The economic cycle has always had it's ups and downs, and it can be good to have a familiar place to go.
Oslo experienced two booming periods, where people became rich overnight from the stock market. Grand Café turned into a stock exchange and the Champagne was flowing. It issaid that little Charlie, shoe shiner in front of the toilets in the basement on Friday, showed up at Speilen saturday morning as a guest in black shoes, top hat and gold chain, and seemed to have the time of his life. In this period the waiters at Grand Café had to put up signs on the table telling the guests that working was not permitted in the café.
Distilled spirits were prohibited in Norway from 1919 to 1927. When the law was introduced, the Oslo police arrested 900 persons in the first few months. The "hip flask law" was introduced, and the art of moonshine was further improved.
The shares in Grand have changed hands numerous times in the hotel's history. Outsourcing of Grand Cafe has been attempted, most recently only a couple of years ago, but with no luck. Schous brewery has saved both Grand and Bristol several times, securing lucrative deals for it's golden produce, as well as gaining control over several of the city's finest watering holes. It was Schous breweries that paid for the wall decorations done by Per Krogh.
If you look down under the wall decoration you will see Ibsen's handwriting woven into the carpet on the floor. This is a reproduction of a letter from a furious Dr Ibsen to Georg Brandes.