“Hotel Viru has been an undisputed landmark of Tallinn and the source of uncountable legends for almost 40 years now,“ said Anu Soosaar, the Managing Director of Sokos Hotel Viru. “The idea of opening up a museum has been pondered over for more than ten years due to our visitors’ extreme curiosity about the activities of the KGB in the hotel and the room on the 23rd floor of the hotel that the organisation left behind. We believe that now that Tallinn has become European Capital of Culture is the perfect time to tell the story of Hotel Viru, the KGB’s part in this story and speak about the entire era in general as it can give the guests who have travelled great distances to visit us the chance to get a sense of our past.“
Most of the exhibits on display at the museum originate from the archives of the hotel and will undoubtedly bring back many memories for the local people as well. On 13 January, in addition to the free entry to the museum, visitors will also be able to enjoy free half-hourly thematic bus tours that begin and end in front of Sokos Hotel Viru. Participants of the bus tours will be riding in a Soviet bus, accompanied by a tour guide who speaks four languages. The tours depart every 30 minutes starting from 11.00.
Itinerary: Viru Square (the former Stalin’s Square or Central Square) – Narva maantee (the former Adolf Hitler’s street) – down the Pronksi street across the Gonsiori street (formerly known as the Lomonossov’s street)– Liivalaia street (formerly known as the V. Kingissepp’s street) – Lauteri street (Imanta street) – Iceland Square (the former Lenin’s Avenue) – Estonia puiestee– G. Otsa street – Pärnu maantee – Viru Square.
From the opening day until the end of April visitors will be able to enter the museum only on Saturdays and Sundays at 10 and 11.30. From May until the end of September the museum will be open on all weekdays between 10 and 18 and the guided tours will depart in every hour starting from 10. We advise you to book in advance by calling on +3726809300 or sending an e-mail to [email protected]. Group bookings will be accepted also outside the normal opening hours.
The tickets to the museum cost 7 Euros, the guests of the hotel can visit the museum for 5 Euros. A family pass costs 15 Euros and it is valid for two parents with up to 3 children. Journalists can enter the museum for free upon presenting their press pass. The Heroes of the Socialist Labour will not be granted priority entry to the museum.
AS Sokotel is a subsidiary of the SOK group operating under the trademark Sokos Hotel Viru. The hotel has 516 hotel rooms, a modern conference centre, a spacious restaurant world, a beauty salon and numerous saunas. Sokos Hotel Viru is the biggest hotel in Estonia with a capacity to accommodate up to 1 000 guests. In May 2011, the hotel will celebrate its 39th anniversary.