my two boys and fantastic wife. We truly enjoy feeling the sea breeze in the summer and breath the crisp mountain air in the winter.
Q: If you were trapped on a desert island, what would you take with you, if you could choose one thing?
A: A surfboard, used both as an activity and also as a escape route when needed.
Q: What is the title of the book about your life?
A: I hope it is “Super Dad”.
Q: What is your next travel-destination?
A: Next travel destination for work is London and right after that I have a personal trips to Paris and Berlin.
Q: Do you have any special hobbies?
A: I enjoy skiing in the winter and when I lived in California I picked up surfing. I have also done six marathons so running has become an important part of my lifestyle with the years.
Q: Thank you for your time. Do you have any personal comments?
A: Amerikalinjen is opening its doors March 2019 and we are creating a unique luxury boutique hotel with 122 keys where food & beverage will be front and center of attention. Follow our journey @amerikalinjen on Instagram and Facebook. It is going to be a great story to read.