Scan Magazine, Issue 104, September 2017

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Scan Magazine  |  Contents


unwinding, Sweden does spa and wellness exceptionally well. We went on a mission to list the very best destinations for that all-important pampering weekend.

32 Sofie Hagen – ‘Hashtag Blessed’ Her stand-up shows have received rave reviews, and her very own podcast has a big, dedicated following. Sofie Hagen is the brightest shining star in the Danish comedy sky right now, and Scan Magazine spoke to her about anxiety-safe shows, fat acceptance, the Law of Jante, and why her new show is called Dead Baby Frog.



Whether fjord views or conferencing facilities are at the top of your list of priorities, a rich and fascinating heritage always adds a special touch to any hotel stay. Take note of these historical gems in Norway.


From Danish Wool to Swedish Houses


SPECIAL FEATURES Nature’s gifts are not just for foraging – though they are certainly good for that, too. Among other things, this month’s special features present solutions for making the most of Mother Nature in looking after your skin – not just by moisturising, but also by drinking tea!

Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway While enjoying a stay in one of our top historical hotels in Norway, why not make the most of the activities and adventures on offer during autumn and winter in this spectacularly beautiful country? From ice climbing and kayak paddling to husky excursions and fishing trips, we list winter wonders not to miss this year.

We found ways to stay warm with both Danish wool garments and Swedish coats, learnt all about wellmade Danish furniture, and interviewed our favourite Swedish architect along the way.

20 Goodness from Face to Gut

Historical Hotels in Norway


FinTech Spotlight Last month, our eyes were opened to the exciting possibilities created by the booming FinTech industry. This month we continue our exploration – now also dipping a toe into the Finnish scene.

BUSINESS SPECIAL THEMES 36 Nordic Art & Culture Special – Norway Take well-preserved buildings, a proud history and an innovative art scene, and you get a buzzing scene for culture vultures to enjoy. We list our current Norwegian culture highlights, including a progressive opera company and Norway’s first ‘culture church’.

89 Danes Taking Over the World When we spoke to the general secretary of Danes Worldwide, we learnt that there are 250,000 expats living outside of Denmark. No wonder that they are taking the world by storm – with electrical bicycles, the world’s first smart piggybank, and a groundbreaking new meeting space rental platform, to name just some of the inspiring businesses we got to know better this month.

40 Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

70 84

In Denmark, we fell for the breadth of traditional and modern art, including everything from paintings to sculpture and old-school printing techniques. Read all about the galleries and art institutions not to miss on your next visit.

52 Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations From an old monastery celebrating peace and quiet to a pop culture hub urging you to have fun while

CULTURE 120 Where to Go, What to See… As the festival season draws to a close, concert halls and exhibition spaces are the perfect places to hide after a cup of hot chocolate in a cosy café or a pint of ale in an enticing pub. We list some promising cultural happenings over the coming months, in addition to Karl Batterbee’s reliable low-down on the musical highlights from Scandinavia this season.

REGULARS & COLUMNS 8 Fashion Diary  |  11 We Love This  |  106 Attractions of the Month  |  109 Experience of the Month 110 Artist of the Month  |  112 Hotel of the Month  |  114 Inn of the Month 115 Restaurants of the Month  |  119 Humour

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  5

Scan Magazine  |  Editor’s Note

Dear Reader, When this month’s cover star, Sofie Hagen, told me that she feels “hashtag blessed, I think is what the kids call it”, it was with sarcasm in her voice. But she meant it: yes, she grew up with an emotionally abusive psychopath grandfather, and poor, relatively speaking, and she spends a great deal of time and energy as part of a growing fat acceptance movement – including when, on stage, she jokes about British men chatting her up and admitting to being so-called ‘chubby chasers’. But she feels blessed; she knows she is privileged. There are times when it is hard to hold on to that gratitude, when the stress and worry take over and the perspective slips away. I find that few things help bring focus back to what matters quite as well as a quality art experience or a truly buzzing cultural event, something our Nordic Art & Culture special can help with. For a completely new perspective, read about Andøya Space Center in Northern Norway; and to deal with the most existential of conundrums, head for the Museum of Religious Art in Denmark.

you in the mood for mud baths, white robes and Zen meditation. I am sure feeling inspired by the words of Swedish Spa Hotels’ Sara Hellgren, who describes spending a few days at a spa with her son, and am busy planning our next family getaway somewhere truly relaxing – and offline! But a true Scandinavian can never escape time in the great outdoors, so of course we listed this year’s very best autumn and winter experiences in Norway too. Dog sledding and northern lights chasing, you say? Each to their own, I say. You will find me in a hot spring, feeling hashtag blessed.

Linnea Dunne, Editor


Another safe bet when the mind races is a stint of mindfulness or perhaps an entire weekend of indulgent spa treatments. Our annual Swedish Spa & Wellness Special is back and sure to get


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Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  Fashion Diary

Fashion Diary… The leaves are changing and it is time to carve pumpkins, drink hot chocolate with marshmallows, eat pumpkin spice bread and snuggle up with a cosy blanket and your favourite book or movie. Autumn is officially here, and we love it! But if you are not as ecstatic about autumn as we are at Scan Magazine, we hope that at least these fashionable items will boost your love for the season. By Heidi Kokborg  |  Press photos

A cosy sweater like this one from COS is an absolute must this season. What we really love about this sweater is that it is just elegant enough to wear over a shirt at the office and just casual enough to wear for the Sunday lunch with the family. COS sweatshirt, £45

No matter the season, every businessman needs a classic briefcase. Made in smooth, black leather, this briefcase signals business; there is room enough for a laptop, some paperwork, pens, keys and even your wallet. Tiger of Sweden briefcase, £379

Whether you like it or not, it is coat time again. This wool coat is classic and made by the Italian weaver Marlane. Crucially, it goes perfect over a suit. Tiger of Sweden coat, £449

Always make sure to have a rain coat and a pair of solid boots handy during autumn. These classic leather boots are great for this season and, due to the exclusive cattle leather, they are exceptionally comfortable too. Mads Nørgaard boots, approx. £124

8  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  Fashion Diary

There is nothing saying that just because it is autumn you cannot wear a dress anymore. This beautiful dress from Danish Nümph is made for those chilly autumn days. Wear it with a black blazer and stilettoes for a sharp office look or a cosy sweater and a pair of chunky boots for the ultimate casual autumn look. Nümph dress, price on request

September can sometimes be a little tricky to dress for – some days you need to dig out the good old winter coat, and other days you can get by in just a T-shirt. We are huge fans of the blazer as a sort of transition jacket. VERO MODA blazer, approx. £46

Bring on the cosy sweaters and soft scarves! Really, is there anything quite like wrapping a soft, warm and beautiful scarf around you? This pretty scarf from Tiger of Sweden will definitely bring out your autumn mood. Tiger of Sweden scarf, approx. £79

How perfect are these black leather ankle boots? They are elegant, chic and fashionable and go well with both a dress and a pair of jeans. The heel is just high enough to make you look very stylish, yet low enough so that you do not trip and fall in the middle of the high street. Mads Nørgaard shoes, approx. £214

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  9

Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  Street Style

Nordic Humans of London Scan Magazine’s brilliant Sanna Halmekoski has once again hit the streets of London to find out what the Scandinavian fashion fanatics are wearing. Cool, sleek, and full of statements, this is a little piece of Scandiland in the United Kingdom. Text and photos by Sanna Halmekoski  |

Ray Noir Norwegian musician @raynoir

Åsa Höjer Swedish communications manager at the Swedish Church and freelance graphic designer

“I love the colour black, I always wear black. When I go shopping, I first look for the colour black and then for the right type of cut and shape. My music is dark wave industrial, inspired by metal. My shoes are by Puma, my jeans are by H&M, my shirt is by Topman, most of my rings are by Tokyo Human Experiments, and my sunglasses are by Lanvin.”

“My style depends on the day and the occasion. I don’t like dressing up too much, but I like to combine small details such as different jewellery or a different scarf. I don’t remember where I got my shoes, but I love them and have had them for years. My shirt is from Fara.”

Nina Tanskala

Åsa Höjer

Nina Tanskala Finnish fashion designer and cofounder of Szutan: @szutan

Ray Noir

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“My style is Nordic, clean and practical. I rarely shop, and only ever for good quality. Sometimes I also make my own clothes, and at Szutan, we like to find ways to design clothes in a more environmentally friendly way. My skirt is by Szutan, the jacket is self-made, my shoes are by H&M, and the colour was sprayed by me.”

Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  We Love This

We love this… As we enter the first official month of autumn, nature transforms into a magical landscape of red, orange and yellow shades, and the nights are getting darker, we suggest that you take the opportunity to give your home a hygge boost. We promise that it will make both autumn and winter so much better! By Heidi Kokborg  |  Press photos

There is nothing like the feeling of wrapping a warm blanket around you after a long day. This beautiful wool blanket will keep you warm as the evenings get colder and is sure to keep the chills at bay, plus it looks perfect thrown across the end of the bed, on the couch or draped over a chair. Lapuan Kankurit Blue Iida Blanket, £69

Nothing says ‘hygge’ like a scented candle – especially if said candle is actually named ‘hygge’. Skandinavisk scented candles are made from a blend of perfume and vegetable wax with a 100 per cent cotton wick and an engraved beechwood lid. The candle burns for up to 50 hours, so snuggle up with a blanket and a cup of tea and light this ‘hygge’ candle for an ultimate Danish evening. Skandinavisk Scented Candle – Hygge (Cosiness), £29

This time of year, you need a lamp to create a soft, cosy atmosphere in your home. Whether you place this lamp in your living room or on your bedside table, we are sure that it will make your evenings more enjoyable! Table lamp KLABB IKEA, £25

As you are likely going to be spending more time indoors, you will want a beautiful, yet very cosy cushion on your couch or in your favourite armchair. This cushion has been designed with a focus on functionality, quality and beauty – values that have been a part of Georg Jensen Damask since the company was founded in 1756 in the Danish town of Kolding. Georg Jensen Damask BASE cushion, Dappled Blue, approx. £42

Think like a Scandinavian: always make sure to keep your feet warm! What better way to do it than with these cosy felt slippers? They will keep your feet snug all through the cold, dark autumn and winter months. Gleerup felt slippers, £69.95

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  11

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Joha

Wool that is kind to the wearer and the bearer We may not always think about it, but the treatment of animals in the clothing industry can be as cruel as that in the food industry. Therefore, Danish wool expert Joha has made a conscious choice to only produce sustainable and ethical wool garments. This means, among other things, that the brand never uses mulesing wool in any of its products. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Joha

Joha, a much-loved Danish children’s wear company, has spent decades improving and expanding the brand’s top-quality wool products. Today, the Joha collections include not just children’s wear but also collections for adults and products that combine materials such as silk and wool. However, it is not just the comfort of the wearer that motivates the family behind the com12  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

pany. “To feel pride in our final product, we must be able to look ourselves in the mirror and truthfully say that we are proud of how our clothes are produced,” says Kristine Frølund Johansen, who is, with her husband Michael, the third generation of Johansens to run Joha. “We don’t just care about the welfare and comfort of the people who wear our clothes, but also very much about the

animals that make it. Although we think about it less, the treatment of animals in the clothing industry is just as important as animal welfare in the food industry.” This not only means that Joha never buys wool from mulesing sheep, but also that the company always maintains the strictest standards when dyeing fabrics and, as far as possible, uses organic materials.

The warming (and cooling) qualities of wool Some people might think that woolly underwear is just for cold winter nights or skiing trips, but they are wrong. Thanks to the various advantages of wool and

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Joha

Joha’s different designs and combinations of fabrics, many pieces are just as comfortable on warm days as on cold ones. “A lot of people know that wool is great for keeping the body warm and maintaining a stable temperature when it is cold, but it is actually just as good at keeping the heat away from the body,” says Johansen. Another unique quality of wool is its ability to absorb moisture. Because of the many small air pockets contained in the fabric’s fibres, it can absorb up to 40 per cent of its own weight. In comparison, cotton absorbs only around eight

per cent of its own weight. “Wool is a fantastic product for babies to sleep in, because it maintains their bodies at a constant temperature and absorbs any moisture, preventing them from getting damp and cold,” explains Johansen.

Comfortable and affordable Made from soft merino wool sourced from New Zealand, all Joha’s products are of the highest quality and carry the Woolmark quality mark. Furthermore, Joha was the first baby underwear brand to be approved for the EU Ecolabel. “All our products, cotton and wool, have the EU Ecolabel. It’s a symbol that testifies

that there are no harmful substances in our products, but also that the product has been through an environmentally harmless production. It means that we have to be extra careful when we source our yarn, and it makes things a little bit more complicated, but we like to run a principled business,” says Johansen. However, she stresses, this is not reflected in the final price of the product. “It’s part of our philosophy to try to make this kind of comfort and quality accessible to everyone.” Web:

Joha was founded in 1963 and is today sold in approximately 900 shops in the Nordic countries as well as Germany, Iceland, Belgium, Holland, Russia and Japan. Joha also includes the children’s wear brand Katvig, which produces sustainable children’s wear under the slogan ‘for the love of earth’. Thanks to the high quality of wool, Joha’s products are suitable even for premature babies and children with sensitive skin (Joha produces a special sensitive skin range). Joha never buys wool from mulesing sheep. Most of Joha’s products – including those made of wool – are machine washable and dryable. All of Joha’s products have the EU Ecolabel.

Joha produces 100 per cent natural, moisture-absorbing, soft wool underwear for children and adults. Bottom left: Michael and Kristine are the third generation of Johansens to run Joha. Their son, the fourth generation, helps out by modelling the clothes.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  13

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Ross

Pål Ross.

Born to rewrite the rules Inspired by his mechanical engineer grandad and his artist mother in equal measure, Pål Ross grew up convinced that there was a better way to do just about everything. He went on to become one of Sweden’s most celebrated architects, proving that houses can be anything but square. By Linnea Dunne  |  Photos: Ross Architecture & Design

“LEGO was different back then. I don’t think you got kits with instructions; it was half a kilo of LEGO and you made what you wanted. It was a fantastic universe of thousands of pieces and I built spaceships and cranes and entire little towns,” says Pål Ross. Looking back, he describes a creative child to whom there was no such thing as an impossibility. His grandfather ran a factory in Småland, where Ross spent his summers learning all about machinery, technology and construction. “We came to develop a very close friendship and called each other ‘polare’ [‘buddy’],” Ross recalls. “I’ve always been 14  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

very curious and struggled to accept when people would say that something doesn’t work or can’t be done. I probably get that from morfar [grandad] – when I asked questions, he always explained everything to me in detail, so that I could fully understand. He was the very same; when he first set up his factory, he couldn’t order the equipment he needed, so he built it himself.” Born in Stockholm in 1961, Ross grew up making sense of the world through construction. Among his specialties were cardboard spaceships with entire habitats including bedrooms, changing rooms for putting the space suit on and

a control cabin, which he made for himself and his friends. “There are a few still hanging around somewhere,” he says. “I realise now that I was very much doing then what I’m still doing today. This thing of spatially creating habitats, I had that with me from a very early age.” Ross Architecture & Design was founded in 1996 and, since then, over 300 exclusive villas have been created, now with a number of office environments adding to the portfolio of ‘works of art’ as Ross likes to call them. The head architect’s razor-sharp vision and determination to find a perfectly satisfying solution to every task has remained as strong as ever, and the result is an immediately recognisable design expression that refuses to, as he says, put life in a box. “When people say that things should be a certain way because they’ve always been like that, I ask ‘why?’. My artistic

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Ross Architecture & Design

work stands out from the mainstream because, say, I started looking at why we tend to build square houses, and then it turned out that it was just because it was easiest that way – not because it was what was best. And what’s easiest can be good enough, but it’s not necessarily what’s optimal,” says Ross. “I guess my work is very much intertwined with who I am as a person. I practise what I preach – and I don’t have a lot of time for those who don’t.”

A champion of longing and listening

sion with trends that seem dated within a year. Now with countless accolades and awards to his name, including Best Architecture Single Residence Sweden and Sweden’s Most Beautiful Villa, he has proved his point. “I may be stubborn, but I always consider other people’s feelings,” he hurries to add. “If I find a better solution to your problem than the one you had envisaged, I have the pedagogical ability to explain it to you in such a way that you’ll understand and won’t feel run over.”

When Ross was six years old, his mother received a stipend to go to Spain to work on an exhibition, so the family relocated. Ross recalls spending his teenage years helping his friends decorate their rooms, building furniture from next to nothing. “This was before IKEA came to Spain, and your average Spanish bedroom was just so dull! So I used a few saws and some wood and foam cut-outs and came up with clever solutions,” he says. “This was the Franco days and people just didn’t have a lot of money. There was no H&M back then and I kept getting handme-downs – it looked terrible… so I learnt to sew and redesigned all my clothes!”

As someone who spends hours on end interviewing his clients in order to understand their desires, habits and needs before starting the process of drawing their future home, or indeed office, Ross certainly takes other people seriously and he admits that there was a time when he considered studying psychology. “This is all about radically improving people’s lives,” he says. “Just like we can’t help but be moved by music, our physical surroundings play a huge role in our wellbeing. Our first major office project has already drastically reduced the sick days among the employees. Great architecture makes people feel better!”

That he is a champion of dreams is clear. Not only does he reject the beaten path; he insists that a high price tag says nothing about how beautiful or pleasant a design will be, talks enthusiastically about spaces that provide an energy boost and frowns at the fashion industry’s obses-

He describes the cathartic creative space he enters when he packs up to hibernate for a few days after the interviews are done – a space where he forgets about time and gets to exist in a bubble – and says that there is a certain nostalgia involved. “I always hit a low after a project

is done. It’s like saying goodbye to a close friend; I’ve then lived in that house, created the space around me, looked at it through their eyes.” It is as if Ross the award-winning architect and Ross the child meet in that creative space, that place where everything is possible and nothing brings as much joy as helping people. “I always say during any given project that if we can fly to the moon and walk around up there, then we can do this. And of course we can,” he smiles. The brand-new Ross book “When I was young, I read a piece of advice somewhere that you should strive to have a child, plant a tree and write a book in your lifetime, and I was quite receptive to that message,” says Pål Ross apropos of Live In A Work of Art: Contemporary Scandinavian Architecture, the book that is out now on Birch Hill Publishing, printed on a custom-made landscape A3 format. You can order the book on the website.

Web: Facebook:  rossarkitekturdesignab Instagram: @designbyross

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  15

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Helland Møbler

The stylish Twin chair model is one of Helland Møbler’s best-selling classics, launched in 2002.

Scandi furniture with a Sunnmøre twist Searching for high-quality furniture for your office space, reception or health care business? Look no further – Helland Møbler’s furniture, based on 70 years of experience in Norway and beyond, is exactly what you need. By Karen Langfjæran  |  Photos: Helland Møbler

The management and ownership of the furniture manufacturing company based in Stordal, Western Norway, has been within the family since 1947 when the furniture production blossomed in the small village. “Despite this being one of the least populated municipalities in Norway, there used to be a total of five factories here up until the late ‘90s,” says Joakim Helland, director of Helland Møbler. Although the company has expanded since then, all product development of Helland Møbler still takes place at their headquarters in the original factory located between steep mountains 16  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

and the beautiful fjord. So there is really no wonder that the business is a success – they are based near one of the most inspirational fjords of Norway!

Celebrating 70 years of Scandi furniture

This year marks the 70th anniversary for the furniture manufacturing company, and Helland has experienced his share of them. Having run around his grandfather’s factory as a child, Helland now runs the furniture manufacturing company with his brother in Stordal – and the business has taken off, particularly

within companies where design, quality and comfort are not only preferable, but necessary. “Helland Møbler began manufacturing furniture for the contract market in the 1960s, after focusing on the private market for the first few years. Today, we manufacture specialised furniture for official buildings, receptions, offices, residential care, institutions and hospitals, but we’ve also provided furniture for buildings such as bowling halls and churches,” says Helland. Complete control of the entire value chain enables Helland to develop and offer furniture in small quantities. “For hospitals and care homes there is often a need for special product modifications,” Helland explains. Competence in product development combined with creativity is a key element of the business, not only

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Helland Møbler

in the health care market, but also in the contract market as a whole. The company’s long history as a family business has been significant in the development of its production ideals. “It’s important to us that we manufacture beautifully designed furniture without having to compromise on comfort or quality,” says Helland. The result is stylish Scandi furniture, designed by wellknown designers, which certainly contributes to more appealing rooms – and more comfortable breaks as you sit down and enjoy.

Keeping it local while going international

Helland Møbler’s slogan, ‘Furniture that cares’, leaves little doubt that the furniture manufacturing company has the end user in mind when manufacturing those stylish pieces of furniture they have come to be known for. Despite providing furniture for a number of needs and markets within Europe, it is within the health care

sector that Helland Møbler truly thrives – meaning the company is doing its share to improve Scandinavian and European health. Their market-leading products are widely spread around Norway, but the brand is also acknowledged internationally as one of the very best. “We recently designed and provided a substantial number of resting chairs for 630 rooms in the new hospital outside Stockholm, Nya Karolinska, which is due to fully open in 2018,” says Helland. Having beaten the Swedish competition on such a prestigious project, they stand strong as an international furniture brand – with that little Sunnmøre twist. For it does indeed matter that Helland Møbler is a family business that is still based in the original factory at the beautiful fjord location. Today, you can find show rooms, sales offices and dealers in Norway, Sweden, Germany and England as well as contacts in Japan, Switzerland, Austria and the Netherlands – but the head office will always remain in the

fjords of Sunnmøre. This local approach not only contributes to local jobs, right where it once started, but also to their efforts to make as little environmental impact as possible. “We use high-quality, recyclable materials and are certified in a number of ways – among others in ISO14001 and through Møbelfakta,” says Helland. Seeing the beautiful fjord from your office window must surely make you want to take care of it.

From Helland to you, with love

Although the fjord view does not come with the furniture, it provides all the inspiration you need for comfortable seating anywhere. The company’s mission is to make every day better through the utmost care, and although it does not include human qualities yet – though Helland says that you never know what the technology of the future might bring – it is perhaps the next best thing. Web:

Top left: Helland Møbler’s original factory is located between steep mountains and the beautiful fjord.Top right: No need to compromise on anything in the production of the Duun resting chair, which will be found in 630 rooms at the new hospital outside Stockholm, Nya Karolinska. Bottom left: The family business opened its first factory in 1947. It is now truly international, delivering for the contract market in several countries. Bottom right: The stylish Tiara chairs have a classic Scandi style and come in either oak or birch with several colour finishes to choose from.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  17

Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Formfin Møbler

Left: The Villa Collection aims to bring the indoor living room outside. Top right: With their locally designed and produced furniture, Formfin Møbler is conscious of being kind to the environment and its local community. Right: CEO of Formfin Møbler, Vibeke Aanning Aarseth, took over the company at the start of the year

Handcrafted furniture designed and produced in Norway For more than 70 years, furniture manufacturer Formfin Møbler has been at the forefront of the production of locally produced and handcrafted furniture made within a small radius of Hundeidvik, near Ålesund in Norway.

the local cultural life – and we support the building of schools, sports and activity centres as well as Norway’s oldest singing choir.”

By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Formfin Møbler

Priding themselves on a longstanding collaboration with Norwegian furniture giant Bohus since 1976, Formfin Møbler has also partnered with interior designer and former SAS Scandinavian Airlines flight attendant Halvor Bakke on his Signature Collection.

The collection has been made in collaboration with the Hageland Group, who have both chosen local partners within a ten-minute radius. This is something that is incredibly important to the company – and backed by Innovation Norway and Skattefunn.

But do not be fooled by its longstanding history; Formfin Møbler is constantly evolving with the times to keep up with the current trends on both the design front and the innovative production and market aspects of the business.

“It means that any amendments that need to be done can be made very quickly, because we’re all so close to each other,” says CEO Vibeke Aanning Aarseth, who took over the steering wheel at the start of the year. “We also have short delivery times of only one week to Hageland.”

Bringing the living room outside Its latest project, the Villa Collection, has been focusing on bringing the living room outside by creating outdoor furniture that is worthy of the indoor living room: stylish, comfortable and of great quality, to cater for the growing trend of outside spaces in Norway. 18  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Product manager Geir Kvalvåg adds: “It’s a great environmental advantage to use all local suppliers – and our aim to make and produce everything in Norway means that we’re the biggest employer in our local village, which we have been since 1946. We’re a great contributor to

Despite its focus on a local production line, Formfin Møbler also employs a range of different nationalities, which Aarseth believes helps build a colourful society. “There are generations of people working hand in hand, and everyone has equal rights regardless of their nationality,” she explains. With its very own in-house designer, who adapts to suit most styles and tastes, the company’s vision to be the ‘safe choice for the home’ is followed through by their ability to trace every single bit of material in every piece of furniture they create. The transparency of their creations, and willingness to contribute to the local society, truly make them a Norwegian company through and through.


Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Elvine

Fashionably functional Urban cool designs tailored to suit unpredictable weather conditions in a metropolitan setting, along with Gothenburgian playfulness, make up the foundation of Elvine. This exciting Swedish brand shines bright on the fashion sky, and its founder attributes a great deal of the success to his own hometown. By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: Elvine

“I’m a true Gothenburgian with the harbour, humour and quite unpleasant weather in the blood, so the city has naturally become an important part of Elvine’s DNA,” founder and creative director Daniel Mänd explains. “For instance, the weather here has pushed us to design solid, functional jackets. We call it City Function, meaning that the design and amount of functional features of the jacket are adapted for city wear.” The City Function jacket has become Elvine’s trademark item of clothing. Much of the inspiration behind it comes from the frustration Mänd experienced when trying to find a functional city jacket without having to resort to looking like an outdoorsy person. Playfulness is something that Mänd and his team at Elvine take seriously, especially with regards to their attitude and the way in which they communicate.

“As long as your basic needs in life are met, there’s really nothing that needs to be particularly serious. In this time of bizarre presidents, ridiculous reality TV shows and bloggers telling people what to wear, we think that you should laugh at it all, relax and add some fun to everyday life,” says Mänd. Despite the playfulness, Elvine is evidently adopting a serious approach when it comes to social responsibility. As a result, Elvine makes an effort to offer modern design produced in a both socially and environmentally conscious way. “We stopped using environmentally hazardous fluorocarbons in the textile impregnation processes ages ago. We use eco-friendly alternatives instead,” says Mänd. Moreover, the social work Elvine engages in has included projects supporting homeless charities in Gothenburg. “I felt that it was important to give something back

to people who haven’t been as lucky as I have,” the founder continues. Put simply, the aim of this innovative fashion brand is to produce modern, easy-towear clothes that can be worn for more than one season. Their clothes are characterised by playfulness and, of course, boast a high level of resistance to harsh weather conditions. Daniel Mänd.

Web: Facebook: Instagram: @elvineclothing

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  19

Scan Magazine  |  Beauty Profile  |  Moonsun

Love your skin With brand Moonsun Organic of Sweden, two skin therapists have successfully created a range of lush skin products with essential oils that are also environmentally friendly – pure heaven for your skin. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Moonsun Organic of Sweden

Skin therapists Mia Skaug and Jenny Svärdendahl are the creators of the brand Moonsun Organic of Sweden, a unisex series of holistic skin products with delicious natural aromas. They first met in 2002 during a course in holistic skin therapy, set up a salon together and eventually started developing their own sustainable skin care products for body and mind. Both have an extensive background in spa treatments, cosmetics and aromatherapy and over the years they have learned about the importance of high-quality natural ingredients, small-scale develop20  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

mass production with lots of added water to dilute the products, with Moonsun Organic of Sweden we do things smallscale, through trial and error, and now have a range of honest and sustainable products.”

ment of organic products and their impact on the skin.

Multi-functional products

“Skin care is becoming increasingly popular, but there are a lot of certifications that are not telling the truth,” say the founders, explaining that even though some labels state that a product is organic it might not mean that it is 100 per cent environmentally friendly. “We have come to understand what holistic really means – getting the whole picture – and how we can slow down and look at better products and ways of working. Instead of

The Moonsun Organic of Sweden multifunctional series, called Love Your Skin, reflects the two entrepreneurs’ work as therapists in holistic and natural cosmetics, aromas and mindfulness. The ten unisex products for face and body consist of perfectly matched high-quality ingredients and essential oils, and have been thoughtfully developed and tested over a number of years to suit both men and women and fit any skin type. “It took us almost eight years to create this skin

Scan Magazine  |  Beauty Profile  |  Moonsun

series, which is based on aromatherapy. We have tried all the products in our treatments in the salon, seen for ourselves the long-term impact on the skin, and realised that the combination and balance of the ingredients really work.” Most popular is the award-winning Beeswax body oil, with hints of sea buckthorn and lemongrass. The versatile oil is ideal for everything from dry feet to split ends, and is perfect as a massage oil. It has won Guldäpplet (the Golden Apple) by wellness magazine Hälsa and been nominated for Product of the Year at the Organic Beauty Awards Sweden. Skaug and Svärdendahl explain the idea behind their beeswax product: “As aromatherapists, we wanted a useful oil with good fats, and this is the one we ended up using in our treatments. It’s amazing to work with, giving our

customers soft skin but also taking good care of our own skin.” Also popular is the moisturising vitamin C serum with aloe vera, a boosting serum that is also recommended after a day in the sun. According to customers, the nurturing face cream with macadamia oil gives the feeling of more shine and lustre. The other well-made products include cleansing oil and cleansing cream, face oil and face tonic, body lotion and body scrub, and a combined body and hair soap.

The future of skin care In addition to their environmentally friendly and climate smart range of products, Skaug and Svärdendahl look closely at how the packaging of the products can be better and have chosen to use recycled plastic for the 200-millilitre bottles

instead of glass to reduce the carbon footprint. A focus on sustainability is at the very core of their business, from ingredients to packaging, providing a great promise for the future of professional skin care. “There are a lot of old marketing tricks out there in terms of cosmetics and skin care, but we don’t actually need all those different products for day and night and different parts of the body,” say the skin therapists and emphasise making use of old knowledge and what nature has to offer. “It’s important to think long-term about our environment, not to follow all the new trends religiously, and only use what we actually need. Less is more.” The range of lush Moonsun Organic of Sweden skin care products is available at selected retailers and in their web shop. Web: Facebook: moonsunorganic Twitter: @moonsunorganics Instagram: @moonsunorganic

Mia Skaug and Jenny Svärdendahl, founders of Moonsun Organic of Sweden.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  21

Scan Magazine  |  Beauty Profile  |  Loelle

Dominique Guellouchi and colleague Sara Nomberg at beauty awards.

Essentially kind oil Despite its long history, you may never have heard of argan oil. It is time to familiarise yourself with the name, because this Moroccan beauty secret is about to take the world by storm. One of those spreading the word about the benefits of the exotic oil is the man behind the company Loelle. By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: Loelle

First mentioned in medical texts from the 13th century, argan oil is believed to have been used as early as 1500 BC. It is widely utilised in Morocco, in cooking as well as in medicine and beauty treatments. “Argan oil is an important component of Moroccan traditional medicine. It’s packed with vitamins that help the skin regain its lustre,” explains Dominique Samir Guellouchi, founder of Loelle, a company that produces and distributes argan oil in Sweden and online. The inspiration behind the company comes from two important people. “My mother, who’s from Finland, met my father in Morocco – a country and culture she fell in love with. She has always advocated a healthy lifestyle and sug22  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

gested I start the business. I named it after my daughter who was born around the time when I founded the business. My daughter stands for love, so I felt the name was perfect because the motto of the company is love and kindness,” says Guellouchi. Argan is a tree endemic to Morocco. The rare oil is extracted from the kernel inside the argan nut, which is found inside the argan fruit. From having been a local ingredient, the oil has become increasingly popular globally due to its antioxidant properties and cosmetic benefits. “At Loelle, we believe that skin products should contain as few ingredients as possible and be free from chemical additives. More and more people become

aware of the benefits of organic, natural oils and seek to replace their old products. Recently, we launched a luxury series, containing among other products a barbary fig seed oil, which has been a big hit and even won Best Serum 2017,” Guellouchi explains. In addition to the commitment to organic, natural products, Loelle takes a societal responsibility. The production of Loelle’s oil is placed in the safe hands of a few women’s cooperatives in Morocco. “I’m glad we found the cooperatives we’re working with. We have a nice relationship, regularly go there and donate clothes and school supplies to the children in the village. They’re incredibly nice people, but sadly very poor. So, in line with our philosophy of love and kindness, buying our products helps these women and children. It’s a win-win situation,” Guellouchi finishes. Web:

Scan Magazine  |  Beauty Profile  |  Lindarome

Photo: Emma Eriksson

Photo: Simon Nilsson

Photo: Simon Nilsson

CEO Cecilia Thorsson (left) together with skincare therapist and co-founder Linda Mossberg. Photo: Emma Eriksson

Swedish skincare – from the inside and out “Our skin is a living organ, and just like our other organs it needs nutrition. Your skin will tell you how you feel on the inside,” says Cecilia Thorsson, CEO of Lindarome. The company has developed a new skincare concept with a range of supplements, serums and creams that focus on specific problem areas with a promise of longlasting results. By Sara Wenkel

When Linda Mossberg, co-founder of Lindarome, worked as a skincare therapist she always ended up consulting on the subject of nutrition and how to live a healthy life, in addition to performing the usual skincare routines. “It is all linked together,” she says. “You can try out many different skincare products but in the end find that you lack a specific nutrient, which your body needs to resolve your skin problem.”

online, to guide and help them find the combination that is right for them. “The good thing is that you can continue with your normal skincare routines and just add the Lindarome products, as they are supplemental,” says Thorsson.

International focus ahead from carefully selected natural and active ingredients inspired by the Nordic nature, developed and produced in Sweden according to GMP standard.

Skincare duos

The skincare duos work for a better and more long-lasting effect. Each duo focuses on a specific skin problem, for example acne, uneven skin tone, sun damage or premature ageing. “It might be that you have several problems and that one duo combined with three supplements is what is right for you,” says Thorsson.

Lindarome offers what she calls ‘skincare duos’ – supplements combined with active serums or creams. These are made

Lindarome has a skincare therapist devoted to answering customers’ questions

Skincare supplements and beauty vitamins are fast-growing product categories in markets such as the US, Asia and Europe. This spring, Lindarome was part of the CosmoProf in Bolonge, one of the world’s biggest beauty exhibitions. “We have a very fun year coming up when taking the brand outside Sweden,” Thorsson enthuses. “We truly believe that more people will realise the winning concept of looking after your inside to improve your outside.” Web: Instagram: @lindarome_se

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  23

Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Profile  |  Restaurant Address

Photo: Richard Lightbody

The legendary Copenhagen harbour’s home away from home If you are looking for somewhere to eat where you will be greeted like a long-lost friend, Address is the place to go. The neighbouring city dwellers queue up for its smørrebrød sandwich lunches, and in the evening customers looking for exciting Danish-French food fusion can enjoy a sense of modern hygge while watching the tranquil blue waters of Øresund. By Ulrika Kuoppa-Jones  |  Photos: Address Restaurant & Vinbar

Address Restaurant and Wine Bar is situated in Tuborg’s harbour, Tuborg Havn, named after the legendary brewery. The docks outside Copenhagen have a distinct urban style and Address itself, situated right by the water’s edge, bears the timeless design mark of Scandi favourite Georg Jensen. “On a clear day, you can see all the way over to Sweden, with nothing obstructing the view and more than the occasional boat sailing past,” says restaurant managers Jilly Høi and Tilde Christiensen Olsen with a smile. But the location is only one of the qualities that make this restaurant so popular. In a hectic time when businesses are taking shortcuts in terms of service, Address has its own philosophy: “We want our customers to feel a real sense of belonging here. Customer service is at the core of everything we do. We believe 24  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

in finding members of staff with a big heart, real personalities who are relaxed around our customers and obviously skilled at what they do, too.” Tuborg Havn is a place that changes its feel throughout the day. Buzzing and busy during the hectic office hours, it turns into a tranquil haven come late afternoon. Address Restaurant and Wine Bar’s philosophy is to serve good, honest, sustainable food, be it with a Danish or French twist. Everything is based on local produce in as much as it is possible. Address opened up three years ago by owners Michael Lynenskjold and Kim Hansen. Jilly Høi and Tilde Christiansen Olsen now manage the restaurant. “We have become busier and busier over the years,” says Høi. “Apart from catering for all the guests, we host plenty of birthday

parties and weddings, especially in the summer months. We have the capacity to host a DJ and entertain with live music.” She continues: “Our returning customers come from all over the world. They say it is because this feels like a home away from home – that Address has a real soul. I recently heard some business customers from London say that they couldn’t wait to come back.” What could be a better compliment than that?

Web: Facebook: restaurantaddress Instagram: @restaurantaddress



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Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Profile  |

SSAM Korean Food Bar

A taste of Korea If you have not already fallen for it, it is definitely time to taste some authentic Korean food. Why not kick-start your love story with this exciting cuisine by visiting a little gem of a restaurant in Copenhagen?

a chance to experience Korean culture without going there, or feel like they’re re-visiting Korea,” says Jeong.

By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: Boen Imaging

Opened in June this year, the first months have been quite busy at SSAM Korean Food bar. “Our idea is to serve tasty and affordable Korean food in a comfortable environment. There aren’t that many Korean restaurants in Copenhagen so we weren’t sure what to expect, but the locals seem to like our food,” says founder, co-owner and head chef Jeong Hwa. The heart and soul of SSAM is Jeong, originally from Korea, and her husband Jeff Larsen. They met when Larsen lived and worked in South Korea’s second city of Busan. Jeong is a qualified chef, so opening a restaurant was something she had always wanted to do. Consequently, it is hardly surprising that she is responsible for the culinary side of the business, whereas Larsen gave up his job as an engineer in order to run the restaurant, taking care of all non-cooking-related matters. One such matter is the bar, where 26  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

customers can get their first taste of the famous Korean spirit Soju, a distilled vodka-like rice liquor that is an absolute must at any Korean restaurant. Korean food is the latest in a line of Asian cuisines to conquer the world, and Jeong has a theory on why this is. “I think with the popularity of K-pop and K-drama, there’s a growing interest in Korean culture generally. An important part of any culture is of course the cuisine,” Jeong explains. Together with the rest of the team, Jeong prepares all the food fresh in the morning. Everything you would hope to find on the menu is there, from the wonderful bibimbap served in a stone bowl to Korean fried chicken and stuffed buns. The philosophy of SSAM is quite simple. “We’re just a small place with a focus on quality over quantity; a place where people can get


Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Profile  |  Midsummer Tea

The healthy Swedish cuppa from Melbourne A young Melbourne lass packed her bags for a new life with her summer romance – in the midst of rural Sweden. It was a hunch that turned out to be the real thing. Five years later, Jessica Loft has turned her love for living in tune with Mother Nature into a magic blend of luxury tea. By Ulrika Kuoppa-Jones

Midsummer Tea promotes indulging in healthy, white tea, whether it be an invigorating morning brew, a cosy cup on your picnic, or a rehydrating ice tea after yoga. “I got the idea for my tea company as I watched the trend of detox, skinny and healthy teas really catch on in Melbourne,” explains Jessica Loft. “I did extensive research in creating a healthy and exclusive tea and found that handpicked and mildly processed white tea was the purest.” The name came naturally. “The tradition, the magic and mystery about Midsummer, the flower garlands, the sun that never sets, the seven flowers under the pillow... I love it!” Jessica is fascinated by the distinct change of the seasons in Sweden, quite

unlike her native Australia. That is why Midsummer Tea consists of four seasonal blends. “I blend the tea with fruits and elderflower to be enjoyed as ice tea in the summer; with apple, ginger and cinnamon for a warming winter brew, calming lavender and pear for the spring, and a boost for the immune system with lingonberries and raspberries in the autumn!”

Photo: Lukas Nyberg

It blew her mind that so many things are readily available to forage in Sweden. “I have a theory that this is the reason why people are so beautiful in Scandinavia. You’re all raised on handpicked superfruits!” she says with that trademark Aussie laugh. Web: Facebook: midsummertea Instagram: @midsummertea Twitter: @midsummertea

Photo: Isabella Demetral

Scan Magazine  |  Café Profile  |

Racoon Coffee & More

Left: The coffee is ‘the baby’ at the Ålesund-based café. Photo: Karoline K Vassenden. Middle: Racoon Coffee & More serves popular healthy foods as well as cakes and cookies. Photo: Andrea Beckmann. Top right: The café is located in an old Jugend house in Ålesund’s town centre, and the owners are keen to help preserve the town life. Photo: Susanne Finnes. Right: The café also has a licence to serve alcoholic beverages and stays open until 11pm every Friday. Photo: Susanne Finnes.

Preserving town life one coffee at a time With a strong urge to create something entirely from scratch at the same time as helping to save the town centre and supporting its local businesses, Racoon Coffee & More in Ålesund is passionate about both coffee and its home town. By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Racoon Coffee

Opening at 7.30am, the café – which has a clientele ranging from school kids to pensioners – aims to serve the people of Ålesund and its visitors the very best coffee around, mixed with healthy foods, cakes and alcoholic beverages on the side. “The coffee is our baby,” says co-owner Anette Finnes, who opened the café with Linn Therese Briksdal Dimmen in March 2015. Having worked together in a café in a shopping centre, the pair decided it was time to create something they were passionate about, which is how Racoon Coffee & More was born. “A lot of people in town already knew who we were because of our previous job, so they’ve all been immensely sup28  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

portive,” explains Finnes. “Town centres in Norway are dying out, and that’s why we decided to open up in town – to hold onto the town centre of Ålesund for as long as possible. The streets are never empty and there are plenty of activities, so it makes sense to be here.”

Supporting local Besides the coffee, which is sourced from Supreme Roastworks in Oslo, the café handpicks its suppliers to be as local as possible. Some pastries are baked on-site and others are from the nearby bakery Mandel & Melis. The meat is from the butchers Hole Kjøtt and the chocolate from Pralina, based in Ålesund. “For our ingredients, we only travel as far as Oslo and Trondheim,” says Finnes.

“We want to be urban and follow the trends, so we have a great deal of healthy options like smoothies, chia porridge and salads, but we also serve cakes and cookies. Instead of just copying trends, we follow them and put our own spin on them – we’d rather be the trendsetters, so we do a lot of talking and brainstorming to make that happen.” The café is located right by the steps that take visitors up to the viewpoint Fjellstua in an old Jugend house, and the owners explain that they have created jobs that they love going to. “We run this purely on passion – that’s why we have such a big focus on quality. We help our local community and pull each other up – that’s what everyone here does,” says Finnes.

Web: Instagram: @racooncoffee

Scan Magazine  |  Café Profile  |  LiVERTEN

The restaurant that plays with food We are all told as children not to play with food as it is bad manners, but at LiVERTEN in Norway the complete opposite is true. By Idha Toft Valeur  |  Photos: LiVERTEN AS

When LiVERTEN was founded in 2004, that was the plan: to play their way to exciting and different tasting food built on tradition and local produce from the areas around the Lierne municipality, a few hours north of Trondheim. Since opening their doors, LiVERTEN has not stopped expanding and sharing their culinary experiments with the local community. As of today, they have a restaurant, a catering service, their own bakery and a little shop connected to the local petrol station, where they offer their characteristic dishes known to all the locals. “We are especially proud of our Li-bab, which is our twist on the traditional kebab. It has become the talk of the town and even in the next town over; people travel to try it because a friend of a friend said it was

good,” says Siw Ellinor Aagård, quality manager and chef. “In our Li-bab we have reindeer meat, mashed potatoes and a sauce made of lingonberries, and we wrap it all in soft bread made in the bakery. It’s definitely a little different.” So, if you ever find yourself in Sandvika, the town centre of Nordli in Lierne, stop

your car and find your way to the restaurant or service station and grab that Li-bab served in a cone wrapped from newspaper. You will not be disappointed. Web:

Scandinavian simplicity Designed and handcrafted in Norway Freywood

Scan Magazine  |  Education Profile  |  International School of London

‘Genuinely international, genuinely diverse’ With a focus on academic challenge and enquiry as approach, International School of London (ISL) is renowned for its diverse and rigorous language profile. The school prides itself on providing a friendly, secure base for students of all ages whose parents come to London for work.

friendly atmosphere with a degree of informality. People know each other, the families are involved; we pride ourselves on really strong interpersonal relationships,” he says.

By Linnea Dunne  |  Photos: ISL

“We’re an International Baccalaureate [IB] school, so naturally we’re very strong on this – but other than that, our real strength is our language programme,” says Yoel Gordon, head of admissions. “We offer English as a second or additional language, as well as mother-tongue teaching in 22 different languages.” The language programme has given the school a respected name and provides insight into the unique environment prospective students can expect. Gordon estimates that the single largest language group represents no more than nine per cent of the entire student population, pinpointing just how diverse the atmosphere is. “There’s no dominant culture or language,” he explains. “There’s a tremendously dynamic and exciting mix of backgrounds; we’re genuinely international, genuinely diverse. That really is a defining aspect of the entire academic experience.” 30  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

A non-national curriculum offering the IB programme all the way from primary – starting at age three – through secondary and all the way up to the IB Diploma programme, ISL champions the practical, enquiry-focused approach typical of IB, with a non-national curriculum. This makes for an attractive option for parents who come to London on a two- or threeyear expat assignment. Key for their children is a welcoming environment where they can easily make friends, as well as an academic programme shaped around a cultural awareness of the great academic and social changes these pupils are going through. Crucially, they need support for whatever adventure awaits next, be it an international school elsewhere, a return home, or the first year at university. Gordon believes that the school’s relatively small size, with only around 400 pupils in total, helps. “There’s a very

Right now, what is perhaps most exciting is the fact that a four-year-long building programme is coming to an end, presenting a brand-new building for the IB Diploma students and significantly increased capacity for the school overall. “We’re growing!” Gordon enthuses. “There are plenty of interesting projects going on, including a huge new sports complex in our neighbouring Gunnersbury Park. It’s a very exciting time.”




Miriam Aida

Marco Pereira

Welcome to experience a great festival! / FRANO HRV / EDIN KARAMAZOV HRV / FRANK GAMBALE SOULMINE USA / NOELIA MONCADA T R I O A R G / L E O B R O U W E R C U B / M I R I A M A I D A S W E & M A R C O P E R E I R A B R A / YA N KO K N O R & H E D V I K A S V E N D O VA C Z E / S I N F O N I T Y E L E C T R I C G U I TA R O R C H E S T R A E S P / I G O R P R E S N YA KO V R U S / R O B E R T S VÄ R D S W E / L O S A N G E L E S G U I TA R Q U A R T E T U S A / D I M I T R I I L L A R I O N O V R U S /

12-18 O C T O B E R



Scan Magazine  |  Cover Feature  |  Sofie Hagen

32  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Scan Magazine  |  Cover Feature  |  Sofie Hagen

Sofie Hagen: ‘Hashtag Blessed’ Sofie Hagen is smart, hilarious, and not afraid to take up space. Scan Magazine spoke to the latest stand-up star to come out of Denmark about fat acceptance, lessons in social justice, and a dead baby frog. By Linnea Dunne  |  Photos: Matt Crockett

“Sometimes I don’t tell Danes when it’s going well,” says Sofie Hagen, who has just completed her third annual run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. “Here, I can go up and say to someone that I’m really happy because I got this TV show, but in Denmark I have to say that maybe I got this TV show but it’s just a small one. I have to talk it down a lot.” She is trying to explain the meaning of the Law of Jante, a description of Scandinavian group behaviour that frowns upon the showing off of individual success, which she thinks illustrates the Denmark of her youth well. She grew up with a single mother-of-two and an “emotionally abusive psychopath” grandfather. “It sounds tragic, but I remember it as quite good; I’m a really resilient person and, anyway, when you’re a child you don’t know how it’s meant to be,” she says. “I was poor in a Danish sense, but we were fine. At least back then we had a socialist government, and I had a very Danish upbringing in that there were never any expectations on me or thoughts of grandeur, no American ‘you can all be presidents’ – no, my mum always used to say, ‘when you become a single mother…’. There was never any pressure.” That she ended up finding her voice as a stand-up comedian is something she takes very little credit for herself. “It was never an option, never something anyone

had mentioned you could do, especially as a girl. When I made jokes at school, the kids assumed I was weird, not funny; but when the boys did, they’d all laugh,” she recalls. “But then I started going to comedy shows and comedians started recognising me and saying ‘hey, you clearly want to do stand-up, that’s why you’re here’, and eventually someone told me, ‘on Tuesday you go up and do five minutes – you have to, this is silly and ridiculous’. I had to be forced into it.” With the Law of Jante deeply ingrained into her psyche, she did not even believe that she was funny at the start. “I remember when I realised that maybe I was funny. It was about two years into doing stand-up, and I was sitting with my friend and said to her, ‘I think that maybe, after two years of audiences laughing a lot and other comedians telling me I’m good at this, that maybe they’re right; maybe I’m funny’.”

Educating and being educated Hagen left Denmark for London in 2012 and performed extensively. The following year, she was rewarded with a One to Watch label from Time Out and the Laughing Horse New Act of the Year; she was the first ever woman to win. Since then, she has been consistently winning over audiences and critics alike, including five-star reviews of her first Edinburgh Fringe show, Bubblewrap, in 2015,

and co-hosting duties of the podcast The Guilty Feminist in 2015 and 2016. But while the journey may look straightforward to the outsider, it has required some soul searching for the comedian herself. She laughs when reminded of having previously said that she was ignorant before leaving her home country. “Oh yeah, it’s a continuous journey – it doesn’t feel like it ever slows down or stops. As soon as you start seeing sexism and racism and privilege, it becomes this never-ending spiral where you can always do and be better, always act and learn and read more. It’s not like there’s a place you can reach where you’re good enough,” she explains. Today, she has a consultant with her when touring to prevent her from making problematic jokes and to continuously increase her social awareness. Her shows are all what she calls ‘anxiety safe’, meaning that no one in the audience will be picked at, as well as having disabled access and gender neutral loos. “I try not to use ableist terms or misrepresent what happened in history,” she says. “I care so much about mental health and social justice, and I’m always being completely honest. I am myself on stage and I want to talk about what I care about, and it just so happens to be politically charged topics.” Since moving on from The Guilty Feminist, Hagen has set up her own podcast called Made of Human – a project very close to her heart. “I have a bit of a problem with authority – I’m not good with having other people tell me what to do. I recently got involved with a podcast that a comIssue 104  |  September 2017  |  33

Scan Magazine  |  Cover Feature  |  Sofie Hagen

Photo: Karla Gowlett

pany paid me to do, and…” she yawns. It is just after 10.30am. “Sorry, I just woke up. They got to decide the name of the podcast, they gave me a script and I just wanted to tear it up and run! Made of Human is like a direct transaction between me and my listeners. If they can’t or don’t want to pay, they don’t – but if they want to and can, they do. That’s how it should be. It’s just me talking to another person, and it helps people. It’s the best format ever.” The feedback she has received since setting up the podcast has been overwhelmingly positive, with endless listeners saying that it makes them feel less alone. “Everyone says exactly that: it makes me feel less alone, it makes me feel like I’m an OK person. I didn’t know that’s what the podcast was when I started it, but it’s the greatest gift – it’s extraordinary,” Hagen emphasises. “Plus, it educates me. I’ve had no straight, white men on, so I talk to a lot of people who know about oppression. We’re all being educated.”

Fat and blessed A while back, Hagen shared a photo of her friend, Andrea, on Instagram along with a caption saying that she is the reason Hagen does what she does. “I went to university in Copenhagen and studied Russian for some reason, and I met Andrea. She was a proper activist, involved in all the important work. I knew nothing, so when she realised I was going to be a comedian and people would listen to me making self-deprecating jokes 34  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

about being fat, she sat me down for a chat,” says Hagen. “She taught me about the correlation between diet culture and capitalism, how the myth of thin equals beautiful isn’t reality, how it’s sold to us by corporations as part of a billion-dollar industry. She opened my eyes to that.” Today, Hagen is known as a fat acceptance advocate. As she stopped struggling with her body, she explains, she learnt to be angry instead. “It’s all political now. We can’t keep making it about fat people telling their sad fat stories; it’s about holding people accountable for doing this to young girls. This isn’t about health, that’s a derailment tactic – this is about fat people being treated well, being paid the same and treated as human beings. It has to change now.” A fat person with impeccable timing and buckets of charm, she is certainly wellread and more than a bit sharp. Her new show, Dead Baby Frog, is named after an experiment in 1872 that showed that if you put a frog into boiling water, it will jump straight out, but if you put it in and slowly turn up the temperature, it will allow itself to be boiled to death. “It’s a way for me to understand why my grandmother ended up in two abusive relationships in her life,” Hagen explains. She will be touring the show throughout the UK this autumn, and on to Denmark in 2018. “I feel so incredibly lucky that I get to do this and that people want to see me. I guess it’s what the kids call hashtag blessed,” she laughs.

Reviews and awards:  “Hilarious… clever, touching and funny.” The Mirror  “A warm, confident show… Hagen is hilarious.” The Skinny  “There are few comedians who make a room as warm as Sofie Hagen does… the Danish comic has impeccable control of her craft.” The Times  “Compelling, beautifully constructed… Hagen is a lovable guide through a tale that digs deep, but with a very light touch.” The Guardian 2012 – Funny Women Awards – Finalist 2012 – Leicester Square Theatre New Comedian of the Year 2012 – Third place 2013 – Laughing Horse New Act of the Year – Winner 2014 – Chortle Awards Best Newcomer – Winner 2015 – Fosters’ Best Newcomer Award – Winner 2016 – Danish Comedian of the Year – Nominee

Web: Podcast: Blog: Instagram: @sofiehagendk Facebook: sofiehagen.komiker Twitter: @SofieHagen

Scan Magazine  |  Cover Feature  |  Sofie Hagen

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  35


T & IAL R i A EC ec C p I S D E SP R NO TUR L CU m he

T al

Mimi Goes Glamping bonfire under the stars. Photo: Magnus Skrede

Borealis 3x3. Photo: Tunart / Getty Images / BNO

Hansel & Gretel tour.

Ground-breaking opera experiences The rich programme of Bergen National Opera (BNO) is not just impressing the local audience, but also enchanting international critics. “The company has developed a well-deserved reputation for its world-class productions,” the UK’s Classical Music magazine wrote. But along with a formidable reputation in regards to the main stage, BNO’s new ambition is to bring opera to remote parts of Norway, involving local teenagers in such performances alongside professional artists. By Marte Eide  |  Photos: Bergen National Opera

“I am very excited about our forthcoming productions. They star excellent Norwegian talent alongside international cast,” says opera director Mary Miller. This season has kicked off with the annual Mimi Goes Glamping, a charming festival that has also caught international attention. “It’s like a rock festival, but with opera. It appeals to people because of the great food, yoga, poetry, tours, and singing around the bonfire,” says Miller. “We will also premiere our innovative production of Robert Munsch’s classic story The Paper Bag Princess, but with a twist where amateur singers join the professionals on stage. The production will then be performed again at Bergen Prison involving inmates and staff, and finally with the students at Norway’s United World College,” says Miller. 36  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Humperdinck’s well-known opera Hansel and Gretel tours to venues in Western Norway this autumn. “BNO will visit the schools beforehand to present the opera and get the students involved. I think the teenagers will love it, especially the very wicked witch!” Miller enthuses. 15 students will then participate in the actual performance during the tour, making it a real community experience. BNO’s main productions are presented in Bergen’s Grieghallen in collaboration with Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. “For Verdi’s Otello, we have a wonderful international cast – American, Australian, Korean, Polish and Norwegian,” Miller notes. Next year will include celebrity recitals including the sensational Lise Davidsen, and 3x3 at Borealis Festival, which con-

sists of three new 15-minute operas by young Norwegians. One of the season’s highlights is BNO’s spectacular new production of Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman with rising star Elisabeth Teige as Senta. BNO also presents a semi-staging of Berlioz’s Grande Messe Des Morts, to open Festspillene i Bergen in May. “Opera has this fantastic ability to tell a story by combining music, design, singing and theatre. The general feedback from the audience is that they love the intensity of the BNO experience,” says Miller. The Paperbag Princess.

For the full programme and tickets, please see: Web: Facebook:  bergennasjonaleopera Instagram: @bergenopera

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Norway

Left: Osafestivalen is held on 27-29 October at Voss, and has previously welcomed artists including the Norwegian Odd Nordstoga. Photo: Runhild Heggem. Right: As a niche festival, Osafestivalen focuses primarily on traditional and modern folk music, with additions of classical, pop, rock and jazz elements. Photo: Knut Utler.

A niche folk music festival at Voss Folk music festival Osafestivalen, which is held every year in Voss, Norway, will kick off its 27th year on the last weekend of October. People will come together to enjoy three days of traditional and modern folk music, as well as elements of classical, pop, rock and jazz music. By Line Elise Svanevik

This year will see 20 different concerts being held in the district most known for its extreme sports, jazz festival and food traditions, including acts such as Ale Möller, Swedish group Väsen, and Norwegian musician Gabriel Fliflet, who will be playing his album release gig at the festival. “We want to stimulate an interest in folk music, and to be a meeting place for people who enjoy it,” says festival manager Tormod Kleiveland. “We’re a niche festival with both Scandinavian and international influences, and we want to help drive an interest in folk music, in both the traditional and modern way, as well as being a meeting place where folk music meets other genres – especially focusing on baroque music.” He explains that traditional folk music has often been brought forward from one person to the next, while the modern strand

includes some of the big bands that are listed on radio today, including the Norwegian folk-pop artist Odd Nordstoga, who has previously played at the festival. Kleiveland also explains that the festival creators aim to be strict with themselves, in the sense that they are passionate about keeping the festival as a niche offering and therefore want to surprise the visitors with new and smaller bands rather than placing safe bets. “We want to offer music that we know is good, and we know people will have a good time at the gigs – but we always take a chance on the artists we choose,” he explains. “We also have a classical element to the festival, which sets us aside in many ways.”

Keeping it local The festival managers are also keen to promote all the things the local area of Voss has to offer – which throughout the

year includes jazz festival Vossajazz, extreme sports festival Ekstremsportveko, and football tournament Voss Cup. The food and drink will be coming from very close by, including the local brewery Voss Bryggeri and Park Hotell which, according to Kleiveland, has one of Northern Europe’s most exclusive wine cellars. “We want to focus on what Voss has to offer – which is a lot,” he adds.

Arranged for the 27th time this year, the folk music festival was started by violinist Sigbjørn Bernhoft Osa. Photo: Runhild Heggem.

Osafestivalen will take place on October 27-29 this year. Web:

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  37

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Norway

Explore the northern lights from within In picturesque Vesterålen in Northern Norway, you are bound to have an extraordinary stay – especially if you visit Spaceship Aurora at Andøya Space Center. By Karen Langfjæran  |  Photos: NAROM / Andøya Space Center

The beautiful archipelago of Vesterålen, located just North of Lofoten, is filled with traditional villages, extraordinary mountain views and adventures typical of northern Norway – but look closer and you will find that science blends in beautifully with the dramatic nature. At Andøya Space Center, researchers have studied the northern lights and outer space for the past 55 years and now welcome visitors of all ages to partake in the excitement through virtual space missions and rocket launches at the visitor centre Spaceship Aurora. “Norway launched its first science rocket in 1962 here in Andøya, only five years after the Soviet Union launched their first ever satellite into space,” says Alexander Biebricher, chief science officer at Space-

ship Aurora. Despite being among the first nations to explore space, Norway is not particularly known for this historic fact outside of its formal circles – although the visitor’s centre has helped in reducing the information gap since its opening in 2014. “We attract scientists and school children alike, and the science of space and the northern lights seems less complex by the minute as you actively learn more,” says Biebricher. At Andøya, you also get the chance to enjoy a spectacular view of the northern lights phenomenon, usually in the period between the autumn equinox and the spring equinox. “There is, however, never any guarantee for the northern lights to show, not anywhere,” says Biebricher. Obviously with the exception of Spaceship Aurora.

A one-of-a-kind experience on the Norwegian culture scene


By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Kirkelig Kulturverksted

After the opening of Kulturkirken JAKOB in Oslo in 2000, the old Grunerløkka parish church morphed into Norway’s first ‘cultural church’, creating a new trend on the cultural scene. “Today we appear as a completely unique arena in a European context. We conduct religious services every Sunday, but the rest of the time you can find a mixture of art and culture – everything from concerts and theatre to dance events and exhibitions for all age groups. Our ambition is to be an eclectic arena offering a wide range of happenings throughout the year,” says Thor-Erik Fjellvang, head of programme and booking. With its distinctive combination of spectacular church rooms with enormous ceilings, beautiful architecture, exceptionally good acoustics and a captivating atmosphere, JAKOB truly is a wonderful place to experience culture. “I would argue that this is the most beautiful concert venue in Norway, but I am of course biased,” Fjellvang smiles. When JAKOB was set up 17 years ago, the hope and purpose was to expand the boundaries for what a church space can be. “We see in Norway, especially around Christmas time, that most of the churches are now being used as concert spaces. This was not the 38  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

case before we started,” he says. “December is the busiest period for us, and our one-ofa-kind atmosphere attracts Norway’s finest artists to come back year after year to hold their Christmas concerts here.” Over the past year, visitors have had the opportunity to see a variety of Scandinavian and international artists, such as Marit Larsen, Astrid S, In Flames, Rosanne Cash and the Christian Wallumrød Ensemble. The space can also be rented for weddings and other special events, with the possibility to accommodate groups from around 70 to 500 people.

Web: Facebook:  kulturkirken Twitter: @kulturverksted Instagram: @kulturkirkenjakob

! y r u x u L n a e L Hotel With Urban Deli at Sveavägen 44 in Stockholm is a modern, trendy design “Lean Luxury” hotel located in the bustling heart of the city. All design elements in the rooms and public areas are custom made and invoke a sense of modern form and living. All rooms are labelled “without a view” since they are located underground, but they are stylish furnished with high quality air condition, free high-speed internet connection and are very, very quiet. All rooms are certified sound proofed and a quiet night’s sleep is basically inevitable. If you fancy watching TV in your room you’ll have more than 120 channels in more than 12 languages available at your leisure as well as access to built-in Spotify, Netflix in the room. Just enter your login for these services and you can pick up your viewing of your favourite TV-series or listen to your own playlists. If you fancy a nice meal, you just have to go upstairs to sample the

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wide variety of offerings from the contemporary restaurant Urban Deli. The included breakfast is also served in the restaurant. If you have to skip town very early in the morning or need a picnic meal to go, the in-house food market has a range of options of beverages, salads, meals and snacks to choose from. On the 9th floor roof Urban Deli has a bar and outdoor lounge area with a great view of Stockholm. Perfect for an evening wind down or a relaxed business get together. There are also areas available for meetings or group events, with amenities and food options. The hotel setting in the very centre of Stockholm together with the highly social and relaxed atmosphere makes Hotel With Urban Deli an excellent choice both for business travellers and tourists visiting the city. Our friendly and accomodating front desk staff are waiting to help you get the most out of your stay with us. Welcome!

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Master printer Niels Borch Jensen. Photo: Birgitte Rubæk

The art of the unknown Niels Borch Jensen has been interested in art since childhood, when one of his favourite books was a collection of Goya’s etchings. At the age of 17, a teacher introduced him to the world of graphic printing and, soon afterwards, Borch Jensen acquired a printing press, which he duly put in his bedroom. In 1979, he set up his own graphic print shop in Copenhagen and today he is considered one of the world’s master printers, having helped artists such as Julie Mehretu, Danh Vo and Tal R to find their own expression in print. By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: BORCH Editions

“When they think of prints, people usually think of things like poster prints and reproductions of other art, but print art in itself makes for exciting and unique pieces,” says Borch Jensen. “Each print is an original piece of art.” Even when artists work with the same motif for a little while, changing the colour will dramatically alter the look and feel of the image. The artist only gets to see the effect at the end of the process – and once the print is done, it is done. “Prints provide a nice amount of resistance,” he elabo40  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

ten work with artists across several years or even decades, helping each one to experiment and develop his or her distinct voice within the temperamental medium. They have worked with the Danish artist Per Kirkeby since 1979 and the Isrealiborn artist Tal R since 1995. Despite the close collaboration process and the important role of the printmaker, Borch Jensen rejects the artist label for himself. “I think I hit upon quite a good way to explain the relationship a while ago,” Borch Jensen explains. “It’s quite similar to that of architects and engineers. The artist has the vision and the creative genius to get there. We have the practical know-how and the technical expertise.”

rates. “Artists never know exactly what they’re going to get before the final print is revealed.” He speaks in an urgent, enthusiastic voice. “Now, something like 90 per cent of artists will loathe the medium for that very reason, but for the remaining ten per cent, that unpredictability becomes a catalyst that can unlock a whole new way of expression.”

Start the press: the history of print

Because of the steep learning process and the ever-changing results of prints, Borch Jensen and his talented team of-

Graphic printing may seem a little more obscure than its painting, drawing and sculpture cousins, but in fact it has been an integral art form from Europe to Japan

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

for many centuries. Gutenberg’s introduction of the printing press in Europe around 1440 led to text becoming available to a much greater swathe of the population; the same was true of art and artistic illustrations. “I recently got myself a very nice little Rembrandt original,” Borch Jensen casually mentions. “One of the best attributes of graphic prints is that you can get an original piece from famous artists at a much more reasonable price than you’d have to spend on most other mediums.” Rembrandt owned a printing press and used it throughout his life, while more recent artists such as Degas helped to bring the art form into the 20th century. Niels Borch Jensen Gallery and Editions are world-leading experts in classical print techniques, which include ‘intag-

lio’ (etching onto a plate of copper, wood and so on, before filling the indentations with ink) and the somewhat more modern techniques of monoprint (painting directly onto the plate) and photogravure, a type of photographic engraving. They work with established artists as well as newcomers and, as they grew, the Niels Borch Jensen Gallery began to fund graphic print projects and artists themselves. In 1999, they also set up a gallery in Berlin.

the Danish capital. “Nowadays, Copenhagen can really hold its own and artists are keen to come here, so it all worked out really well with the print shop being here and the gallery space in Berlin.” In 2014, Borch Jensen also opened a gallery shop in the heart of Copenhagen, making it easy for inhabitants and visitors in both cities to see the fruits of the year-long artistic collaborations themselves.

“Back in the 1990s, I used to travel around and talk to artists from all over the world. International artists weren’t that keen on coming up to Copenhagen. After the fall of the wall, however, Berlin became this exciting, bohemian space for artists, so we set up an additional gallery and print shop there.” Today, all printing is done in

BORCHs Butik Bredgade 22, DK - 1260 Copenhagen K

You can view the works at:

Gallery Lindenstrasse 34, DE - 10969 Berlin


Artist Tal R, printer Thomas Jennions.

Artist Julie Mehretu.

Artist Tal R, printer Julie Dam.

Artist Tal R, woodcut.

Artist Julie Mehretu.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  41

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Installation view: SUPERFLEX, Superkilen, Copenhagen. Photo: Iwan Baan.

The art of nurturing art This autumn, the Turbine Hall at TATE Modern and Serpentine Galleries, two of London’s best-known art institutions, will be presenting solo exhibitions by artists represented by the gallery Nils Stærk. Nils Stærk, the Dane behind the gallery, talks to Scan Magazine about his two decades in the art industry, his love of the irrational, and the artist group SUPERFLEX’s forthcoming Turbine Hall installation. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Malle Madsen

Having worked with most of the artists since the beginning of their career, Nils Stærk today represents 20 successful artists and artist groups from Denmark and abroad. One of them is the Danish artist group SUPERFLEX, which has been commissioned to create the next installation for Tate Modern’s distinct Turbine Hall. Another is Norwegian Los Angeles-based artist and photographer Torbjørn Rødland, who will be exhibiting at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery this autumn. But, contrary to what one might think, Stærk does not have an art degree or elaborate system behind his way of find42  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

June this year, Stærk opened his new 500-square-metre gallery space in Copenhagen’s notorious north-west neighbourhood. Designed by Henning Larsen Architects in an old garage, the new bright gallery presents five exhibitions per year.

Never bored ing and selecting artists. “I don’t have an academic approach to art; it’s much more intuitive and based on more than 25 years of experience of working with contemporary art,” he says. “I consider it a great gift to be able to work like that, because our society today is way too rationally righteous. The irrational is being pushed into the background because we constantly strive to be more efficient, but I believe that we would perform better and contribute much more if we allowed more room for the irrational elements of life.” The irrational has certainly contributed to a successful career for Stærk. In

The main denominator for most of the artists represented by Nils Stærk is that they use their art to question and reflect on the world they are part of. SUPERFLEX, an artist group consisting of three Danes widely known for their politically charged and playfully subversive installation works, is among those. “SUPERFLEX uses a very commercial structure to describe different challenges and look at how our society is structured. They call their work ‘tools’ because they use it to question and discuss social and economic structures, but what’s interesting about them is that unlike many other artists they always leave the viewer in doubt

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

as to what their own viewpoint on a subject is,” explains Stærk, who has worked with the group since 2003. “The upcoming exhibition at the Turbine Hall will remain a secret until the opening day on 2 October – but I can reveal that it will be a surprising and interactive installation.” Nils Stærk’s current solo exhibition, by Torbjørn Rødland, presents another example of an artistic, critical exploration of today’s globalised society. Rødland is also exhibiting in London at the Serpentine Galleries this autumn. “His expression is a great exponent for the gallery’s profile. I’ve worked with him for 16 years and his work still surprises me. That’s why I can continue without getting bored. Every time you think you cracked the code to his work, a new layer appears,” explains Stærk.

International collectors and first-time buyers Ever since he set up his first gallery in his two-bedroom flat in Copenhagen two decades ago, Stærk has been focused on the international market. For more than a decade, his gallery has participated yearly in three international art fairs – Art Basel, Art Basel Miami Beach and Zona Maco in Mexico. “This year, we’re also taking part in ARTBO, the art fair in Bogota, Colombia. I think South America is an incredibly exciting place. The intellectual level is very high and there’s a lot of curiosity among collectors, so I’m really thrilled to be working in that part of the world,” says Stærk. However, Stærk’s focus on international collectors is not born out of a lack of in-

terest in the local market or intellectual arrogance. On the contrary: having bought his own first piece of art at the age of 13, Stærk stresses that he is always happy to help students and new collectors find a plausible solution to buy their first artwork. “Many galleries aim to obtain a high international profile and forget the potential there is in the local market. For the past decade, there has been a significant development on the Danish art scene and the interest for purchasing contemporary unique artworks is growing. Some people come with a wide knowledge about art, others with a curiosity and keenness to learn more. This group is to me just as interesting as working with the established collectors,” says Stærk and rounds off: “What would be left for me to do if I only had customers who knew everything?” Dates: 3 October 2017-2 April 2018: SUPERFLEX’s installation at The Turbine Hall at TATE Modern, London. 28 August-21 October 2017: Fence Studies / Wordless, solo exhibition by Torbjørn Rødland at Nils Stærk, Copenhagen. 29 September-19 November 2017: The Touch that Made You, solo exhibition by Torbjørn Rødland at the Serpentine Galleries, London.


Top left: Leading Danish gallery owner Nils Stærk at the new gallery space in Copenhagen. Left: Installation view: Torbjørn Rødland, Fence Studies / Wordless at Nils Stærk (26 Aug-21 Oct 2017). Courtesy of the artist and Nils Stærk. Photo: Malle Madsen. Right: Torbjørn Rødland, Young Head, 2013, C-print. Courtesy of the artist and Nils Stærk.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  43

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Left: Cameron Rudd, Still Waters. His paintings of swimming and leisure in Berlin’s lakes are intricate and eye-opening. He paints in a way that creates colourful, digitallooking still lifes that draw people in. Right: Christian Lemmerz, Adam. An international sculptor of quite a different calibre in contemporary art. This philosophic and intensely in-depth thinking artist hovers around death especially and what is ahead.

Art for generations In 1982, Franz Pedersen started Galleri Franz Pedersen to display and sell the art of some of Denmark’s most reputable artists. Today, the gallery is run by Kasper Pedersen, Franz’s son, who has continued his dad’s work as well as adding new contemporary artists from across Europe to the repertoire. By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Galleri Franz Pedersen

“Growing up, I often had established artists come through our front door to speak to my dad, so it was an environment where art was really important and meaningful. That’s really where my passion for art started,” explains Kasper Pedersen.

time on the road and at exhibitions finding new artists or a particular expression. “My top priority is always finding something that’s original,” he says. “My clients have often spent a long time considering what they want, so I always keep them in

the back of my mind to see if I can find something that’s perfect for them.”

A close contact Much of what Pedersen does is actually based outside of his gallery. “When people get in touch, it’s often because they have something in mind. They’re looking for a particular style, want something that fits with their own passion for art or something to start or continue their collection,” explains Pedersen. “It’s also about inspiring them. We show them the

Original art The gallery, located in Horsens, is today home to an exclusive range of artists spread across five rooms. The art ranges from the dark and sombre to the bright and colourful. “The art in the gallery is primarily in the form of paintings and sculptures. I look for pieces that are figurative in their expression as well as showing a true craft and strong originality,” says Pedersen. Finding this kind of art takes time and patience. Pedersen spends much of his 44  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Michael Kvium, Madwalk. His outstanding paintings conjure up a cruelty theatre with representatives of mankind showing us ‘the truth incarnate’. Michael Kvium scans the limits for how far you can act concerning brutality and grotesqueries nowadays.

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

art we’ve already collected and see what stirs up an emotion in them. People are often surprised at what they think they like and what they actually like, so it’s very much a collaboration between us to find the perfect piece.” If you are looking to get into art or continue a collection, Kasper Pedersen is a good person to know. With a gallery full of inspiring art and artists, and a person who has grown up and lives in the world of art, it is hard to go wrong. Web:

Anders Moseholm, Interchange. He paints huge photo-realistic visions of towns you think you know but are difficult to locate. The paintings have a sort of stratification with incorporated words and sentences as a remarkable cachet across the canvases.

Christoffer Munch Andersen, Barbie. His paintings are hyper realistic in a modern way of nature morte, inanimate objects as a token for vanitas. He has a special focus on painting consumer objects; things one hardly pays attention to are raised to artworks.

Left: Andreas Schulenburg, Lavine i en sukkerskål. His artistic products are expressed in pottery, drawings, paintings and, most importantly, felt. He uses felt in an exquisite, thoughtful, satiric way, which turns reality upside-down. Right: Maria Rubinke, Dream On. She uses white china dolls/babies with a twist as her artistic expression. In a special, peculiar way, she transforms the innocent fragile china dolls into frightening and distorting expressions in a disturbance of conventional opinion of white china.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  45

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Marek Zyga, Poland: You Want Be Darker.

Øssur Mohr, Faroe Islands: Forårssol – Færøerne.

Claus Larsen, Denmark: Tænk anderledes.

Artful salesmanship It may be surprising that Europe’s largest art centre, with 35,000 visitors per year, is to be found in the tiny village of Bryrup in the middle of Jutland, Denmark. Since 1998, Midtjyllands Kunst Center has grown from a fledgling collection to over 2,500 square metres of art displaying more than 100 renowned artists from across Europe and five other continents. All of the pieces are for sale, but coming for a visit is a great experience in itself. By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Midtjyllands Kunst Center

“Did you know that 15 per cent of the Danish population take an active interest in the art world?” Ole Holger Pedersen, the founder of Midtjyllands Kunst Center, begins. “That’s actually looked upon as a point of pride in Denmark, as it’s higher 46  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

work with hope to change. “We want to be a place where you can come, have a look round, grab a glass of wine and get lost in the collections with the help of our art experts,” Pedersen explains. “When you come across some artist that you like, you can explore dozens more of their paintings out back through our 3,500 square metres of pull-out walls. If you’re lucky, you may even meet the artist while you’re here.”

than the rate in many other countries, but it still means that 85 per cent are rarely, if ever, exposed to exciting art.”

Art in action

This is something that Pedersen, his talented employees and the artists they

One such artist is Claus Larsen, currently visiting from his home in Milan. Originally a doctor, then a medical illustrator,

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Claus turned to art full time in 2009 when an Italian gallery suggested he exhibit his work. Since then, his paintings have been on display across the world, including at Verona’s First Biennale of Creativity, at the London Olympics and at the world exhibition in Los Angeles in 2014. “Ole called me up about three years ago to ask if I’d be interested in working with Midtjyllands Kunst Center,” he says. “It’s a great way to have your art seen by a wide audience, and I love the sense of community that exists amongst the artists and employees here.” Larsen continues: “The art centre gets up to 50 artists and 10,000 guests visiting over our Easter and October exhibitions. They accommodate us all and really take care of us and encourage us to work in the exhibition space.” That way, guests at the centre can meet with the artists, get insight into the way they work, and hear more about the thoughts behind works they may be interested in buying. “I love to chat to visitors and hear their interpretations of my paintings,” he continues. “They can often be quite different to my own, and that’s really fascinating.” Larsen paints with exquisite detail and colour, and historical techniques are mixed with symbols of modernity in a visually pleasing manner that often masks darker warnings about the state of the world.

Art for rent for businesses Larsen’s large paintings sell on the more lavish side of 100,000 DKK each, while some of the art centre’s sculptures cost just a few hundred Danish kroner. “We’re

now selling works of art to all types of people,” says Pedersen. “It’s becoming clear that normal people wish to have an original painting or sculpture adorning their home or office. People are discarding old posters of Monet’s Water Lilies in favour of real, provocative pieces of art that really speak to them.” One of Midtjyllands Kunst Center’s most popular ideas was to launch a ‘rent art for your business’ deal a few years back. ‘Rent art’ is a subscription service of art for businesses and institutions in which the centre supplies eight to ten pieces of art every three months, which they supply and arrange in a tasteful and wellbalanced manner as a mini-exhibition at the subscription office. They then change the images every three months, giving employees and customers a chance to engage with modern art and the centre’s artists greater exposure, while providing employers with a chance to give their office a quarterly makeover at a very decent price.

Anyone who feels inspired should head to Bryrup from 16 September, when an exhibition featuring new works by the explosive Danish painter Pia Amdi, the Faroese-Leirviksfjeld painter Øssur Mohr and the Polish sculptor Marek Zyga launches in the impressive black room. Another of the countless exhibition spaces designed by the centre’s inhouse architects will feature newly added works by Icelandic abstract painter Vignir Jóhannsson. Web: Phone: +45 7575 7774 Facebook:  GalleriHabsoMidtjyllandsKunstCenter Instagram: @midtjyllands.kunst. center

Pia Amdi, France: Hanekamp.

“The service costs 4,000 DKK per quarter, and we give out gift cards worth 3,000 DKK to every business every quarter too,” Pedersen explains. “So we don’t really gain much from it at first glance, but it helps to get a discussion going within the offices. When a discussion starts about a work of art, whether they like it or not, it means they’re engaging with it – disliking some and loving some other pieces. That, we believe, will bring us and the art world more customers in the long-run.”

Vignir Jóhannsson,   Iceland: Tidspyt.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  47

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Art for the soul Picking a piece of art can often seem overwhelming, as the art world and art in itself can be difficult to breach. At Galleri Art Expo, one of Denmark’s largest galleries, owner Sarah Høi provides the time and expertise needed to pick out the perfect piece, with the ultimate goal of making art available to everyone. By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Galleri Art Expo

“People often think that visiting an art gallery requires good knowledge of what art is nice and what isn’t. But the beauty of art is in the eye of the beholder, and every piece has a different effect on someone. We want to put the person in focus rather than the art, and let them find out what they actually like,” says Høi.

Art for the home With its 1,200 square metres, Galleri Art Expo has a huge variety of art in all shapes, sizes and price categories. “To find art you truly like, you have to look for a long time. It’s okay to say thanks for the visit and leave without buying anything. We encourage people to bring pictures of their home or the place where they want to hang a painting, so we can help them find art that fits perfectly into their homes and their lives.” Høi even allows paintings to be borrowed and taken home, so that people can see 48  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

if they like it in the space. “It sounds crazy, but art should make you feel something, and it should make you happy to see it in your home,” explains Høi. The gallery hosts a mixture of upcoming and established artists and currently has 68 Danish artists associated with it.

Telling the story “I always make sure that when people buy a piece of art, they know where it’s come from and who it’s by. There’s a story behind every piece, and I think it’s important to tell that story.” The prices range between 200 and 500,000 DKK and are set by the artists themselves. Høi has really excelled at making art something that everyone can enjoy, as well as taking the pretentiousness out of it and allowing the individual to find out what they like. “It’s really important to trust your instincts with art and ask us for help; after all, it’s what we’re here for,” Høi concludes with a smile.

Galleri Art Expo is based in Hørning between Aarhus and Skanderborg in Denmark. The work of 68 Danish artists is on display, as well as that of one Faroese and an American. The gallery is located in a converted film studio space. Web:

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

Legendary site for contemporary art

By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Galleri V58

One of Denmark’s most significant galleries manages to combine contemporary art, architecture and history in a delicate mix. Named one of Denmark’s best galleries by, Galleri V58 is located in the historic building Børnely in the heart of Aarhus. Established in 2007 by Eigil Johansen and Chris Sørensen, it represents a dynamic mix of 35 established and up-and-coming artists from Denmark and abroad, and is continuously keeping up to date on the current trends in the world of contemporary art. With a 400-square-metre space covering two floors and a number of elegant exhibition rooms, Galleri V58 hosts solo and group exhibitions throughout the year including painting, drawing, photography, installations, ceramic and bronze sculptures. The focus is on mankind – face, body and habitus of humans – and their existence in urban and natural landscapes. Among the talented artists showcasing their work are, for instance, Steen Larsen from Denmark,

Elin Engelsen from Norway, Alexei Svetlov from Russia, Frank Paul and Christophe Blanc from France. The beautiful building itself is historically interesting too, situated between the city hall and the art museum ARoS in central Aarhus, with many visitors coming just to check out the legendary architecture. Built in 1883, it had an important position in cultural history and features a mix of Gothic style and Danish renaissance elements. Galleri V58 is located on Hans Hartvig Seedorffs Stræde 12 and is open for visitors all year around, Monday to Friday 11am-5.30pm and Saturday 10am-3pm. In addition to its displays, Galleri V58 also offers a flexible art rental system, bringing contemporary art to businesses.

Web: Facebook:  galleriv58 Instagram: @galleriv58

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Nordic Art & Culture Special – Denmark

How do we define ourselves? Between 1976 and 1981, the Danish artist Bodil Kaalund (1930-2016), alongside the local community, was decorating Lemvig church. This sparked an interest in art, in particular religious art, causing a range of existential questions about life, death and everything in between. As such, Lemvig became the perfect place to establish Museet for Religiøs Kunst (the Museum of Religious Art) in 1994. The museum was set up to try to answer some of the questions about life that had been raised, and to do so through art. “I think that many people expect a museum like ours to be solely based on religion and religious figures, but actually we’re focused on trying to look at the many different ways of defining ourselves,” explains museum director Christine Løventoft. “We collaborate with other museums in Denmark and Europe to create thought-provoking and exciting exhibitions. Our next exhibition is about otherness, and about how ‘the other’ in art has shaped our own identity,” she says. The exhibitions are spread across five rooms in the museum, which has breath-taking views over the Lemvig fjord.

“I think it’s really important in this day and age to spend some time reflecting on who we are. At the museum, we’re trying to look at the aspects of life that can be diffi-

By Josefine Older Steffensen

cult to talk about and give people the time and space to reflect,” says Løventoft. Museet for Religiøs Kunst is highly respected in the world of art and has 16,000 visitors a year. The museum creates relevant, surprising and exciting exhibitions and is definitely worth a visit.

Photo: Helene Høyer Mikkelsen


Otherness exhibition poster: Martinus Rørbye, En siddende nubier, Rom, 1839. Belongs to Nivaagaards Malerisamling

Format Artspace offers exceptional and affordable art “The art world is notorious for being closed off and elitist, but I want to break up with that prejudice. I want to make sure that art is accessible for everyone, so you don’t have to eat porridge for a year in order to hang something special on your wall,” explains Anne Riber, owner of Format Artspace. By Mette Hindkjær Madsen  |  Photos: Format Artspace

Riber used to live in New York, where she was fascinated by small, down-to-earth galleries in Brooklyn that welcome everyone. When she returned to Denmark, this concept was nowhere to be found. “I thought it was such a shame that there was no place for all art lovers to find art pieces in their price range,” says Riber. So, almost five years ago, she opened Format Artspace – her own gallery where she collaborates with both emerging artists such as Cecilie Enevold Nielsen, now opening her first solo show, and established profiles such as Ida Kvetny who is exhibiting later in September. Every six weeks, a new artist is on display at the charming two-storey gallery in 50  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Copenhagen, and the types of art presented are as varied as the people who craft it. But they have the concept of Format Artspace in common: there are always pieces made especially for this gallery, costing between 500 and 5,000 DKK. “Each piece has a background story that I’m very excited to share, so when guests

visit I make sure they get the full experience,” ends Riber. Web:

Aurora Alps – at the edge of Tromsø

Your activity provider when visiting Tromsø and Lyngen Alps: – 50 min. transfer – soft adventure – good service – summer and winter

AURORA ALPS + 47 917 35 497



D AN NS h PA TIO lT S a i P INA ec O p T S T S ES ’ EN SS D D E E SW LLN E W e:


Photo: Vadstena Klosterhotel

A spa break as the best family experience ever He looks determined. Curiosity has been replaced by deep concentration and he is listening carefully to the instructions. A few minutes later, the serious facial expression is replaced with a big smile and sparkling eyes with splashes of terrified delight. “Again, mum! I want to go again!” he shouts excitedly. By Sara Hellgren, head of marketing and communications at Swedish Spa Hotels

facilities, and you can be certain to find something that appeals to every family member. What was previously significant among large Mediterranean holiday resorts can now also be found within Sweden’s borders.

We are spending a couple of beautiful summer days at Vann Spa, located on the Swedish West coast. The weather is not the best, but it does not matter. My six-year-old son has just tried out

In addition to the hotel’s splendid spa area with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, we play miniature golf, enjoy great food with magical views, try mountain climbing (at safe altitudes just outside

52  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

the hotel’s zip line cable ride for the first time and is overjoyed. More and more spa hotels now offer a wide range of activities in addition to spa

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

the hotel entrance) and have a quick go on the obstacle course. The paddle tennis court is unfortunately fully booked, and we will have to save the exciting helicopter ride for next time. But there will be a next time, no doubt. When summarising this year’s summer holidays, the children insist that the days at the spa hotel in Sweden were just as fun as the week at the famous family hotel with the happy mascots in Greece. Food for thought when planning the next holiday trip... Swedish Spa Hotels is an organisation with 42 member establishments working together on quality and development of the spa industry.


Sara Hellgren, head of marketing and communications at Swedish Spa Hotels. Press photo.

Photo: Badhotellet

Photo: Upper House

Photo: Hotel Smögens Hafvsbad

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  53

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Be inspired in Tylösand Hotel Tylösand is unlike any other spa resort. Inspired by pop culture, this awardwinning hotel boasts an industry-leading spa, fine-dining restaurants, a world-class art gallery, and a buzzing nightlife – not to mention the amazing view of the sea.

says CEO Elisabeth Haglund. This could not be truer, and one thing is certain: a stay at Hotel Tylösand will not be boring!

By Malin Norman  |  Photos:

Pop culture at the core

Tylösand is mostly known for its long sandy beach, great golf courses and the fabulous Hotel Tylösand, which will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2020. Since 1995, the hotel has been privately owned by musician Per Gessle and businessman Björn Nordstrand and has become an energetic hub on the Swedish West coast. These days, the hotel houses 230 modern guest rooms, 30 different conference rooms and space for up to 750 people, the award-winning The Spa with 20 treatment rooms and more than 50 fitness classes per week at the gym. Ho54  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

tel guests can also dine in style at two high-quality restaurants under renowned chef Torsten Kjörling – Leif’s Bar & Grill and Restaurang Tylöhus – plus Titus Tapas and Bettans Bar during the summer months, and savour treats from the in-house bakery. Hotel Tylösand is also the home of legendary nightclub Leif’s Lounge and hosts plenty of live gigs throughout the year. “What’s so special about Hotel Tylösand is the holistic experience, really. We have so much going on here, for our guests and also for people who live in the area,”

As part of its fantastic facilities, Hotel Tylösand hosts a large art gallery, Tres Hombres Art, with a focus on modern photography. Founded by Per Gessle and Lars Nordin back in the ‘80s, it now includes around 450 pieces from some of the world’s most famous photographers, such as Albert Watson, Terry O’Neill, Anton Corbijn and Mary McCartney. The gallery also showcases paintings, sculptures and graphics by contemporary Scandinavian and international artists, and most of the pieces on display are for sale. As Per Gessle is one of Sweden’s bestknown musicians and also originates

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

from the area, it comes as no surprise that Hotel Tylösand is infused by pop culture and heaps of music. For instance, there is a museum with records, posters and awards from Gessle’s bands Gyllene Tider, where he was lead singer, and international success Roxette with Marie Fredriksson. Who can forget monster hits such as Joyride, Listen to Your Heart and It Must Have Been Love? “Yes, there is a lot of music and a lot of happiness here at Tylösand!” says Haglund and explains that music also plays a key role at The Spa. With the introduction of sound therapy as part of the treatments, guests can select their preferred tunes from an extensive playlist.

Swim-in movies and golf Situated next to the sea and the sevenkilometre sandy beach, Hotel Tylösand is a true spa resort. In addition to the many

luxurious treatments with sound therapy and energetic gym classes, guests can relax in the lush lounges and pool areas overlooking the sea. Why not to take the opportunity to float in the big indoor pool while watching a movie, or enjoy the Happy Lounge with its pool bar and outdoor pools and tubs? The newly refurbished two-floor spa has been named Best Luxury Resort Spa as well as Best Luxury Business Hotel Spa at World Luxury Spa Awards 2017. Haglund highlights the importance of such prominent prizes: “Winning two categories for best spa is incredible – especially as this is not just for hotels in Sweden, but for all of Northern Europe.” This autumn, guests can experience a number of spa weekends with different themes, for instance treatments combined with wine tasting. With two

of Sweden’s best golf courses nearby, Halmstad Golfklubb and Ringenäs Golfklubb, Haglund also recommends a spa and golf weekend. Leading up to Christmas, Hotel Tylösand offers fabulous Christmas dinner experiences with a music show, a piano bar, and Asian-themed dishes including seafood and sushi. Hotel Tylösand is located on the West coast in between Göteborg and Malmö, easily accessible by train as well as a number of flights every day to Halmstad City Airport.

Web: Facebook: hoteltylosand Twitter: @hoteltylosand Instagram: @hoteltylosand

Elisabeth Haglund, CEO of Hotel Tylösand.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  55

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Pampered at Sweden’s glass art hotel Kosta Boda Art Hotel is an excellent hotel and award-winning spa, as well as a showroom for fantastic art by the designers at Kosta Boda glassworks. An explosion of colour and form awaits the guests to stimulate the mind and the body. By Malin Norman  |  Photo: Kosta Boda Art Hotel

Located in Kosta Boda with its almost 300-year-old history of glass blowing, it comes as no surprise that the town’s hotel also has something to do with glass. The glassworks was founded back in 1742 by Anders Koskull and Georg Bogislaus Staël von Holstein, two officers in Karl XII’s army. Today, Orrefors-Kosta Boda glassworks is one of Sweden’s most internationally known brands and the area is often referred to as the Kingdom of Crystal.

individually decorated with glass art from our fantastic designers at Kosta Boda,” explains hotel manager Ulrica Olsson. “This is an exceptional environment and we are incredibly proud to carry on the tradition of the glassworks. Kosta Boda celebrated its 275th anniversary this year, peaking at the Swedish National Day celebrations, where King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia took part and also paid a visit to our hotel.”

Kosta Boda Art Hotel opened in 2009 and is a showroom for glass, a successful and highly praised concept. “Glass is the common theme at the hotel, with rooms

Seven of Sweden’s most famous designers from Kosta Boda glassworks, which is located just across the street, have contributed with glass art and textiles for the

56  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Unique glass art

hotel’s 102 guest rooms, corridors and meeting facilities. They can also be found throughout the hotel, including in the Glass Bar and the Art Lobby Bar, in the Linnéa Art Restaurant, and even displayed at the bottom of the swimming pool. Clearly, the hotel is very proud of its collaboration with the artists, who have all added their own characteristic expression and created a unique environment for the guests. The list of prominent designers includes Anna Ehrner, Göran Wärff, Ulrica Hydman-Vallien, Bertil Vallien, Kjell Engman, Åsa Jungnelius, and Ludvig Löfgren. All in all, the hotel showcases art for around 50 million SEK and everything is for sale, including artwork and furniture and even small details such as glass tumblers. “It’s easy for our guests to see how the glass and artwork can fit into

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

their homes. And as they buy pieces, or perhaps because the designers want to include their artwork in exhibitions elsewhere, we replace them with new ones. This is a living showroom, constantly changing.”

Five-star spa A must-do at Kosta Boda Art Hotel is a visit to the five-star spa, which also showcases the fantastic glass art in its pools and facilities. Guests can get pampered from head to toe with a range of popular treatments, such as Art Glass Feeling and Art Glass Escape with warm glass used in the treatments and an exclusive glass gift to take home as a memory. Both treatments have been named Best Spa Treatment at the Spa Awards. Kosta Boda Art Hotel has received numerous awards for its design and service, for example TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence in 2016 and 2017. Amongst other prominent honours are Sweden’s Best Design Hotel by Hotel Specials and

the Big Tourism Prize, which is awarded in particular for innovation, internationalisation, quality and sustainability in Swedish tourism. “We have had a fantastic journey so far,” says Olsson. “Our guests appreciate the individuality of the hotel and how we present the art. We have managed to put together a great mix of spa treatments, art and history from the area, in addition to excellent cuisine.”

New brasserie Last year, Kosta Boda Art Hotel introduced a modern brasserie with room for around 50 guests, who are welcomed to the rustic and intimate space by the crackling sound and warmth of an open fire. The brasserie also has an excellent wine cellar and an open plan kitchen, where guests can watch the chefs at work. Next year, an extension of the hotel and the spa is on the cards. According to Olsson, the spa will double in size out-

doors with a pool area and a number of new treatment rooms and types. “Today’s focus on health, exercise and recreation continues to grow and we want to be a future partner in this area. We’re very much looking forward to an exciting development of our hotel!” The entrepreneurial spirit of Kosta Boda is evident in the hotel’s design, spa and innovative cuisine, but also in how the town has established itself as a destination. In addition to the famous glassworks, visitors can also explore nearby Kosta Outlet with 20,000 square metres of fantastic shopping opportunities. Kosta is a true hub for stylish glass and design, with plenty of opportunities to get pampered from head to toe. Web: Facebook: KostaBodaArtHotel Instagram: @kostaboda_arthotel

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  57

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

A journey for the senses Luxury hotel Upper House has a superb mix of the highest quality tranquil space and peace of mind. In addition to its fantastic views of Gothenburg from up high, this is a real hotspot for yoga enthusiasts and Michelin-star dining. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Upper House

Opened in 2013, the small yet modern hotel Upper House has already won several awards for its excellence. For instance, it has been named Best Hotel in Sweden at the Trivago Awards 2017, and won in the categories Best Service Hotel, Best Romantic Hotel and Best Luxury Hotel at TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Awards. “Our focus is on caring for the guests,” says Lisette Norberg, director of front office and spa, and further explains that the staff listen carefully to what the guests’ expectations are beforehand and help them with preparations for their 58  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

visit, including transportation options, event bookings, gifts for the room and so on. “As you can expect from an international five-star hotel, our service is professional yet genuine and personal. We just make sure to give a little bit more every time.” Upper House is conveniently located in the centre of Gothenburg and close to the huge indoor arena Scandinavium as well as Liseberg, one of Scandinavia’s most visited amusement parks. Many guests come to stay while visiting international exhibitions and events, or when having fun at the fair. Part of the

tall building complex Gothia Towers, Upper House is an oasis sitting in the middle of the three towers with its 53 stylish rooms spread across levels 21 to 24. The floor-to-ceiling windows ensure plenty of light throughout and, of course, fabulous views.

Spa and yoga luxury up high In addition to the stunning vistas of Gothenburg, Upper House also features a fantastic spa. With oriental influences and inspiration from the West coast of

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Sweden, the tranquil interior is a mix of marble details and light wood. Norberg emphasises the importance of a peaceful environment for the guests, where they can land. “This is not supposed to be a leisure centre, so we book no more than ten people at a time. We want to have time for the guests and make sure they get the chance to relax properly.” New in the spa this year are the yoga sessions, which take place on the 20th floor and have proved to be incredibly popular already – even featured recently in magazine Yoga World. Guests can also enjoy the hamam, a Turkish sauna with a traditional bathing routine, or they can book a massage and other treatments and go for a relaxing swim in one of the two indoor pools. Alternatively, they can try the Champagne pool on the outside of the building, with glass floor and all. As Upper House Spa is attractive also among those who are not staying at the

hotel, a new membership service gives access to the spa, gym and classes. In addition, hotel guests and visitors have the opportunity to buy exclusive spa products under the hotels’ own brand, UH by Upper House, which supports local production and is based on Nordic ingredients; for instance the lush shampoo, conditioner and shower cream with honey and seaweed, and the luxurious body oil with sunflower oil and blackcurrant.

Michelin-star dining On the 25th floor is the hotel’s fine dining restaurant, Upper House Dining, with a fantastic terrace and the same light and airy atmosphere as the rooms and spa. Hidden away on the building’s roof are two beehives – Sweden’s highest located – and a space to grow vegetables and herbs for the kitchen. Under the direction of renowned executive chef Krister Dahl and head chef Gabriel Melim Andersson, Upper House

Dining has received several prominent awards since opening and, in 2016, its very first Michelin star. The talented culinary team is continuously elevating the creative work further with high-quality produce from carefully selected suppliers and by using its own honey and harvests from the roof garden. The gastronomic experience is based on local produce according to what is available during the seasons, combining unique flavours, playful presentation and heaps of passion, in addition to delicious wines picked by the trained sommeliers. Guests also praise the splendid hotel breakfast, which consists of homemade muesli, organic yoghurt, sliced fruit and freshly baked bread, and warm dishes can be especially ordered at the table and freshly prepared – for a great start to the day. Web:

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  59

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

An unusually alert 150-year-old People travel from near and far to visit the wonderful Mösseberg Health Resort. Some come for the excellent spa experience, some for the scenic environment and rich nature, and others for the biggest collection of Jugend furniture in Northern Europe. Regardless of your reason, the skilled staff at Mösseberg Health Resort will take very good care of you. By Sara Wenkel  |  Photos: Sebastian Streith

Originally described as ‘the grandest and most beautiful bathing establishment ever seen in this country’, Mösseberg Health Resort has been a destination for recreation and inspiration since 1867. Today, traditional herbal baths and trendy treatments are on offer at the spa, and the newly renovated hotel lets the guests create their own private oasis overlooking the beautiful and peaceful Mösseberg park.

Celebration package “As 2017 marks the 150-year celebration of Mösseberg Health Resort, we have a year filled with celebrations and really want to spoil our guests,” says a passionate hotel manager, Ursula Frölin. This autumn, a special celebration package is available. Over a weekend, the guests sip on cold Champagne in the magnificent, listed Jugendstil lounges, enjoy free access to the spa and sleep in an elegantly decorated double room. “We are also very 60  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

pleased to be able to serve a three-course dinner inspired by the menu served at the opening ceremony 150 years ago,” explains Frölin.

panded the health resort and renovated the whole hotel, with the number of visitors massively increasing. “We even had to open another hotel downtown,” says Frölin and smiles. Three-course dinner included the Celebration Package: Emperor Soup With lightly smoked Fröya salmon, locally produced quail egg and pesto of spinach.

Many guests at Mösseberg Health Resort appreciate the location and easy access within walking distance from Falköping train station – all while getting a sense of being in the middle of a spectacular environment with a rich heritage.

Young Swedish Cockerel With late summer legumes, morels fried in butter, and brown butter emulsion.

Mösseberg Health Resort has been through a fantastic few years, having ex-


Cherry compote With creamy ice cream and almond.

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Top-rated modern sanctuary For more than 100 years, Badhotellet has been dedicated to the health and wellbeing of its many guests. With a tranquil atmosphere, award-winning spa ritual and continuous developments, this classic spa hotel holds its ground as a modern sanctuary. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Badhotellet

Badhotellet is located in a beautiful park next to river Svartån in Tranås, within easy reach of Jönköping and Linköping. Open for more than 100 years, this is one of Sweden’s oldest spa and conference hotels and a popular destination for relaxation and recreation.

Erlander and TV-show host Lennart Hyland were among the visitors in need of relaxation. Even King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden came to stay here during the spa hotel’s 100th anniversary celebrations in 1999.

The spa first opened its doors in 1899. Axel Andersson, who suffered from ill health and had visited many retreats in Sweden and abroad, believed that the fresh air and peaceful surroundings of the small town of Tranås would provide the ideal setting for a spa. The aim was to offer healing water treatments according to the ethos of German priest Sebastian Kneipp, one of the forefathers of the naturopathic medicine movement.

Over the years, the spa hotel has been continuously updated and now offers a mix of fine old traditions and modern facilities as well as a first-class service and cuisine. “We have maintained the history and environment of Badhotellet and carefully carried out renovations to stay true to our heritage,” says marketing manager Regina Hamilton.

Already in its first year of business, Andersson’s spa attracted around 300 guests. Celebrities such as author Astrid Lindgren, former prime minister Tage

Prized spa ritual

The gym has been recently refurbished with new equipment from Technogym, and in August Badhotellet launched its very own spa brand, Küren. These fantastic products with near magical aromas will be available in the hotel rooms as part

of the award-winning spa ritual, named Best Spa Ritual 2016, and in the hotel’s spa shop. The restaurant has also been upgraded and now offers the new, modern concept Axels Matsalar (Axel’s Dining Hall) with an exciting mix of French brasserie and Swedish flavours. With the kitchen moving up a level, guests can now get up close with the chefs in the open-plan kitchen. Badhotellet is appreciated for its relaxing spa weekends and day spa, and the hotel also offers a variety of packages with a combination of spa and conference activities.

Web: Facebook: badhotellet Instagram: @badhotellet

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  61

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Unwind in a charming old monastery During the first half of the 14th century, it housed royal parties so glamorous they were the envy of Europe’s entire aristocracy. In 1350, Saint Bridget of Sweden took the palace and transformed it into a monastery, a stronghold for quiet, Spartan living. Vadstena Klosterhotel has certainly had many guises over its lifetime, but fourth generation restaurateur Matilda Milton suggests that both King Magnus Eriksson and the very first nuns would feel right at home if they were to return. This is a place to switch off and relax – a place to find yourself. By Linnea Dunne  |  Photos: Vadstena Klosterhotel

“The beds are more comfortable now than they were back then – we are a fourstar hotel, after all – but there’s a sense of peace here that we’ve got for free,” says Milton. “The spa completes the sense of calm in your soul.” The spa only opened two years ago but has already won two titles from the annual Spa Awards: Best Spa Kitchen and Best Newcomer. The customers are equally impressed. “I’m 62  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

starting to recognise quite a few of them now. Some return every few months.”

‘Built from the heart’ Thanks to Saint Bridget, the patron saint of Europe, Vadstena is an important pilgrimage site and you can take a pilgrimage all the way from here to Rome. Milton talks about the development of the new spa as an urge to emphasise the inner

journey and the area’s already restful atmosphere. “We’re not spa geeks, and we didn’t have any architects involved. It’s all built from the heart,” she says. “We’ve simply tried to create the ultimate environment to unwind. There are separated areas so that you can stroll around without feeling like you’re being watched all the time. You can grab a piece of fruit or a glass of Champagne; we want guests to feel at home, like you’re always welcome, never in the way.” While the lack of what Milton refers to as “flashy design” was partly a result of a limited budget, it was also a conscious decision to create a spa in tune with its surroundings and the monastery environment. The colours are soft and muted, and there are religious icons on the

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

walls. “The eye doesn’t need to work very hard,” she says. “It clearly works, because people keep falling asleep in the resting lounge.” The current ritual is a head-to-toe treatment with elements of everything from aromatherapy, hot baths, mindfulness and yoga, to a Finnish sauna with essential oils and the spa’s own sauna honey. The idea of being steeped in the monastery heritage is a crucial aspect of the ritual. A herb garden on the grounds boasts herbs and medicinal plants cultivated by, among others, Johan Päterson, Sweden’s first known gardener and one of Saint Bridget’s squires in Rome. The restaurant kitchen uses herbs from the garden in its cooking and wedding guests like to gather for a toast in the picturesque, fragrant setting – and the spa likes to make use of this old resource too. “Right now, we’ve incorporated mint and lavender from the herb garden in the ritual, and next spring we’ll add even more healing herbs as part of a continuous renewal process to ensure that you

get a unique experience every time,” Milton explains.

Conferencing with presence Complete relaxation may be coveted, especially by those on a break from work, but businesses have seen the benefits of unwinding too. “The peace and quiet here means that people can really focus on the decision that is to be made right now,” says Milton. “It’s about presence – no one is thinking about collecting the kids. It makes a conference calm but effective: there’s a clear purpose and clear results. Our conference guests call it value for money. And they keep coming back.” With a restful environment being central at the spa, no children are allowed and chatter is kept to a minimum. Conference guests, however, can book the spa after hours to hold meetings in the pool without having to worry about bothering anyone. Mondays at the spa take a different spin. “We’re closed on Mondays, but our lovely nuns are welcome to pop by then for a bit of luxury relaxation. The

Bible says they’re allowed,” Milton laughs. “They were here drinking Champagne with us for the opening!” The nuns also welcome guests to stay with them and join retreats for that added peace and quiet, while those who prefer to relax by shopping will enjoy the charming town centre with its cobbled streets and many antique shops. At the less Spartan, more boastful end of the spectrum is the well-stocked wine cellar of 4,000 bottles and the breakfast experience in the 13th-century former palace vaults. “The buildings speak for themselves. Entering the halls is a jaw-dropping experience – the history is in the walls. It’s a cultural heritage second to none,” Milton enthuses. “If you think about it, it would’ve taken quite a long time for all the royals, who travelled from all over Europe by horse and carriage just to attend a party here. They must have been some pretty amazing parties.” Web:

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Check in, breathe out Bliss for the soul. This is how a stay at Vann Spa Hotel Conference is best described. The hotel, designed by famous architect Gert Wingård, offers some well-deserved peace and quiet as well as amazing views of the Gullmar fjord. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Vann Spa Hotel Conference

Vann Spa Hotel Conference is located 23 kilometres north east of Lysekil, in a beautiful nature reserve next to Gullmar fjord. “The setting is absolutely fantastic,” says hotel manager Susanne Åhlund. “We’re in the middle of the forest, yet right by the beach, and with spectacular panoramic views. This gives such a sense of peace and quiet, it’s pure bliss!” Opened in 2009, the hotel was designed by prominent Swedish architect Gert Wingård, who has successfully managed to reflect elements of nature and its colours throughout the building, for instance with the clever use of colours such as vibrant orange representing sea buckthorn, grey for the granite landscape and lush dark green for the nearby forest. 64  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

For an active life The hotel has 151 comfortable rooms and five suites, a conference facility for up to 300 people and a relaxing spa of 1,000 square metres with treatments and saunas. Indoors, guests can enjoy the large pool, which is divided into Big and Small Tjärn, separated by a fireplace, and five smaller pools with different themes, sounds and aromas – for instance Forest Pool, Ice Pool and Devil’s Pot. Outdoors awaits a large swimming pool, open in spring and summer, plus two heated tubs. In addition to its many spa treatments, Vann Spa Hotel Conference organises plenty of activities on land and on water for body and mind. “We want to inspire movement and overall health,” says Åhlund. She recommends in particular

the outdoor gym and mindfulness trail, and why not try forest floating with hammocks displayed amongst the trees? New this year is a paddle tennis court, a mix between tennis and squash. During the summer months and term breaks, the hotel goes all in with heaps of fun things to do for families with children. Following all the exciting activities, the restaurant offers a popular menu with freshly caught fish and shellfish as well as high-quality meat and vegetables from the area. It is KRAV labelled and certified by Smaka på Västsverige (Taste West Sweden), and Vann Spa Hotel Conference also has its very own bakery, producing delicious bread and pastry – for another well-deserved treat. Web: Facebook: vannspahotellochkonferens Instagram: @vannspa

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Smögen, then and now Hotel Smögens Hafvsbad has a long history as a meeting place and health resort by the sea. For more than 100 years, guests have come to Smögen for relaxation and, just like in the former days, they can still enjoy that salty atmosphere. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Hotel Smögens Hafvsbad

The old fishing village of Smögen is one of the most famous spots in Bohuslän, attracting around one million visitors during the busy summer months. In the early 1900s, city dwellers travelled here for recreation by the sea after facing what was considered the intellectual challenges of winter. This is also the spot where famous poet and singer Evert Taube made his first official performance, which took place in Godtemplarhuset in 1918. Back in those early beginnings, Hotel Smögens Hafvsbad only had eight guest rooms and a beautiful dining hall. Today, it has 76 rooms, a fabulous seafoodthemed restaurant, a relaxing spa with massages and other treatments, and conference facilities for up to 220 people

– but with the same wonderful atmosphere and sea view.

Poets, celebrities and a hotel ghost “We have kept the heritage and charm of the old days and mixed it with modern comforts,” says hotel manager Nils Folkesson, who also explains that some of the rooms tell the story of former guests who had a great impact on Smögen – famous people such as the aforementioned Evert Taube as well as film director Torsten Winge, teacher Mamsell Helena Kullgren and Count Blankenhjälm, now certified as the hotel’s very own ghost. A stay at Smögens Hafvsbad will naturally be focused around the sea and people’s relation to water, then and now. For

instance, guests can enjoy the traditional bathing ritual, but with modern-day products. The spa also features a range of treatments, a pool and Jacuzzi, and of course the opportunity to swim in the sea. After some well-deserved relaxation, guests can enjoy a lovely meal of freshly caught fish and seafood in the restaurant with a view of the sea. Hotel Smögens Hafvsbad is open all year round, but Folkesson recommends a visit during the off-peak season. “The winter months are incredible here, with a completely different atmosphere to the busy summer months. Smögen is ideal for hiking, with a number of different routes, and we have plenty of other activities and a variety of fantastic restaurants in the area.” Web: Facebook: smogenshafvsbad Instagram: @smogenshafvsbad

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Age-old simplicity in brand-new extended Japanese baths Peace. That is the meaning of the Japanese word ‘yasuragi’, and the minimalist spa and conference venue on Hasseludden in the Stockholm archipelago, surrounded by nothing but sea and pine trees, certainly does what it says on the tin. For 20 years, city dwellers and businesses in need of the spatial and mental space to focus have been coming here to find exactly that – and now the Japanese baths are getting a complete facelift. By Linnea Dunne  |  Photos: Yasuragi

“The word ‘yasuragi’ is a lot like that relaxing exhale you do when you slowly sink into a hot spring. That feeling of letting go and allowing the body and all the senses to rest is magical to most people,” says Kersti Olophsdotter, marketing manager at Yasuragi. “It’s something I think most people don’t experience enough in their everyday lives.” Hasseludden started out as a centre for education and training, owned and used 66  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

by the Swedish Trade Union Organisation (LO) and its member organisations. But as the demands of profitability brought a realisation that the space had to also serve a commercial purpose, a significant sum of money was invested into reshaping the venue to present a unique Japanese bath.

Simplicity and authenticity Yasuragi quickly became known as one of the best places in Sweden to really relax, with countless regulars and return-

ing guests. Taking inspiration from the Far East may be more of a rule than an exception in the world of wellness these days, but Yasuragi has been and remains a true pioneer in this regard. “What’s unique about Yasuragi is that we’re primarily a Japanese bath, not a traditional spa. It’s like visiting a real ‘onsen’ in Japan, and it’s not just the baths that are authentic – the restaurants, the hotel and the gardens are Japanese too,” Olophsdotter explains. “That’s our strength: we stick to the Japanese and refrain from mixing different expressions.” The concept at Yasuragi is based on the principal idea that all people need stillness, beauty and harmony – and Yasuragi is all about simplicity. “It should be easy to come here, easy to be here, and easy to unwind,” Olophsdotter continues.

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

“We’ve always insisted on this simplicity and stillness and simply won’t compromise on our promise to our guests that they must be able to unwind and return home with renewed energy.” A Yasuragi visit starts with the age-old Japanese bathing ritual where you sit on a wooden stool, wash yourself and then repeatedly pour buckets of water over yourself. Like at a Japanese ‘onsen’, you get a ‘yukata’, a cotton bathrobe, which you wear throughout your stay – in the baths, during activities and treatments, and when you eat. “It’s part of the overall simplicity,” says Olophsdotter. In addition to the hot springs, which make the foundation of the Yasuragi experience, there are optional treatments and activities to choose from, including Zen meditation and a journey with Tibetan singing bowls.

Exciting revamp 20 years on, now owned by Nordic Choice Hotels with Petter Stordalen as majority

owner, it is yet again time for renewal. Yasuragi is getting a complete facelift and a brand-new extended Japanese bath as part of its greatest investment to date. “Ever since 1997, the Japanese baths have been a cornerstone of what we do, and this is a chance for us to strengthen this foundation. It’ll be an entirely new bathing experience and is a natural step for us to continue to refine and develop our Japanese heritage,” says Olophsdotter. The rebuild, which includes the restaurants, has been created by DAP architecture group after a study trip to Japan and extensive consultation with the venue management. “It’s a truly honourable mission for us, not just from an architectural perspective, but in the challenge of moulding a place where people can relax easily and get in touch with themselves,” says Mats Hansson, creative leader and partner at DAP, who are behind the new restaurants and baths concept. “We really get to consider the interplay between

people and their physical environment – how lighting and material choices impact on the tactile experience. In this intimate environment, it’s crucial not to feel left out; it’s our task to allow the guest to feel at ease and relaxed. It’s a dream project for an architect to get to create a Japanese experience for this brand, which for 20 years now has been continuously refining its concept.” Olophsdotter is no less excited: “We are really looking forward to giving new and old guests an experience of true peace.”

The brand-new bath will open on  1 January 2018. Web: Facebook:  yasuragisweden Twitter: @YasuragiSweden Instagram: @yasuragisweden

Photo: Silkeberg

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Love life in the Swedish archipelago As the rain is pouring down and the sun sets way too early for you to soak up enough sunshine, there is nothing better than to check in to a welcoming, warm hotel. At Stenungsbaden, you will enjoy newly refurbished deluxe rooms, a spa with trendy treatments and hot springs, and a food menu inspired by the sea – which is just by your doorstep. By Sara Wenkel  |  Photos: Erik Nissen Johansen

The Swedish West Coast – and the province of Bohuslän in particular – is something out of the ordinary. It is home to the Northern part of the Gothenburg archipelago and is, among other things, known for its beautiful rocky seaside. Here, locals and holiday-goers alike come for crisp air, great outdoors satisfaction and fresh seafood. It has been featured on CNN’s list of ten of the Last Great Wildernesses in the World, and with 8,000 islands and islets it is easy to understand why. 68  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

On one of these islands you will find Stenungsbaden, a popular stop for the many sailors as well as a celebrated destination for spa junkies and a recommended place for hosting conferences. Stenungsbaden is only a 30-minute drive from Gothenburg and 45 minutes from Landvetter airport. “It is no coincidence that Stenungsbaden is located here,” says Patric E Österström, CEO. “Our facility is framed by the most beautiful landscape and a place where recreation comes naturally.”

All amenities at Stenungsbaden have seen great improvement in the last few years. 50 deluxe rooms have just been renovated, and another 79 rooms will go through the same change this season. All in all, the whole facility is in greater harmony which, according to Österström, makes a big difference to the visitor. “It creates a balance throughout the whole experience. Our lowest level is now much higher than it used to be – from the first impression when you visit our website to the final touch on your bespoke body treatment.”

Best spa in Sweden As return on the investments and proof that the hard work has paid off, the spa at Stenungsbaden, Bluewater Sports & Health Club, was recently presented with a highly prestigious award: The Best Spa Hotel in Sweden, according to

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

the international Luxury Spa Award. “We have done our homework and created what our guests asked for, so we are very pleased with the award. However, we will always strive to become even better, and we want to keep up the high standard,” says Österström. The spa at Stenungsbaden works closely with Comfort Zone, an advising consultancy helping spas all over the world to develop their offerings. One of their biggest tasks at Stenungsbaden is to connect the spa experience with the outdoor surroundings. Seaweed massage and foot scrubs on the cliffs are two popular summer treatments and, for those brave enough during the winter, there is a sauna ritual followed by a refreshing dip in the ice-cold sea. According to Österström, the coming months are a prime time for spa visits. “It is grey and rainy outside and we need to get energy from something else than the

sun,” he says. “We have adapted to meet our customers’ requests. For example, the demand on facials increases as our sun-kissed cheeks fade.”

to reduce energy consumption, waste, chemicals, transportation and water. That is incredibly important to us,” says Österström.

Stenungsbaden is also hosting afternoon tea every Friday this autumn, which is popular among the spa guests. It is a perfect way to start the weekend and unwind from stress.

When speaking to Österström, he repeatedly returns to the word ‘balance’. “Our wish is that the guests experience balance between the spa, indoor and outdoor activities and, of course, perfectly prepared food. I think this balance is as important to a conference group as it is to a family holiday,” he says.

Effort on good food In addition to afternoon tea, Stenungsbaden offers a vast food menu with everything from organic breakfast to an exciting lunch buffet and, later in the year, also a traditional Swedish Christmas smörgåsbord. The à la carte restaurant, Captains Table, is influenced by the American East Coast and the Swedish West Coast and treats the guests to a stunning sea view from the hotel’s top floor. The use of organic, locally produced food is a given throughout all of Stenungsbaden’s food offerings. “We also continuously work

A warm and joyful feeling, both from the building itself and the staff, is imminent when arriving at Stenungsbaden. “It should pervade everything we do,” Österström states. “It is all about loving life, and my mission is to make sure that my staff do that, which will influence our guests to do the same.” Web:

Photo: LeKa

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Top Spa and Wellness Destinations

Photo: Björn Olfenius

Modern gastronomy served in the deep Swedish forest Between two lakes, in the middle of the lichen-draped forest, lies a very special Manor House – a place to indulge in award-winning gastronomy sustainably made in tune with nature; a haven where you can watch the starry sky from the hot spring or spot for beavers, black-throated divers or even moose from the water. By Ulrika Kuoppa-Jones  |  Photos: Anette Andersson

Färna Herrgård & Spa (Färna Manor House & Spa) in the highly acclaimed beauty of Bergslagen, northwest of Stockholm in Sweden, is the ideal romantic getaway or stop for an energy-boosting conference or relaxing weekend. The manor house dates back to 1776 and its grounds have seen both iron and wood being refined. In 1994, it was turned into a hotel and conference centre with food certified by Swedish organic label KRAV, listed by Chaine des Rotisseurs and the White Guide. “We are passionate about slow food and base the menu on sustainable and seasonal local ingredients,” says head chef and sommelier Inga-Lena Eriksson. “We have our own kitchen garden where we grow veggies and herbs. We also hold taster sessions of beverages, and serve a very popular afternoon tea. Everything is cooked and baked on our premises.” 70  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Färna Manor House & Spa works closely with local farmers, and Eriksson has spent ten years sourcing high-quality producers of food in the neighbourhood. She jumps in the car to pick up cheese and other local produce directly from the farmers, which helps to build up a precious personal network.

says Sofie Andersson, director of marketing, with a big smile. A shop is also found in a big barn on the premises, with hand-picked modern Scandinavian design items, interior design and clothes. “What overseas visitors seem to appreciate more than anything else is how pure and untouched nature is here,” says Andersson. “That you can walk in the forests for an hour without seeing another human being – and then come back to an exciting, hearty meal!”

Pure, untouched nature But there is more than good food to be enjoyed here. The Manor House is situated in an eco-park, which brings visitors a unique sense of closeness to nature. Any guest can go for a stroll in the deep forest, enjoying the unique Swedish foraging bylaws and picking local berries and mushrooms. “We offer a safari on a quiet boat, slowly moving up the lake and into the river. Sitting right by the water’s edge like this enables us to come up close and personal to wildlife like beaver, deer and black-throated divers – even moose!”

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Catering for big parties and Christmas dinners, the hotels are also popular wedding destinations.

A place for important decisions Boasting an incredible history, including being a deciding factor for Norway gaining its independence from Sweden in 1905, the Fortress Hotels – Oscarsborg and Kongsvinger – are places where people still come to make crucial decisions in both business and personal life.

or seminar. “We’ve got incredible facilities here at the hotel. It’s perfect for those wanting something different to an airport hotel at Gardermoen; these fortress hotels are very special,” says Eide.

By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Festningshotellene

The coastal fortress Oscarsborg now runs its very own Escape Room based on the incredibly important events of 9 April 1940, when the fortress helped sink the German heavy cruiser Blücher in the Oslofjord, playing a significant role in Norway’s history. Recreating the events in one hour, the people in the Escape Room must solve a mystery relating to the events of that day. “It’s an incredible experience,” ex72  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

plains Tony Eide, owner of the hotels. “It’s based entirely on that day, which makes it a thrilling task for those taking part in it.”

Historical themes for business conferences Oscarsborg is located a mere 30 minutes from Oslo, making it an ideal location for businesses in the capital who want an extraordinary location for their conference

Many of the businesses that come to the Fortress Hotels for conferences decide to run with the historical theme of the buildings in their daily activities, as the vast history lends itself perfectly for business gatherings and team building. “We usually say that it’s the place for making important decisions – both historically and today,” says Eide. “Both fortress hotels are completely unique, and no amount of money could build these types of places

Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Historical Hotels in Norway

today – they are both historical and architectonic, and they are of course listed buildings in need of preservation, which we have to respect.” The hotels need to be walked in, eaten in, slept in, and generally used, as they need to be maintained in order to be preserved in the best possible way – which is in everyone’s interest as they are a great part of Norwegian history. “It takes an incredible amount of maintenance to keep up a building of this calibre, and when we maintain them, we help preserve history as well as the buildings,” Eide explains.

Exclusive suites At Festningen Hotel & Resort, which sits on top of Kongsvinger and has a grand view over the city and the Glomma river, the vibe is even more exclusive. There are only 28 rooms – compared to the 90 rooms at Oscarsborg – and the majority of these are executive suites. In addition, it features conference rooms for businesses interested in making the hourlong trip from Oslo. The head chef chooses a particular menu, which consists of the best ingredients out there and what is available seasonally. “We try to be as unique as we can with the menu,” explains Eide. “We believe in local food, but we are keen to remember that local isn’t always the best quality, and quality is equally as important for us.”

Oscarsborg is located on an island, making for fantastic sea views.

Oscarsborg is located on an island, which means that fish and seafood feature heavily on the menu, whereas the fortress in Kongsvinger is located close to a big area known for its hunting, meaning that game is a true classic on the menu. The hotels can cater for up to 500 people in one sitting, thanks to the many rooms and restaurant areas throughout. Equal to Oscarsborg, the history at Kongsvinger’s fortress hotel is vast and, since the 17th century, it has been an important part of Norway’s political history. With floodlights throughout the grounds at both fortresses, they are both truly magical places to be in the winter. “Many people think these places are primarily used in the summer, but some of the

greatest memories I have are from walking these grounds when the floodlights are on and the grounds are covered in snow in the winter,” says Eide.

Activities for everyone The hotels’ activity offers are also vast and Oscarsborg is particularly family and child-friendly as kids can happily climb the old cannons and partake in safaris in the summer. There are murder mystery nights and plenty of outdoor space for activities for people of all interests and age groups – and for those wanting to make incredibly important life decisions, the wedding seasons see multiple couples tying the knot at both hotels. Web:

The intricate details give the visitors a sense of the great history that lies behind it.

The hotels can cater for up to 500 guests at a time in its many different restaurant rooms.

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Losby Gods is surrounded by gorgeous nature. Photo: Turid Horgtun.

Oslo’s hidden conference and party gem Did you know that there is a majestic place located a mere 20-minute drive from Oslo, away from the hustle of bustle of the city, where you can go for a conference, seminar, wedding, confirmation, a romantic weekend – the list goes on – and experience grand history and beautiful nature all in one place? By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Stine Eid

If the answer is yes, then you know it could be none other than the spectacular Losby Gods, which welcomes around 30,000 guests a year to its large country estate – some of whom walk in to the reception area wide-eyed, exclaiming: “We didn’t know this was here – and so close to Oslo!” You really have to experience it to believe it.

Conference location of dreams Director Heidi Elisabeth Fjellheim has been running the manor since 2008, 74  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

after joining the team in 2003, and explains that the building features a unique history that dates back to 1850. “There’s a certain peacefulness out here that makes it such an ideal location for many occasions – for conferences, there is a tranquil vibe that provides those attending with the focus that they require, and we can accommodate for up to 200 conference-goers at one time,” says Fjellheim. “You get the nature right into the meeting room, and the very best thing about it is that it has absolutely everything you need

in one place, so there’s a sense of togetherness that many of our guests greatly appreciate.” Eight out of the 16 meeting rooms are historical, dating back to 1850, originally used as the most exclusive bedrooms at the manor. “But we have a big focus on technology; it shouldn’t be oldfashioned simply because it’s historical. We have comfy furniture and a high level of service and technology, so that the conference-goers can focus on what they came here to do,” she explains.

Engagement and details When it comes to the menu, Losby Gods prides itself on its focus on engagement and details. “We need everyone who works here to have a burning passion for

Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Historical Hotels in Norway

Losby Gods and to really focus on the details,” says Fjellheim. “This is something we work with every single day, and which we believe makes a huge difference. We focus on using seasonal, local ingredients with Norwegian food traditions – although our kitchen is also international.”

Gods wine from the vineyard Negro Angelo in Piemonte, Italy, which has been produced since 2009. “You can’t buy the wine anywhere else, so we do get some people coming back here purely because they want to drink our wine,” she adds.

Wedding central

The chefs are also in possession of the cooking diary of the very first chef at the manor, as she wrote down everything she made throughout the years – something that is hugely inspiring to the kitchen team at Losby Gods. “Our chefs get to delve into the world of what she was cooking, which is incredibly exciting, and they also go out and harvest the fruit and berries we grow in the garden, for an even more personal touch,” says Fjellheim.

Fjellheim maintains that Losby Gods is for the big and small occasions in life – and especially the big ones, considering they average at a whopping 80 weddings per year. “We had 20 weddings in July alone, over a 31-day period,” she explains. “The reason it’s a desired wedding venue is that everything is in one place: from when the nerves kick in and the priest is ready, to the end of the wedding and beginning of the afterparty.”

In addition to the focus on great-quality food, they also have their very own Losby

She adds: “But we’re not a machine – every wedding is treated as equally spe-

cial, and we always want our brides and grooms to feel like it’s all about them, and this is something I really feel like we manage to do.” Additionally, the manor hosts one of the country’s biggest wedding fairs annually, drumming up a fair amount of interest in the grounds as a venue. Losby Gods is also highly known for its golf, with both a nine-hole course and an 18-hole course. The manor even featured on the reality series The Bachelorette because of the romantic nature of the place and, every weekend, Losby Gods hosts Romantic Weekends, which see couples coming in and enjoying each other’s company for a night or two. It truly is a fairytale manor – and what better place for a romantic getaway? Web:

Christmas is an important holiday at Losby Gods.

Perfect for the big and small occasions in life, Losby Gods caters for many types of parties and weddings. Photo: Her & Nå.

The manor is a popular conference venue for companies within the Oslo area, due to being situated only a 20-minute drive from the capital.

The grand nature of the manor provides guests with a great atmosphere.

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Left: Dalen Hotel is located near the Telemark canal in a gorgeous 123-year-old building. Top right: The food at the hotel is a mix between Scandinavian and French. Right: General manager Malin Jernberg prides herself of the authentic historical feel the hotel provides.

A day in the life of a Dalen Hotel guest Picture yourself stepping onto a boat on the Telemark Canal to be taken on a cultural-historical journey through a grand Norwegian landscape – known to locals as the world’s eighth wonder – and enjoy a welcome drink and a good meal in the boat’s very own restaurant. By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Skodde Studio

carte menu as well as three-, four- or five-course set menus, and following the meal you can enter the saloon bar where you can enjoy a coffee and a piano concert running from 6pm until midnight every single night.

Arriving at your destination at Dalen Pier, the end station of the canal, you are greeted by a concierge in a red costume who will carry your luggage to his yellow veteran bus and transport you to your hotel. Although the hotel is known as ‘the hotel from the fairy tales’, this is not imagination but real life and simply the experience of any guest staying at Dalen Hotel.

Go to bed in a gorgeous room featuring privately imported products from Indonesia, sleep in a Jensen ambassador bed and listen to the waterfall outside as you drift off. Wake up to a historical breakfast buffet before going on a hike or back on the canal boat, and come to realise that fairy tales do exist in the hotel world.

Checking in at the front desk by the grand double fireplace, it becomes clear that the romantic hotel sells experiences – not just overnight stays. After being handed your room keys, you go to your luxurious bedroom and enjoy a glass of port and some fine chocolate, change into your best outfit and go to the garden for a game of croquet, or to the on-site arboretum. 76  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

For those wanting an active stay, there are plenty of hiking and biking opportunities, and the hotel provides guests with the opportunity to rent rowing boats and electric bikes. Stave churches and museums are also located nearby. Coming back into the hotel, you enjoy an afternoon tea and some Champagne, followed by a game of chess with your loved one. At 5pm – every single day – listen to the story of the hotel, which first opened back in 1894. Have an aperitif in the restaurant before enjoying a meal by Swedish head chef Alexander, who previously worked in a Michelin-star restaurant, and enjoy the wine or beer pairings by the several on-site sommeliers. There is an à la

A romantic package The most popular choice for Dalen guests is the romantic package, featuring an overnight stay, a threecourse dinner, Champagne, chocolate, an aperitif and afternoon tea.


Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Historical Hotels in Norway

Cosy hotel on the fjord Private boat rides, fishing trips, a cinema, the best cheese in the world, museums and eco parks – these are just some of the things available to guests staying at the scenic Tingvoll Fjordhotell in Norway.

tel is never far from the urban buzz. But for those happy to stay put, it even has its very own cinema as well as TVs and Wi-Fi in every room.

By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Frans Houbraken

Located on the seafront, 33 kilometres outside Kristiansund, the hotel is a relaxed and atmospheric place where guests can enjoy several types of food – and those arriving late will always be offered a bite to eat. There are 16 rooms in total, nine of which are currently available, with two overlooking the sea – and the hotel can currently cater for approximately 24 guests. Tingvoll Fjordhotell is also a wedding destination and can transform one of its sea view rooms into a bridal suite on request. Moreover, they have the capacity to cater for confirmations, Christmas dinners, memorials and other parties in their two party rooms.

Cultural activities Within walking distance of the hotel is Tingvoll Eco Park, an adventure park where everything is organic, featuring plenty of animals and things to do. “The local museum is also very child-friendly,

with several old-fashioned games and activities,” explains Simone Houbraken, who has been running the hotel with her husband Frans for the past year since opening up again after being closed down for eight months. “We also have Kraftkar ten minutes away, which is a cheese that has recently been voted the best in the world,” explains Houbraken. “And then there’s Den Glade Ku [The Happy Cow] just a ten-minute drive from the hotel.”

The food varies from week to week but is largely Norwegian with offers of fish, meat, chicken, pizza, burgers and a takeaway option. “When there’s a wedding, we do a three-course meal, and we also cater for special occasions, like when the Eco Park opened and they requested deer. We also have a Sunday buffet every two weeks,” says Houbraken.

The couple recently invested in a private boat, allowing them to offer guests a trip to the sea for a spot of fishing or to rent a canoe. Recently, a father and son went out and caught four pollocks – one weighing in at eight kilogrammes. The hotel also has its own private floating dock for guests with boats or sailboats. Only a 45-minute drive from Kristiansund and 90 minutes from Molde, the ho-


Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  77

ER WAY T IN OR lT ia W c e & IN N Sp N M ES U T NC AU RIE PE X E e:

m he

One of the most popular activities at Lauklines Kystferie is chasing the magical northern lights. Photo: Filip Kulisev.

Serenity in the scenic nature of Northern Norway Despite being situated in a remote location, surrounded by the most scenic Northern Norwegian landscape with a great sense of peacefulness, Lauklines Kystferie has got an equal amount to offer for those wanting a quiet getaway as those seeking adventure through whale safaris and chasing the northern lights. By Line Elise Svanevik

With six cabins hosting up to six people each, Lauklines Kystferie in Kattfjord – approximately 30 kilometres from Tromsø airport – can accommodate up to 36 guests at a time, and upwards of 90 per cent of the visitors are regulars who return every year.

here, so we’ve preserved some of the old houses that we now use as reception and museum. The six cabins we have are new, but when our guests check in they get a feel for what life was like here in the olden days by going through the old houses,” explains Hanna.

The current owners, Andreas and Hanna Nilsen, took over the small family-run business in 2000. It had then been left empty for a number of years, picking up where Andreas’ grandfather, who started the business in 1930, left off. “Andreas’ grandfather originally had a fish landing

Whales and northern lights

78  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Lauklines has teamed up with a range of local businesses for their activity offering, which means that visitors can be picked up from the resort and driven out to their desired activity – be it whale safaris, dog sledding, fishing, snowshoeing, skiing,

northern lights sightseeing, or simply hiking across some amazing mountain trails. “It’s great for activities, but many of our guests come from very urban areas, and they just want to come and enjoy the peace and quiet, and to watch the whales right outside the window during the season. It’s great to be able to experience nature so close,” Hanna continues. Originally from the city, Hanna has now been living at the premises for 17 years. She says that after one year there she could never imagine living anywhere else. “It’s so incredibly peaceful here. Our guests have the brilliant opportunity to simply be here in the moment, to relax and enjoy the views and the northern lights.” Web:


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

Photo: Gaute Bruvik

Experience farmed fish up close on the coast of Norway Aquaculture is one of the largest export industries in Norway, with a long tradition. You are in the midst of it all if you travel to Helgeland, so make sure to take the opportunity to visit the Norwegian Aquaculture Center. Here, you can learn more about modern-day fish farming and the environment around the facilities, and taste what the sea has to offer. With focus on quality and knowledge, this truly is a great place to get acquainted with farmed fish and sea life. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Norsk Havbrukssenter

and 100,000 cods, with the permission to breed both. “History shows that it has been difficult to practise cod farming because of the nature of the fish and the difficulties in finding the suitable nourishment, but we are now on the fourth generation of farmed cod and it is looking very promising,” explains Laugen.

Situated in Toft, south-west of Brønnøysund, the Norwegian Aquaculture Center welcomes a large number of visitors throughout the year. With stunning surroundings and a charming setting, the destination allows guests to experience farmed fish up close. “Our guided tours around the facilities are very popular, especially amongst tourists arriving from Hurtigruta. They learn about marine life and fish development, and see how to

The conditions in Norway are ideal for salmon farming. With a very fertile coast, and marine conditions well suited for environmentally friendly and responsible aquaculture, Norway is today one of the world’s largest fish and seafood exporters. The Norwegian Aquaculture Center operates with systematic and long-term breeding work, and you will meet the salmon and the cod, see what they eat and how they live.

80  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

handle the fish from an egg to finished product in an authentic, real environment. We think it’s important for people to understand where their food comes from,” says CEO Marte Laugen.

Ideal for salmon farming The centre was established in 2002, and the first fish was put into the enclosures in autumn 2008. Today, the centre is proud to keep around 50,000 salmons

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

Recruitment to the aquaculture industry “We are proud of the industry we represent. Our goal is to contribute to better information, greater understanding and thus increased interest in an exciting and future-oriented industry. This will contribute to increased recruitment and lay the foundations for a sustainable industry in the coming years,” says Laugen. The centre cooperates with educational institutions and is committed to the recruitment of children and youth to the aquaculture industry. “We have visits from nurseries and school classes up to upper secondary school, offering different arrangements for all age groups. The youngest kids can visit our aquarium with crabs and shells, while the slightly older youngsters learn by practising through their biology and food knowledge studies,” Laugen explains. “Our passion for recruitment of girls to the industry is strong. Each year, we hold a girl camp, and we have an apprentice scheme available for interested girls.”

With fish on the menu Earlier this year, the centre renovated their facilities with a brand-new restaurant focusing on serving simple and lo-

cally sourced seafood. With a different theme every Friday and Saturday this summer, guests had the opportunity to taste a variety of delicacies from the sea. Each weekend, the menu changes, focusing on everything from sashimi and whale meat to monkfish and halibut, with a three-course meal accompanied by selected wines. “We can offer custom programmes for groups, with the possibility to have a dining experience with a guided tour to learn more about the fish they are eating. Since our centre is onshore, we suggest that groups arrive by boat from Brønnøysund to see more of the idyllic surroundings. When they arrive, we can for instance arrange a salmon filleting competition and a cooking competition, making them part of it all from start to finish,” says Laugen. This is one of the experiences the centre offers, but the possibilities are many and can be discussed and arranged beforehand to suit each group. “Throughout the year, we have everything from companies to groups of friends and parties visiting us. We always make sure that the programme is tailored to suit them, creating a unique and exciting experience. Next year, we will be offering accommodation

in ‘rorbuer’, a traditional Norwegian type of seasonal house used by fishermen, for the possibility to explore the archipelago even more,” she adds.

Part of the local history The first industry at Toft started up in the form of a shop back in 1924, and since the renovation these historical premises now host exhibitions about aquaculture and local history as well as a tourist shop and a café. A part of the exhibition is dedicated to Trollfjell Geopark, an area with an exceptional geological heritage of international significance, providing activities based on the unique geological history and localities in the area. “We are thrilled to showcase Trollfjell Geopark, a cooperative project between the municipal boroughs of Brønnøy, Vega, Vevelstad, Sømna, Bindal and Leka, and an important part of the regional tourism pride,” says Laugen.

Web: Facebook: Norsk.Havbrukssenter Twitter: @kulturverksted Instagram: @norskhavbrukssenter

Photo: Simen Traelnes

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  81

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

Beyond Limits offers trips for any experience and fitness level.

Adventures beyond limits Have you ever dreamed about skiing on a glacier, kayaking in the Arctic, ice climbing in the summer or dog sledding across wild, untouched nature while the northern lights dance across the sky? With more than 15 carefully crafted trips, Beyond Limits can help make all of those dreams a reality, while pushing your boundaries beyond what you ever thought was possible. By Linn Skjei Bjørnsen  |  Photos: Beyond Limits

Based just above the Arctic Circle, in the heart of the Norwegian county of Nordland, Beyond Limits offers unique, quintessential experiences for anyone wishing to explore one of the wildest and most untouched places on earth. Offering everything from daytrips in the mountains and on the water, to expeditions spanning several days and long distances, Beyond Limits can design a trip that fits your needs – no matter what you do, where you are from and what your experience level is. 82  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Born out of one man’s passion for limitless adventure and a deep love for the Norwegian nature, Beyond Limits is now in its second year running. Last year, Rune Krogh left his job as a climber and inspector in the oil industry to turn his passion into a full-time job. “I guided trips on a hobby basis for years, but after witnessing the huge interest for nature-based experiences like this, I decided it was time to take the plunge and make a living of my hobby,” says Krogh. Since then, he has guided expe-

ditions to the North Pole, on Norway’s northernmost territory Svalbard, on the Svartisen glacier, across Norway as well as Greenland – going east to west like the famous Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen did in 1888.

Experiences for everyone Although it might sound like this is not for the faint-hearted, Krogh and his team of professional guides offer trips for any experience level. “Our goal is to share this beautiful place we call home with everyone. You’re not required to have an above average fitness level to participate in our easier hiking trips or any previous experience of paddling to be part of our kayak trips. Our dog sledding is for just about anyone, while the longer treks that last several days, covering high altitudes and demanding ter-

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

rain, obviously require a certain fitness level and previous experience,” he says. Some of Beyond Limits’ most popular excursions are their kayak trips. In the fall and winter months you have the unique opportunity to experience the magical northern lights from the kayak seat – paddling through crystal clear waters while the sky lights up in a spectacular colour show. The Arctic kayak trip is another must-try, allowing paddlers to experience the magnificent Svartisen, Norway’s second-largest glacier, up close and personal. If you ever dreamt of floating above the emerald green waters of the Arctic north, manoeuvring between impressive icebergs and paddling directly at the feet of a glacier, this trip is definitely for you. “People are coming from all over the world to experience Svartisen – and most of them return with a new profile picture for Facebook,” Krogh affirms.

Another way of experiencing Svartisen is to let a team of huskies guide you through the beautiful and untouched scenery of snow-covered surfaces, crystal clear skies and magnificent glimpses of the northern lights. With 20 huskies in the family and years of experience with dog sledding, Beyond Limits offers both day trips and longer expeditions in summer and winter alike. “This is one of my favourite ways of exploring the wilderness,” says Krogh. “There’s nothing quite like that bond you share with the huskies, and working together with them as a team is a truly unique experience.”

national parks and one nature reserve all the way to the Swedish border; sleeping in tents on the way. “This trip is the ultimate winter survival test, and I’m not going to lie – it can be brutal. Not only because it requires long and demanding days of skiing, but also because the weather can be unpredictable in the winter months, with snowstorms and extreme temperatures,” says Krogh. “That being said, I believe everyone is capable of pushing their own boundaries. What it really comes down to is accepting your limits, because once you do you can go beyond them.”

An adventure of a lifetime

As the British author and inventor Arthur C. Clarke once put it: “The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible” – and that is what Beyond Limits is all about.

For adventurers looking for a more extreme and challenging winter experience, Beyond Limits offers a six-day expedition across Norway on skis. This follows the Arctic Circle, from Svartisen glacier in the West through Nordland’s pure wilderness, crossing two different


Spectacular northern lights over Svartisen glacier.

Experience the breath-taking Norwegian landscape with guided husky excursions.

Sunrise over Svartisen glacier.

Arctic kayak paddling is one of Beyond Limits’ most popular trips.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  83

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

Exploring Svartisen:

Cool, calm and collected Driving along the coastal route in Northern Norway is a bucket list must, with great views and a range of activities worthy of a stop. If you are looking for a truly magical experience, Svartisen Glacier is a bucket list item all on its own.

where you can enjoy a cup of coffee and a meal as you take in the spectacular view and nature,” says Nilsen.

By Karen Langfjæran  |  Photos: Svartisen AS

The traditional restaurant has had its fair share of famous visitors, such as Fridtjof Nansen, and is filled with stories of the past. It is located one kilometre away from the quay, and you may wish to end your exploration here – but if not, you may at least want to stop to buy your packed lunch. “The specialty is Arctic char – but make sure you stop by on a day when they serve their dinner buffet, where you can choose freely from wonderful dishes based on traditional recipes,” Nilsen recommends.

The adventures of Norway’s secondbiggest glacier start only 50 metres from the popular coastal route along the Helgeland coast in Northern Norway, where the road gently stops by the Holand fjord. “In our current season, between April and September, you can leave your car and take a ten-minute ferry ride over to the other side of the fjord,” says Rolf Nilsen, manager of Svartisen AS, a company coordinating activities and facilities 84  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

on and near Svartisen. At the other end of the fjord you have majestic views of the glacier, but what also awaits is some complex decision-making.

Experience Svartisen – by foot or with bikes “You can rent bikes on the ferry taking you over to the glacier side, and once on land you can explore the area by bike. You get the best views from afar at Brestua,

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

If you are in a less traditional mood, you may find the rather untraditional activity named Kiss a Moose by Svartisen Moose interesting. Here you can get close to the domesticated moose named Arnljot and Wilma – and this is undoubtedly as close as you will, or maybe should, ever get to moose.

cier guides are highly trained and experienced and always make sure to adjust according to your needs – we have young kids and elderly well into their eighties visiting,” says Nilsen. You will need to book glacier tours in advance – so you can long for the experience well before you go.

You can also walk all the way up to the glacier. “You can follow the road from the quay for about three kilometres, before you get on a path for another 40 minutes up to the glacier,” says Nilsen, adding that renting bikes will make it easier.

If you would rather stay within your comfort zone, a traditional ‘hytte’ experience may be closer to your idea of holiday material. “At 1,100 metres above sea level, you will find a DNT-owned (the Norwegian Touring Association) cabin, recently named the least accessible DNT cabin in the country, which is lovely both to stay in and to walk up to,” says Nilsen. The cabin sleeps 20 people, so there is obviously a need for more beds in the area. “There is a vast choice of possibilities for overnight stays, ranging from tents to cabins, farm stays and fisherman’s cottages,” says Nilsen.

Glacier tours and longer stays – for the adventurous There is no doubt that the ultimate goal is to explore the glacier further. If you are feeling up for the adventure, there are no less than three providers offering treks lasting three and a half to eight hours, as well as ice climbing. “The glaFeeling adventurous? Book yourself a spell of ice climbing or a glacier trek at Svartisen. Photo: Rocks & Rivers

Staying for one or several nights will not only give you more time to explore the area – it will also make sure that you are left with the best experience the Svartisen area has to offer: the peace and the silence when most people have left. “Even though I come here every day, I am still amazed at the incredible sense of relaxation I get from just being here,” says Nilsen. “You can expect to find your shoulders at an all-time low.” The ultimate goal of Svartisen AS is to expand the season from its current five months during the summer to being available for full-year action. “As the area is so private and you can easily turn off all available lights, it is truly perfect for seeing the northern lights,” says Nilsen. Exciting as that sounds, you will have to visit Svartisen during the summer for now. Web:

Ready for a truly magical experience? Visit Svartisen in Northern Norway and enjoy a truly peaceful moment.

Expect magical glacier and fjord views as your boat takes you to the quay where the real magic starts.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  85

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Autumn & Winter Experiences in Norway

Hunting the light

By Maria Lanza Knudsen / Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Dan Steinbakk

Chasing the northern lights is one of the most quintessential arctic adventures in Norway. But how do you get the best experience? As autumn and winter approach and darkness falls, northern Norway awaits nature’s own festive lights, the aurora borealis. These multi-coloured streams of light decorate the sky and attract people from afar. Dan Steinbakk, the owner of touring company Arctic Experience, runs tours from Tromsø from September to April. He prides himself on offering personalised tours for groups of up to eight people. The knowledgeable guide, who grew up under the northern lights, guarantees the comfort of each guest by providing appropriate clothing and the enjoyment of the lights around a bonfire. “You can experience four seasons and landscapes in one trip – from forests and the tundra to arctic snow-capped mountains and the ocean,” says Steinbakk. “There really is something magical about the landscape, especially with the autumn colours in addition to the beautiful colours in the sky!”

Arctic Experience’s focus on small groups allows Steinbakk to tailor the tour and ensure that guests get the best viewing of the beautiful lights, and his company has now received TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence three years in a row. In addition to showcasing the magic in the sky, Arctic Experience has a unique handheld radio

called a VLF receiver that allows you to listen to the spectacular natural phenomenon. To capture the moment, Steinbakk always takes professional-quality photographs for guests to take home. Indeed, for avid photographers he even provides instructions on how best to capture the lights. Let the chase begin! Web:

Sustainable thinking for a sustainable future Tromsø Friluftsenter was among the very first tourism providers in town when they started in 2004. Since then, the family business has offered authentic experiences portraying the very best of Northern Norway through guided whale safaris and northern lights excursions. By Pernille Johnsen  |  Photos: Tromsø Friluftsenter

Central to Tromsø Friluftsenter is the core value of sustainable thinking for a sustainable future, something that has been internationally recognised. Tromsø Friluftsenter was the first tourism agency in Norway to carry the illustrious blue flag, known worldwide for substantial knowledge about the environmental implications of tourism and ways to combat them on a daily basis. The family business is run by the fatherand-daughter duo, Alf and Trine Risvik. The pair does a great deal of the guided tours and direct customer interaction assuring that each visitor leaves with the genuine and special experience you get when you visit a spectacular place, organised and presented to you by people who truly care 86  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

about the location. They keep the tourist groups small and intimate, avoiding big crowds. These efforts were highlighted in the TV-series Jakten på Nordlyset, produced by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK). Rave reviews also feature on TripAdvisor, and it is evident that the personal touch team Risvik brings to each excursion provides sustainable memories for tourists wishing to explore Norway throughout the year. Web: Facebook: tromsofriluftsenter

Experience the Northwestern coast of Nor way & the beautiful Geirangerfjord by boat with us NORDVEST opplevelser

For more information

Please visit Or contact us at

How is your business doing, whilst you are travelling? If you are our customer, then your business is doing fine, because you have a CRM system that sustains your business processes, and users who want to use their CRM system. When CRM implementations fail, it is typically because the users refuse to use the CRM system. Management can enforce user compliance, but this often leads to incorrect use, which can be more harmful to your business than passive users. We develop 360 Business Tool, so it genuinely helps our users with their daily tasks in sales, marketing, service and delivery. Our system is made for our users - not the other way around. That is why you can trust that 360 Business Tool is in use, also whilst you are travelling. If our users have questions or concerns, our supporters deal with them effectively by phone, chat or e-mail. That is why you can trust that 360 Business Tool is also used correctly. Your business processes are always applied, and the generated data is always genuine and sufficient.

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Scan Magazine  |  Business  |  Keynote

Scan Business Keynote 89  |  Business Profiles 90  |  FinTech Spotlight 98  |  Business Column 104  |  Business Calendar 104




85 per cent of our success results from a good atmosphere One aspect of becoming an excellent networker is to create a good atmosphere everywhere you go. Your competence is not enough to build up a broad and steady network; it can mean a start but, in the end, it will be the atmosphere that gets you right to the cream of networking. A study by MarketWatch found that more than 85 per cent of what we succeed at results from the ability to create a good atmosphere. What we tend to value highly is professional competence and expertise, yet this counts for only 15 per cent. This is not to say that we should assign professional competence less than 100 per cent value in future – but it means that while starting to create good, new relationships with others, we need to pay attention to prioritising good atmosphere.

How to create a good atmosphere When we contact, or talk to, other people professionally or in networks, we often focus heavily on getting our own message heard. For some years, we have been told we should memorise an elevator pitch, and this can certainly be worthwhile; an elevator speech can clarify our own ideas about our aims for our business life or our company and can there-

By Simone Andersen

by create focus. But giving an elevator speech or talking a lot about yourself and your services will not do much in terms of creating a good atmosphere.

Listening, accepting and understanding Try to think of an occasion where you felt comfortable in a one-to-one meeting. Were you with someone who was talking a lot about themselves, who was selling, and who was not paying attention to what you said? Surely not. When we feel comfortable, it is often because someone is listening to us, someone who asks about what we have said, someone who is positive about us, someone who understands us the way we want to be understood. Good atmosphere comes through accepting and understanding the person you are talking to, and not least through an attitude that lets them know that you understand them. The art is to make other people feel important and special. For example, think of the retired talk show host, Oprah Winfrey. She knows how to create a good atmosphere. She shows openness, empathy, intimacy, and she is a good listener.

Simone Andersen is a journalist and has a master’s degree in media science. She worked for many years at the Danish Broadcasting Corporation (DR) as an editor and talk show host. She is an expert in business networking and building relationships, has just written the bestselling The Networking Book, and gives talks on this subject.

Contact: +45 26161818

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  89

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Gaest

Where do you want to meet? Meetings are often where companies generate their best ideas, but they can also become tedious routine appointments when held in the same uninspiring environments. has created a platform that makes it easy to find, book and rent out the perfect meeting room in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and the UK.

a meeting space that is creative. Lots of people find that when they change where they meet, their meetings actually become more productive.”

By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos:

Renting out spaces

“There are so many unused meeting spaces, both traditional and untraditional, and we wanted them to be leveraged,” explains Anders Boelskifte Mogensen, co-founder and CEO at The platform went live in Denmark in January of this year, and has since then expanded to four different countries with more than 3,000 meeting spaces available for rent.

Renting a space For those needing to rent a space, the process is simple: search by location, find the perfect spot, choose the time – meetings are booked by the hour – and 90  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

add any available extras such as coffee or lunch. Add your payment details, and voilà – you are booked. The whole process takes just minutes, and you do not have to pay until the meeting is finished. Once a booking has been approved, it is easy to change and amend. You can also communicate directly with the host. “By asking yourself what the purpose of the meeting is, and then finding a space that reflects that purpose, I think people will get a lot more out of their meetings,” says Mogensen. “For example, if you want a creative solution, then find

For companies wanting to rent out their meeting spaces – and make money doing so – the process is equally quick and easy. Simply create a user profile, upload information about the space – including its amenities – and then add pictures. After that, the listing will be up in just a few minutes. Meeting rooms on range in size and style. You can find everything from traditional meeting rooms where everyone can gather around a table, to more unique spaces such as boats and an upcycled shipping container – which also happens to be one of the most popular.

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Gaest

In the next couple of months, will also offer private individuals the opportunity to rent out spaces in their homes. “There are some incredibly cool spaces that we want to take advantage of, so we’re handpicking a few of these rooms, and we’re always interested to hear from people who think they might be able to offer a unique and inspiring meeting space,” says Mogensen.

process tends to be very tedious and it takes many days before everything is actually confirmed. With, we wanted to shorten that process by confirming bookings as quickly as possible, usually within a few hours. We also work from the notion of full transparency, so we make sure that all costs are crystal clear throughout the booking.”

The need to meet stands out in part because of the variety of meeting spaces, which are best described as exciting and interesting while also providing everything you need to ensure a productive meeting. “I think people really enjoy that they’re in different surroundings, because it not only makes for an experience but also an effective meeting.”

In a world that is rapidly becoming more digital, meetings are actually on the rise. “It seems like the more digital business becomes, the more we actually want to meet face to face. There are just some things that can’t be sorted out over email,” says Mogensen. In 2010, the business of meetings in Denmark generated revenue of 20.8 billion DKK, but the process of booking meetings is still old-fashioned. “If you’re meeting off-site, the booking

Variety is the spice of life

With 700 rooms in Denmark, 1,000 in Sweden and around 1,300 in the UK –

and with more European countries in the pipeline – there is undoubtedly a space that perfectly suits your needs. “I think this is going to be the future of meetings. I truly believe that people want something different and fun. I also feel that conventional ways of perceiving and booking meetings need to be shaken up so that companies can get more out of them,” says Mogensen. has in its short lifespan already established itself as a trustworthy, ambitious and useful platform that provides a much-needed service that no one else can match. The future for is bright, with growth, expansion and more features coming sooner rather than later.


Anders Mogensen (blue polo) and the Gaest team.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  91

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  HelloRider

The future of commuting Biking is an important part of day-to-day life in Scandinavia. Today, more and more people see electric bicycles as an ideal alternative to cars. HelloRider has recently launched its concept in Scandinavia and opened its omni-channel set-up, with a combination of a strong online platform and physical stores. It seems to be working; in just over a year they have become the largest electric bicycle retailer in Scandinavia. By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: HelloRider

“Electric bicycles are gaining popularity at an amazing speed. In Denmark, currently around 13 per cent of bicycles sold are electric, whereas this number is around 35 per cent in the Netherlands, so the growth potential is enormous,” says Olav Jørgensen, ex-McKinsey consultant and now managing director of HelloRider in Scandinavia. HelloRider has close ties with the Netherlands, as it is part of the Dutch omni-channel company, International Bike Group. International Bike Group started as a pure online player, but it has opened 52 shops across the Netherlands and Belgium in the last year and a half.

Electric bicycles HelloRider sells a variety of traditional bikes, but the company has a clear focus on electric bicycles. “We firmly believe that the electric bicycle is the future of transport. With a range of more than 100 92  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

kilometres and a speed of 25 kilometres per hour, the electric bicycle is perfect for daily commuting,” says Jørgensen. In HelloRider’s user-friendly webshop, you can browse for your ideal bicycle. Shopping and ordering is easy and, with a large amount of bicycles in stock, your bike can be delivered at your doorstep in just a few days. Furthermore, HelloRider provides Scandinavian customers with the opportunity to experience bicycles at their test centres, which are located at their stores – a unique possibility to feel, see and test ride the bicycles.

High-quality service Service and guidance are critical when selling electrical bicycles. During each step within the customer journey, customers are advised by specialists. But service does not stop after a bicycle is purchased; HelloRider has developed a tight partner network with bicycle me-

chanics, or service partners, all across Scandinavia. For all maintenance services, the customers can visit a service partner close to his or her home. In addition, HelloRider’s dedicated customer service team is reachable via phone, email and chat and is eager to help customers and answer any questions they may have. Olav Jørgensen, managing director.

HelloRider: Founded: 2015 HQ: Copenhagen, Denmark Growth rate: 300 per cent Annual sales: 15,000 bikes Managing director: Olav Jørgensen


Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Ernit

The world’s first smart piggybank Electronic payment methods have increasingly replaced cash in our society. A proven effect of this is that we, in our search for instant gratification, spend more and increasingly spend it on unhealthy and short-lived pleasures – and children are affected more than anyone else. Ernit, an electronic piggybank, aims to teach the new generation the benefits of delayed gratification, such as patience, empathy and perseverance. When Søren Nielsen, CEO of Ernit, one day heard his daughter refer to his credit card as “the magic card”, he realised that a worrying development was happening. “The downside to the convenience of electronic payment methods is that the value of money becomes more abstract. Study after study has shown that without cash we buy more, make more

impulse purchases and end up with things that we appreciate less,” says Nielsen. To teach their children to save up and appreciate the value of delayed gratification, Nielsen, a former editor of a financial magazine, and his two co-founders Mads Tagel and Thomas Bjerring, decided to bring back the piggybank anno 2017. Connected

By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Ernit

to an app where parents, grandparents and others can lodge money, Ernit’s electronic piggybank lights up and plays a tune when money is transferred to the child’s savings. The child can then log on to the connected app and distribute the money towards his or her set goals. “For us to really appreciate our purchases, paying must hurt a little; we must feel like we’re giving something up to get something else, and that’s a lesson we wanted to pass on to our children,” says Nielsen. Web:

Left: From right to left: Ernit’s three founders, Søren Nielsen, Thomas Bjerring and Mads Tagel, and designer Lars Larsen – and their six children.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  93

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Danes Worldwide

Photo: Pelle Rink

Connecting and supporting Danes abroad The organisation Danes Worldwide was set up in 1919 to support Danes moving abroad. Since then, the organisation has grown to reach out to over 20,000 members across the world and has become an influential lobbyist with the Danish government. Danes Worldwide is run by Anne Marie Dalgaard, a woman who knows all about what it is like to live abroad.

immensely popular. Their online courses are held at three levels, including a course that covers the first school years and provides the child who completes it with an accreditation from the Danish Ministry of Education.

By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Rasmus Ursin Knudsen

“One morning, I woke up and found myself in Moscow with my husband and two children under the age of four,” explains Dalgaard. “It was a huge change, and I really wish I’d known at that time that there was an organisation called Danes Worldwide, who could’ve supported me and helped me find others in my situation.” Danes Worldwide was initially set up to support Danes stationed abroad, who would not be able to contact Denmark 94  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

during their stay. Now with cheap flights and good communication channels, more Danes are trying to live abroad and Danes Worldwide has grown to incorporate some of the challenges that these Danes face.

Learning Danish One of the main things Danes Worldwide offers is Danish education. They offer online teaching courses used by over 500 students from more than 50 countries, as well as summer schools, which are

The online courses take no more than three hours a week and leave the pupil with a good vocabulary and the ability to speak and write in Danish. There are two types of summer schools for kids to enjoy: one is for children aged nine to 18, which takes place over three weeks, while the other is for younger kids aged six to nine, where they can bring along their parents or grandparents. “At the summer school, we aim to do more than just teach Danish. We try to teach them all about Danish culture as

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Danes Worldwide

well; we touch on everything from music to history and make sure that the kids, and the adults, are up to date on what’s happening in Denmark. It’s a way of adding to what they’ll have learnt from their parents and bridging the gap,” says Dalgaard.

Lobbying for Danes Danes abroad often face a unique set of political challenges and, with many of them not being able to vote in Denmark, Danes Worldwide has become their political voice. “One of our major successes was influencing the decision to be able to have dual nationality, which has meant that Danes across the world haven’t had to give up their Danish nationality when obtaining citizenship in their country of residence,” Dalgaard explains.

Danes Worldwide also hosts events abroad and in Denmark throughout the year for their members, including talks and informative evenings as well as a bigger gala every other year. Their magazine, DANES, provides essential information and support for Danes throughout the world and is included in the membership fee.

A new way forward When Dalgaard became general secretary in 2010, she wanted to draw from her own experiences and created a new plan for Danes Worldwide. She has lived in Brussels and Russia and worked at the EU Commission as well as being self-employed, so she has covered most aspects of a life of a Dane living abroad. In total, she has spent 15 years away from Denmark.

“What I really wanted was to create an NGO that is there to support people. For instance, we have psychologists whom members can talk to before and after they move, and advisors once they’re out there. We can also help people find local communities, which can by extension provide essential support,” she explains. “The prospect of supporting the 250,000 Danes abroad is incredibly exciting, and we want to be their voice in Denmark. Many people choose to move abroad and want to maintain a connection to Denmark. We simply help them to sustain and grow that connection while they’re away,” concludes Dalgaard.


“We’re currently working on voicing the concerns about bringing family together in Denmark, which can often be expensive and near impossible if your spouse is not Danish. We have also contributed to changing the conversion rates between the International Baccalaureate (IB) and Danish marks, which is often unfavourable to those with an IB. Starting from the academic year 2018/2019, the conversion rate will be more fair.” Dalgaard continues: “Danes living abroad are of huge value to Denmark and its government. They represent Denmark when they go abroad and often promote it. That’s why we want the Danes worldwide to feel valued, because they’re proving an invaluable resource to Denmark, contributing to increased trade, global networks, the branding of Denmark and so on.”

Member benefits As a member of Danes Worldwide, you get a huge amount of support in all areas of life. The organisation has experts on hand with a wide range of skills. There is always someone to contact to get help, be it with taxes, pensions or simply feeling lost and lonely. Danes Worldwide connects with Danish churches, consulates and communities across the world and creates events where Danes can socialise and mingle.

Anne Marie Dalgaard with Kristian Jensen (former foreign secretary).

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  95

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Danes Worldwide

Light up your day in an elegant way Neoline crafts LED lights that save energy while energising you with its good looks. The Danish company has maintained its Scandinavian roots while planting seeds around the world for everyone to enjoy their smart technology wrapped in tasteful design. By Mette Hindkjær Madsen  |  Photos: Neoline

Simple solutions and high quality that saves energy from day one – those are the principles of Neoline and their stateof-the-art LED fixture, designed to fit in anywhere from a warehouse to a stylish office building. The LED market has had a boost in recent years due to its great potential for reducing CO2 emissions, and is projected to continue to grow massively. Neoline develops LED lighting solutions based on the philosophy that high quality pays for itself. “LED is the sensible investment. With great energy savings and short-term returns on the investment, there can’t be a trace of doubt about that,” says CEO of 96  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Neoline, Jens Hedegaard. Neoline uses the best components for their products, be it for touch screens or movement sensors, resulting in solid solutions with long-standing warranties. “We think that this is the best solution – and investment,” the CEO states.

From Holstebro to Turkey Today, Neoline has offices not only in Denmark, but has also flicked a switch in Luxembourg, Israel and Turkey. They deal with clients around the world while holding a steady grip of their Scandinavian roots. “We build our lights on Scandinavian tradition – within both design and quality. Our products are created very

carefully – designed in Denmark, aligned with Scandinavian minimalism and produced in the EU with Neoline’s trademark requirement of excellent quality,” says Hedegaard. Simplicity, functionality and minimalism are the key aspects of Neoline’s design vision. A significant chunk of their resources goes into developing and designing the products. Their attention to detail combined with the minimalistic approach, they have found, enables them to distribute the same LED products to many different types of clients and environments.

A passion for design Two of Neoline’s design series exhibit their Scandinavian design philosophy clearer than any: Neo-Light and NeoVision. They have been created with the belief that simplicity and functionality walk hand in hand.

Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Neoline

“It was our ambition from the very beginning that Neo-Light was supposed to deliver more than to simply save energy. That is why we designed the fixture carefully from the principles of Scandinavian minimalism; to not only make it efficient on the inside, but beautiful on the outside as well. Behind the matte glass, we used the newest LED technology and drivers of the highest quality – and with that came a warranty period of five years,” explains Hedegaard and continues: “We have updated Neo-Light with a range of new features to assure that it continues to be a front runner within the developments of technology and design. For instance, this means that Neo-Light is now compatible with our wireless IQRF control and has kelvin shift along with new movement sensors integrated in the end cap. On the design front, we have recreated the fixture in white nuances to fit all settings.”

Hiding components such as movement and daylight sensors in the fixture is an example of Neoline’s approach to combining functionality and design. But the list of smart design ideas does not end here. Neo-Vision tailors an impeccable atmosphere by cooperating with the wireless control system IQRF, which can adjust the level of the light, temperature, colour and more.

On-demand solutions “Neoline’s first priority is to meet the needs of our client. So, we adjust our solutions to every customer – like our Neo-Vision, which we deliver on demand and can be made to measure in a length defined by the client, up to three metres. For bigger solutions, where the client has specific needs, we work together in creating new products that secure the ideal lighting,” Hedegaard explains.

Neoline boasts technology that can give you different directions of lighting, intelligent wireless controlling, and even change the colour of your light to always fit your mood. The fixture is IP68 certified, which means that it has the highest level of protection from intruding fluids and particles in electronics.

Intelligent lighting The newest member of the Neoline family is their innovative Neo-SmartLight. It spearheads LED products from all over the world with its network connectivity and integrated intelligence. It features voice control of lights, working with the Alexa system from Amazon. This technology forms the backbone of smart buildings and cities, and it is outstanding even beyond its intelligence as it provides superior cost savings and solid, measurable CO2 reductions. Jens Hedegaard.


Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  97


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Photo: Klever

Very Klever – bin the paper bill ‘I love paying bills,’ said no one ever. The line from Klever’s website probably rings true to most, and it provided entrepreneurs Jeanette Samuelsson and Simon Sandvik with enough motivation to create the ground-breaking bill management app Klever, making paying bills hassle-free – and mobile. By Linnea Dunne

“With the dawn of the internet, everyone was thinking ‘great, now we’ll find new ways of invoicing and everything will become much easier!’. But instead of technology making everything easier, it made it more fragmented,” says Jeanette Samuelsson, CEO of Klever. “People get bills in different inboxes, even by text, and then you need to go home and check your physical letterbox as well before you start paying everything. We 98  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

just thought it was bonkers that in 2017 we’re still doing things this way.” With a background as a property investor and co-founder of Fixura, Finland’s first peer-to-peer lending company, Samuelsson was ready for a new adventure. The crux with disorganised and costly billing and payment systems provided inspiration and, together with her business partner Simon Sandvik, she set

out to solve the problem. Two years on, Klever – a smartphone app that receives all your bills in one place and allows you to pay them with just one click – is well established on the Finnish market and starting to make waves on the business scene beyond its home country. “We wanted a mobile solution,” explains Samuelsson. “Many people travel a lot, but most have a smartphone. What’s so clever about the app is that once you’ve scanned a bill, all the details are there and saved for future transactions. If you want to know how much you’ve spent on something over the past six months, you just search for the information in the app, and you can easily find payment dates

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  FinTech Spotlight

and other relevant details. When a due date approaches, you get a push notification asking if you want to pay your bill.” All you have to do when you get a paper bill is take a picture of it with your smartphone, and Klever will ask whether you want the app to automatically send an address change to the supplier. If you agree, all future bills from said company will arrive straight to your app – no more paper. Do you want to pay the bill? Swipe to confirm. Your payment details are saved and stored securely, using the same integration partners as the banks. Speaking of security, an added benefit of using Klever is that it helps fight fraud. “We have a database of all the big companies and their details, so we know if they’re legitimate. There are people opening people’s post boxes, changing the IBAN number of the bill issuer – but not with us,” says Samuelsson. “If something looks suspicious, Klever will always ask the user to double check the details.”

says. “The natural next step, as such, is a PFM – personal finance management – tool within the app. There’s a great deal of delusion out there. You can buy almost anything for 29.90 euros a month, a new TV or whatever it might be, but most people don’t consider the overall cost. Many people don’t have a back-up fund for the day something breaks; very few have a financial plan.” Whether you simply want to take back control over your cash flow, get an overview of your bills to calculate a monthly average, or need some help to start saving, having an impartial advisor in your pocket could be an effective solution. “We’ll be able to help with independent

financing if an unusually hefty bill comes through, and if you’ve been surfing researching a trip to Thailand in June next year, the app can help you calculate what savings are needed and automatically set a small sum aside every month so that you can book those tickets,” Samuelsson enthuses. “Not everyone needs an economics degree, but my vision is that everyone should have a financial advisor in their pocket.” Web: Facebook:  kleverapp Twitter: @thekleverapp Instagram: @kleverapp

Big plans Klever is currently available for private individuals in Finland and preparing to launch for small and medium-sized enterprises, and the interest among businesses is huge. “Everyone wants an improved cash flow, everyone wants their bills paid on time,” says Samuelsson. “E-billing hasn’t been as powerful as we thought it might be, and the systems currently used by most companies cost a lot of money. Those who have heard about Klever and been in touch with us are delighted that there is now an alternative with a high activation rate, completely free of charge.” Next in line is Sweden, and Samuelsson says that the UK looks like a tempting next step after that. Once licensing is in place, there is very little holding them back; the technology is all ready to go, and the users are keen. “Research shows that the UK has a very high adaptation of financial apps. They like to try new things.” But Samuelsson has bigger plans. “I’m really interested in finance in general and personal finance in particular,” she

CEO Jeanette Samuelsson. Photo: Ville Juurikkala

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  99

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  FinTech Spotlight

Quick, in-depth insights into your financial situation Most of us know how difficult and time-consuming it can be to gain any real overview into the way that financial decisions might impact our personal finances long-term. Now, a secure and highly detailed digital simulator, Festina Advisor, has been created by Danish company Festina Finance led by Morten Schantz. Advisor allows individuals, households and businesses to view the exact effects that events such as buying a house, a car, changing jobs or making an investment will have on their budgets. By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Festina Finance

With more than 25 years of experience as an IT consultant for well-known firms such as Visa, Codan and Danica Pension, Schantz is no newcomer to the world of finance and technology. In 2007, the company he had built on the side since 1993 was deemed the best and most profitable software company in Denmark by Computerworld. He eventually sold the business, and began to look around for the next big thing. “I’d had the idea for a very long time that a software simulation to predict finan100  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

cial outcomes could be very useful for financial industries such as banking, insurance, pensions and so forth,” Schantz explains. He set up the company Festina Finance, which today features an IT solution that helps to empower its users financially and boasts an array of happy employees from all around the world (the company was awarded the Great Place to Work certification in 2017). “We’re really proud to have such an international workforce with us here in Denmark,” Festina Finance’s CEO Mikael

Braagaard says. “When you work in different markets, it’s important to have people with in-depth knowledge of that particular region, so that the simulation system can be fitted to the specific conditions and available information of that market.” Festina Finance currently works primarily with banks, pension funds and building societies, which either make Advisor available as a service to their customers or use Advisor to build up an accurate prediction of future finances when advising their clients financially. In Denmark, Festina Finance is currently modifying a version of Advisor according to the needs of SDC, a co-operation of more than 120 Nordic banks, and their customers in other Nordic countries will gradually be able to use the service from 2018. The insurance and pensions management company Edlund has also launched its own version of Advisor,

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  FinTech Spotlight

called LifeSteps, for its clients. What is more, Festina Finance broke into the UK market in 2016, and the 40-strong Building Societies Association has recently come on board. “We’ve just hired our first employee stationed in the UK,” Schantz explains. “We hope to do the same in other countries soon and, thankfully, it looks like it’s going that way for us.”

particularly in Denmark and the other Nordic countries, where state-driven initiatives such as NemID have already digitised most of the personal information needed. If the simulator’s data is maintained over time, Advisor can be used again and again and be adjusted as new life events or financial opportunities come along.

Play around with your finances

Secure and ready for the future

The Advisor system is built using gamification ideas in order to give its users the clearest and most comprehensible overview of their particular financial situation. Users put in information such as tax and wages as well as data on anything from energy usage to asset payoffs, depending on the type of use and scenario that they wish to check for. It can even be performed simply by dragging and dropping the desired information into the calculator. The end result is a visually engaging overview of colourful graphics, timelines and gauges which offer up different potential scenarios when the input is adjusted. The process can take as little as five minutes,

Advisor works by accessing the alreadyavailable information on secure banking sites – with the customer’s permission of course. The entire process is customer-led, and Advisor is being developed for compliance with two new EU initiatives due for launch in 2018: The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Revised Payment Service Directive (PSD2). These initiatives will protect individual EU citizens’ rights to their own data and give individuals more freedom to choose their banking services provider outside of traditional banks, if they so choose. “Because of the adjustability of the Advisor platform, it is entirely malleable to the exciting new financial oppor-

Mikael Braagaard.

tunities of the future, whatever they may be,” Braagaard points out. Neither Schantz nor Braagaard believe that traditional banks are in danger of being disrupted, however. “Through Advisor, we’ve seen first-hand the willingness of banks to update their services to the 21st century,” Braagaard says. A lot of financial technology has benefits for both users and providers within the sector, including banks, and this is certainly the case with Festina Advisor. “The simulator is a win-win for financial advisors as well as their customers,” Schantz concludes. “By providing fast and accurate information for the individual customer, financial institutions such as banks, pension managers and insurance companies help to build up trust with their customers and develop a better working relationship. And the customer, of course, gets the best possible basis on which to make or not make a financial commitment.” Web:

Morten Schantz.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  101

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  FinTech Spotlight

Left: Detech Technologies CEO Dr. Antti Korhonen creates solutions for the future. Top right: Dr. Antti Korhonen lecturing in London at the Fintech Week 2017. Right: Detech Optimizer is based on a 200-page mathematical model.

Managing uncertainty in financial institutions Financial crises have set the world of financial services reeling, with practitioners and regulators alike having to up their game in order to ensure financial stability and success of the institutions. The need to avoid new financial crises is now among the top priorities in the financial services industry. By Taina Värri  |  Photos: Detech Technologies Ltd

Dr. Antti Korhonen was a global citizen already at the tender age of three, when his family was living in America. Later on, he returned to study at the University of Chicago. As the first person to achieve a PhD in finance in Finland, he is a pioneer in the field and his wide expertise covers the academic world, the financial services industry as well as banking supervision. Today, he is CEO of Detech Decision Technologies Ltd, based in Finland and the UK, and a frontrunner in developing a science-based next-generation solution for financial institutions. Dr. Korhonen’s expertise in various fields of financial services, assembled with the brightest young minds in new technology, has created a sophisticated enterprise-wide decision-making and risk management tool based on opti102  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

misation. The solution is targeted at the top management in banking, insurance, pension funds and asset management.

Optimal strategies with action plans Detech Optimizer offers the most advanced method for managing uncertainty in financial institutions. It allows indepth analysis of the financial standing of the company, as well as the actions it must take. The underlying complex mathematical model with thousands of equations has been implemented into a ready-to-use, flexible piece of software. The tool makes the strategic planning process fast and easy and gives the companies significantly improved cost efficiency. It provides a link between long-term strategic decision-making and short-term oper-

ative risk management and also fulfills the regulatory requirements for extended scenario analyses and stress tests. The software enables the management to create strategies based on their business goals and priorities. The tool computes optimal strategies with concrete and detailed action plans. It gives the top executives a full view and control of their future business activities and prepares the companies simultaneously for different developments in an uncertain economic environment. Forward-looking dynamic strategies lead to considerable improvements in performance, when compared to traditional static or simulation-based approaches. This improvement in performance becomes particularly noticeable in exceptionally difficult and turbulent operating environments.

Web: and

- your guarantee for high quality products and fast delivery

Industry • Farming • Offshore • Contractors • Food industry • Fishing

RG Rom Gummi • Neptunvej 1, 7620 Lemvig • +45 97 82 20 33 •

RG Rom Gummi is a Danish production company with well over 30 years of experience. The company offers a wide range of specially produced rubber products for just as many different industries. RG Rom Gummi’s top priorities are solid craftsmanship and fast deliveries followed by a constant focus on adaptability and creating individual solutions regardless the size.

Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  FinTech Spotlight

Karri Salmi, chairman of the board, and Kimmo Lönnmark, CEO

Bringing businesses together The rapidly growing investment service group Privanet is on a mission: to bring together small and medium-sized enterprises and investors looking for good alternative investment opportunities.

small and mid-sized construction companies get non-banking financing for their building objects.

By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Privanet Group

Recently, Privanet has also announced a collaboration with the Swedish pioneer of crowdfunding, FundedByMe, and acquired a third of its Finnish subsidiary. CEO of Privanet Securities, Kimmo Lönnmark, explains: “We are doing a lot of work to create a value chain for companies from seed all the way to stock exchange, and provide a stable partnership along the journey.”

Privanet is a regulated investment services group specialising in the arrangement of capital for SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and in the brokerage of unlisted securities. The successful business model is based on an excellent understanding of the unlisted investment space and a strong distribution network that combines 12 offices across Finland with a digital funding platform. Privanet already serves more than 15,000 customers and is growing fast, now also internationally. The group offers a number of channels of financing, ranging from crowdfunding to private placements as well as investments from its own balance sheet. Crowdfunding is done via AROUND, which has become one of the most attractive platforms in the Nordic region and raised well over 30 million euros during its first year in operation. For investors, Privanet offers distinctive investment opportunities that are not available elsewhere, including emissions 104  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

of equity and debt finance in unlisted companies and start-up opportunities.

Increasing awareness With an ability to utilise its own balance sheets to underwrite issues, a well-known secondary marketplace to arrange liquidity, and an organisation that is capable of carrying out product sales worth 100 million euros annually, Privanet is growing strong. “Our goal is to increase the awareness, liquidity and selection of unlisted investment opportunities,” says chairman of the board of Privanet Securities, Karri Salmi. “We want to direct foreign investors’ capital to support the growth of Finnish companies with the vision of developing unlisted securities into an important asset class.” In addition to digitalising the Finnish financial industry through its own crowdfunding platform AROUND, Privanet will release a new digital platform this autumn for real estate crowdfunding: REALINVEST. It is designed to help

Web:, Facebook: AROUNDPrivanet Twitter: @PrivanetFinland LinkedIn:  company/privanet-group-oyj

Scan Magazine  |  Business  |  Column / Calendar

Drawings to make your team better Can you draw your team? What shape is it? It is an interesting exercise to try this out and, if your colleagues do the same, you can compare designs and discuss the differences. This will surface people’s views about how the team is working in various areas including decision-making, leadership style, roles and work allocation. In top-down organisations, leaders have most if not all of the say and so its teams might be seen as pyramids. In flat organisations with shared and consensual decision-making – as often in Scandinavia – teams might be seen as circles, perhaps with the leader in the middle. A team with a servant leader might be represented with the team members in front and the leader behind. The product of a group discussion on team shape can be an agreed representation both of the team’s current shape and of how

By Steve Flinders

you would all like it to be. The process can encourage open communication, and bring about greater team effectiveness. You can also look at the team’s communication network. An imaginatively coloured diagram might indicate channels of communication, frequency, importance, distance, style and any number of other features. But has the team got its network right? Getting agreement about how the team communicates with the outside world, with whom and what about, can sharpen its sense of purpose as well as improve efficiency. Finally, draw your own communication network. Are you talking to the right people for the right amount of time? Are important people missing? Is hierarchy needlessly limiting who you talk to? Is your communication network working for you? These are important questions to ask yourself regularly.

These exercises will not only bring out your inner artist. They will help you think creatively about the shape of your team in more than one sense; and about the effectiveness of your and your team’s communication networks. Steve Flinders is a freelance trainer, writer and coach, based in Malta, who helps people develop their communication and leadership skills for working internationally:

Business Calendar Scandinavian business events you do not want to miss this month By Heidi Kokborg  |  Photo: DUCC

Life Science Forum 2017 – Cancer Care The need for effective cancer treatment is growing, as the risk of developing the disease increases. The SCC welcomes you to their Life Science Forum with a focus on cancer and treatment. The event will bring together Members of the Chamber who specialise in life sciences as well as experts from the Chamber’s extended network, stakeholders and policy makers. Date: 05 October, 6pm Venue: The Shard, Greenberg Traurig LLP, 8th floor, 32 London Bridge Street, London, SE1 9SG

Centenary Conference The Finnish Chamber’s Centenary Conference features interesting talks about the political, trade and finance links between Finland and Britain over the past 100 years.

There will also be a peek into the future. Speakers include Mr. Erkki Liikanen, governor of the Bank of Finland; Dr. Risto E. J. Penttilä, head of Finnish Business and Policy Forum; former Lord Mayors of London, and many others. Date: 27 October, 9am Venue: EBRD Headquarters, Broadgate City of London, 1 Exchange Square, London EC2A 2JN

Sustainable Brands Conference The Sustainable Brands Conference will cover areas such as solving social problems that alleviate, or altogether eliminate, resource tensions along the way and encourage embedded sustainability-driven behaviours and pro-active management to drive change from within. The conference is organised by the Sustainable Life Media.

Date: 30 October-1 November 2017 Venue: Copenhagen, Denmark – venue to be announced sb17cph/

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  105

Scan Magazine  |  Attraction of the Month  |  Denmark

Attraction of the Month, Denmark

Making music available to everyone Aarhus Symfoniorkester (Aarhus Symphony Orchestra) was founded in 1935 to serve as the city’s orchestra. Since then, it has grown to become a large national orchestra, collaborating with national and international talents and performing both modern and classical symphonies, while still maintaining a distinct focus on providing music to the local community. By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Nikolaj Lund

“We’re better now than we’ve ever been,” says chief executive and artistic director Kristian Rahbek Knudsen about the orchestra, which currently counts 66 musicians. Originally trained as a classical violinist himself, Knudsen had the pleasure of guest performing with the orchestra when he was younger before a career in chemistry whisked him off to Cambridge and even farther shores. His office still rings with the tender tones of the violin on occasion, but his focus is 106  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

solely on the creative and administrative development of the orchestra. “We’re developing in really exciting and creative ways,” he says. In recent years, the orchestra has collaborated with many conductors and soloists to create a new way of playing music. Currently, they have the Danish composer Allan Gravgaard Madsen writing three pieces specifically for Aarhus Symphony Orchestra. Madsen is famed for his tal-

ents when it comes to composing classical music for orchestras. In August this year, the orchestra collaborated with Shiva Feshareki, a conductor and turntablist, who uses a turntable to create a duet with the orchestra positioned in a circle around her. “We quite often look internationally for people we want to create something with or invite to Denmark. Feshareki has performed in London and, after hearing what she could do, we were incredibly excited and honoured to invite her to perform with us in Aarhus.”

The city’s orchestra Despite working with international talents, Aarhus Symphony Orchestra has not forgotten about its roots. There are

Scan Magazine  |  Attraction of the Month  |  Denmark

concerts every Thursday and Friday evening throughout the year, and recently Saturdays were added as well. “Every week we’re learning a new piece, so there’s always something new for people to come and hear,” explains Knudsen. The orchestra has proven immensely popular with the locals, and ten years ago Musikhuset Aarhus (the Music House in Aarhus) built a concert hall dedicated to the symphony orchestra, which Knudsen describes as “a complete luxury to have”. It is in this space that the orchestra performs and rehearses everything from Christmas concerts to the hour-long Saturday concerts.

Connecting the old and the young “We do a lot of work with the old and the young in Aarhus. 100 per cent of the children in the public school system in Aarhus watch us perform at least once a year, as we regularly visit schools or invite them to Musikhuset,” says Knudsen. “We do the same for the elderly, as we often go and visit nursing homes and perform for them.” The orchestra also has close links to Aarhus Music School,

which produces some fantastic musicians who are sometimes invited to play with the orchestra. “We think it’s really important that we’re connecting with everyone in the city,” the artistic director explains. “We were set up to be the city’s orchestra, and that is still our main priority. We’ve gotten a great response from the locals, and people seem to be very interested in what we’re doing and where we’re going.” The orchestra performs around 75 times a year, and some of these concerts are free to the general public. “We kind of want to challenge what people think a symphony orchestra is, so we encourage everyone to come and see us perform. You don’t need any musical knowledge or understanding to enjoy a relaxing evening with us. Most people quickly fall in love with the music.”

Developing partnerships To further engage in the local community, Aarhus Symfoniorkester recently launched SymfoBusiness, which encourages partnerships between the orchestra and businesses. “It’s a way for us to fur-

ther engage with people and for them to engage with us and know we’re here. It’s a good way for us and businesses to support the local area and promote each other,” explains Knudsen. “We’re a big organisation that’s looking to the future, wanting to connect with as many as possible,” he adds. Aarhus Symfoniorkester already has partnerships with different organisations and events including Smukfest, a music festival, where it has become tradition for them to play the opening set on the Sunday morning.

A new kind of orchestra Aarhus Symphony Orchestra’s fantastic mix of the old and the new has put it firmly on the map of orchestras in Denmark. Their willingness to develop and bring in talents make it an incredibly exciting orchestra to follow. Aarhus Symfoniorkester is at the forefront in Denmark of a new wave of classical music that is here to inspire, relax and impress us all. Web:

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  107

Scan Magazine  |  Attraction of the Month  |  Sweden

Attraction of the Month, Sweden

Board an interactive journey to an invisible world Trusting someone you do not know in complete darkness is a scary thing. At Invisible Exhibition in Stockholm, you get to try this and experience how the senses are enhanced when you are not able to use the most dominant sense: your sight. By Sara Wenkel  |  Photos: Gabor Marosi

The successful concept was first launched in Budapest followed by Warsaw and Prague, and since last year the Invisible Exhibition entertains curious visitors in Stockholm as well. Lilla Felföldi is exhibition manager in Stockholm and explains how the tour works. “A group of eight people will be led by our blind or visually impaired guide through six different furnished rooms. In each room, you will be exposed to different everyday situations, which you will experience in a completely new way as you are in total darkness.” Many of the guests at Invisible Exhibition Stockholm find the beginning of the tour slightly frightening, but as they get used to the darkness they start to enjoy what the other senses tell them, and they walk away from the exhibition with a very posi108  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

tive experience. “Everyone always comes out exclaiming, ‘wow!’,” Felföldi laughs.

Teambuilding in the dark and invisible dinner This September, Invisible Exhibition

Here, the guests get to experience what it is like to eat without being able to see what they are doing. The three-course meal can also be rounded off with dessert tasting, where delicious baked goods from Eva’s bakery are part of a smell and taste challenge. You can also combine the dinner with wine tasting in the dark. “It is surprising how many people cannot tell the different between red and white wine,” Felföldi concludes.

Stockholm began to welcome private groups. “We create bespoke tours depending on if it is a conference, a stag do or something completely different,” says Felföldi. Invisible Exhibition plans different teambuilding tasks, which the group must solve together. “You need to collaborate to answer the problem, and you need to help other members of the group to help themselves. You learn quickly how to appreciate the help from others,” Felföldi explains. Also new for this season is the option to end the visit with an ‘invisible dinner’.


Scan Magazine  |  Experience of the Month  |  Norway

Left: Mezzo soprano Maria Nohr has been cast as Maria von Trapp in one of the biggest productions of Hålogaland Teater’s history. Photo: Hålogaland Teater. Right: Situated in Tromsø, Hålogaland Teater first opened in 1971. Photo: Hålogaland Teater. Bottom: The Sound of Music will see 16 musicians from The Arctic Philharmonic and 33 actors hit Hålogaland Teater’s stage this autumn. Photo: Hålogaland Teater.

Experience of the Month, Norway

The musical of all musicals This autumn, the mother of all musicals, starring the beloved Von Trapp family, will be hitting Hålogaland Teater in the Northern Norwegian city of Tromsø. The largescale production will see 33 actors and 16 musicians perform in the production in collaboration with The Arctic Philharmonic.

suring that the hills are alive and that Edelweiss blossoms throughout Northern Norway in the run-up to Christmas.

By Line Elise Svanevik

The Sound of Music, written by Rodgers and Hammerstein, is an iconic both musical and film production. On 12 October, the city of Tromsø will be greeted with one of the biggest productions in the history of Hålogaland Teater. “There are 16 musicians, 20 adult actors and 13 children,” explains market and information adviser at the theatre, Stein Sebastian Fredriksen. “It’s going to be spectacular, and it’s great that it’s a musical so many people know and love – the songs are known to get stuck in your head. It’s just great to be able to sit back and enjoy the beautiful music and songs, and let romance blossom in the Swiss alps.” Having cast the local mezzo soprano Maria Nohr as Maria von Trapp on her home turf, Fredriksen explains that she is one of the great classical singers in Norway today. “It really is fantastic to have a big star like her on stage – and, although the songs might sound easy, it’s actually

a very challenging musical for the singers,” he adds. Her co-star, the Captain, is played by Sondre Krogtoft Larsen who, according to Fredriksen, also has a wonderful voice.

A current theme Due to the history of the musical, which is set in World War II, the plot line sees the Von Trapp family fleeing from the Nazis, which makes it a very relevant theme with the current refugee crisis that sees many people fleeing from their countries today. “It’s a fantastic love story, but it’s also incredibly meaningful due to the von Trapp family seeking refuge, and that’s one of the reasons why this musical has survived up until today,” says Fredriksen. “It’s got such a good storyline that it could almost be played without music.”

The Sound of Music is also going on tour to Bodø, Harstad, Mo i Rana and Hammerfest throughout December, en-

Duration: 12 October-16 December Starring: Maria Nohr and Sondre Krogtoft Larsen Musical leadership: Simon Revholt Directed by: Ivar Tindberg Written by: Rodgers and Hammerstein Translated by: Ragnar Olsen


Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  109

Scan Magazine  |  Artist of the Month  |  Norway

Nordvendt Lengsel is currently displayed at Krane Galleri in Tromsø.

Artist of the Month, Norway

From the pen to the paintbrush After quitting her job as a journalist for the Norwegian broadcasting company NRK nearly ten years ago to become a full-time artist, Tromsø-based Kari Rindahl Endresen reflects on the decision to follow her passion. She has never looked back. By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Kari Rindahl Endresen

Having been commissioned by the county governor to paint a picture for Queen Sonja of Norway and exhibiting her works in New York City, Endresen explains that her success so far feels slightly surreal. “When I was standing there at a collective exhibition that I was personally invited to in New York, with lots of people and Champagne, I couldn’t believe I was there,” she says, adding that the royal painting was a highlight in her life. Her watercolour paintings feature rough lines and streaks – some even describe 110  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

her art as quite masculine. “There was a customer who came into one of the galleries I was exhibiting at once, and asked to speak to the ‘male artist’, as he was convinced that the paintings were done by a man due to the edgy lines,” she laughs. Endresen explains that it is important for her to express speed and excitement in her work, and to bring a certain mood to it all. “It shows contrasts and that there really is life in the artworks – it’s not photographs and cute watercolour; there is

plenty of tension, excitement and life,” she adds. With the grand nature surrounding the artist in Tromsø, she has recently moved her studio from the town out to sea – an hour outside Tromsø city centre, which she felt was a natural choice. “I tried to paint at home after my eldest daughter moved out, but it never worked, so for me, driving out and painting at sea with all the birds and mountains surrounding me, everything just fell into place,” she explains. “It’s almost a little bit magical, and it helps create peace within me.”

Meaningful art books Being both a journalist and an artist, Endresen has also published four art books, the most recent being a collab-

Scan Magazine  |  Artist of the Month  |  Norway

oration with a photographer. It is based on a theatre performance by Ketil Høegh running in Tromsø, entitled Every Brilliant Thing, which has been adapted from a British play by Duncan Macmillan. “I was inspired by the essence of the theatre performance, which is about remembering the great things in life – especially when things are hard. The book is called The greatest things in life and features short lines including ‘The greatest thing in life is good health’ – that someone loves you, love, grandchildren and so on,” she explains. “I have this burning passion for caring. I get more and more worried about the fact that, instead of going over to someone’s house for a cup of coffee, we send a text message. It’s easy to portray yourself in a great way on a mountaintop in a picture or over a glass of wine – but it’s the everyday cup of coffee that shows how we really are.”

“It’s important for me to tell a bit of the story, but not everything. I’ve overheard people vividly discussing the location of the things portrayed in my paintings, and when that happens I just stand there, listen and enjoy myself in the background,” she explains. “I experience people discovering their own stories through my art. Some cry because they can see their grandmother coming towards them, and as a communicator, that’s what I want to achieve – to let my paintbrush tell a story.”

Experimenting with other art forms Also experimenting with graphics through lithography, Endresen has been taught by Anders Fredriksen, who recently moved his studio Fredriksens Grafikk from Oslo to Kristiansand. “It’s been enriching being at his studio, turning everything upside down, drawing on a rock with ink. It’s been

amazing – especially to be able to work with other artists,” she explains. Endresen feels incredibly lucky to have been able to live off her own artwork for nearly ten years. “It’s been absolutely amazing – it’s hard work, but it’s great to be able to do it for a living. I’ve been really lucky with a good bunch of friends, family and galleries around me who cheer me on and support me, and I’m looking forward to seeing where it takes me next.” UPCOMING EXHIBITIONS September 2017: Galleri Henrik Gerner, Moss 2018: Ten-year anniversary exhibition at Krane Galleri, Tromsø Web:

Through the houses she depicts, Endresen wishes to tell the beginning of a story that she hopes others can finish.

Endresen has also contributed to designing scarves, and her and her friend Helene Karde are bringing out their latest two designs this autumn – one of which will see the profits being donated to Norwegian charity Leve, for those bereaved by suicide. With this in mind, Endresen tells individual stories through her daring paintings with the nature and houses she depicts. Tromsø-based artist Kari Rindahl Endresen has moved her studio out to sea in Rorbu, Malangen, an hour from Tromsø city centre.

Despite her background in journalism, Endresen has painted since she was a young girl. Photo: Lasse Jangås, from newspaper Nordlys.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  111

Scan Magazine  |  Hotel of the Month  |  Sweden

Hotel of the Month, Sweden

The key to longevity In a time of big, impersonal hotel chains, Hotel Royal stands out as it remains committed to its tried and tested recipe for success. Familiarity, continuity and charm are the cornerstones of this Gothenburg hotel, which has effectively become an institution in Sweden’s second city. By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: Hotel Royal

Not much has changed at Hotel Royal since its foundation in 1852. That is essentially the whole business idea. “Longevity works. There’s no need to change things just for the sake of it. One of our best appraisals came from a regular guest who entered the lobby, saying he was pleased to see that nothing had changed since his last visit. In fact, we had just modernised and renovated the entire lobby. I suppose it has something to do with the familiar feeling you experience when you get here,” says Markus Oddestad, CEO. 112  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

A fascinating heritage Keeping in mind that it is the oldest hotel in Gothenburg, Hotel Royal naturally takes a great deal of pride in its history. Family-owned since it first opened its doors more than 160 years ago, the hotel has been owned and run by the Oddestad family since 1980. The first Oddestads in charge were the unconventional sisters Martha and Hanna. Known for their oldschool fashion sense, they were easily recognisable in 1980s Gothenburg, given that they walked around town in long

dresses that had been trendy some 70 years earlier. The sisters began running the hotel as they realised retirement was dull and did not suit them. In addition, the two ladies employed an army of retired carpenter and painter friends to carefully renovate the hotel. When the sisters eventually got too old to continue, their nieces and nephew took over. That nephew, Markus Oddestad, has been CEO for the last 18 years. “My aunts created an incredible atmosphere, which we have continued to build on,” he says.

Take to the floor During its lifetime, Hotel Royal has luckily dodged any insensitive renovations and stayed faithful to its old character-

Scan Magazine  |  Hotel of the Month  |  Sweden

istics. From the minute guests enter the building, the well-preserved details can be seen everywhere: there is a striking patterned stone floor dating from the turn of the last century, welcoming guests in the lobby; the impressive staircase will make any vintage lover smile, and the detailed ceiling paintings have been carefully preserved.

Moreover, the hotel regularly feels the effects of Gothenburg’s reputation as ‘the city of events’. The city has earned this name due to its success in attracting international bands, big sporting events as well as party political conferences. The hotel has something to suit everyone, with its 76 rooms ranging from single to superior double rooms.

“Of course, this is an old building and we have to renovate things here and there all the time. However, our aim is to look after the old features of the hotel while being able to offer all the modern comforts the guests expect,” Oddestad explains.

The importance of longevity means friendly and respectful treatment of every single person walking through Hotel Royal’s doors, both guests and staff. “Proof that our idea works is that, in a trade known for high employee turnover, some of our staff have been with us for 30 years,” says Oddestad. The key to the hotel’s success is that respectful familiarity and longevity, which of course is one of the many reasons why guests choose to return to Hotel Royal.

Location, location, location Situated in the centre of town, with both airport buses and the central train station around the corner, the hotel attracts tourists and business people alike.

“One of the reasons we’ve decided to stick with the heavy room key is that it gives us an opportunity to regularly meet the guests face to face during their stay, namely when they drop the key off before heading out. If we had made the switch to cards, it’s more likely that guests would just have dashed past the reception, making their stay less personal,” Oddestad explains. Then again, the heavy key does not always ensure that the guests will remember to return it at the end of their stay. “I’ve saved an envelope sent from Nicaragua, which contained a remorseful letter along with the room key that a guest had forgotten to return to reception,” Oddestad fondly recalls. Web:

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  113

Scan Magazine  |  Inn of the Month  |  Denmark

Inn of the Month, Denmark

Come innside! Vester Skerninge Kro is one of Denmark’s oldest and most famous inns, based in Southern Fyn. It has been an inn since 1772 and has served the local community and visitors with good food and a warm welcome ever since. Today, it is run and owned by Susanne Irene Christensen and her sister Karina, who welcome everyone with a big smile and a good chat. By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Vester Skerninge Kro

The inn today comprises a restaurant, four bedrooms and a big event space in the old barn. It is located in a beautiful area surrounded by nature, making the old black and white building really stand out. The inn has been completely renovated by the Fenne-Fredriksens, the previous owners, to make it usable in the modern age; however, the integrity of the building has remained intact, with four small rooms comprising the restaurant.

an intricate five-course menu. The ingredients come from the local area and the menu changes with the seasons.

“It feels a bit like you’re sitting in someone’s home. It’s very cosy and informal,” says Christensen. The restaurant serves a mix of Danish and French classics, offering everything from a simple meal to

With Christensen looking after you as soon as you step through the door, you know that you can let your hair down and relax. Her friendly and professional demeanour makes this inn worth a visit.

114  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

Love at first sight “It was love at first sight when I saw the inn,” explains Christensen passionately. “I’ve worked in hospitality most of my life and I love it. My aim is to really make people smile and give them a positive experience.”

Stay the night or spend the weekend here and go back to your everyday life feeling refreshed. The recently acquired old barn has been transformed into an event space for any occasion, be it a wedding, a birthday or a business meeting. Vester Skerninge Kro caters for everyone and can make any event unique. They are also using the space to host events such as wine evenings and talks a few times a month. Vester Skerninge Kro is an anchor for the locals and worth a visit for anyone coming by the local area. It is hard to go wrong with good food and a nice atmosphere all in a beautiful setting. Despite being 245 years old, the inn still plays a major role in the local community and provides great service for anyone visiting.


Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Sweden

Restaurant of the Month, Sweden

Inviting modern brasserie A clear favourite amongst locals, the casual and chic Brasserie Godot is serving a mix of classic French cuisine and contemporary Swedish dishes, plus some of the tastiest cocktails in town. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Brasserie Godot

Mattias Rosenbaum and Staffan Svederman opened Brasserie Godot in 2001, with the aim of combining the city’s best cocktails with modern cuisine and French brasserie traditions all in one place. “When we first started some 15 years ago, cocktails were not a huge thing in Stockholm,” says Svederman, explaining the brasserie’s successful concept. “We wanted to open a great bar based on innovative thinking, a place to stay for the whole evening. At Brasserie Godot, people can have an aperitif before dinner, enjoy a lovely meal and continue in our bar afterwards.” The menu includes mouth-watering dishes such as moules marinière, choucroute and steak frites, but also adapts

to include what is currently available during any given season. It serves wellcooked meals with high-quality ingredients and fantastic flavours – as simple as that. The entrepreneurs also made sure that Brasserie Godot was one of the first restaurants in Stockholm to offer vegan food, now serving a popular three-course vegan menu in addition to the other delicious dishes.

Illustrations by local artist The two owners go way back and, before Brasserie Godot, set up celebrated restaurant PAUS together. They are both certified sommeliers, which explains the long list of fabulous wines and craft beer, as well as irresistible cocktails such as Godot Crushed with passionfruit, Drew

Berrymore with raspberries and strawberries, and the cure-all Godot Penecillin. The inviting dining room is small, simple and stylish, yet with an exclusive feel. Celebrated local artist Eric Ericson has covered the wall behind the bar with a five-by-two-metre illustration of a fantasy city landscape, inspired by New York City and Cairo. Ericson also custommade the restaurant’s unique lamps in ten different designs, all available to buy for those who want to bring some of the magic home. In addition to its classic French food, innovative cocktails and friendly atmosphere, Brasserie Godot boasts an ideal location in Östermalm, close to hotspot Stureplan – a must for those who want to continue exploring the city’s nightlife after a visit in the brasserie. Web:

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  115

Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Norway

The restaurant is somewhat of a flagship to Gjøvik, and a place people have been coming for a nice meal or celebration for many years.

Restaurant of the Month, Norway

Walls steeped in food traditions Gamletorvet Spiseri is located in the centre of Gjøvik, Norway, in a Swiss chalet-style building that was constructed by the Gjøvik workers’ society in 1889, now worthy of preservation. Over the years, it has been a library, a cinema and a theatre, and has served as a meeting place for the people of the town for 128 years. Numerous political meetings have also taken place here.

we have a small à la carte menu, a classic three-course menu and a six-course menu. The menu changes seasonally, following what’s fresh and available locally at that particular time.”

By Line Elise Svanevik  |  Photos: Stian Enger

The brain behind the food

The restaurant is furnished with fine, early 19th-century furniture and chandeliers, with white linen and candles on the tables. The restaurant seats up to 105 guests in four different rooms. They cater for all types of guests and celebrations, including confirmations, weddings and birthdays. Owner Caroline Olsen Benounis took over the premises in 2015, having worked in the restaurant as front-of-house man116  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

ager since 2011. “With my passion for food, wine and spirits, I just had to say yes when the opportunity to buy the restaurant came along,” she says. She explains that the food in the restaurant is traditional Norwegian with a modern touch, and food has been served in the part of the building that now houses the restaurant since the very beginning. “We want to hold on to the traditions, and at the same time impress our guests, so

The Swedish head chef Niklas Johnsen, who has been working at Michelinstarred restaurants in both Sweden and Norway, is a man with many plans. Johnsen is a chef who is organised and creative and has a huge passion for food. It is important for him that his staff love their work and share the same passion for taste that he has. One of his many creative dishes is the rack of lamb with powdered chocolate bread, burned Jerusalem artichoke

Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Norway

purée, tarragon sauce and potato from Sogstad Farm. He believes that chocolate and lamb is a really nice combination and loves to experiment with different flavours. Early in November, the restaurant starts with their yearly Christmas menu, featuring classic Norwegian dishes such as ‘lutefisk’ and ‘pinnekjøtt’.

A passion for aquavit After a discussion about how the Toten district, in which Gjøvik is located, needed its own aquavit, Olsen Benounis decided to take matters into her own hands. “Due to the aquavit tradition where aquavit is named after different areas of Norway, we were all sitting around discussing what makes Toten special. Toten is known for its agriculture and has soil that is perfect for potatoes and other vegetables. We wanted to use potato skin

as a spice, so we started the search for a local farmer. Magne Fremstad, owner of Sogstad Farm, was the best match for us. He taught us about different sorts of potatoes, and one of them was Troll.” Together with Det Norske Brenneri (The Norwegian Distillery), they created their very own recipe, which involves drying the Troll potatoes for 40 hours. Four times in the same period, they also get smoked on a bit of wood from the Norwegian juniper tree. The final product has a taste of smoked potato with hints of vanilla, mint leaves and elderflower, and the aquavit’s name is Toten Troll Aquavit, named after the region and the potato. In 2002, Gamletorvet Spiseri became the first restaurant in Norway to get the title Certified Aquavit Restaurant – now

37 in total – which they feel is exciting because they are so passionate about it. They are also promoters of the Norwegian Aquavit Festival, held in Gjøvik 1214 October, and Toten Troll is of course on the programme. What better place to enjoy a drink of Toten Troll than in the restaurant’s very own pub on the corner, Spiseriet Vinbar, which opened in 2009 and is now also owned and run by Olsen Benounis herself? As part of the Historical Hotels & Restaurants in Norway (De Historiske), the restaurant has been a flagship place in Gjøvik – a place where people have come for a true celebration and good food for many years. Web:

Gjøvik Gjøvik is a place for family trips, fishing, hiking, water sports, shopping and the outdoors. Big on cross-country skiing, the town also has Olympic history dating back to 1994. Situated right by the lake Mjøsa, it features a science centre and a chocolate factory. And guess what – the tourist information in Gjøvik is the only one in the country that rents out skateboards and scooters. The restaurant has its very own aquavit, called Toten Troll Aquavit.


Head chef Niklas Johnsen is known for his incredibly passionate approach to cooking.

Owner Caroline Olsen Benounis took over the restaurant in 2015, having worked there since 2011.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  117

Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Denmark

Restaurant of the Month, Denmark

Not just a run-of-the-mill experience What sounds more idyllic than an old mill house by a stream in a forest by the sea? How about having a restaurant and plentiful picnic opportunities thrown in? Møllehuset in Frederikshavn, Denmark, gives you the opportunity to explore all your Disneyesque dreams – or just enjoy a wonderful meal. By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Møllehuset

Alfred Pichler moved from Austria to Denmark 30 years ago after meeting Lise, his Danish wife-to-be. Three decades later, they are an integral part of the Bangsbo community near Frederikshavn, as the proud managers of the 400-yearold mill house. Pichler speaks impeccable Danish with a North Jutland twang and talks lovingly of his adopted region. “We have a bit of everything around here,” he explains. “There’s the sea and the beaches, which most people know about, and Frederikshavn has the longest palm beach in Denmark. But Bangsbo, where we are, also has a lot of interesting historical and cultural sights to explore, like the Bangsbo Bunker, the museums and the botanical gardens.” When the 17th-century watermill burnt down in 1881, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise for the local population. 118  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

The mill house was turned into a leisurely retreat for the people of Frederikshavn. The timber-framed building’s position next to the stream and its backdrop of luscious green forest and rolling hills made it an ideal candidate for Victorian romanticism, and Møllehuset’s career as a restaurant began. The icing on the cake came in 2005, when Alfred and Lise, a professional chef and restaurant manager respectively, took over the restaurant following extensive renovations. “We have lots of locals that we know really well,” says Pichler. “But today, we also have quite a few international regulars who make a point of swinging by every year on their Jutland holiday.” The building itself may draw in visitors, but it is the excellent food and service that bring people back again. “What I really love about managing our own res-

taurant is the freedom to experiment and listen to people’s suggestions,” Pichler explains. “Someone suggested that we should pack picnic baskets for people to take to the beach or into the forest. That’s become one of our most popular summer options. We’ve also started making smørrebrød to pre-order for people on their way to Skagen, for example.” Those wishing to explore Bangsbo further can combine dinner at Møllehuset with a stay at the old Lisboa hotel just up the road – a popular solution for conferences and parties, in particular weddings. “We try to accommodate everyone here,” Pichler concludes. “Everyone deserves a taste of Bangsbo.”


Scan Magazine  |  Humour  |  Columns

IS IT JUST ME… … or did this summer go by in a blink? How can the days be so much longer in the summer time and yet fly by faster than people leaving Trump’s White House? Pardon me for being all Game of Thrones depressive and melancholic, but I hear myself repeatingly saying “Winter is coming”, like I was from the North and fighting Ser Jaime Lannister. I know the summer of 2017 was more like three months added to autumn – there were brief moments when I was wondering whether it was time to build that ark. And what was up with all the wind? I mean, had I been a kite surfer, this would have been my wet dream – but people who follow this column will know that I am as much a kite surfer as Bob Dylan is a songwriter for One Direction. But seriously, I had to call on a friend who is working as a weather reporter to ask if it was just me or it has really been windier of late than it ever has before. Luckily for

By Mette Lisby

me, it was not just in my head that it was windy – it has been the windiest summer in 47 years. To top it off, it has been the worst summer in 47 years. So, basically, it has been the worst summer of my life – well, yes, I take this a bit too personally, I know. But maybe it was also the fact that I was in Denmark for the summer for the first time in years – and like all your memories of childhood summers, it always seems the summers of years gone by were amazing, so my expectations were high. But in Denmark, there was literally not one single day of proper summer in all of July 2017. I mean, come on. July! If you cannot get a summer day in July, you might as well start believing that Brighton might win the Premiere League and England will be World Champions in football in 2018. Yet the summer flew by faster than Lewis Hamilton of 2015. I seriously think that setting the clocks forward kind of inspires the time to go faster in the summer time, and


Mette Lisby is Denmark’s leading female comedian. She invites you to laugh along with her monthly humour columns. Since her stand-up debut in 1992, Mette has hosted the Danish version of Have I Got News For You and Room 101.

By Maria Smedstad

It has taken a while, but I can now just about handle coal. Mostly, I have learnt through observation and asking questions such as: ‘Do you stack them in a pile? Do you rely on airflow? Do you create some sort of kindling scaffold?’ This is generally met by confusion: ‘Airflow? You just squirt lighter fluid on them until they burn.’ Which of course is the British approach to barbeques as well, so a useful lesson for all seasons, come rain, snow, or more rain.

We lived in California for a while, where the seasons changed very little. It was hot and dry in the summer and warm and dry in the winter. As much as this was fantastic, after a while I started to strangely miss the rain and the cold. And now, as the evenings grow darker, I embrace the idea of pulling on a thick jumper and retreating into an English house with inadequate insulation and a coal fire. I was a bit of a pyromaniac as a child, which was lucky as I grew up in a place where fire-making was part of the school curriculum. We were frogmarched into the woods from an early age and taught all kinds of handy survival tips (as well as how to dye wool using crushed bugs – a skill that I have yet to use). The first time I saw a condom was when our teacher demonstrated the water-carrying properties of one (also a skill unused). Fire-making, however, is a

therefore setting the clocks back to wintertime slows it down. Well winter is coming – and for now, I have a super cheap pre-owned not-used-at-all summer for sale. Any takers? I promise you it will blow you away…

skill I am grateful for. I thought I could set fire to anything – until I moved to England and was affronted by British house coal: solid, damp lumps that you heap in a tiny, iron-lined hole in the wall and hope for the best. A seemingly impossible task!

Maria Smedstad moved to the UK from Sweden in 1994. She received a degree in Illustration in 2001, before settling in the capital as a freelance cartoonist, creating the autobiographical cartoon Em. Maria writes a column on the trials and tribulations of life as a Swede in the UK.

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  119

Scan Magazine  |  Culture  |  Columns / Calendar

Scandinavian music Swedish trio NONONO are back with their first new tune in over three years. After their critically acclaimed hit Pumpin Blood, Stina Wäppling, Tobias Jimson and Michel Flygare return with Masterpiece. I will avoid the obvious play on words here, but in all honesty they are not lying – and this song gains extra points for being not just a sublime creation, but also unashamedly camp and kitsch. It is instant love, once again. Vero are a brand-new Swedish outfit that popped up earlier this year with the release of their debut single, Hello, but it is the follow-up single and their latest release – Virtue – that has made their native Sweden fall for them in a big way. The trio – Julia Boman, Clara Gyökeres and Amanda Eddestål – are all based in Stockholm, and on Virtue they have delivered an electro beauty that is elevated by a dreamy and super-catchy chorus. Also listen out for the epic double-ended middle-eight.

After their party-starting success at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest with Grab The Moment, Norway’s JOWST are now back with the follow-up single. Featuring Alexander Walmann, it is ThatFeeling. Mercifully, they do not stray very far from the uplifting, tropical-tinged house music that they made their name with when representing their country back in May. ThatFeeling is another infectiously upbeat tune – even better than its predecessor, and actually quite reminiscent of their fellow Norwegians Donkeyboy in parts. Denmark has not been immune to the Latin pop explosion of the summer of 2017 any more or less than the UK, and one Danish artist has recruited the talents of one of Denmark’s biggest popstars of the past decade to join him on the nation’s answer to your Despacito, your Mi Gente, and your Subeme La Radio. It is LennyGM and Medina, and they have just released the summerflavoured Si Tú Fueras Mía. All the elements

By Karl Batterbee

of a modern-day Latin hip hop-pop banger are present and correct, along with – if the artists do not mind me saying – production traits that in parts bring to mind both Ace of Base and the Vengaboys. Making it all the more enjoyable, obviously!

Scandinavian Culture Calendar – Where to go, what to see? It’s all happening here! Maria Friberg, Commoncause HD Video, 2008 (1 September-29 October) Commoncause is a video by Swede Maria Friberg, filmed on the main staircase at the National Museum in Stockholm. The video lasts seven and a half minutes, with 300 velvet-like spherical forms rolling like amorphous balls down the imposing stone staircase. The sound creates an impression of an on-going flow. Nationalmuseum Design, Kulturhuset Stadsteatern, Sergels torg, Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm Jazz Festival (6-15 October) Stockholm Jazz Festival started in 1980, and it is one of the oldest festivals in Swe120  |  Issue 104  |  September 2017

By Heidi Kokborg

den. The festival takes place all around Stockholm over ten days. This year, artists such as Sofie Livebrant, Horncraft and Dianne Reeves will be performing. Stockholm, Sweden

Culture night in Copenhagen (13 October) Experience Copenhagen in a different light and see places you will not normally have access to, as hundreds of museums, churches, exhibition halls, art galleries, humanitarian organisations, and political and cultural institutions open their doors to their secret rooms, basements, towers and cultural events this one night only. Copenhagen, Denmark

The national museum in Stockholm.  Photo: Hans Thorwid/Nationalmuseum

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Stockholm Jazz Festival takes place all around Stockholm. Photo: Ola Ericson

Finland 100: Finnish festival of Orienteering (13 – 15 October) In order to celebrate 100 years of Finnish independence, the Consulate of Finland is putting on a themed weekend of orienteering activities alongside Manchester and District Orienteering Club. The weekend will show how the traditional Finnish forest orienteering enjoyed in Finland and the UK has developed. There will be local Finns at strategic points around the city to inform the public what the event is about and to promote Finland. Manchester, United Kingdom

CODA Oslo International Dance Festival (17-28 October) CODA Oslo International Dance Festival is the largest international dance festival in Scandinavia with performances, courses, workshops and seminars. The festival aims to strengthen dance as an art form in Norway, by presenting a diverse range of national and international contemporary dance through a biennale of the highest artistic calibre. Oslo, Norway

Sakari Oramo.   Photo: Benjamin Ealovega

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  121

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Experience CODA Oslo International Dance Festival in October. Photo: Arno Paul

Semyon Bychkov conducts The Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra (25 October) Russian Semyon Bychkov was 20 years old when he won a contest and had his breakthrough, and his career as a conductor has been radiant. He has worked with the world’s leading orchestras. In Vals-Fantasie, you will hear his phenomenal capacity to create shimmering orchestral sounds filled with lustful energy. 7pm. Konserthuset Stockholm, Hötorget 8, 103 87 Stockholm, Sweden

the heart of a programme that opens with Florent Schmitt’s last work, his Second Symphony of 1957, a piece of luxuriant orchestration with a battery of percussion – a captivating follow-up to last season’s performance of Schmitt’s incidental music for Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra. Sibelius’ Third makes a perfect complement to the Francophone tone of the programme, a work of almost classical poise and scale; another staging post in Sakari Oramo’s Sibelius symphony cycle. Barbican Centre, Silk Street, London EC2Y 8DS

Sakari Oramo conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra (27 October)

Nico & Vinz in Oslo (28 October)

César Franck’s once hugely popular Symphonic Variations are paired with Ravel’s inventive Concerto for the Left Hand, both works played by the awardwinning Jean-Efflam Bavouzet. They form

Nico & Vinz are a Norwegian duo who achieved world fame after Am I Wrong dominated the charts in 2014. They have had hit after hit since then. Am I Wrong reached number one in Britain, num-

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ber four in America and was charted in over 100 countries. The duo has toured the world and played in venues such as Madison Square Garden, London O2 and Marine Stadium in Tokyo. Sentrum Scene, Arbeidersamfunnets plass 1 0181 Oslo, Norway

The Wooden Bike Tour in Stockholm (All year) Sweden is ranked as the most sustainable country in the world, and you can get a little taste of that as you get to experience breath-taking views of Stockholm while riding on a handcrafted wooden bike. The tour lasts two hours and everyone aged over 16 can join. The tours always start at 1pm unless other arrangements are made. Stockholm, Sweden

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Nico & Vinz. Photo: Smallz and Raskind

Issue 104  |  September 2017  |  123

MICHAEL KVIUM CIRCUS EUROPA 2/9 2017 – 14/1 2018

Michael Kvium, Stand Up Comedy, 2016. Foto: Anders Sune Berg

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