This Swedish Hotel Is Home to the World’s Largest Whisky Collection (Video)
Hotel Skansen, on the Swedish island of Öland, offers guests a staggering 1,179 different whiskies to choose from.
The hotel, which had accumulated the most whisky labels offered in Sweden in 2001 with more than 500 varieties, has been expanding its collection ever since. In June, the hotel claimed the Guinness World Record for the world’s largest collection of commercially available whisky.
“My dad has been collecting and drinking whisky for many years, so whisky has always been a part of my life,” hotel CEO Fredrik Norén told Travel + Leisure.
His father's interest in whisky grew on him, and the two spent 20 years traveling the world — from Scotland and Ireland to Japan, France, and South Africa — to taste and learn about different varieties. They began slowly bringing bottles back, later working with local distillers in Sweden to create the collection housed at the hotel.
Today, guests can enjoy this collection in the hotel's whisky basement, with leather seats and bottles lining the walls.
Selections range from peaty varieties from Scotland's island of Islay, to U.S. bourbons, to the hotel's own whisky brand launched 11 years ago.
One of Norén's favorites is the new Dachi whisky, made from Japanese and Scottish spirits and stored in a Hungarian oak cask for five years. According to Norén, there are currently only 16 bottles around the world.
The hotel also incorporates its whisky varieties into their restaurant dishes, regularly using them in butters, sauces, and marinades. They also work with a local chocolate manufacturer to create whisky-infused chocolates and whisky and chocolate pairings for guests.
Even though the hotel’s whisky collection is already the world’s largest, it's still growing.
“It changes from day to day and that’s the fun part of it,” Norén said. “It’s not a museum; it’s a whisky bar where people can get to enjoy the product on display and actually taste everything.”