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How a Swedish hotel reunited this bear with his best friend

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How a Swedish hotel reunited this bear with his best friend
The bear having a croissant for breakfast. Photo: Kristoffer Kinnunen/Hotel Avalon
13:07 CEST+02:00
A Gothenburg hotel's attempt to track down the owner of this lost teddy bear on social media turned into something much bigger.

The stuffed bear was found sitting alone on the pavement outside the entrance of Hotel Avalon in central Gothenburg last week.

His human friends and family were nowhere to be found, so front office manager Kristoffer Kinnunen quickly invited the teddy back inside and posted a picture and an appeal on the hotel's Facebook page.

"The bear is feeling well under the circumstances and is resting in Arne Jacobsen's iconic chair 'The Egg'. But he misses his owner, so please get in touch if you recognize him," he wrote.


The teddy in the chair by Danish designer Arne Jacobsen. Photo: Kristoffer Kinnunen/Hotel Avalon

This was the start of a social media campaign which has warmed hearts in Sweden in recent days. And for the bear, it was the beginning of a free stay at the feng shui-certified design hotel in Gothenburg.

Kinnunen began posting pictures on Facebook, updating people on the bear's activities each day.


Spending the night alone at the hotel. Photo: Kristoffer Kinnunen/Hotel Avalon

The posts all received hundreds of shares.

People then started to get involved in the search for his owner and even looked out for the well-being of the teddy bear himself. One Facebook user suggested that he should pay a visit to the bar to pass the time.

"He tried, but on closer inspection of his ID we discovered that he was not old enough. It'll be a coke," replied the hotel.


Chilling out on the rooftop terrace. Photo: Kristoffer Kinnunen/Hotel Avalon

The bear quickly adapted to his new luxurious lifestyle, which prompted another social media user to suggest the teddy's owner would eventually have to face a hefty hotel bill.

"It's not going to be cheap," Hotel Avalon replied, but admitted that it had benefited from the extra attention it had received thanks to the story going viral. "We would consider letting his stay be on us as a thank you for all the positive feedback we have had."

Some suggested that perhaps it was just a clever marketing campaign, which the hotel denied.

"It's not a PR event or part of our marketing. We are very keen to find the owner of the teddy, because it looks like it has been used a lot and is probably really missed by someone. The picture and the texts are taken/written tongue in cheek, mainly because it will be a fun story to tell the child when the teddy is returned," it commented.


Reading a book and looking at some hotel art. Photo: Kristoffer Kinnunen/Hotel Avalon

The social media campaign turned out to be successful. On Sunday the bear, whose name was revealed to be 'Balli', was reunited with his best friend Moa and the hotel thanked people for making it happen.

"We are very grateful for people's commitment, it was amazing to see all the shares which ultimately contributed to a very happy reunion," Kinnunen told The Local.

It is not the first time social media help children reunite with their stuffed toys. Last year the Swedish military helped a lost teddy bear get back home. Read more about that here.

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