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SEPTEMBER 2019 ISSUE 128 PROMOTING BRAND SCANDINAVIA

JOSEFINE FRIDA – FROM SKAM TO DISCO SWEDEN’S BEST SPAS AND SPA PRODUCTS 2019 A CULTURE VULTURE’S GUIDE TO THE NORDICS EXPLORE NORWAY – TRAVEL SPECIAL


Scan Magazine  |  Contents

Contents COVER FEATURE 32

Josefine Frida – From SKAM to Disco Dedicated SKAM fans will know her as the impossibly cool and kooky Noora with the perfect blonde hair and bright-red lips. Now, finally, Josefine Frida is back, starring as the leading lady in a film about power dynamics, religious faith – and dance. Scan Magazine spoke to the Norwegian shooting star about dealing with fame, being a role model, and managing expectations.

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To maintain that holiday cool, flick through our guide to the very best spa experiences on offer in Sweden right now. Think Turkish baths, deeptissue massages, relaxing lounges and luxurious skin products. Most of these have won awards; all are sumptuously transformative.

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DESIGN Hygge-ify Your Home and Wardrobe Design and fashion editor Ingrid Opstad gives a helping hand as you prepare to give your wardrobe an autumn overhaul – and shares some tips on how to bring a little bit of hygge into your home, too, this season. Among other coveted items, how about a super-cute tea strainer or, if you want to dream big, a chance to live in a work of art?

CULINARY SECTION 16

A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics This month’s exploration of the best things Denmark has to offer brought us everywhere from a theatre mecca and the inspiring LEGO House to an oyster festival and a geopark. Once we got the bug, we decided to unearth some mustsee destinations in the Faroe Islands and Norway as well.

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Sweden’s Best Spas and Spa Products 2019

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Explore Norway If you want an unforgettable autumn or winter experience, head for Norway. Few places combine northern lights excursions with outdoor adventures in breathtakingly beautiful surroundings as well as the destinations we list here. Why not tick something off that bucket list with a journey down the Atlantic Ocean Road?

Scandinavian Eats and Treats As the evenings get colder, we are getting hungrier – and this month, we proudly introduce a new columnist, food writer Louise Hurst, who starts out strong with a recipe for ‘kladdkaka’. Also, don’t miss our top-ten eats and treats to try if you want to be like a real Scandinavian, as well as our current food haunt favourites.

100 Visit Jyväskylä Bang at the heart of this land of a thousand lakes, Jyväskylä combines culinary excellence and cultural highlights with natural experiences beautifully. We list a few destinations to get you started.

BUSINESS SPECIAL FEATURES 28

Whale of a Time — Even at School Few things look quite as exciting as the whale and puffin tours we’ve discovered in Iceland – perhaps a dreamy holiday for the Christmas wish list? No need to be bored while you save up, though, at least not if you’re in school in Denmark. Read on to find out what the two featured educational businesses have come up with.

105 Sustainable Growth — For You and Your Business Find out how two-way mentoring can help you grow – even if you’re the senior professional used to handing out advice to younger hopefuls – and learn about businesses working to promote sustainable growth and innovation in Finland. That, and more, is in this month’s business section.

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SPECIAL THEMES 25

Finland’s Culinary Scene Alongside our new Culinary Section this month, we couldn’t help but include a top-three of Finnish culinary highlights. The next time you visit Finland, consider trying out these delicious gems.

CULTURE 130 Norwegian Bergman-esque Family Drama We spoke to Norwegian actress-gone-director Camilla Strøm Henriksen about Phoenix, her new feature film that’s out in UK cinemas this month. Music tips from Scandipop and events highligts in our calendar complete the culture section.

REGULARS & COLUMNS 6 Fashion Diary  |  8 Street Style  |  10 We Love This   |  112 Restaurants of the Month   115 Brewery of the Month  |  116 Hotels of the Month  |  122 Interior Designer of the Month  124 Gallery of the Month  |  126 Artists of the Month  |  129 Humour

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  3


Scan Magazine  |  Editor’s Note

Dear Reader, The Norwegian TV-series SKAM was, in my humble opinion, the best thing to have happened to Nordic screens since Don’t Ever Wipe Tears Without Gloves – and that’s saying something, because I wasn’t myself for months after seeing the latter. SKAM came along and captured perfectly, and with both sensitivity and humour, exactly what’s wonderful about Scandinavia, as well as what’s so challenging yet exciting about being a teenager. Rarely has the Swedish teenager in me felt so seen. To have Noora herself – I’m sorry, I mean Josefine Frida – on the cover of this month’s Scan Magazine, then, is a great honour, and to know that she is returning to the screen is exciting indeed.

those of you who have the travel bug. This month, we start with a cultural séjour in Denmark and continue via the Faroe Islands to Norway, where we look ahead to the winter season – which, of course, means northern lights, fjords and dog-sledding.

In more exciting news, this issue of Scan Magazine introduces a new columnist: food writer Louise Hurst, an expert in all things Nordic food. The first proper autumn issue felt like the right time to bring her on board; it’s not just me who feels that extra need to nurse and feed and pamper myself as the back-to-school season arrives, is it? We haven’t held back in that regard. How about a top-ten of Scandinavian must-try eats and treats, or an entire peace-packed spa special, listing Sweden’s best, award-winning spas and some luxurious treatment products?

Linnea Dunne, Editor

Finally, for those of you who are planning to spend the autumn on the couch and can’t quite wait until Josefine Frida is back, we’ve had the honour of speaking to actor-come-director Camilla Strøm Henriksen, whose Bergman-esque family drama is out this month. As someone who likes a bit of melancholic realist Nordic drama, I’m pretty sure I’m going to be a fan.

SCAN

As always, we’ve made sure to also dig out hidden gems, cultural hot-spots and adrenaline-inducing adventure destinations for all

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Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  Fashion Diary

Fashion Diary… As the last moments of summer turn into cooler days and with autumn upon us, this is the perfect time for a little wardrobe overhaul. We look at ways to bring some of this year’s biggest fashion trends into the new season, with the help of some great Scandinavian fashion brands. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Press photos This summer, neon green was popping up everywhere, and it is shaping up to be the must-try trend of the year. Brighten up your wardrobe with accessories like this cosy and soft three-tone scarf with fringed ends, from Acne Studios. Acne Studios, ‘Kelow’ dye scarf, £210 www.acnestudios.com

Checked shirts are back in fashion, and this classic, long-sleeve checked version from Han Kjøbenhavn will make you look effortlessly stylish. You can pair your checked shirt with casual denim jeans or a smart dress trouser, depending on the occasion. Either way, you will be right on trend. Han Kjøbenhavn, Army shirt, approx. £217 www.hankjobenhavn.com

Functional, comfortable and easy, the puffer jacket is here to keep you warm and look fashionable this season. This blue number from Samsøe & Samsøe is a great option, and we suggest teaming it up with coloured corduroy trousers – a textile we will see a lot of in the fashion world in the coming months. Samsøe & Samsøe, puffer jacket, £330 Samsøe & Samsøe, trousers, £110 www.samsoe.com

2019 has been a year of looking back and finding retro touches from the past. This 1969 Vintage unisex wristwatch from Danish brand About Vintage by Skov Andersen ticks all the right boxes and comes with different strap options. About Vintage by Skov Andersen, ‘1969 Vintage’ wristwatch, approx. £225 www.aboutvintage.com


Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  Fashion Diary

Snakeskin print is all the rage this year, and since next season’s footwear focus is all about the pointed toe, we think this pair from Hope Stockholm is perfect. It is handy too: the heel on the Medina slipper is reversible and can be folded up to be worn as a fullheel shoe, or down to be worn as a slip-on. Hope Stockholm, ‘Medina’ slipper, approx. £274 www.hope-sthlm.com

Boiler suits and jumpsuits have been popping up everywhere this year, and this is probably the easiest outfit idea to bring with you into autumn. Go for this form-fitted and belted number from Gestuz and catch two trends in one – because beige is still a big hit! Gestuz, ‘Ettagz’ jumpsuit, approx. £218 www.gestuz.com What’s not to love about the floral trend we have seen throughout 2019? This cute babydoll dress from Stine Goya is both floral and puffy, which, to us, is a great combo. Its silhouettes, print and colours reflect the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s, reminding us that retro style is still cool. Just add thick, dark tights and you are autumn ready. Stine Goya, ‘Jasmine’ dress, £294 www.stinegoya.com

This year, we have seen the return of the chunky gold-chain necklaces. Make a statement with this Bond necklace from Swedish design company Edblad. Embrace a bit of maximalism and layer them up while mixing and matching different chains to get the perfect look to go with your outfit. Edblad, ‘Bond’ necklace, £74 www.edblad.com

Boiler suits and jumpsuits have been popping up everywhere this year, and this is probably the easiest outfit idea to bring with you into autumn. Go for this form-fitted and belted number from Gestuz and catch two trends in one – because beige is still a big hit! Gestuz, ‘Ettagz’ jumpsuit, approx. £218 www.gestuz.com

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  7


Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  Street Style

Nordic Humans of London Scan Magazine’s brilliant Sanna Halmekoski is back and 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  |  www.nordichumans.com

Katri Salminen Finnish co-founder of Alvar magazine

Kim Jakobsen To.

“My style is classically Nordic. I like laidback and easy-going clothing. I don’t want to look too plain, and I try to add a little twist to my outfits. I shop judiciously and often wear clothes by young, new designers. My T-shirt is from my hometown, Lahti; my jeans are by Whistles; and I cannot remember where I got my shoes from.”

Lars Göransson Swedish chef “My style is quite representative of the Nordic spirit. I like to buy timeless and straight-forward clothes. I don’t like big logos or brand names. The colour palette of my wardrobe is classic and filled with different shades of blue. My shoes are by Church’s, the shorts are by Ralph Lauren, the sunglasses are by Persol, and the watch is by IWC.”

Kim Jakobsen To Norwegian photographer

Katri Salminen.

8 | Issue 128 | September 2019

“My style depends on the day. Some days I like to dress up and wear high fashion, like Gucci. However, my style is usually quite practical. I used to dress very eccentrically. I don’t shop a lot, but when I do, I like to buy good quality. My shoes are by Puma, my socks are by Gosha Rubchinskiy, the jeans and shirt are vintage Levi’s, the bag is by Porter Yoshida, and the sunglasses are by Persol.

Lars Göransson.


Scan Magazine  |  Design  |  We Love This

We love this… Autumn is right around the corner, a time of year when many of us spend more time indoors. What better reason, then, to share a few simple ways in which to make a house truly feel like a home – little details that will help you get comfy and cosy in the coming ‘hygge’ season. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Press photos

Comfy seating is key to making you feel like you’re at home, and the Yam chair by Norwegian brand Northern is subtle enough to blend in with most interiors, yet striking enough to stand out in a contemporary space. Each seat in this series designed by Mattias Stenberg has been made with soft contours that enhance comfort and add support to the overall structure. Northern, ‘Yam’ chair, £1,330 www.northern.no

Sound and light are both great means of creating a nice atmosphere in your home, and with the aGlow Bluetooth speaker, you get both in one. With its beautiful details and clean look, it gives you an all-round experience of a functional speaker and elegantly designed product. You can wake up with the alarm clock function or grab it by its leather strap to bring the music with you wherever you go. Even at night, aGlow will do its best to lighten up the dark with its integrated colourful LED light, while playing your favourite tunes. Kreafunk, ‘aGlow’ Bluetooth speaker, £129 www.kreafunk.com

Cosy and decorative textiles are great for making a house feel more homely. The more pillows the better, we say! This square-shaped cushion cover is decorated with an orange Love pattern, printed onto a naturalcoloured linen fabric. It’s a design based on the graphics of the book Spirit&Life, which was published in celebration of Marimekko’s 50th anniversary. Marimekko, ‘Love’ cushion cover, 40x40 cm, £35 www.marimekko.com

Artwork truly makes a house feel like a home, and we love the abstract style and autumnal colours of this art print by Berit Mogensen Lopez. This beautiful series of prints is gouache on watercolour paper, where texture, transparency and the organic shapes create a floating and dream-like expression in a unique universe. Berit Mogensen Lopez, ‘NO 10’ art print, 50x70 cm, approx. £82.50 The Poster Club, frame, 50x70 cm, approx. £64 www.theposterclub.com

Add personality to your home with one or more of the Favourite cups by Design Letters. With their timeless and classic design, they look great in any setting and are fun to play around with. Combine different cups and other Arne Jacobsen porcelain items to create decorative words, statements or sentences on your table or shelf. Variants: PAUSE (blue), HEY (green), HOT (brown), SMILE (soft green), WORK (grey), WEEKEND (black), HELLO (black) and LOVE (terracotta pink). Design Letters, ‘Favourite’ cup, £17.50 www.designletters.com

10 | Issue 128 | September 2019


Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Pauliina Rundgren HandiCrafts

Designing products with a purpose Pauliina Rundgren’s design company, Pauliina Rundgren HandiCrafts, celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. The products include famous wooden jewellery, clever kitchenware and stylish home décor. All designs carry the signature copper enamelling, a traditional technique completely handmade by the artisans themselves. By Mari Koskinen  |  Photos: Heikki Hyttinen

“As a designer, my passion is to design and produce durable high-quality products for everyday use. There is always a story behind every project, and this makes them unique – it makes you cherish and take care of the product, instead of just replacing it quickly with the next trendy thing.” Environmental thinking and sustainability were among Rundgren’s key values right from the start. “To us, it means zero waste and minimum transport. We use Finnish raw materials whenever possible, and all our products are produced in Finland,” she explains. The products carry both the Design from Finland and the Key Flag labels, which guarantee that the origin and design are truly Finnish.

The products are sold both in the online shop and at over 100 distributors. The company also has its shop and studio, located in

the old Kenkävero vicarage – a great destination for anyone interested in exquisite handicrafts, exciting exhibitions, and events in a beautiful, old milieu. “There is a direct view from the shop into our studio; you can see how the products are made, right in front of you,” Rundgren explains. Pauliina Rundgren HandiCrafts is also present at Habitare, Finland’s largest design show, where they showcase their latest home décor products.

Asteri tea strainer.

Web: www.prhandicrafts.fi Facebook: prhandicrafts Instagram: @prhandicrafts Saimaa shelves in green and black.


Villa White, Exclusive design, circa 500 square metres. Photo: Ossian Tove

Built to last A garage combined with a disco? Absolutely. A living room designed especially for a Ferrari to be able to park in it? Sure, why not? A house that comes with its own designated ballgame room? No problem. When the team at Ross Architecture & Design say that anything is possible, they really mean it. By Pia Petersson

The above are all examples of requests from clients that the firm has managed to realise when designing their future homes. “We are our customers' guardian angels. From the first drawings to the moving-in day, we’re there for them all the way, making sure they get the house they dreamt of. When it comes down to it, we’re grateful to be able to add value to the lives of the families we work with,” begins Pål Ross, founder, CEO and, of course – architect. To say ‘no, that’s not possible’ is clearly not this motivated architect’s modus operandi. Instead, Ross and his team thrive on a challenge. Ross founded this niche architectural firm in 1996 with the intention to provide 12 | Issue 128 | September 2019

high-quality housing. “At present, we have completed over 300 projects. What drives me as an architect is getting to create better quality of life for the client. This is why we are careful to only use safe building materials, along with rigorous construction solutions,” Ross explains.

From the very outset, the Ross team has questioned conventional architectural methods and procedures. A key component in how they approach a project is the use of natural flows and shapes. “The nature around us isn’t square. For instance, a river winds through the landscape; that’s simply the way nature works. If you come across something

Live in a work of art With regards to the actual houses, they are themselves a work of art, which also happens to be the motto of the firm – ‘live in a work of art’. Beauty is taken seriously and is key to how the team approaches a new project, Ross underlines. “Once a human’s basic needs have been satisfied, beauty is vital in order to make us happy and peaceful,” he states.

Pål Ross, founder and CEO, Ross Architecture & Design. Photo: James Holm


Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  Ross Architecture & Design

square in nature, man put it there. This way of working gives us the opportunity to use space in a different way,” Ross enthuses. Consequently, a Ross house holds a certain calm, a flowy movement and a graceful peace.

Visions of Spain Keeping in mind that Ross spent a large chunk of his childhood and most of his youth in Spain, there is naturally a special place in his heart reserved for the country – which probably explains the genuine excitement detectable in his voice when he reveals the details of the firm’s upcoming venture. Having just secured their first project in Altea, on the Mediterranean coast, the firm harbours an ambition to build more Ross houses on Spanish soil. To be able to secure a watertight end result, the firm has established cooperation with reputable local consultants. “We have identified a great need for our services abroad, in countries such as Spain. Actually, I think the typical Ross design already embodies quite a lot of Mediterranean influences, such as the white plaster façade,” Ross reflects.

Future proofing In order to make sure it will stand the test of time, a feature that is offered in any Ross project is a lift – a useful addition, of course, in order to ensure that a

Villa Altea, Exclusive design, circa 350 square metres, Spain. Photo: Ossian Tove

house can still be lived in when its occupants have reached old age and perhaps struggle to get up and down the stairs. “Moving house at a late stage in life is upsetting. In this context, a lift doesn’t cost much. Just to know that you don’t have to ever leave the house adds a huge sense of security,” Ross points out. In a day and age when sustainability and durability are central, Ross buildings stand out. This is due to the fact that these houses are genuinely robust,

which keeps the running costs down over time and ensures that no nasty, expensive and wasteful surprises arise. In addition, a Ross house is built to last – for a long time. “The lifetime of our buildings is 200 to 300 years. If you do things right, it’s possible to save resources and be really, truly sustainable,” Ross concludes. Web: www.ross.se Phone: +46 8 84 84 82

Awards: — Gold award for Best Architecture   Single Residence Sweden, by the International Property Award — Building preservation award for   Best New Building — The Most Beautiful Detached House in Sweden

The Ross team consists of seven dedicated full-time architects and engineers.

xxx Villa Victoria, Limited edition, roughly 700 square metres, Sweden. Photo: Emil Jönsson

The energy-efficient architecture produced by Ross is always free from materials that can cause allergies and asthma.

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  13


With a passion for fashion — and for a brighter future In an industry that has long been characterised by a throwaway mentality and easily replaceable goods with a short shelf life, TREEM wants to make a difference – for the individual as well as for society as a whole. Its bracelets epitomise this worthy aspiration – in production, story and design. By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: TREEM

First things first: TREEM stands for the True and Elegant Movement. True, to underline the importance of being true to yourself. Elegant, because this brand emphasises the significance of being elegant from the inside and out. The last word is key: the company is envisioned as being just that – a movement. “The future development of our society needs a bit of TREEM: a strong and representative foundation to stand on. 14 | Issue 128 | September 2019

We refer to our design language as raw elegance, which signifies that owners of our bracelets will dare to break out of a destructive pattern, which unfortunately many people end up in,” begins founder and CEO Carl-David Hagerbonn. It truly is an ambitious aim, but then Hagerbonn is an ambitious man with a lot of experience. After a long, thriving career in finance and tourism, living in

Sweden, Germany, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia and the UK, Hagerbonn decided it was time to try his hand at something new. “I often go back to my travels – both to when I travelled around the world on my own many years back, and to the extensive travelling I’ve done during my career: meeting people from different cultures, from all levels of society, all with their story, almost always with a good, humane intention. Eventually, I started to get that feeling of wanting to make a difference, more for real,” he explains. And so TREEM was born.

The basis of the production The TREEM bracelets are made from classic materials such as gold, silver


Scan Magazine  |  Design Profile  |  TREEM

and Italian leather. There are several different ingenious designs to choose from, to suit different personal preferences and occasions. What all the bracelets have in common, is that a commitment to sustainability, equality and good working conditions form the prerequisite for the production. In order to guarantee this, TREEM has developed a number of smart working methods. “First of all, we cast our bracelets here in Stockholm, which means we have 100 per cent control of the production process. Additionally, we have a good working companionship with the Italian leather company we cooperate with. Most companies in our industry manufacture their goods in countries such as China, Bangladesh and India, where transparency is limited with regards to sustainability and the treatment of employees,” explains Hagerbonn. When it comes to the sustainability aspect, recycled metal is used in the production process as much as possible. The TREEM team is not very big, consisting of just 15 people working anything from full-time to freelance. Nevertheless, every staff member is equally important, Hagerbonn emphasises. “We have a policy in the company that everyone’s voice is welcome; everyone has good ideas and everyone’s welcome to fail. The ambition is just to fail fast and learn, for the sake of the customer, the staff and the company,” he says.

The Arctic collection The collections are inspired by Norse mythology, Nordic nature and wildlife, and northern natural phenomena such as the aurora borealis. Almost all collections come in five different sizes, which is more than most jewellery collections. However, this fits in perfectly with TREEM’s aim to always achieve high customer satisfaction levels. One collection is called Stark, and customers have rated this bracelet as smart and cool with a unique design. “We haven’t actually seen this design anywhere else. Customers can change the leather cord colour and switch between the elegant or raw side depending on their mood and what type of adventures that await,” Hagerbonn explains.

The latest collection, which has just hit the shelves, is named after the two Polar regions. “The inspiration behind the names comes from the strength, beauty and balance that the two poles of the earth represent. These regions are currently put under a lot of stress. At TREEM, we feel that these bracelets are a statement, but also a strong identifier for those who wear them. The bracelets are a declaration of love – they represent balance and a will to stick together, which is what humanity, couples in love, and the planet need,” Hagerbonn points out.

The future is bright Even though the main focus is on the European market, the TREEM bracelets have been sold in 74 countries worldwide, and there clearly is global interest in this type of conscious, stylish jewellery. When it comes to changing the industry and putting an end to the fast-fashion culture that has permeated it for so long, Hagerbonn evidently has a grand plan for the future endeavours of the company. “The goal is not only to make jewellery, but to continue being relevant in what we do, and gradually expand the TREEM brand within the world of fashion. As we now get more and more customers – active ambassadors of change – the True and Elegant Movement will grow stronger,” he concludes. Web: www.treemsthlm.com Facebook: treemsthlm Instagram: @treem_sthlm

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  15


Smørrebrød. Photo: Mikkel Heriba

Top ten must-try Scandinavian eats and treats By Linnea Dunne

1. Smørrebrød

Smørrebrød. Photo: Maria Nielsen

16  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

In Scandinavia, sandwiches only have bread on one side. In Denmark, these open sandwiches are almost like a national dish, available in every café worth its salt. Take buttered rye bread and add a topping of choice, or two or three: think cold cuts, fish, cheese and garnishes, maybe something pickled and something smoked. Smørrebrød are delicious and mostly quite healthy. Just hop on your bike, cycle to the nearest Danish café, and enjoy some open sandwiches and ‘hygge’. Being Danish isn’t so hard, after all.

Smørrebrød. Photo: Maria Nielsen


Scan Magazine  |  Top Ten Feature  |  Must-try Scandinavian Eats and Treats

2. Herring

Herring. Photo: Carolina Romare, imagebank.sweden.se

Herring. Photo: Tina Stafrén, imagebank.sweden.se

When the world thinks that Scandinavians  are sitting around eating meatballs like there’s no tomorrow, what they’re probably more likely eating is herring:  pickled, fermented, smoked – you name it, they eat it. The Swedish ‘gravad lax’ has even travelled as a dish without translation, that’s how popular it is. But  beware of the moment when the can of fermented herring is opened – and make sure that you know where to run and hide. There’s no polite way to put it; that  stuff stinks.

3. Cloudberries Organic, natural, and bringing heaps of healthy antioxidants, northern berries are all the rage right now. To many Scandinavians, cloudberries are the best of them all: rare, golden and perfectly sweet. Try a warm cloudberry compote served over quality vanilla ice cream, and you’ll soon be a convert too.

Cloudberries. Photo: Sara Ingman, imagebank.sweden.se

Cloudberries. Photo: Magnus Skoglöf, imagebank.sweden.se

4. Brown cheese It sounds wrong, and it looks wrong – but ask any Norwegian expat and this stuff is like a piece of heaven. Made from whey, with a distinct caramel flavour, brown cheese (or ‘brunost’) works for breakfast, lunch or as a snack, though some argue that it’s Norway’s Marmite – you either love it or hate it.

Brown cheese. Photo: Foap, Visitnorway.com

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  17


Scan Magazine  |  Top Ten Feature  |  Must-try Scandinavian Eats and Treats

5. Salmiakki If you’re not from Scandinavia but you’ve got Nordic friends, you’ll have been put to the salty liquorice test. This is when you’re handed a sweet and told to try it without a word of warning – and as the extreme saltiness kicks in and you start grimacing, your Nordic friends fall over with laughter. But jokes aside, they – especially the Finns – love their salty liquorice, or ‘salmiakki’. Some even say that the real deal comes with a heap of health benefits!

Salmiakki. Photo: Vastavalo

Liquorice. Photo: Tina Stafrén, imagebank.sweden.se

6. Smalahove

Smalahove. Photo: Thomas Rasmus Skaug, Visitnorway.com

Pølse. Photo: Maria Nielsen

7. Pølse Rød pølse, medisterpølse, kjøttpølse, wienerpølse – the Danes like their pølse, or sausages. Danish Hollywood star Ulrich Thomsen even went and made a film centred on the philosophical idea of pølse as a peaceful unifier. Enjoy as a hotdog with fried onions, remoulade, mustard and some pickled gherkins for a proper Danish quick feast. 18 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Pølse. Photo: Maria Nielsen

At the weirder end of the Scandi food spectrum, Smalahove is perhaps to Norwegian tourism what fried cockroaches are to South-East Asian backpackers: a reluctant bucket-list item, and not necessarily one you beg for seconds of. This sheep’s head, most often sliced in half and served in the build-up to Christmas, is salted and dried, sometimes smoked, and boiled or steamed for hours. Start with the ear and eye – or, wait, with the Instagram snap.


Scan Magazine  |  Top Ten Feature  |  Must-try Scandinavian Eats and Treats

8. Cinnamon buns Nothing smells of Sweden quite like ‘kanelbullar’, or cinnamon buns, fresh out of the oven. It’s typically the first scent that greets you as you enter a Swedish airport or bigger train station, and it’s one that will make most Swedish emigrants homesick within seconds. Enjoy freshly made along with a mug of filter coffee or a glass of cold milk, and that’s the essence of ‘fika’ nailed.

Cinnamon buns. Photo: Björn Tesch, imagebank.sweden.se Cinnamon buns. Photo: Magnus Carlsson, imagebank.sweden.se

9. Reindeer Once you get past the idea of poor Rudolph and his red nose, you’re in for a treat with this very special delicacy. With the booming New Nordic Cuisine mentality, loving local is key, and indeed, in many parts of the Nordic countries that means eating reindeer. Try reindeer sausage, smoked reindeer heart, reindeer stew, or why not simply hot-smoked, dried and sliced?

Reindeer. Photo: Pernilla Ahlsén, imagebank.sweden.se

Crispbread. Photo: Janus Langhorn, imagebank.sweden.se

10. Knäckebröd

Reindeer. Photo: Pernilla Ahlsén, imagebank.sweden.se

Forget the snoozefest that is the crispbread aisle in your average UK supermarket. Nordic crispbread, known as knäckebröd, is a beautiful thing: versatile, often hand-crafted, and rooted in old traditions. In Sweden, the large, round crackers of the 1800s had a hole in the middle in order to be thread onto poles and sticks hung from the ceiling, something you still see today alongside countless other shapes and sizes, not to mention the many different types of flour blends used. Take a piece of rye crispbread and add real butter. There’s beauty in simplicity. Issue 128 | September 2019  |  19


Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Column  |  Nordic Kitchen Stories

What you'll need: — 23cm cake tin — 200g unsalted butter — 200g dark chocolate, minimum 54%, chopped into small pieces — 4 medium eggs — 160g caster sugar — 150g plain flour — 1 tsp vanilla extract — Butter for greasing

Louise’s Nordic kitchen: kladdkaka By Louise Hurst

This decadent chocolate torte is possibly Sweden’s most popular cake; without exception, every café boasts its own version. It is a rich, dense, incredibly simple cake with just a few ingredients, baked just long enough to form a crisp exterior, while remaining gooey and mousse-like in the centre.  Serve at room temperature or pop it in the fridge and it takes on a completely different character, becoming dense and fudge-like: ‘kladd’ means ‘sticky’ in Swedish, and this cake lives up to its name in the most wonderful of ways. This recipe is my mormor’s (my grandmother’s) and has stood the test of time as it has passed through the generations. It remains a great favourite, never failing to please. Simple as it is to make, just be sure to whip it out of the oven in time to achieve the crispness of the outside but hiding the soft, sticky, silky texture inside. 20 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Method: Grease the cake tin, dust with a little flour and line with a baking parchment disc. Preheat the oven to 190C fan/gas 5. Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl set over a pan with simmering water. Do not let the water touch the bowl. Once the chocolate and butter have melted, remove from the heat and cool for 5-10 minutes. Whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract in a free-standing mixer with a balloon whisk attachment until thick and pale in colour. This will take approximately 4-5 minutes. Pour the melted chocolate mixture into the whisked eggs and stir. Sift the flour and fold into the chocolate mixture. Pour into the prepared tin and bake in the centre of the oven for 15-17 minutes. Cool in the tin. Enjoy!

Cordon bleu trained food creator Louise Hurst marries her passion and professionalism to create stunning, stylish Scandinavian dishes. With a touch of love and a pinch of nostalgia, she brings a deliciously fresh approach to ‘husmanskost’ – traditionally homecooked Swedish fare – along with her own creations. Read more at www.nordickitchenstories.co.uk


Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Feature  |  Restaurant Essens

Tonny Kristensen.

Feel-good food in cosy surroundings Restaurant Essens is not like other restaurants. The furniture is a mix of second-hand and new, creating a cosy and down-to-earth vibe where everyone is welcome. You can expect mouth-wateringly good food, ‘hygge’, and a friendly atmosphere. By Heidi Kokborg  |  Photos: Mediebroen.dk and rsfotografi

In Frederikshavn in Northern Jutland, you will find Restaurant Essens, a downto-earth restaurant that serves delicious food – most of which is grown on a field belonging to the restaurant, just minutes away. “I started Restaurant Essens because I was tired of fine dining. I did that for 13 years when I owned a successful fish restaurant. I wanted to go back to my roots: cooking tasty food in a place that reflects me and is totally down to earth,” says Tonny Kristensen, owner and head chef at Restaurant Essens. “We do whatever we want here – not what other people think we should do. I wanted to go a different way. Nothing is streamlined here. The interior is a mix

between old and new, which creates a friendly and cosy environment where everyone feels welcome,” he explains.

Locally grown food If you expect to find a big menu here, you will be disappointed – or perhaps pleasantly surprised. Restaurant  Essens has no menu, and that is  entirely on purpose. “This means that I have zero waste. When you have a menu, you must have certain food, often in big amounts. We don’t need  that. We only have what is in season, and our food is always fresh. In doing it this way, we always use everything, which is much more sustainable,” says  Kristensen.

Restaurant Essens also has its own field close to the restaurant. Here, they grow more than 200 different types of crops. Most of the crops are used in the restaurant, and the remainder is sold.  They mainly serve fish, which is delivered fresh every day, and what little meat they do serve comes from a local farm. Food more local than that is hard to come by! And not only is the food local and sustainable; it is tasty, feel-good food. “To me, feel-good food means that the food tastes good and that you share it. Therefore, not every course is a single-serving size here. You’ll often get one dish that is shared between  everyone at the table. Sharing feels good – it is cosy, and people really love it,” smiles Kristensen. Web: www.restaurantessens.dk Facebook: Restaurant Essens Instagram: @restaurantessens

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  21


Seafood and good times After more than a decade of expanding and refining the concept, Fiskehuset Bogense today attracts visitors from near and far – even the Crown Prince of Denmark has paid a visit. Scan Magazine talks to the owner of the busy seafood restaurant and hears the story of how he once went out to pick up pizzas and came home the owner of a fish-market hall. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Fiskehuset Bogense

In 2006, more or less on an impulse, Torben and Merete Agerholm bought an old fish-market hall in Bogense harbour and turned it into a fishmonger shop. A couple of years later, to increase turnover and maximise the freshness of the fish, they started running a weekly buffet where people, for the modest price of 79 DKK (around 9.50 GBP), could help themselves to as much seafood as they liked. The plates and cutlery were in plastic and everything was self-service, but the buffet was a hit, and thus Fiskehuset Bogense was created. 22 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Every year since, little by little, the couple has expanded and refined their concept, turning Fiskehuset Bogense into an attraction of its own. Proving how far it has come since its humble beginnings, this year, at Cross Denmark, UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships, Fiskehuset Bogense had HRH the Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark among its guests. “That we have come this far is mainly thanks to three central aspects of our concept: the first one is our produce – we only use the best quality; the second is our employees – they always meet

our guests with a smile; and then there’s the price – it has to be reasonable, something that regular people can afford,” says Torben Agerholm. “It’s a concept we’ve been faithful to since day one. I might be able to accept that a dish is a bit of a miss, because that just

Fiskehuset Bogense is also a popular venue for celebrations of all kinds.


Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Feature  |  Fiskehuset Bogense

means that our chefs are trying out new things, but we have never compromised on the quality.” The ability to keep prices at a reasonable level stems partly from the fact that the restaurant still adjoins the original shop selling fresh and smoked fish, which means that the restaurant buys its seafood at wholesale prices.

From near and far Thanks to its simple concept and broad appeal, Fiskehuset today has people driving in from all over Funen. And while the concept is still essentially the same as it has always been – a large buffet with small, freshly made dishes, seafood salads and home-smoked fish – every year has seen new additions. “Every year, we’ve added something to the experience – a large wooden boat to present the buffet on, small outdoor cabins on our porch, or a new corner in the restaurant,” says Agerholm. The restaurant has also become a popular venue

for parties and private events, with many locals choosing to celebrate everything from confirmations to anniversaries in its casual maritime settings. “It’s pretty much the same concept as on a normal visit, but you can add the waiters, table settings and anything else that you need for a party,” explains Agerholm. “You have a separate section, but it’s still based on the buffet, which means that you can walk around, chat, and stroll down to the harbour while the kids go crab fishing.”

Pizzas and a fish-market hall While Fiskehuset Bogense is today the centre point of the Agerholm family’s life, it coming into their hands was not the result of months or years of premeditation – quite the contrary. “It was a bit of a coincidence that we saw the ‘for sale’ sign on a building in the harbour when holidaying in the area,” explains Agerholm. “I noted down the number of the estate agent, and later in the evening, when I was driving into

town to pick up a couple of pizzas, I gave him a call. He happened to be around, and so I returned home having not just bought pizzas, but also the old fishmarket hall!” It was, however, his wife who had the idea of turning the old fish market into a fishmonger shop. After that, it all just went step by step, and today, the restaurant is so popular that the Agerholms have a team of 45 employees helping them out, including their two grownup daughters. “It’s a family business, and we’re always in the restaurant ourselves,” Agerholm says. “That’s how it’s always been, and that’s how it will continue to be.” With 200 to 300 daily guests during peak season, it can at times be hard work, but there are no regrets, says Agerholm. “It is a busy life, but then there are those days when the sun is shining and the place is just buzzing with happy people – it doesn’t get any better than that.”

Home-smoked fish is one of the popular delicacies of the buffet.

Set in Bogense harbour, Fiskehuset Bogense offers beautiful views and a laid-back maritime atmosphere.

Opening hours: High season (June, July and August): Open for lunch and dinner every day. Easter until June and mid-August until mid-October: Open for dinner Friday, lunch and dinner Saturday, and lunch   Sunday. Prices: Lunch 149 DKK. Dinner 189 DKK. (18/23 GBP) Location: Fiskehuset Bogense is located in Bogense harbour, Vestre Havnevej 19 - 5400 Bogense, a 40-minute drive from Odense. To book, call: +45 6481 1072

With small, freshly made dishes, seafood salads, and home-smoked fish, Fiskehuset Bogense’s buffet has become an attraction of its own.

Web: www.fiskehuset-bogense.dk

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  23


Scan Magazine  |  Culinary Feature  |  Agger Wine

Making wine in Viking land Many people associate Denmark with a lot of generally good things. Wine, however, is not usually one of them. Nevertheless, this summer, Solaris, a Danish white wine produced by Agger Vin (Agger Wine), won first prize at Københavns Vinfestival 2019 (Copenhagen’s Wine Festival). In the countryside of south-west Funen, not far from Helnæs Bay, long lines of vines adorn the soft slopes of Ungersbjerge. It is far from south-west France and Italy, but it is the site of Funen’s largest wine estate. Initiated by the 70-year-old Nicolai Agger eight years ago, the estate today comprises 4,000 wine stocks. Last year, those wine stocks and the warm summer produced the white wine that,

By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Agger Vin

to create the acidic Sauvignon Blanc type of wine that a lot of people like – even when the weather is not ideal.”

despite competition from a string of imported wines, won the first prize at Copenhagen’s wine festival. “Partly, I would say that things have just happened little by little, but I am a competitively minded person by nature,” admits Agger. “The most vital move I have made was bringing in a wine maker from New Zealand to help with the production. His experience with a similar climate and his expertise have meant that we have been able

Left: 70-year-old Nicolai Agger owns Funen’s largest winery. Middle and right: This year, Solaris, a white wine produced by Agger Wine, won first prize at Københavns Vinfestival.

Agger Wine is open for visitors every day (guided tours and tastings can be booked for groups of a minimum of eight people) and also has a parkgolf complex (parkgolf is a Japanese concept, a mix between regular golf and mini golf) and a wine café.

Web: www.agger-vin.dk


FI NL M AN ini T D’ hem SC S C e: EN UL E INA RY

Top: The restaurant has a lovely terrace situated in a quiet square. Bottom left: Lauri Väänänen enjoys serving tables and entertaining guests. Bottom middle: Owners Lauri and Irja Väänänen in front of Restaurant Heinätori. Bottom right: Fresh ingredients are the key element on the menu.

Simple, superb food In this fast-paced, trend-chasing world, it is comforting to find a restaurant that offers simple yet sophisticated food with great attention to detail, and which is also praised for its attentive and friendly service and unpretentious atmosphere. By Mari Koskinen  |  Photos: Restaurant Heinätori

After a long career as an engineer, Lauri Väänänen made his lifelong dream come true and started Restaurant Heinätori, meaning Hay Market, together with his wife, Irja Väänänen. “I have always been interested in good food and have always been the chef in our household,” says Lauri Väänänen, owner of the restaurant. “I knew exactly what I wanted to have on the menu when I finally got to open the restaurant. We offer traditional Nordic dishes from the ‘60s, using the finest, fresh ingredients.” The à la carte menu has not changed since the opening. “We are not running after every trend; if and when we feel that it is necessary to change something, we will – but not because everyone else

is doing so,” Väänänen says. The threecourse Heinätori menu, which changes a few times per year, brings yet more variety to the offering. The restaurant is situated at Pyynikintori, an old market square about a tenminute walk from Tampere city centre. The building dates back to 1914 and actually used to be part of a real hay market. The restaurant has 60 seats in the open restaurant space, which can be dived into three smaller areas. It can also be booked for private events, and there is a cosy terrace away from the street seating up to 35 people. “We prepare all food ourselves, starting with peeling the potatoes – everything

arrives fresh on the plate,” Väänänen explains. “Every morning we get fresh produce, mainly from the Tampere Market Hall, the biggest indoor market in the Nordic countries, and the finest fish directly from the fishermen. This way, we have 100 per cent control over the quality and the quantity we buy, and we’re proud to say that we have no food waste.” Väänänen is often present at the restaurant, greeting the guests at the door and entertaining them with his intriguing tales. This is something you don’t come across very often in restaurants today and leaves a great impression on the guests. Restaurant Heinätori really has all the right ingredients for the perfect dinner.

Web: www.heinatori.com Facebook: Ravintola-Heinätori Instagram: @heinatori

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  25


Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Finland’s Culinary Scene

Gastro Café Kallio is a brutal bistro: classic with a modern twist.

The edgy Kallio neighbourhood provides the perfect home for the restaurant.

Brutally tasty A daring menu, clever use of ingredients, and extravagant theme nights make dining at Gastro Café Kallio a truly special experience. By Hanna Heiskanen  |  Photos: Juhani Lehmus

When did you last taste lamb testicles? Or mallard eggs? Both are all in a day’s menu at Gastro Café Kallio, an eatery located in Helsinki’s trendy Kallio neighbourhood. The restaurant, which started off as a café and bakery, has over the past few years gained something of a cult following among the city’s culinary connoisseurs. When asked to describe the Gastro Café’s approach to cooking, Kare Karhu, who co-owns the restaurant with Julia Juvonen, opts for classic with a modern twist. “It’s a brutal bistro. We’ve more or less put the space together ourselves using cheap materials. But the cooking itself is quite classical, Nordic dishes with French and Russian influences. Food we want to eat,” Karhu says. 26 | Issue 128 | September 2019

The decision to serve red meat was a conscious one. Gastro Café Kallio has embraced the so-called nose-to-tail approach to preparing meat. Using all parts of the carcass for food is one way of decreasing the production of meat. “It’s also about respect for the animal: we don’t just prepare a few steaks and throw the rest to waste,” Karhu explains. Gastro Café Kallio prepares its own sausages and also continues the tradition set by the bakery by baking all the bread served. Many of the restaurant’s trusted suppliers are local, and in the summer, you might get lucky with the homemade ice cream. If you’re still hesitating to order dessert, consider that Julia Juvonen has represented Finland in international culinary competitions in the pastry category.

To keep things exciting, Gastro Café Kallio’s menu changes on a whim. “If we’ve received, say, a small amount of lamb testicles, they are served until we run out,” says Karhu. A Gastro Café Kallio specialty is fish served whole, bones and all. Every now and again, patrons are treated to a long, ten-to14-course Sunday menu designed by visiting culinary stars. There are also occasional theme nights – feasts for all senses, including live music. “We like to collaborate with our neighbours and are looking forward to hosting an exhibition by artist Nanna Susi, whose studio is close by. The food at the opening will of course be inspired by her paintings,” says Karhu.

Web: gastrocafe.fi Facebook: Gastro Café Kallio Instagram: @gastrocafekallio


Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Finland’s Culinary Scene

Food with thought A popular culinary hotspot for locals and visitors alike, Restaurant Nokka is located by the Baltic Sea in Helsinki’s charming neighbourhood of Katajanokka. The head chef, Ari Ruoho, shares with Scan Magazine what makes this gastronomic flagship such an unmissable spot. By Maria Pirkkalainen  |  Photos: Restaurant Nokka

When you dine at Restaurant Nokka, you always know what to expect: whether it’s the fact that the food is absolutely delicious or that it’s guaranteed to have been sourced responsibly and locally. Located in the beautiful seaside neighbourhood of Katajanokka, in a port warehouse from the 19th century,

Nokka is led by head chef Ari Ruoho and committed to serving its customers only the purest seasonal ingredients, sourced as locally as possible. “Whether it’s reindeer meat or vegetables, everything comes from our network of trusted, small suppliers in Finland,” says Ruoho. “We also take extra

care to make sure that all our quality meat is sourced from ethical farms that prioritise sustainability.” Nokka has been pioneering this ideology for nearly 20 years already, with Ruoho being the head chef for a decade now, creating inventive dishes from the different elements of Finnish cuisine. In addition to offering exquisite, top-notch Finnish dishes in a comfortable environment, Nokka also boasts an extensive wine selection. As we move towards autumn, so too will Nokka. “From September onwards, our seasonal ingredients will feature plenty of flavours from the Finnish forests, such as wild herbs and game meat,” says Ruoho. The next time you visit the beautiful Helsinki, why not pop in for a delightful lunch or dinner?

Web: www.ravintolanokka.fi/en Facebook: ravintolanokka Instagram: @ravintolanokka and @ari74ruoho

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  27


Scan Magazine  |  Travel Feature  |  Special Tours

A whale of a time in Iceland Iceland is both geographically and culturally defined by the sea surrounding it, so when visiting Iceland, it is worth spending some time on the water. With numerous whales to watch, fish to catch, puffins to admire and the northern lights to be fascinated by, the sea is one of the best places to head to.

an active trip, Special Tours also offers sea fishing trips, where the fish is caught and then cooked onboard. “It’s some of the freshest fish you can get, and there’s usually plenty of it!” Hauksson enthuses.

By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Special Tours

Iceland is famed for its jaw-dropping nature and geography, making it an incredible place to travel to. From Reykjavik, there are numerous possibilities to explore Iceland’s waterways and the creatures living below the surface. “Spotting a whale or seeing the puffins in their natural environment is a really fantastic experience,” says Arinbjörn Hauksson, marketing manager of Special Tours. Special Tours offers a wide range of tours out to sea and also owns and operates the Whales of Iceland exhibition, which is a perfect add-on to any wildlife adventure in Iceland. The exhibition showcases 23 life-sized models of whales, with a lot of in-depth information available in ten different languages. Guided tours in English are available twice a day, as well as a full screening of the award-winning film Sonic Sea on an eight-metre-long screen placed under a full-sized fin whale. When the film is not being screened, underwater footage of 28 | Issue 128 | September 2019

whales is displayed on the screen, immersing visitors in the water.

Away from the city lights “If you sail just five minutes from Reykjavik, it becomes much darker, which means it’s possible to see the northern lights, something you normally can’t do in Reykjavik. It’s a wonderful trip, where people make good use of the many viewing platforms we have,” explains Hauksson. For those more interested in

“We want people to have an amazing time and want to help in any way we can. On the boat, we help out with camera settings and information and facts about what you’re seeing. There are so many things to explore, so we try to offer a good variety of trips and make the most of this wonderful place we live in,” concludes Hauksson. Special Tours offers whale, puffin, angling and northern lights tours from Reykjavik harbour. In the case of no sightings, a free ticket is issued for another tour. Coming in 2020: an app with guides and information in numerous languages.

Web: specialtours.is Facebook: specialtoursiceland Instagram: @specialtours Twitter: @specialtours


Scan Magazine  |  Education Feature  |  Odense Skolefoto

Turning school photos upside down Odense Skolefoto (Odense School Photo) involves the pupils when shooting school photos, making the experience – and the photos – all the more fun. Does your kid have a favourite quote? Incorporate it into one of the photos. Or does your child want to wear a cool cap, or perhaps make a funny face? No problem. By Heidi Kokborg  |  Photos: Odense Skolefoto

We have all been there: standing in line to get your school photo taken, and when it’s finally your turn, you are instructed to sit up tall and smile. Snap – and back to math class you go. A few weeks later, the picture hangs on the wall along with those from the previous years. This is all well and good – for the parents. However, it is not the most exhilarating experience for most kids. That’s why Odense Skolefoto decided to rethink school photos. “We are involving the pupils in the process. Of course, we still take the parents into consideration, but we are also making it a fun experience for the pupils. They are an active part of

the process, and they have more freedom and opportunities than they would have had, traditionally,” explains Jesper Klausen, CEO at Odense Skolefoto.

Express yourself Odense Skolefoto offers a package where you get three portraits, two halflength portraits, and one so-called freestyle half-length portrait. “For the freestyle photo, the pupil decides what happens. We are living in the age of selfies and social media, and kids want to express their personality in a photo. That is exactly what they get to do here,” says Klausen. “If they want to wear a cap or make a crazy face, they are free to do

that, and then they can share the photo on social media.” But the fun does not stop here. The photos are shot with greenscreen technology, so when it’s time to buy the photos in the web shop, you can choose between 70 backgrounds. Why not choose a different background for each photo? And that’s not the only thing you can do. You can also add a quote on the photos. Either choose a quote from a drop-down list or write your own – so if your child has a favourite expression, why not add that? As the cherry on top, Odense Skolefoto is also an environmentally friendly company. All their pamphlets are printed on carbon neutral paper, and they use sustainable technology in their production. Web: www.odenseskolefoto.dk

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  29


Founder Erik V. Hansen and managing director Hasse Palmelund are working on expanding Alkalær’s successful reading method to the English language.

Can anybody learn to read? If you ask the Danish organisation Alkalær, the answer to the above question is a resounding ‘yes’ – as long as the learner is motivated and has language and functional senses. Of course, this is a claim that demands some proof, but having developed a complete reading system for Danish schools, Alkalær can now provide just that. And next, Alkalær’s founder is working on breaking the code to reading in English.

Hasse Palmelund, managing director of Alkalær. “But the worst part is that people who cannot read are dependent on others to form their own opinions, and that’s simply a rubbish situation to be in, living in a democratic society."

By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Alkalær

It was this massive hurdle that led children’s books author and founder of Alkalær, Erik V. Hansen, to start the company. He wanted to teach everybody to read, the young and the old, Danish and foreign. Having created a complete system for doing so, he is currently working on developing a similar system for breaking the code to reading in English.

One of the things shared by all western countries is the Latin alphabet and its many vowels. And it is especially the many vowels and their various sounds in the Danish language that are tricky not just for Danish pupils, but also for people from, for instance, Asia. Besides, the Scandinavian countries share a phonetic approach to the written language, which means that words are created by combining the sounds of letters and not, like in China, for instance, by deciphering word images. 30 | Issue 128 | September 2019

“The phonetic approach is excellent if you know the sounds of the letters and, on top of that, know the sounds that don’t have their own letter. But the written language creates problems for a lot of people. In Denmark alone, approximately 15 per cent of pupils leave elementary school without having learnt to read and write properly. That makes life difficult – it’s hard to get an education, you’re dependent on other people’s interpretations, exhausted by memory techniques, and potentially exposed to bullying,” says

It is never too late to learn to read The catalyst that led Erik V. Hansen to dedicate years to writing and researching was an incident experienced during


Scan Magazine  |  Education Feature  |  Alkalær

nationwide, which means that even for those who left school a long time ago, it is not too late to learn to read.

Breaking the code to reading in English

Sold to more than 1,000 Danish schools, Alkalær’s extensive reading system aims to enable everybody to read.

a temporary job at a school. Teaching the new pupils the sounds of the letters one morning, noting the name of the day on the chalkboard, he wrote ‘onsdag’ (Wednesday). Phonetically, in Danish, this would have been written ‘ånsda’. The children’s reaction was puzzled and confused. “It’s a normal reaction when you’re faced with something that’s illogical – and the illogical is not a rarity in the written language,” Erik V. Hansen points out. In the beginning of 2000, Erik V. Hansen began developing Læsetrappen (‘the reading ladder’), which, step by step, presents the issues of the written language. The approach differs significantly from other reading methods by being 100 per cent consistent in the presentation of and approach to reading. The ambition was that everybody who follows Læsetrappen would learn to read. “It was a very narrow

and dogmatic ambition to set for yourself,” Erik V. Hansen admits. But he and Alkalær succeeded in creating material for all the steps of Læsetrappen, and in the process, he also created some of Denmark’s easiest reading books. With titles such as Bo så en ko (‘Bo saw a cow’) and Kan man tro på Pia? (Can you trust Pia?), they are 100 per cent phonetic reading books. On later steps, books introducing challenges such as silent letters and nonalphabetic sounds follow. Currently, Alkalær’s teaching materials have been sold to more than 1,000 schools in Denmark, and its training courses have been attended by a similar number of teachers. A network of private educators, who help dyslexic children as well as adults break the code to reading, also uses the method. The network is

Today, Alkalær’s reading methods offer a complete system, including reading books, booklets with reading tests, games, assignment folders, songs, and much more. “The lessons are, of course, individually adapted, and everybody works with the step they have reached on Læsetrappen. That way, you avoid frustration, defeat, memorisation and guesswork,” Erik V. Hansen explains. Having successfully changed the approach to reading in many Danish schools, Alkalær and Erik V. Hansen have now set themselves an even bigger task – to break the code to reading in English. “The dream is to develop apps with which both Danish and English users can learn simply by playing fun games and solving riddles. We have already created three apps – two for the Danish reading code and one that makes our first attempt in English – but it’s a process that requires a lot of resources and it’s likely that we will need a little help. Over the long term, we want to teach everyone to read solely by using apps – that’s the future,” stresses Erik V. Hansen, who has taken the full consequence of his own phonetic research and thus today writes his name as Eag V. Hansn – exactly the way his name is pronounced. Facts: Alkalær has helped thousands of dyslexic people read. The Alkalær method is used in more than 1,000 schools in Denmark. With 83 private tutors, Alkalær has Denmark’s largest network within its field. Alkalær has published 118 songs and sound tracks and 63 printed teaching resources. Alkalær has created three apps.

Web: www.alkalaer.dk

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  31


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Scan Magazine  |  Cover Feature  |  Josefine Frida

Josefine Frida — from SKAM to Disco You might have seen her on the screen: the young feminist with the shoulder-length, blonde hair and her signature red lip, who more than once taught Scandinavians of all ages a thing or two about the struggles of being a teenage girl through her SKAM character, Noora Sætre. Now, Josefine Frida is back on the screen, and two years after the last episode of SKAM aired, the actress is moving from shame to proud flamboyance and is ready to meet Hollywood. By Synne Johnsson  |  Photo: Sofie Amalie Klougart

Josefine got famous overnight when the Norwegian SKAM became Scandinavia’s most popular TV-series and her character, Noora Sætre, became a role model for thousands of young people across the world. Over four seasons, viewers followed a diverse group of friends through ups and downs, and there were few Scandinavians who did not watch wide-eyed on their TVs, laptops and smartphones with butterflies in their tummies as William, the school’s infamous player, fell head over heels for the inspiring Noora. The TV-series aired for the first time in September 2015. Throughout the first series, the SKAM actors kept a low profile, but during Josefine’s second season, the show went viral, reaching an average of 1.2 million viewers every week. This sudden and unexpected popularity made Noora Sætre a household name in most homes across Norway and, soon, the rest of Scandinavia. Josefine herself has a more clouded memory of when she started to reach TV stardom. “I don’t think I understood it; I still don’t understand it, actually,” the 23-year-old says. “I never thought I would

get the role. I just auditioned for it because I thought ‘okay, I don’t have anything else to do right now, so I might as well’. Being a part of it, though, was simply amazing, every single day.” The SKAM actors were shielded from the spotlight through the entire show and did not give a single interview until the last episode aired. Josefine thinks that this made her sudden fame a lot easier to handle. “It’s not the people who come up to you and say that they are so happy to meet you or tell you how pretty you are that are difficult about being famous. It’s all the gossip magazines and the constant media attention that’s the challenging part of it.”

Social awareness As SKAM became a global phenomenon, Josefine’s fame rocketed, and she now has almost two million followers on Instagram. And with those followers, comes the responsibility of having young people looking up to her. “I’m pretty shy, and these days there’s a lot of focus on who’s a good role model and who’s not. It makes you think twice before posting anything,” she says, explaining that she has, thankfully, not experienced any explicit pres-

sure of being a good role model, probably because she avoids voicing controversial opinions. “I don’t know how I would handle public debates about what I, as a person, might be doing wrong. There seems to be this expectation that you have to use your voice all the time, but I don’t think that’s the case. I’ve decided that acting is my job, so I’d rather focus on choosing good and important roles and stories to take part in,” she says. That does not, however, mean that she is in any way oblivious. Josefine admits that her position has made her conscious of what she posts on social media. Moreover, she is grateful for the fans she has and happy that people look up to Noora, as she believes the character is a healthy role model. “I get messages every day from people who say I’m their idol. I remember what it was like when I was younger and was a fan of someone – I wanted to be like them and do what they did, so I try to avoid encouraging people to do anything silly,” she smiles. “I think a lot of people still look up to me because of Noora, but I don’t mind. Noora is a good character to look up to.” Her image as ‘Noora from SKAM’ is not one she necessarily wishes to let go of, but she does hope and believe that after her new role in Disco, some might see her as ‘Noora from SKAM and Mirjam from Disco’.

Disco freestyle Her film debut, Disco, will be released this autumn. The film is about 19-year-old Issue 128 | September 2019  |  33


Scan Magazine  |  Cover Feature  |  Josefine Frida

Mirjam – a disco freestyle world champion and a highly valued individual in her family’s free church community. During a competition, Mirjam collapses on the dance floor, and she understands that it is triggered by suppressed memories from her past. She cannot dance anymore and starts to doubt in her religion, which leads her to seek something more concrete in a controversial, fundamentalist congregation. “It is about the power imbalance in relationships and in, for example, religion. It is also about what happens when you lose your power and lose yourself,” Josefine explains. “Even though I can’t necessarily relate to the concrete situations, there are definitely aspects I can relate to. It’s not that many years ago that I was 19 and convinced that there was no one who could understand me and no one in the entire world who had the same feelings I had.” Going into the role, Josefine did a great deal of research to be able to portray Mirjam’s situation as accurately as possible. She visited different churches and congregations and attended services; she also spoke to priests, believers and even those with experience of leaving sects. “I wanted to talk to people who know what it’s like to be in Mirjam’s situation. I didn’t want to portray anything the wrong way or bring any misconceptions, because that would show in my acting,” she says. The other aspect of the film, however, disco freestyle, Josefine was more familiar with. In fact, she used to dance when she was

Josefine Frida in the role of Mirjam in Disco. Photo: Mer Film

younger. “It was so random, because that wasn’t even the reason why they picked me,” she says. Originally, Josefine was to perform every dance scene herself, but that did not go to plan. After a split jump, she tore her muscle and was advised not to dance at all for six weeks. Later in the shooting process, she also sprained her ankle. Even though she continued to dance and train, she had to let a professional take on some of the tricks and jumps. “I did a lot myself, which I am proud of, but I did need a body double. It was actually pretty funny, because we filmed at the actual World Disco Freestyle Dance Championships, where my body double, Julie, participated and won,” Josefine says. “I mean, I could never in a million years become as good as a world champion, so maybe it was for the best that she did some of the dancing. Everything happens for a reason.”

Rising star Disco is already doing well and will be going to both the San Sebastian and Toronto film festivals, and Josefine seems to be on the verge of an international breakthrough – she has been selected as one of the upand-coming actors in Toronto’s talent programme, Rising Stars. “It’s an honour to be chosen to be a part of Rising Stars as the first Norwegian ever,” she says. “I really appreciate such recognition, even before Disco has hit the cinemas.” As part of the Rising Stars programme, Josefine will meet high-profile casting agents and directors and will also be introduced to press from all over the world, something she is excited about. “I am really looking forward to meeting with people with so much knowledge of the industry. It will be interesting to hear their stories about how they have got to where they are today. I’m hoping to learn a lot and to make some new acquaintances.” This is potentially a very big step for Josefine’s future, but that’s not something the young actress gets caught up in. “What this can lead to in the future, I don’t know. I don’t have any expectations other than to learn a lot and have fun. To me, it’s important to enjoy and appreciate what is happening in life right now,” she says.

Photo: Jørgen Nordby, Mer Film

34 | Issue 128 | September 2019

She is understandably looking forward to it coming out so that she can show her fans the product of the work she has put countless of hours and so much sweat into. “It’s so exciting that it is already doing well,” she smiles. “Oh my God, I really hope people like it!”


Issue 128 | September 2019  |  35


e:

ST E B cia S ’ e N 019 Sp E 2 ED AS SW SP m he

lT

Climate-smart gifts that give memories for life Every year, it’s the same: a number of gifts to be given to various close family members, distant relatives, best friends, work colleagues, and so on – often a deed of time-consuming shopping that results in severe performance anxiety. By Sara Hellgren, head of marketing at the Association of Swedish Spa Hotels

In today’s society, we all need to think and act in more climate-smart ways and stop consuming unnecessary things that just gather dust and ultimately end up in the bin. Instead, we should expand our collections of memories. There is nothing better to give away than an unforgettable memory – something to look back upon, a memory that brings a smile to your face; a mouth-watering breakfast buffet with your best friend; a long, never36 | Issue 128 | September 2019

ending lunch with your mother; a relaxing massage for the teen, a luxurious facial for yourself, or a romantic surprise weekend with the one you love the most. Put simply, these are things that can have much less of a negative impact on the environment, yet will create sweet moments to save in your memory bank. Next time, buy a giftcard for a memorable experience, and add the treat of a little time spent with yourself…

Sara Hellgren, head of marketing at the Association of Swedish Spa Hotels. Photo: Johan Melander

Web: www.svenskaspahotell.se


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

Photo: Vadstena Klosterhotel

Photo: Upper House

Photo: Hagabadet

Photo: Frösö Park Hotel AB

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  37


Pampered at Sweden’s glass art hotel Kosta Boda Art Hotel is not only an excellent hotel and award-winning spa; it also serves as a showroom for fantastic art by the designers at Kosta Boda glassworks. An explosion of colour and form awaits the guests, to stimulate both the mind and the body.

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.

By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Kosta Boda Art Hotel

Located in Kosta 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 Kosta Boda 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 renowned brands, and the area is often referred to as the Kingdom of Crystal. Kosta Boda Art Hotel opened in 2009 and is now an acclaimed showroom for glass, a successful and highly praised 38 | Issue 128 | September 2019

concept. “Glass is the common theme at the hotel, with rooms 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.”

Unique glass art 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 hotel’s 102 guest rooms, corridors and meeting facilities. They

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 (around 4.2 million GBP) 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 their


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

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

Award-winning spa A must-do at Kosta Boda Art Hotel is a visit to the award-winning 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, using warm glass. Both treatments have been named Best Spa Treatment at the Spa Awards. “Our signature treatments with warm glass are incredibly popular,” admits Olsson. “And at the end of the treatment, you get an exclusive glass gift to take home as a memento.” New this season is a cold-water shower, where you pull a string and water pours over your body, as well as four new beautiful ceramic tubs, where guests can have a treatment with salt.

Kosta Boda Art Hotel has received numerous awards for its design and service, including TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence several years running, which means that it qualifies for TripAdvisor’s Hall of Fame. Among 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.”

Renowned brasserie The hotel offers different dining options for its guests: bistro, à la carte and fine dining. Last year, Kosta Boda Art Hotel introduced the modern Brasserie 1742, with head chef Karim Khouani – a rustic

and intimate space with 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. In this year’s edition of Guide Michelin Nordic, the brasserie was awarded The Plate, and it’s also been named one of Sweden’s seven best restaurants by the magazine Livets Goda. 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 fantastic shopping opportunities, Olsson recommends a visit to the new Kosta Safaripark, with the chance to see animals such as European bison, red deer and wild boar roam freely in their natural environment. Web: www.kostabodaarthotel.se Facebook: KostaBodaArtHotel Instagram: @kostaboda_arthotel

Brasserie 1742, with head chef Karim Khouani, has been awarded The Plate by Guide Michelin Nordic.

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  39


Feel the full impact of ‘the Yasuragi effect’ Yasuragi is somewhat of a magical place. With a pioneering Japanese hot-spring concept, it highlights another way of living that is more sustainable. It promotes health and reduces stress, which has an impact on creativity, collaboration and empathy. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Yasuragi

Located at Hasseludden, just 20 minutes east of central Stockholm, Yasuragi offers stunning views of the archipelago. The building itself was designed by Japanese architect Yoji Kasajima in 1972 and used as a conference centre before its transformation into a Japanese-style hotel in 1997. Owner Petter Stordalen took over in 2006, and since then, the hotel has been continuously updated, including an extension by White Arkitekter. What is unique about Yasuragi is that it is primarily a Japanese bath, not a traditional spa. It feels just like visiting a real 40 | Issue 128 | September 2019

‘onsen’ in Japan, and not just the baths are authentic – the restaurants, the hotel and the gardens are Japanese, too. The concept is based on the principal idea that all people need stillness, beauty and harmony – and it is all about simplicity.

A 360-degree perspective “People talk about sustainability, but sometimes it’s just used as a trend word and doesn’t say much. Instead, we talk about ‘the Yasuragi effect’, which is both complex and simple,” says Per Keller, CEO. “Basically, we are looking at sustainability from a 360-degree perspec-

tive, including everything from the impact of food on humans and earth to how we can affect the overall wellbeing of people in the sense of both physical and mental self-awareness. The foundation is all about reducing our climate impact as far as possible. The next layer is where we look at how we can help people live more fulfilling lives. This is something we have been doing for many years; it’s in the DNA of Yasuragi.” Keller elaborates further on the idea behind the approach: “These days, by default, we tend to have a stress level that we think is normal, but which is actually very unhealthy. To counteract stress, we use the Japanese bathing rituals, but we also look at what we eat and how we treat each other in our relationships to other people, and provide practical tools for how


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

we can live more sustainable lives. This is what makes for the 360-degree effect, which we call ‘the Yasuragi effect’.” And the effect is being noticed. Recently, Yasuragi has been nominated by 360° Eat Guide, a new restaurant guide rating Nordic establishments, in the hotel category. The venues are judged on the basis of both gastronomy and sustainability, including assessments on how they work with food waste, water use, menus, communication and education.

Stillness, beauty and harmony

over yourself. This is a form of peaceful purification, to let go of everyday worries. 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. The Yasuragi effect certainly brings the visit to another level for both private and corporate guests. For instance, you can kickstart your team during a conference, with time to reflect and set new goals for the future. “Our concept promotes

health, reduces stress and has a positive impact on creativity, collaboration and empathy,” confirms Kersti Olophsdotter, head of brand. “This is why many companies decide to run their team events in this serene environment at Yasuragi.” Web: www.yasuragi.se Facebook: yasuragisweden Twitter: @YasuragiSweden Instagram: @yasuragisweden LinkedIn: @Yasuragi – Japanese Spa- and Conference Hotel

Water and trees are considered healing and essential components for us humans. In addition to the hot springs inside and out in nature, which make the foundation of the Yasuragi experience, there is a bath house inspired by Japanese courtyards in its architecture. Here, you will find the cavern bath, a carbonated spring, a rest sauna and more. To really unwind both body and mind, Yasuragi offers different types of treatments and activities to choose from, including Zen meditation and a journey of sounds with Tibetan singing bowls. Visits always start with the age-old Japanese bathing ritual, where you sit on a wooden stool, wash yourself and then repeatedly pour buckets of water Issue 128 | September 2019  |  41


Sturebadet provides wellness for both body and soul. Photo: Henry Moshini

Health and wellbeing from inside and out Sturebadet is a renowned spa in the centre of Stockholm. Built during the latter part of the 19th century by doctor Carl Curman, the spa boasts a rich history, and its mission remains firm: to provide a calm oasis in a big city, and to make Stockholm healthier. By Nina Bressler

the reason why spas are more important than ever. “We believe that everything is connected – if you feel happy and content as a human being, you will work harder to create a better life for yourself as well as the world around you. It begins with the individual, and with being mindful of how you treat your body and mind. We believe that spas have a big role to play in this, and we want everyone who leaves our premises to feel more vitalised than when they entered,” she says.

Sturebadet is located in the middle of Östermalm in central Stockholm, and provides a hidden spot for wellbeing in the shape of a spa as well as a gym, a doctor’s reception, and event facilities. The spa was built by doctor Carl Curman and opened to the public in 1885, during a time when running water was still considered a luxury. Curman was well aware of its healing properties and was on a mission to increase access for the wider public, believing in the holistic connection between physical and mental health – that if you treat your body well, your mind will follow.

Holistic treatments and activities

Today, Curman’s vision and heritage remain at the very core of the business and in everything they do – from treatments and architectural details to suppliers and food. The newly appointed CEO, Sunniva Fallan Röd, eagerly describes

Sturebadet offers a multitude of treatments and activities, where the connection between mental and physical wellbeing always stays in focus. One of their most special, and allegedly lifechanging, treatments is the Sami Zen treatment. Inspired by the Sami culture,

42 | Issue 128 | September 2019

you will spend 80 minutes in a Sami tent underneath a starry sky, getting scrubbed and massaged with hot lava stones – leaving you rested, soothed and at peace. The products used are made by Kerstin Florian and famous for their carefully selected ingredients, designed to provide nutrition to both body and soul. Sturebadet also has its own gym, with experienced trainers available for personal training sessions in addition to a wide range of group training alternatives, where you can train both your physical strength in the fitness classes and your mental agility in one of the meditation classes. To honour its roots,

Photo: Pamela Hanné


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

Sturebadet also works in conjunction with a doctor’s reception, enabling experienced doctors to offer a greater variety of care thanks to the collaboration with the spa, located next door. Instead of a prescription of tablets, perhaps a workout or a hydro massage bath would be more beneficial? Vistiors are encouraged to enjoy the restaurant, too. It serves classic Swedish dishes with an international twist, prepared with the finest ingredients to provide nutritious, enjoyable meals to complement a day full of spa activities, where pleasure and relaxation are always in focus.

Listed building connecting the past with the future The building has been preserved to look exactly the same as when it was built in the 19th century. Despite a devastating fire in 1985, they managed to reconstruct it to its original state, and today it stands proudly with exquisite architectural details that perfectly encapsulate the grand era of when it was built. The building is listed, and every detail has been created using natural materials to make for a relaxed environment that injects a sense of calm and serenity. Enjoy the magnificent pool, overlooked by perfectly recreated Art Nouveau decor,

Photo: Linus Hallenius

or spend time in the Turkish bath, where every detail looks exactly the same as when it was built two centuries ago. The spa also provides the perfect spot for events and corporate meetings in a relaxed environment, where the top floor is a designated events area available for private hire, entirely decorated by the classic Swedish design brand, Svenskt Tenn. Membership provides greater access for regular visitors, with an already loyal group of members – a testament to the spa’s importance as an institution among Stockholm dwell-

Photo: Pamela Hanné

Photo: Linus Hallenius

ers, providing a sanctuary to recharge and revitalise. Reflecting on the future, Fallan Röd concludes: ”I believe that we are moving towards a more holistic view on health – we want to find ways to feel good without artificial additives, and we are looking for mindful ways to do that. Sturebadet provides a unique and historic environment where the focus is on a sustainable approach to health – from the inside and out.” Web: www.sturebadet.se Instagram: @sturebadet

Photo: Pamela Hanné

Photo: Wolfgang Kleinschmidt

Photo: Erik Levander

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  43


Unwind and relax in stunning environments With its three spectacular venues, Hagabadet has become something of an institution in Sweden’s second city, Gothenburg. It started out as a 19th-century public bath, originating in a societal need for cleanliness at a time when many people did not have washing facilities at home. These days, Hagabadet has turned into a place where locals and faraway visitors relax, exercise and enjoy the beautiful environments and tranquil atmosphere. By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: Hagabadet

It all began as an honourable plan to improve public health in this coastal city. In 1834, a cholera epidemic broke out in Gothenburg, and in just a few weeks, ten per cent of the city’s population had died. “As it’s a port city, Gothenburg was particularly badly affected, with nine epidemics in a just a few decades. When one of Gothenburg’s wealthiest men, Sven Renström, passed away, he donated his fortune to the City of Gothenburg. The intention was for the money to support healthcare in the town. Consequently, four public baths and one sanatorium were built. In 1876, Renströmska was the first of these public baths to open its doors. It later changed its name to Hagabadet,” begins Pelle Johansson, who, having held 44 | Issue 128 | September 2019

several different roles at Hagabadet, has been CEO since 2013 and, alongside his wife Helene, co-owns the place. By now, the simple bathtubs that once helped keep the less well-off residents of Gothenburg clean and healthy in times of hardship and disease have been replaced by thermal pools, saunas and relaxation facilities, as well as fitness and yoga classes. “What really sets us apart is that our hot baths are included as part of all exercise here, and the combination is magical. A hot bath helps to release the hormone oxytocin, which is an antidote to the stress hormone cortisol. This means that the combination of exercise and a hot bath helps relieve stress symptoms.

To put it plainly, you’ll feel less stressed when you’re here, something we’re very happy about,” Johansson says.

In the swim of things In addition to the magnificent, listed mid1800s building in the middle of town, there are two other sister facilities. Since 2015, Hagabadet Älvstranden has offered the people of Gothenburg yet another fantastic public bath, right next to the sea.

Pelle and Helene Johansson.


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

With a spa, a generous selection of yoga classes, and a restaurant – all under the same roof – it has quickly become a popular destination. Last year, the third oasis – Hagabadet Drottningtorget – opened its doors. Located underground, in the basement of a hotel in the centre of town, it offers magic and mysticism galore. Adding to the feeling of inimitability, traces of the old city walls have been preserved in the luxurious space.

A team sport “What’s special about us is the combination of beautiful things, beautiful environments, warm baths and how we simultaneously offer Sweden’s largest range of aqua aerobics, yoga and other exercise classes,” Johansson explains. In addition, there is yet another ingredient in Hagabadet’s recipe for success.

“Hagabadet is a team sport. When the employees feel that they make a difference for many people, and when they feel that we as owners are passionate about the wellbeing of the people of Gothenburg, they feel good and start to glow. Hence, our guests also begin to glow. Finally, we light up the sky and so the business, the employees, the guests and the members improve their health and quality of life, just as Sven Renström wanted in his will,” says Johansson.

there’s something that can be improved,” Johansson explains.

Better than yesterday

Evidently, Hagabadet has contributed to keeping generations of Gothenburg dwellers happy and healthy and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

The motto of this trio of mind and body soothing institutions is ‘better than yesterday’. “This is a cornerstone in our quest to make everything better today than yesterday, whether it’s about customer service, exercise classes or the environment. Every day, we all think about if

So, are there any exciting, new adventures and ambitious plans coming up? Quite refreshingly, at a time when constant renewal just for the sake of it often seems to be the norm, Johansson is certain: “Oh no, we’re boring. We want to improve the finer details and refine, refine and then refine some more. Simply be better than yesterday,” he finishes.

Web: www.hagabadet.se Instagram: @hagabadet

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  45


Embrace your inner journey The charming Vadstena Klosterhotel unites old and new. With a past as a glamorous palace and later a monastery with its own brewery, it is now an excellent spa hotel – a place where you can switch off and relax, and perhaps also try one of the historic brews. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Vadstena Klosterhotel

The town of Vadstena has a fascinating history. During the first half of the 14th century, Vadstena Castle 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. These days, Vadstena Klosterhotel is a meeting place just like in the old times, for work and parties, and also a sanctuary for relaxation and inner peace. “Guests really appreciate the beautiful surroundings in Vadstena,” ensures Matilda Milton, marketing manager at the hotel. “It’s not necessary to climb 46 | Issue 128 | September 2019

a mountain or hike in the forest. You can just go for a nice walk along Lake Vättern, watch the horizon and the magical sunsets, enjoy a slow stroll in the garden or perhaps visit Vadstena Abbey Church, which is a three-star attraction in the Michelin travel guide.”

The pilgrimage heritage Thanks to Saint Bridget, the patron saint of Europe, Vadstena is an important pilgrimage site, and you can, in fact, take a pilgrimage all the way from here to Rome. The spa concept at Vadstena Klosterhotel is based on that pilgrimage legacy and follows a number of key values, such as simplicity and restraint.

Spa manager Sofia Lindholm emphasises Vadstena’s past and the importance of harmony. “The spa world is packed with trends and pressure on how we should look and feel. Instead, we want our spa to reflect our history as a monastery, and we offer activities that fit with our past. This is not a fashionable activity centre; it’s a place for contemplation and an inner journey.” The spa strives to maintain a stress-free environment for its guests. As Lindholm puts it: "We don’t want our guests to be


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

overloaded with and feel pressure due to current trends. It should be about human values and tranquillity, and we make sure to embrace our peaceful setting, working with nature and appreciating our wish as humans to find our way home.”

Like a walk in the forest The fabulous spa hotel has won a number of awards, including Best Luxury Getaway Spa Hotel Europe and Most Romantic History Hotel of Europe. The praised spa is open for guests at the hotel and to anyone wanting to spend some time in the day spa, for instance, in combination with lunch or dinner. They can all enjoy the salt water pool, warm spring, Jacuzzi, herb sauna, steam room with aromatherapy, treatment room and resting room, as well as the café and bar.

the ritual. This year, the spa has enhanced its concept further with its own handmade products for treatments.

One of the most popular spa rituals is a head-to-toe treatment with elements from aromatherapy and hot baths 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 spa has also developed a new room, the forest bath, which will open in September. “It can be particularly soothing for people who suffer from depression or burnout, or those who have experienced trauma,” explains Lindholm. For

instance, guests can enjoy a warm foot bath with minerals and pine needle salt. “The room contains particles similar to those we experience during a forest walk, teasing the receptors in the brain and creating a sense of wellbeing and happiness. It feels like a morning walk in the forest.”

Enjoy the good things in life The hotel’s own restaurant uses local produce and herbs from the garden in its cooking, and wedding guests like to gather for a toast in the picturesque, fragrant setting. At the less Spartan, more extravagant 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. In its past days, Vadstena Castle housed one of the largest breweries of the Middle Ages. Now, the old tradition has resurfaced with the help of historians and in collaboration with Fors Bryggeri, and guests can try some of the historic brews. The range of beers includes Kung Valdemar IPA, Munkens Lager (unfiltered), Pax Vobiscum (historic lager), and the newest addition, Dotir, a raspberry beer named after the monastery’s own brewing lady during the Middle Ages. So here you can relax, unwind and, if you so wish, enjoy a beer, just like the monks did. Web: www.klosterhotel.se Facebook: Klosterhotellet Instagram: @klosterhotellet

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  47


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

Pause by pulse in the forests of Jämtland Frösö Park Spa, located on the island of Frösön in Swedish Jämtland, welcomes visitors to its 100 per cent organic spa. Idyllically situated next to Lake Storsjön and framed by the striking mountain range, the spa is currently celebrating being named Best Guest Experience, embodying the perfect destination for nature and spa lovers.

springs. “With us, they get the opportunity to let the thoughts rest, by allowing the pulse to go up or down. That’s what is at the heart of our new concept, Pause by Pulse,” Jansson explains.

By Kristine Olofsson  |  Photos: Frösö Park Hotel

Frösö Park Hotel offers a getaway where guests can engage in activities in the calmness of nature. In addition to enjoying relaxing accommodation, conference facilities, a programme of sports activities and scenic hiking trails, visitors are invited to wind down and discover the soul of Jämtland. The cherry on top is undisputedly the hotel’s spa, Frösö Park Spa, crowned winner of the Best Guest Experience Award 2018 by Svenska Spahotell, based on 100,000 guest reviews. “We work with the concept Pause by Pulse, not only in the spa, but also in the rest of the hotel,” says spa manager Jeannette Jansson. “In our spa, it’s all about exploring hot and cold elements and their impact on the pulse. Our identity is grounded in nature, and all products used in the spa are organ48 | Issue 128 | September 2019

ic. We are proud that we have embarked on this organic journey whole-heartedly. Our very skilled spa therapists and our great products allow guests to see real results, inside and out.”  

Frösö Park Spa and its engaging management are all set to continue delighting their visitors in the future. “People want to disconnect from everyday life while restoring energy, and this is something we offer all our visitors,” Jansson concludes.

Rituals for body and soul Upon arrival to the spa, guests are welcomed with a drop of soothing, specially developed ethereal oil. “We want to embrace our guests with calmness and peace of mind as soon as they walk into our spa,” says Jansson. Guests participating in the highly acclaimed spa ritual are equipped with different products and accompanying instructions, which take them on a journey throughout the spa. Rather than focusing on the outside, the ritual gives participants experiences and sensations for both body and mind through the forests of Jämtland, different types of saunas, and hot and cold

Web: www.frosoparkhotel.se Facebook: frosoparkhotel Instagram: @frosoparkhotel


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

Visit Storhogna and discover an award-winning spa.

A different kind of spa experience 755 metres above sea level lies the Swedish mountain region of Vemdalen – a place with stunning natural surroundings, and home to Storhogna Högfjällshotell & Spa. With an award-winning spa and high-quality food and activities, Storhogna offers a full-bodied experience, all year round. By Emma Rödin  |  Photos: Storhogna

Storhogna was established in 1965, starting off as a small café, which is now where guests enjoy their daily breakfast. When a building was moved from the village of Hackås to accompany the café, it brought with it the rooms that became the foundation of the hotel. Storhogna saw further developments over time and welcomed its ‘winter garden’ in 1989, one of its most original attractions. Ten years later came the grand opening of the spa – the first of its kind. Today, Storhogna is visited by holiday makers as well as conference guests. “Our peak season is winter, when there’s great alpine and cross-country skiing in the area. The summer is also becoming increasingly popular for trail running and hiking,” says Emma Lundin, hotel manager at Storhogna Högfjällshotell

& Spa. No matter the season, visitors can soak up the calm atmosphere of the hotel’s spa and restaurants and recover after an active day. Storhogna is part of Swedish Spa Hotels and has been voted Best Spa by the prestigious World Travel Awards. “We’re very proud of this; it’s wonderful being able to give a standout experience to our many spa regulars,” says Lundin. The spa offers relaxing treatments and a 20-metre-long pool, which faces the serene winter garden. There’s also Fjällvistet. Situated at the foot of the mountain, it holds a large sauna, an outdoor Jacuzzi, and an ice-cold, natural pool. “Fjällvistet also has a spacious cabin with a cosy lounge area – the perfect place to spend quality time together,” Lundin adds.

Another draw at Storhogna is the food. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are offered based on sustainable, local produce. The menu is seasonal and the current dinner menu includes baked beets with goat’s cheese foam and hazelnuts, charcuteries and baked cabbage with chimichurri. Attracting Swedes as well as foreign visitors, Storhogna is easy to get to, with direct flights from Stockholm or by train to nearby Röjan and a 20-minute transfer bus. This winter, there will also be direct flights from London and Berlin. With the mountains right at your doorstep, Storhogna has something for everyone. Whether it’s skiing, nature, relaxation or a sublime food experience you’re looking for, or just the chance to spot a reindeer, you won’t be disappointed. Web: www.storhogna.se Facebook: storhogna Instagram: @storhogna

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  49


A journey for the senses The luxury hotel Upper House offers up a superb mix of the highest-quality tranquil space plus peace of mind. In addition to its fantastic views of Gothenburg from up high, this is a real hotspot for yoga enthusiasts and gourmet dining. This season, guests can also enjoy the new gym area in the award-winning Upper House Spa. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Upper House

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 frequented 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. On the 25th floor is the hotel’s gourmet restaurant, 50 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Upper House Dining, which has received several prominent awards. In addition to the stunning vistas of Gothenburg, Upper House also features a fantastic spa. Most recently, it has been named winner of the prestigious World Luxury Spa Awards 2019 in the national category Luxury Hotel Spa. “We are extremely proud of this fine award. The fact that our guests leave such nice reviews about our spa means that our daily commitment gives great results. We work

every day with the overall experience and to exceed the expectations of our guests,” says Jenny Hayward, spa manager. Upper House Hotel has also been named Sweden’s best hotel in TripAdvisor’s annual Travelers’ Choice Awards.

Spa and yoga luxury up high With Oriental influences and inspiration from the west coast of Sweden, the tranquil spa interior is a mix of marble de-

Jenny Hayward, spa manager.


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

tails and light wood. “Our spa is a place to get away from the hustle and bustle, somewhere to find peace and breathe for a while,” says Hayward. As Upper House Spa is attractive also to those who are not staying at the hotel, a membership service gives access to the spa, gym and classes.

gredients − for instance, the lush shampoo, conditioner and shower cream with honey and seaweed, and the luxurious body oil with sunflower oil and blackcurrant. New additions include a face mist with goji berries, packed with antioxidants, and a lovely moisturising face cream with argan oil.

Upper House Spa has further developed its holistic yoga concept with classes such as aqua yoga, a form of floating, and board yoga with specially designed boards for yoga on land. There is also a number of happenings in the pipeline, such as midnight yoga and mermaid yoga.

Guests can also try the hammam, a Turkish sauna with a traditional bathing ritual, or they can book a massage and other treatments and go for a relaxing swim in one of the pools. During weekends, the spa offers a sauna experience consisting of a seven-to-ten-minute ritual hosted by a sauna master.

New gym and power napping

Another highlight is a sleep retreat bed with a 30- or 60-minute audio programme. While listening to a combination of sounds and music to slow down brain activity, the bed will send vibrations through its soft, water-filled parts, further reducing stress – true power napping at its best.

The hotel’s own brand, UH by Upper House, supports local production in Gothenburg and is based on Nordic in-

This season, the spa has opened its newly refurbished gym on the 19th floor, with the latest exercise equipment from Life Fitness. “The number of members has steadily increased, and there is a lot of interest in our spa, gym and yoga classes,” says Hayward. “In the gym, we have focused on expanding the space for using your own body, and we also have great collaborations with personal trainers and instructors.”

Web: www.upperhouse.se Facebook: upperhouse.se

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  51


An oasis full of exciting contrasts Are you looking for a few days of relaxation in the company of friends or family? Maybe you want to get into better physical shape in a lovely, leafy environment? Well, say hello to Sankt Jörgen Park, a sanctuary of a hotel where balance, positive energy and relaxation are at the top of the agenda – a place where you are invited to take a break from everyday life and invest in your own wellbeing. By Pia Petersson  |  Photos: Mikael Göthage

“Most of us live our lives at a high pace with many demands. As you step into Sankt Jörgen Park, you enter another world, another energy. This is a special place with a recreational tranquillity. You’ll be able to properly replenish yourself and your senses in many different ways here,” begins Emma Smart, marketing manager at the hotel, pointing out some of this hotel’s obvious qualities. “What we offer is a top-up of energy together with new inspiration. Many of our guests are surprised to discover a 52 | Issue 128 | September 2019

destination so full of delights and yet so close to town. It truly is an oasis.”

Mind and body Located in a green refuge just a stone’s throw from Gothenburg, this is much more than a traditional hotel. Guests at Sankt Jörgen Park are invited to eat, drink, exercise and relax – all in an amazingly lush environment. Consciously embracing contrasts, the hotel offers a marvellous spa on the one hand, and many different sports and recre-

ational facilities, including an 18-hole golf course, on the other. “In addition to a well-equipped gym with panoramic views towards the greenery and an extensive group training scheme, we also offer an obstacle course, padel lanes and a gym, all located in the green grove by the hotel. We are also proud of our extensive sports event calendar. We put a lot of energy into our events and offer courses frequently – mindfulness, advanced and beginners’ yoga and running technique, as well as expert lectures in health, to mention a few,” Smart explains. Additionally, a spa treatment at Sankt Jörgen Park always gives access to many gems, such as the pool lounge with its treatment pool, swaying beds and the


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

tea house, and in the summertime, the poolside lounge with its cabanas, warm pools, DJ and bar is true summer bliss. At Sankt Jörgen Park, it is easy for everyone to try a little bit of everything.

A wide culinary selection With four different restaurants on site, there certainly is something to please a wide range of tastes and palates. “We offer everything from traditional, homecooked dishes – always with a twist – to raw food and a lot of exciting tastes in between. We make our own honey, keep our own kitchen garden, we pickle, we bake, we explore along the entire gastronomic journey – always with a conscious mind and with a lot of creative passion and attention to the guest’s experience,” Smart underlines. With autumn approaching, the restaurants modify their menus to reflect the

change in season. Hence, expect more autumnal vegetables, along with tastes that correspond to the season and allow the guests to experience something new, in terms of both produce and flavours. The hotel now enters a cosy period, and soon, the time will come to light the big fireplaces in two of the restaurants.

Time for a nap Once the guests have experienced the Sport Club and the golf course, enjoyed some meditative time in the spa and had something tasty to eat and drink in one of the restaurants, it might just be time to call it a day and retire to the hotel room. Once again reflecting the hotel’s attention to contrasts, each room at Sankt Jörgen Park comes with its own unique character. With names such as Icy suite, Cosy suite and Spicy suite, the rooms have all been named to suit their distinctive design and décor. To add to the lux-

urious feel, every suite benefits from its own private terrace.

Find the right balance Perfectly summarising the philosophy of Sankt Jörgen Park, Smart concludes: “Life is about contrasts – that’s what makes you feel alive. The balance between quiet and busy, hot and cold, wellknown and new.” Some time spent at this extraordinary destination will make any guest appreciate the many exciting contrasts on offer, as this is much more than a hotel. As a result, guests at Sankt Jörgen Park will certainly leave feeling more alive, calm and inspired than when they arrived. This is a place to recharge your batteries, a place where body and mind are given a genuine boost. Web: www.sanktjorgenpark.se Instagram: @sanktjorgenpark

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  53


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

The life force of the well For centuries, pilgrims have travelled to Loka Brunn in the enchanted Bergslagen region to drink water from the well, relax and socialise. Still to this day, it is a meeting place of great beauty, health and relaxation. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Loka Brunn

Loka Brunn has been a place to regain vigour for more than 300 years. People used to go on pilgrimages here, to the well located between the lakes Södra Loken and Norra Loken. Since 2007, the spa hotel Loka Brunn has been owned by the Spendrup family, who maintains the old heritage but also gently brings it into modern times. “There are not many wells like this one left,” admits Mia Spendrup, CEO. “Our

Mia Spendrup, CEO.

54 | Issue 128 | September 2019

guests can experience the spa as they would have done in the old times, still with health, wellbeing and relaxation at the core.” Certainly, Loka Brunn is an experience. It has been named one of Sweden’s finest spas and keeps evolving to offer the best experience possible for its guests.

The Water Salon re-opens In September, the newly refurbished Water Salon will open, building further on the great spa experience. Spendrup explains the idea: “Our new spa takes even more inspiration from the surrounding forests, waterfalls and lakes with waterlilies. It’s what we need in these stressful times, to let our thoughts rest for a while in a beautiful setting. Something happens to people when they come here, they lower their shoulders and relax. This is the true spirit of Loka.”

The buildings have been carefully renovated over the years, adding to the fantastic atmosphere. You can also check out Sweden’s only health spa museum, which provides insight into life in the 1700s and up until modern times. And, of course, you can enjoy a lovely meal in the restaurant, with its focus on local produce according to the seasons. In addition to fabulous conference facilities and popular wedding packages, there is also plenty on offer for those who want to be active during their stay, with a number of themed weekends in collaboration with fitness profiles. “These days, many of us want to keep fit and lead healthy lives, but also treat ourselves sometimes,” explains Spendrup. “Why not pamper yourself with a bit of luxury at the spa while keeping up your healthy routine?”

Web: www.lokabrunn.se Facebook: lokabrunn.se Instagram: @lokabrunn.se


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Spas 2019

Anneli Falk, spa manager.

Photo: Magnus Mårding

Find the Nordic calm The renowned Grand Hôtel in Stockholm is something quite special and, inspired by the natural beauty of the archipelago, its Nordic Spa & Fitness is considered one of the best in the world – well worth a visit, for hotel guests or day spa visitors in need of pampering. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Grand Hôtel Nordic Spa & Fitness

The classic Grand Hôtel in Stockholm has been home to celebrities, high-profile events and everyday bon-vivants since 1874. Overlooking the Royal Palace and Gamla Stan, Stockholm’s old town, the hotel is also home to the popular Swedish Veranda restaurant, famous for its traditional smörgåsbord, award-winning restaurants and the renowned Cadier Bar. The spectacular Nordic Spa & Fitness at Grand Hôtel celebrates its tenth anniversary in October this year. For its hotel guests, exclusive club members and day spa guests, it offers specially designed pools, a wide range of treatments, sauna, gym and much more. “With this spa, we wanted to create something in line with Grand Hôtel’s exclusive atmosphere,” says Anneli Falk, spa manager. “So, we have nothing but pioneering treatments, products and forms of exercise.”

Deep sleep for travellers The spa has a Nordic concept, which means closeness to nature and a healthy, sustainable lifestyle. “When entering the spa, you will find the Nordic calm,” ensures Falk. “You will see it in the wooden details, in the granite from Grythyttan, in the Rauk stones from Gotland found in the sauna, and in the contrast between outdoor chill and indoor warmth.” The bath rituals and treatments include Nordic products exclusive to Grand Hôtel, with ingredients such as cranberries and cloudberries. New this year is a treatment with a vegan facial product by Joanna Vargas Skin Care, popular among celebrities, models and influencers in New York and Los Angeles. The spa also has two exclusive suites, for those wanting a bit more privacy. With a view of the wa-

terfront and the Royal Palace, this is a true treat. Those brave enough can dive into a cold bath. “Cold baths are healthy, healing and have a long tradition of being used to increase blood circulation. Lots of people have a cold bath before their treatment; it’s a bit like diving into the sea from a cliff,” says Falk. A groundbreaking treatment is the Nordic Deep Sleep, helping travellers with jetlag, perfect for far-away guests who have just checked in at the epic hotel.

Photo: Magnus Mårding

Web: www.grandhotel.se Facebook: GrandHotelStockholm Instagram: @grandhotelstockholm Twitter: @GrandHotelSthlm

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  55


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Skincare and Spa Products

Natural beauty from deep within Deepskin Organics® is the essence and philosophy behind MARIA ÅKERBERG, Sweden’s largest organic, professional skincare brand, developed and produced in the Swedish coastal town of Frillesås. The brand’s all-organic and natural products nourish the skin on a deep level, helping it to reconstruct its natural protective barrier and create long-lasting results. “We want to make a difference with skincare that brings out our natural beauty, with natural products that allow you to see real results,” says Maria Åkerberg, founder of the skincare brand with the same name. The customers seem to agree, as the brand is the fourfold winner of Product of the Year at the Organic Beauty Awards, arranged by the non-profit trade organisation NOC. This year’s award-winning product is the gentle Hand Cream with extract of the ancient medicinal plant Calendula, perfect for delicate skin. Products that have previously won are Papaya Peeling, with its exfoliating and moisturising effect; Eye Cream More, with firming extracts from the Persian silk tree; and Face Lotion More, an anti-ageing face cream with red clover extract. MARIA

58 | Issue 128 | September 2019

By Kristine Olofsson  |  Photos: Dermanord

with the vitality of roseroot. “This is a fantastic treatment with immediate results that is more affordable than one would expect. This goes for all of our products. High-quality, organic and natural skincare should be available to everyone,” Åkerberg sums up.

ÅKERBERG is also the only brand in the world to offer Pure Cell Treatment, a unique facial treatment with live, plant-based stem cells, which kickstarts the cell renewing process

Maria Åkerberg, founder and owner of MARIA ÅKERBERG, has taught us the importance of choosing natural and organic skincare.

MARIA ÅKERBERG offers a wide range of skincare products for the face, body and hair, as well as make-up.

Web: mariaakerberg.com Facebook: mariaakerberg.se Instagram: @mariaakerbergofficial


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Skincare and Spa Products

Hotell Tylösand.

Enjoying a sauna makes you healthier — and that’s a fact A sauna can be almost anything you want it to be: a gathering of friends listening to the crackling woodburning fire in the calm of the night; a relaxing skin-cleansing steam sauna; or a session in the increasingly popular infrared sauna, easing your tender muscles. Regardless of preferences, Nordic sauna giant TylöHelo will help you find your perfect way to enjoy the full benefits of the sauna. By Ulrika Kuoppa-Jones  |  Photos: TylöHelo

This year, Tylö turns 70 and Helo celebrates 100 years as a sauna brand, giving them 170 years of combined expertise in steam, infrared and conventional saunas. Enjoying this Nordic way of relaxing is on the rise. “The thing that people seem to value most is that a sauna is a stress-free haven. You can’t bring a phone or a laptop into a sauna, so it becomes a world of its own – a world where you can get your energy back, invigorate your senses or just de-stress,” says TylöHelo Group brand and marketing manager Hanna-Louise Widberg. Having a sauna helps fight depression and makes us happier. This is something that the Finns, being the happiest

people in the world, according to UN studies, know all about. “Enjoying a sauna boosts serotonin, also referred to as the happiness hormone, in the blood,” Widberg explains. And there are other important health benefits. A 20-year Finnish study, published by the US National Library of Medicine, showed that regular sauna use lowers the risk for Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia. It also reduces the risk of stroke and fatal cardiac incidents, as reports published in ScienceDaily have shown. TylöHelo offers a complete range of products within sauna, steam and in-

frared, for both residential and professional use. According to a University of Iowa study published in Journal of Athletic Training, infrared saunas can relieve muscle pain. These types of saunas are increasingly popular. “The radiation penetrates your whole body in a different way, and the surrounding air is not as hot as in a traditional sauna,” Widberg explains. “Using infrared saunas is a different experience and the perfect way to ease sore muscles. A lot of infrared studios are popping up, making it possible for more people to experience how beneficial they are!” Finally, a top tip for all you insomniacs out there: following a sauna, studies of the brain show signs of a deeper, more restful sleep. Why not give it a try?

Web: www.tylohelo.com Facebook: TyloHelo   Instagram: @tylohelosauna

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  59


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Sweden’s Best Skincare and Spa Products

Different dried plant material is grinded before extraction and analysis of active ingredients. Photo: Martin Rosengren

NovAge True Perfection, designed to counteract the signs of a hectic lifestyle.

Jessica Andersson.

Susanne Fabre.

From lab to bottle — passion for beauty and science Are you looking for high-performing skincare based on natural ingredients? Well, you can now look no further. The products developed by scientists in Oriflame’s lab are not only highly advanced and credible, they might well be the Nordics’ best-kept beauty secret, too. By Ulrika Kuoppa-Jones  |  Photos: Oriflame

Using natural products has been a part of Oriflame’s ethos since it was established 52 years ago. Today, it’s found in no less than 60 countries. “Our Swedish nature has always played an important role for us. The plants that live and survive in our harsh Nordic climate – withstanding cold, dark winters and short, intense summers – inspire us when we create our products. We were among the first in the world to create cosmetics made from natural extracts such as birch sap, decades before other brands started doing so,” says Jessica Andersson, managing director in Scandinavia. Oriflame’s products are more affordable than most other well-known highstreet brands. “That’s because we own the whole chain of the process of making our products – right from the initial thought to selling the new product. We 60 | Issue 128 | September 2019

have our own labs, marketing departments and factories,” says Andersson. Oriflame Skin Research Institute in Stockholm uses pioneering science. It is staffed by international chemists and biologists from eight different countries. Research studies are performed inhouse as well as in collaboration with world-renowned research institutions such as Karolinska Institutet. “When we develop a new product, we discuss gaps in the market, like protecting the skin from pollutants. We then research science communities to find what is out there – to seek opportunities for innovation. We only look at natural ingredients; unlike pharmaceutical companies, we don’t make our own chemical ingredients. When we’ve found interesting ingredients, we’ll take them to the lab for activ-

ity testing,” says Susanne Fabre, director of Oriflame Skin Research Institute. In the lab, the natural ingredients get extracted, mostly from plant stem cells. Plant stem cells are a sustainable source that requires 90 per cent less water consumption in comparison to the cultivation of plants. As they are processed in a lab, they are free from pesticides and can be regenerated. “We’re constantly finding new and exciting ingredients for skincare. Bacteria is a very trendy topic. We have them in our gut, but we also have them on our skin. Microorganisms are important for a healthy skin, so by targeting some specific bacteria we can potentially prevent and treat things like eczema and acne,” says Fabre. Web: www.oriflame.se and www.oriflame.no Facebook: OriflameSverige and OriflameNorge Instagram: @oriflame_sverige and @oriflame_norge


S E’ S R U C lT LT RDI ia U c e V O Sp E EN R U H LT O T U T C A IDE GU e:

m he

A beautiful cultural adventure: Ignite the spark in Denmark this autumn Summer is officially over, but don’t close the door on outdoor adventures just yet. The oyster season is about to kick off, and autumnal colours make the perfect backdrop for some sea trout fishing. Our exploration of Denmark’s finest cultural explorations and activities continues… Some might say that Denmark is more of a design nation than a cultural haven, but who’s to say that the former doesn’t inform and enhance the latter? At LEGO House, the two are in fact inseparable. Add a stubborn, innovative streak, and the same can perhaps be said for Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, where classic art gains modern relevance thanks to engaging events and a forward-thinking mindset. At Rudolph Tegner Museum and Statue Park, cultural creativity meets 62 | Issue 128 | September 2019

natural beauty with inspiring sculptures and an impressive building set against a scenic backdrop of raw nature. And speaking of raw: Denmark is the place to be if you want to not just taste, but learn about oysters – and perhaps try picking your own. Nykøbing Mors boasts guided tours in addition to the Oyster and Mussel Premiere in October this year. Over on Funen, meanwhile, you’ll find what is among the world’s

best destinations for sea trout fishing, while one of the northern tips of Zealand boasts a beautiful UNESCO Geopark. ‘There is a crack in everything; that’s how the light gets in’, Leonard Cohen famously sang. An exhibition full of art inspired by the singer can be found in Copenhagen from this autumn, but in many ways, the quote serves as inspiration for any adventure of exploration, be it out in nature or inside the walls of a gallery. Where will you find the light this autumn? Web: www.visitdenmark.com


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Skaldyrshovedstaden. Photo: Morsø Kommune

Rudolph Tegner Museum. Photo: Henrik Sylvest

Photo: LEGO House

Kjerringoy. Photo: Ernst Furuhatt

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  63


Housing creativity Imagine a house built from enormous, white LEGO bricks. You enter, and in the spacious foyer, you see a massive staircase snaking around a giant, ancient tree. As you walk closer, the tree starts to look a bit funny, with its gnarly bark and chunky leaves. You take a closer look, the 15-metre tree soaring towards the sky above you, and realise that every part of it is built using LEGO bricks. The spiralling staircase awaits, each step taking you closer to a new adventure. By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: LEGO House

LEGO House in Denmark’s brick capital Billund has been built for all LEGO fans, from the tiniest DUPLO devotee to the most hardcore ‘adult fan of LEGO’ (AFOL) and everyone in between. Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, the owner and third generation of Denmark’s LEGO family, got the idea for an interactive experi64 | Issue 128 | September 2019

ence house and museum back in 2010, and much like the tree and the company itself, the concept grew bigger and bigger with great little ideas branching off in all directions until the whole thing needed 12,000 square metres and 25 million LEGO bricks to incorporate it all.

The result is a thoroughly modern building, designed by BIG architects, where digitalisation aids but doesn’t take away from the traditional creative experience. Upon arrival, visitors are given a digital bracelet, through which they can record their memories and see their creations come to life.

Create your own experience The house celebrates the core of the LEGO universe: building things. “As with all of the LEGO universe, the most important thing here is play and creativity,” says senior communication and PR manager Trine Nissen. LEGO sets may have changed through time, and


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

new ways of playing with LEGO bricks may have been added along the way, but the hands-on approach to creating and building remains the same. “It was important, therefore, for the LEGO House to be hands-on too. We wanted to encourage every person who comes in here to get involved and get creative – this is a place for every family member, and there’ll be no disengaged mums and dads moping in a corner scrolling through social media.” Much of the house has free access, including LEGO Square, the restaurants and balconies, and the rooftop playgrounds. The six Experience Zones, meanwhile, require a ticket, ensuring that no activity becomes overcrowded and rushed. The Masterpiece Gallery showcases the best LEGO fan creations, while the History Collection houses the museum, special exhibitions and the most beloved LEGO sets from over the years. With icons like the Death Star, the 1980s pirate ship and the yellow castle from the ‘70s, something here is bound to pick at the heartstrings of even the most grown-up grown-ups. The rest of the Experience Zones emphasises a different aspect of learning

The Tree of Creativity is the largest and most complex structure ever built in LEGO bricks. It represents the LEGO Group’s journey from the early days when LEGO bricks were made of wood – the stem – to the future: the top of the tree is unfinished, and a crane continues the journey upwards.

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  65


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

through play, while the fifth aspect, physical learning, is carried out as visitors move through the house. “We strongly believe in nurturing these skills by learning through play, but it’s not something an eight-year-old should or would think about here – they should just have fun,” Nissen says. “I promise you you’ll very much be focused on exploring and creating things.”

Learn through play The Red Zone focuses on classic creativity: open play and building things from your imagination, helped by the giant pools of bricks – many of the LEGO House’s 25 million LEGO bricks end up here. It’s every aspiring creator’s dream. The Yellow Zone, meanwhile, supports emotional learning. “One of the most popular activities in the entire house is the Fish Designer, where people design and build a flatfish out of LEGO bricks,” Nissen notes. “When they’re done, they can scan it, give it facial features and then they release it into our digital aquarium, where all the world can see it happily swimming around. It’s quite a magical experience.” It’s also possible

to build little animals, bring them to life and have them jump around on stage to some classic Safri Duo tunes. The Green Zone takes us into classic LEGO territory – literally – with its mini

world of towns, farms and landscapes full of daily-life activities. If you look close enough and help each other out, you’ll find some rather unusual situations, too. “It’s one of my favourites. I see it almost every day and I keep finding new little details that make me laugh,” Nissen admits. “If you follow the roads, you’ll eventually find the unlucky roadworker whose beautiful, new, straight road markings take on a life of their own when he gets chased by a dog. I also finally noticed the other day where the happy little pigs’ spots came from…” The social learning zone also includes a story lab, where people can work together to shoot, film and edit their own stop-motion LEGO film starring LEGO minifigures.

Building up an appetite Logic and cognitive fun are at the heart of the Blue Zone, which includes an ever-evolving City Architect city – add your own little six-by-six building to the busy streets or compete to see who can build the car that clears both loops and wins your street race. On the other edge of the world, a team of researchers have gone off to study mammoths – but both the mammoths and the little researchers have got stuck in huge blocks of ice, and they need someone to navigate the 66 | Issue 128 | September 2019


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

rescue vehicles, melt the ice and build a safe path back to freedom. When all this exploration is done, both ticketed and non-ticketed visitors can relax at one of LEGO House’s three food outlets. Fine-diners may luxuriate at Restaurant LE GOURMET, while casual diners can chill out at the café. Most people, however, opt for the MINI CHEF family restaurant. “Naturally, the minifigures who work in the kitchen don’t speak Danish or English,” Nissen explains, “so our visitors have to order in a way they understand – putting together their meal order in LEGO bricks, shipping it off and seeing the meal box roll down the conveyor belt to Robert and Roberta, our two friendly robot servers.” After this, there’s no excuse not to go in for another round of play. Web: www.legohouse.com Facebook: OfficialLEGOHOUSE Instagram: @legohouse

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  67


Taking place 11-13 October 2019, the Oyster and Mussel Premiere in Nykøbing Mors presents a number of oyster- and mussel-related events and activities.

Denmark’s Shellfish Capital — where oysters are for everyone Many people may associate oysters with fancy restaurants, evening wear, and adrenalin-inducing bills. However, on the small island of Mors, also dubbed the Shellfish Capital of Denmark, this could not be further from reality. With the surrounding waters of the Limfjord literally teeming with oysters, wellies, a bucket and a shovel are all you need to get your hands on the tasty little treats. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Morsø Kommune

As Mors’ numerous remnants of Stone Age kitchen middens prove, shellfish has been an essential part of life at the Limfjord for millennia. Today, the island’s rich abundance of mussels and oysters has, together with its beautiful and serene scenery, made it a popular travel destination. “As the largest island in the Limfjord, which is crammed with 68 | Issue 128 | September 2019

shellfish, including two different oyster species, we have a long and rich tradition built around shellfish,” explains Maria Kjelds from Morsø Municipality. “This, combined with the fact that we’re home to Vilsund Blue, Denmark’s largest mussel producer, as well as the Danish Shellfish Centre, which arranges a string of shellfish-

related activities, has made us a centre for everything shellfish-related.” Among the island’s many yearly shellfish-centred events is the upcoming Oyster and Mussel Premiere in October. Running from 11 to 13 October, the event celebrates the beginning of the oyster and mussel season with a string of cooking competitions, including the Danish Oyster Opening Championship, and activities.

A taste of the past While the last century has seen mussels and particularly oysters become an exclusive delicacy, for the island’s early


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Events in 2019/20: The Oyster and Mussel Premiere, 1113 October 2019, in Nykøbing Mors: Three days of celebration on Mors, when the oyster and mussel season begins, and when the first oyster boats dock in the harbour. The majority of events centre on the Limfjord oysters (European flat oysters), some of the world’s best. Oyster Final, 18 April 2020: A special event marking the end of the oyster season with talks, cooking classes, tastings, markets, and much more. Oyster Safari: Oyster safari in the Limfjord together with the Danish Shellfish Centre’s biologists. 14, 21 and 28 September; 11, 12 and 13 October; 16 and 23 November; 14 December.

The water around Mors is teeming with two species of oysters: the original European flat oyster and the Pacific Sea oyster.

inhabitants they were a basic source of nutrition. This is obvious in, among other places, the Stone Age Centre Ærtebølle on the mainland, where the remnants of old kitchen middens show that it might not have been unusual for the area’s first inhabitants to eat as many as 60 oysters per day. However, having disappeared from the area for a period of time, the oysters and their delicate taste made them a much more exclusive treat in more recent times, explains Kjelds. “In the 18th century, as the oysters returned to the Limfjord, their delicate taste made them a very coveted resource loved by many, including the king. He actually enjoyed them so much that he monopolised the right to harvest them. It was strictly

forbidden and punishable by law to pick them for anyone but the royal purveyor, Limfjordskompagniet (a seafood company that merged with Vilsund Blue in 2011, moving the whole production to Mors).” The monopoly to harvest oysters was lifted in the 1980s, and though the first harvest of the season is still delivered ceremoniously to the royal family, the delicacies are once again, literally, up for grabs for anyone with a pair of wellies and a bucket.

Pick your own dinner That it is, once again, not just possible but very easy to harvest oysters by hand in the Limfjord, is partly due to a fairly

new environmental phenomenon: the invasion of the Pacific Sea oysters. Having been introduced into the Wadden Sea in the 1990s, this species of oysters has since spread to the Limfjord as well and become more dominant than the fjord’s traditional inhabitant, the European flat oyster. With many of them living on very shallow water, picking them by hand is easy. “Of course, you have to be careful when it comes to oysters; they should only be harvested within the season – October to April – but with the Danish Shellfish Centre’s guided tours, everyone can learn how to safely pick and prepare their own oysters,” says Kjelds. “On the tour, you get your own waders, a shovel and a bucket, and then you just walk out into the water – they’re everywhere, and often you can see them from the shore.” After the tour, the guides will demonstrate different ways of preparing the oysters, which can be grilled, steamed or, of course, eaten raw. They also have different leaflets with recipes and useful tips on how to open them, so even a complete oyster newbie should be in safe waters.

Guided tours on Mors teach participants how to harvest, prepare and eat oysters fresh from the sea.

To book: www.visitmors.dk Web: www.skaldyrshovedstad.dk

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  69


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Photo: Kim Nilsson

Set in the heart of Copenhagen, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek brings its classical collections of art to life with a string of engaging special exhibitions, talks and events.

Photo: Tahnee Cracchiola, Getty

Photo: Ana Cecilia Gonzalez

Living art for living people With an ambition of renewing its relevance in today’s global world, Denmark’s historic art museum, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, is changing its strategy to revitalise and broaden the appeal of its classic collections. With a string of engaging special exhibitions, talks and events, the Copenhagen museum is honouring its founder’s ambition to present living art for living people. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek

Opened in 1897, the Glyptotek was created by Carl Jacobsen (1842-1914), the founder of the Ny Carlsberg brewery and an avid art collector. With a collection of over 10,000 works of art and archaeological objects from Ancient Egypt, the worlds of Ancient Greece and Rome, as well as Danish and French art of the 19th century, the museum has for many years retained a rather elitist image. This is, however, changing. With a number of special events, including the recent Queering the Museum, in celebration of Copenhagen Pride, the 70 | Issue 128 | September 2019

museum is proving that though old, its collection is still very much alive. Director of the Glyptotek, Christine Buhl Andersen, explains: “When opening the last wing of the museum in 1906, Carl Jacobsen said that his ambition was for the museum to be a place with living art for living people. Even though it’s ancient art, he wanted the experience to be new and relevant. That’s the original vision for the museum, and it’s the one we want to revive. We need to create something that speaks to people, all people, not just Danish people – and not just the elite.”

Opening on 20 September, the Glyptotek’s newest exhibition, The Road to Palmyra, is part of this strategy. The exhibition is based on the Glyptotek’s remarkable collection of Palmyranian art and will be the first special exhibition in Denmark devoted to the culture of ancient Palmyra, an oasis city located in present-day Syria. “The town is a unique place, an oasis, a meeting point and multicultural melting pot, and in this exhibition we’re bringing it all in – the presentation and settings are created to bring you right back to that time and place,” Andersen says, before rounding off: “Today, Palmyra is a place you cannot visit because of war and conflict, and that sad circumstance just shows how important and relevant the cultural heritage that we hold here at the Glyptotek still is.” Web: www.glyptoteket.com


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Afrodites Bælte. Photo: Finn Christoffersen

Solvillingerød.

A monumental treasure of nature, architecture and sculptures The road that takes visitors there seems to be never-ending, but the reward for their effort is huge – quite literally. At the end of the road, visitors are met by the sight of an unapologetic concrete building. The monumental, minimalist museum building could easily be mistaken for an art installation against the scenic backdrop of rural and raw nature that has 14 equally unapologetic sculptures scattered throughout it. Rudolph Tegner Museum and Statue Park is a treasure chest that is just as remarkable as the visionary and at times infamous artist behind it – the Danish sculptor Rudolph Tegner. By Camilla Pedersen  |  Photos: Henrik Sylvest

“The weather has such a big impact on the appearance of the sculptures in the park. They get an almost theatrical expression if it’s a rainy and windy day, whereas sunshine and a blue sky give the place an entirely different feel,” says museum director Luise Gomard. She is referring to the voluminous sculptures, which are immersed in breathtaking heather landscapes that surround the museum and even grant a peek to the sea – a one-of-a-kind setting found in an uncultivated and protected area called Russia, 50 kilometres north of Copenhagen. Visitors can refuel and digest the expressive art in the museum’s coffee shop, called Sørens Café.

Rudolph Tegner (1873-1950) not only created several hundred sculptures and artworks, all centred around human life – birth and death, love and crises, good and bad times – and influenced by travels to Italy and Greece, with Michelangelo and the ancient world as his main sources of inspiration: he also created the museum building, which since 1938 has displayed the results of his lifelong artistic endeavours. Designed to resemble a treasure chest, the entrance is almost invisible, which only makes his impressive and expressive treasures of artworks within the building even more breathtaking. The museum is open from April to October, and the park can be accessed all year round.

“Tegner’s art was monumental in both form and expression, which sparked a lot of controversy and turbulence around his person in the Danish art world. But today, his creative and visionary line of thinking is truly recognised and appreciated,” Gomard says. This is partly done by inviting contemporary and prominent artists to display their artworks each year, this year with Alexander Tovborg, Sophia Kalkau and Tim Hinman exhibiting – all drawing on Rudolph Tegner’s legacy, in collaboration with nkkt.dk.

Rudolph Tegner Museum. Photo: Torben Hrab

Web: www.rudolphtegner.dk Facebook: Rudolph Tegners Museum og Statuepark Instagram: @rudolphtegner

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  71


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Photo: John Olsen

Photo: Rune Johansen

Photo: Claus Starup

Photo: John Olsen

Photo: John Olsen

Photo: Mikkel Bækgaard

A textbook example of the power of ice Spaces and places bring people together, and in Geopark Odsherred in Denmark, that is something that definitely rings true. Since the landscape was shaped in the last Ice Age, the environment has helped and continues to shape art, history, culture and local productivity in Denmark’s first and only UNESCO Geopark. By Josefine Older Steffensen

“The local area really is a textbook example of how the last Ice Age impacted the natural environment in this region. From the rolling hills to the flat plains and the sea surrounding it, we’ve got an incredible landscape for people to enjoy and explore,” says managing director of Visit Odsherred, Hans-Jørgen Olsen. The 155-square-kilometre area boasts beautiful walks, some of Denmark’s best

produce and award-winning wine, alongside quaint towns throughout the region. “We have set routes ranging from five to 33 kilometres. While you’re walking around you can also use our app, which provides a look back in time at what the landscape looked like hundreds or thousands of years ago. This area has had such an impact on the people who live here, so it’s a nice way to see how the landscape has changed.”

Celebrating the land

Photo: Altidaktiv.dk

72 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Throughout the year, there are numerous events showcasing what the area has to offer. In the autumn, for example, there are two food festivals – the local produce is renowned in Denmark, with

many restaurants sourcing their produce from there. The area is also known for a group of painters who settled there between the 1920s and ‘50s, after they were inspired by the light, which is particularly entrancing as it reflects in the surrounding bodies of water. Their work can be appreciated at Odsherred Kunstmuseum. “The historical importance of this region can also be seen in the numerous Bronze Age finds from the area. We continue to find evidence of settlements, and Solvognen, Denmark’s most famous Bronze Age sculpture, was found here,” explains Olsen. “The region is a wonderful synopsis of how people, nature, history and culture come together. It’s a place you can continue to explore for years.” Web: www.geoparkodsherred.dk Facebook: geoparkodsherred Instagram: @geoparkodsherred


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Built in 1975, M/S Solea has been touring the lower west coast of Jutland as a recreational fishing and tour boat since 2003.

M/S Solea also provides tours of Hvide Sande and the sights of the surrounding coastline.

Large cod are among the fish anglers can land on M/S Solea’s 14- or 20-hour deep-water fishing excursions.

Catch the soul of the west coast With modern facilities and a crew that knows the sea like the back of their hand, M/S Solea offers everything from 20-hour deep-sea fishing adventures to leisurely sightseeing tours. Starting out in the harbour of Hvide Sande, the traditional fishing boat also carries out trips of deeper significance, as many book the vessel to scatter the ashes of loved ones in the sea. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Kott Fritid

Built at the shipyard in Hvide Sande in 1975, M/S Solea has been touring the lower West Coast of Jutland as a recreational fishing and tour boat since 2003. The boat is operated by a crew with more than 40 years of experience, and this fact, along with the location of Hvide Strande, makes it a good match for many different kinds of trips, says owner Fritz Kott. “We get all kinds of people – tourists who are just holidaying in the area and want a short fishing trip or a sightseeing tour of Hvide Sande, but also experienced anglers who come solely to take part in our 14- or 20-hour-long deep-sea fishing trips.” While M/S Solea still has the characteristic exterior of a traditional Danish fishing boat, it is today equipped with

modern technology and specifically tailored to meet the needs of anglers. As the only recreational fishing boat in Denmark, it is, for instance, equipped with a stabilising tank that reduces rolling in high seas. This is not just convenient for anglers on long trips, but also for those taking part in the new tours of Denmark’s largest wind farm, Horns Rev 3, which is located approximately three hours from the coast. The trip is one of three sightseeing excursions offered on M/S Solea; the others provide tours of the harbour and the town of Hvide Sande, its surrounding coastline and the many interesting landmarks. But a voyage with M/S Solea can also have a more serious purpose. In recent

years, many people have started hiring the boat to take them and the ashes of a departed beloved one out to sea. “Many people have a relationship to this area – they might have come here on holiday their entire life – and they wish to have their ashes scattered in the sea that they love,” explains Kott. Unlike ash scatterings on land, a permit is not required to scatter ashes across the sea.

Facts:

M/S Solea is approved for 36 passengers. The boat is equipped with 29 permanent rod holders. The boat’s under-deck area can seat 36 people. Fritz Kott is also the owner of Kott Fritid, a large fishing tackle shop.

Web: www.kottfritid.dk and www.solea.dk

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  73


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Teatermuseet i Hofteatret (The Theatre Museum at The Court Theatre) has housed theatre for more than 250 years and a theatre museum for almost 100 years.

The Theatre Museum at The Court Theatre moves into the future Set in the heart of Copenhagen, yet unknown to many, Teatermuseet i Hofteatret (The Theatre Museum at The Court Theatre) has housed theatre for more than 250 years. The Court Theatre is part of Christiansborg Palace but has survived both great fires which consumed the palace itself, and today serves not just as a theatre, but also as a museum of Danish theatrical history.

as Denmark’s most famous writer, Hans Christian Andersen, who, in his early years, harboured hopes of becoming a ballet dancer and thus enrolled in the ballet school at The Court Theatre.

By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: The Theatre Museum at The Court Theatre

Inside the actual building, visitors will also find what is probably the best hidden café in Copenhagen. Set in the theatre’s foyer, the café offers beautiful views of Christiansborg’s riding ground and central Copenhagen. The café and the entire theatre are also available for hire for private events.

The Theatre Museum explores different aspects of Danish theatrical history through paintings, photographs, costumes, and memorabilia. But it is not the exhibition of history, but the experience of The Court Theatre itself that sets the place apart from other museums, according to museum director Peter Christensen Teilmann. “While the official theatre was The Royal Theatre, The Court Theatre was equivalent to what would today be the King’s private television lounge – it’s where the most powerful men of the country would meet to plot and scheme, and when you step in here, you sense the history everywhere. Indeed, with the original interior still intact, visitors may sit down in one of the 74 | Issue 128 | September 2019

plush velvet chairs, surrounded by the royal boxes and intricately decorated ceilings, letting themselves be transported right back to the 18th century. The theatre itself is still active, with performances of all kinds – contemporary and classic, music and theatre – taking place in the evenings. During the day, however, the historic stage is free for visitors to test their dramatic skills. “It’s not just a museum where you walk around and look at things; you may also jump onto the stage and give your own little performance – and you would be surprised how many people actually do,” says Teilmann. Visitors who do so may go home in the knowledge that they have performed on the same stage

From the beginning of 2021, the theatre will undergo a comprehensive restoration and renovation, and when re-opening ultimo 2022 with improved facilities for visitors, The Theatre Museum at The Court Theatre will present an exhibition aimed at opening and improving the historic experience to an even broader audience. Web: www.teatermuseet.dk


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Thanks to decades of dedicated work to improve conditions and stocks, Funen has become one of the world’s best destinations for sea trout fishing.

Hooked on Funen Watch the sun rise, the deer peek shyly through the trees, and the fish jump in the sea. After almost three decades of dedicated efforts, Funen has become one of the world’s best destinations for sea trout fishing. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Sea Trout Fyn

There are many reasons to choose Funen as a holiday destination; for anglers, however, tens of thousands of particularly good reasons are happily swimming around in the sea. After dedicated ecological efforts, the waters of the Danish island’s beautiful shoreline are teeming with sea trout. But it is not just the abundance of fish that makes it

Martin Porsborg Hemrich.

a top destination for anglers, it is also the accessibility, beauty and variety of the island’s coastline. “We have visitors from all over the world: Holland, Germany, Sweden, Norway and even the US,” says Martin Porsborg Hemrich of Sea Trout Fyn. “When people choose Funen over destinations like Norway, I think it’s a lot to do with the accessibility of our coastline; compared to the cliffs of Norway, for instance, it’s a very safe and pleasant environment.” On top of these advantages, Denmark also offers longer and warmer days than its more northerly neighbours. This in turn means a longer season, with the first enthusiasts showing up in late February and the last in early November. During this time, an estimated 30,000 to 50,000 anglers visit the island. But despite the island’s popularity, it is not hard to find

a spot of your own. “There are so many areas of natural beauty, and whether you come on your own or in a group, it is not hard to find a spot of your own,” explains Hemrich, and rounds off: “The best spots also give you a variety of settings to choose between – white sandy beaches, rock beaches, still water, strong currents and so on. In some places you will be in the midst of a large, flat landscape, and in other locations, large oaks and beech will create the backdrop, and when you get that big catch on the hook, you will take that picture with you home – the fish, the stillness and the beautiful scenery.” To make sure visitors make the most of their stay, Seat Trout Fyn has published the guidebook 117 Fine Fishing Spots, which can be bought in local fishing tackle shops on Funen. More informatifon and a summary of the book can be found on the website.

Web: www.seatrout.dk

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  75


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark Leonard Cohen. Photo: Old Ideas, LLC.

Candice Breitz – I’m Your Man (2017).

George Fok – Passing Through (2017).

Kara Blake – The Offerings (2017).

From Montreal to New York to Copenhagen In October, the exhibition Leonard Cohen: A Crack in Everything arrives in Copenhagen. It includes installations by 15 international artists and 20 musicians who have created works of art based on their own take on Leonard Cohen, resulting in an exhibition covering a wide range of subjects, media and perspectives. By Josefine Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Guy L’Heureux

Arriving on 24 October and running until 13 April, the exhibition will span two art institutions a short distance away from each other: Kunstforeningen GL STRAND and Nikolaj Kunsthal. “We’re very excited about this exhibition as it’s quite different and it will speak to many different people,” explains Anne Kielgast, chief curator of Kunstforeningen GL STRAND. “The exhibition also uses Cohen in quite a fascinating way, as it’s much more about the central themes he explored, such as love and existence, than it is just his life. This also means that it’s a place for reflection, peace and a bit of a breathing room from the day-to-day hustle and bustle.”

director of Nikolaj Kunsthal. “One of the pieces requires you to lie down to experience it, while others are more about listening or looking. There’s something for everyone, whether or not you’re a Cohen fan, because the exhibition in itself is just an incredible exploration of modern-day expressions of art.”

Intimate concerts and exploring from the floor

The exhibition will be noticed throughout Copenhagen, with a variety of events to celebrate Leonard Cohen and the further themes of the exhibition. There will be intimate concerts at GL STRAND, meditative yoga as part of the exhibition at Nikolaj, and talks and debates, to name just a few of the things happening. The exhibition is truly exciting, and Copenhagen is the only place in Europe it will be on display.

“The exhibition boasts a huge variety of media, so there’s lots to explore with all the senses,” says Helene Nyborg Bay,

Admission gives access to the exhibitions at both Kunstforeningen GL STRAND and

76 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Nikolaj Kunsthal. The ticket allows for a gap between visits to the two places, making it possible to spread out the enjoyment of the exhibition over two separate days within the exhibition period. A full programme of the events taking place will be available on the websites. Leonard Cohen: A Crack in Everything is organised by Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (MAC) and curated by John   Zeppetelli, director and chief curator at the MAC, and Victor Shiffman, co-curator.  The exhibition in   Copenhagen is presented by   Kunstforeningen GL STRAND in   collaboration with Nikolaj Kunsthal. 

Web: www.glstrand.dk Facebook: glstrand Instagram: @kunstglstrand Twitter: @KunstGLSTRAND

Web: www.nikolajkunsthal.dk Facebook: Nikolajkunsthal Instagram: @nikolajkunsthal


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Denmark

Culture connects the community in Aars Nestled into the crest of Denmark’s biggest fjord, the Limfjord, the Vesthimmerland region adds some of the country’s most beautiful nature and a distinctly northern Jutish flavour to the country’s cultural make-up. The artist and poet Per Kirkeby took a special liking to Vesthimmerland’s charm, and today, his art and architecture spice up the region. His bold 1995 design for a music centre sadly had to be shelved, but thanks to local ingenuity and cooperation, Vesthimmerlands Musikhus ALFA finally opened its doors to the public in 2008. By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: Vesthimmerlands Musikhus ALFA

Vesthimmerlands Musikhus ALFA is named after the region’s four largest towns – Aars, Løgstør, Farsø and Aalestrup. It is located in Aars, which Per Kirkeby developed a special relationship with. He made his first local contribution in 1980, decorating the local college. Nowadays, a wealth of his sculptures adorns the town, ranging in size from bronze statues and murals to a 34-metre brick sculpture, making Aars a Per Kirkeby mecca of sorts. Kirkeby’s largest and final contribution is the music centre, which only came to fruition thanks to some accidental EU funding and significant contributions from local businesses. “It may have taken 13 years for the building to become a re-

ality,” says Vesthimmerlands Musikhus ALFA’s director, Lisbeth Jagd, “but it was worth it. It’s become a real community hub, and it’s used by people of all ages from the region and beyond. That’s exactly what we hoped would happen.” She continues: “We aim to have something for everyone, from jazz nights with the likes of Chris Minh Doky, to standup acts including Rune Klan. Anyone should feel welcome here, and we want everyone in Vesthimmerland to feel like it’s their centre.” The music centre hosts everything from kids’ events through chamber music and theatre to big national and international names like Hanne Boel and Sanne Salomonsen. One of the most popular recurring events is

their monthly sing-along session, which is open to all. Amateur musicians can join one of the ALFA’s three choirs, and everyone is more than welcome at their frequent concerts at the centre. The neighbouring college makes extensive use of the centre’s teaching rooms, and for those keen to take on the dulcet tones of an instrument, a range of music teachers are available for oneon-one sessions through Kulturskolen Vesthimmerland. The concert hall seats 420 people and features some of the region’s best acoustics. “We’re a great place for getting up close with the performers and musicians,” Jagd concludes. “We create intimate, unforgettable occasions. Kirkeby and our many local supporters and volunteers have helped create a very special community space and a nationally credible music centre in a short time.”

Web: vmalfa.dk Facebook: Vesthimmerlands Musikhus ALFA

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  77


Við Áir Whaling Station.

Nature, culture and history unfolded Over the last few years, the number of tourists visiting the Faroe Islands has increased dramatically – and it is easy to see why. Located halfway between Iceland and Scotland, the archipelago of 18 volcanic islands, separated by narrow sounds and fjords, offers visitors unparalleled scenic landscapes, a flourishing food scene, and a rich natural and cultural history – a history that is vividly told by the National Museum of the Faroe Islands. By Camilla Pedersen  |  Photos: The National Museum of the Faroe Island

The Faroe Islanders can seem a bit reserved at first, but don’t be fooled. They are just as warm, genuine and welcoming as the breathtaking yet raw and unpolished nature that surrounds them and effortlessly makes everyone surrender to a slower pace of life. “The 78 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Faroese people have a strong local identity. Although subtle, there can even be cultural differences between the different islands. But they all have a deep respect for their traditions, heritage and history – perhaps because they have been relatively isolated from the outside world for

centuries,” says Herleif Hammer, museum director of the National Museum of the Faroe Islands.

Treasures from the past The National Museum is a good place to start for visitors who want to dive into the rich natural and cultural history of the Faroe Islands. Located in the vibrant capital of Tórshavn, the permanent exhibition galleries take visitors on a journey through the natural mammal and bird life of the Faroe Islands, and tell the story of the volcanic geological origin of the islands. On display are also historical artefacts dating back to the Viking


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Faroe Islands

era, one that has played a vital role in shaping the history of the archipelago. “The permanent exhibition is full of cultural treasures to be explored, including the original Faroese rowing boat and the full collection of the legendary Kirkjubøur benches from the 15th century, which are among the most valued cultural items at the National Museum,” Hammer explains. The richly decorated church furniture, characterised by incredibly detailed carvings, was taken out of the small parish church in Kirkjubøur in 1874 due to an extensive rebuilding. As there was no museum in the Faroe Islands at the time, they were moved to the Royal Museum for Nordic Antiquities in Copenhagen, but they were later returned to the Faroe Islands, where they have earned a reputation as one of the biggest attractions of the museum. Another collection not to be missed is of the national costumes, delicately handcrafted from the finest materials and proudly worn by Faroe Islanders of all ages on national holidays and special occasions. “The tradition of the national costume started taking shape 150 years ago,” says Hammer. “It was originally developed from traditional workwear, but it has been constantly changing ever since, using finer materials and more intricate embroidering and knitting patterns – and it keeps changing with time and trends.”

The farmhouse of the open-air museum.

Step into history – outdoors Few things tell the story of the past better than an open-air museum. Neatly tucked into a beautiful green valley just outside Tórshavn and within a short walking distance from the National Museum exhibition hall, visitors can turn back time to the 1920s. A charmingly rustic and traditional Faroese farm with houses, stables and authentic surroundings, including a water-mill, offers a peek into life as a Faroese farmer used to know it. While farming has been and still is one of the most important industries of the Faroe Islands, fishing has been the main source of income since 1920, an industry that the Faroe Islanders are diversifying and constantly developing.

The National Museum is also developing and growing with time as history unfolds and remnants from the past are discovered, with the restoration of a whaling station being one of the bigger projects. Við Áir was the last of seven whaling stations to be built in the country, but perhaps more importantly, it is now the last of its kind in the northern hemisphere. The whaling station tells the story of how the Faroe Islands were transformed from a peasant society into a fishing society – a story that is now being preserved by the National Museum as a place of historical importance. The restoration process is underway, and it will take several years to complete, but visitors can come and see the work being carried out. Things are changing as the welltravelled locals take influence from the outside world, and the Natural Museum will evolve alongside these next chapters of natural and cultural history being written. But the Faroe Islanders’ love for their traditions, heritage and history remains. The permanent exhibition and the museum shop are open all year round, and the open-air museum is open from May to September.

One of the famous Kirkjubøur benches (Judas Taddeus)

The national costume.

Web: www.tjodsavnid.fo Facebook: Tjóðsavnið

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  79


A modern, standard double room in the new building.

Welcome to a charming hotel overlooking the idyllic Hardangerfjord Thon Hotel Sandven is a historic hotel steeped in tradition, suitable for both leisure and business travellers. It is situated in scenic surroundings, perched on the edge of the captivating Hardangerfjord, and in close proximity to Bergen. The hotel is an excellent place to relax while enjoying Norheimsund and the stunning Norwegian nature. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Thon Hotel Sandven

As the perfect setting to start your adventure in Hardanger, Thon Hotel Sandven is an idyllic gem inside a classic 19th-century white wooden house full of history. “It is a typical Norwegian period house in Swiss style, which has been well-preserved with all its charm still present,” says director Arnstein Birkeland. The building itself is listed 80 | Issue 128 | September 2019

and was originally built in 1857. It was privately owned for several generations, until it was bought in 2011 by Olav Thon, who decided to expand the hotel by adding a new extension.

Homely and elegant atmosphere Today, the hotel has a total of 104 rooms, 33 of which are in the original,

historic hotel building. These are kept in its authentic style, with antique furniture and old-fashioned interiors to create a homely and elegant atmosphere. “We are in the process this autumn and winter of completely renovating this part of the hotel. All rooms will be revamped with brand-new bathrooms, but we will preserve the existing, cosy old style,” says Birkeland. The remaining 71 rooms are located in the new wing, which was completed in 2013. Here, the hotel offers 17 wellequipped and modern apartments, perfect for short- or long-term rental, with everything needed for a comfort-


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Norway

able stay. “These are great for families and groups who want to stay together in one space. Each apartment has its own terrace overlooking Hardangerfjord and Folgefonna National Park, where one of Norway’s largest glaciers can be found,” the director continues.

Enjoy Norwegian cuisine In the hotel’s own Restaurant Sandven, lunch and dinner are served daily. Here, guests can enjoy classic Norwegian cuisine based on local produce in historic surroundings. “The restaurant is inside one of Norway’s best-preserved dining rooms, which creates a grand atmosphere,” says Birkeland. A lavish breakfast buffet is also served here every morning. In addition to the restaurant, guests can visit the hotel’s own bar and lounge area, decorated in the old-fashioned style, where one can enjoy a coffee during the day or a drink in the evening. With its prime location right by the seafront at the Hardangerfjord, the hotel boasts a large, impressive garden, which visitors can make use of during the summer months or anytime the weather allows it. “It is wonderful to sit there and enjoy a delicious meal or a drink with beautiful views,” Birkeland says, adding: “When tourists visit us, they run around

and take pictures both outside in the garden and inside the hotel, because it’s so unique and historic.” The hotel is well-suited for courses and conferences, with four meeting rooms including a large hall that seats up to 200 people. These rooms can also be booked for events such as weddings, anniversaries and other celebrations.

In close proximity to Bergen Situated in the centre of Norheimsund, Thon Hotel Sandven is in close proximity to the country’s second-largest city with everything it has to offer. “We are only an hour’s drive away from Bergen, so very convenient for those who want to experience the city but also be close to the breathtaking nature found in the area,” Birkeland says. “We have great bus connections, making it easy for you to get wherever you want to go, and the airport is only one hour and 15 minutes away.”

Activities available all year round While staying at Thon Hotel Sandven, a seemingly endless list of activities is available all year round. With hiking opportunities for beginners, families and the more experienced, and with boat trips and exciting tourist attractions nearby, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

In Hardanger, you can, for instance, go skiing all year: in Kvamskogen during the winter, and at FONNA Ski Resort during the summer, where it is possible to ski or hike on the glacier. If you are not interested in skiing, the hotel offers the rental of rowing boats, kayaks and bikes, for guests who want to stay active. The hotel also partly owns Hardangerfjord Adventure, offering RIB boat trips with a unique view of the fjord, islands, glaciers and life in and along the fjord. Custom tours can be arranged and tailored for groups wishing to explore the area, such as a visit to Folgefonna National Park, including a stop at a local farm with apple cider tasting, or the boats can bring and collect guests who want a more adrenaline-inducing mountain trip. “Other activities close by include the boat museum Hardanger Fartøyvernsenter and  the impressive Steinsdalsfossen waterfall – and, of course, the beautiful nature with its many hiking opportunities starting right outside the hotel,” Birkeland smiles. Web: thonhotels.no/sandven Facebook: thonhotelsandven Instagram: @thonhotelsandven

Top left: The hotel building has been awarded the Olavsrosa – an important sign of historic importance and quality. Top middle: A superior room in the historical part of the hotel. Top right: Restaurant Sandven offers Norwegian cuisine in historic surroundings.

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  81


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Norway

Founded in the 17th century, Bærums Verk is a historical hub of culture, crafts and culinary delights.

Bærums Verk combines an old ironworks site with an eclectic sculpture park.

A marketplace of living history Situated a 20-minute drive west of Oslo, Handelsstedet Bærums Verk is a living, breathing testament to Norwegian history. Originally a 17th-century ironwork plant, this picturesque riverside village is a popular day-trip destination that merges old and new, offering an artisanal marketplace, one of Norway’s oldest taverns, and a sculpture park. By Julie Linden  |  Photos: Handelsstedet Bærums Verk

Founded in the 1600s to make necessities ranging from nails to cannonballs, the foundries of Bærums Verk were the lifeblood of the area for centuries. Once owned by Peder Anker, one of Norway’s founding fathers and prime minister in the early 1800s, the ironworks grew commercially prosperous and well-connected. In 1889, it was inherited by the Løvenskiold family, who still own it to this day. Today’s Bærums Verk is a unique marketplace, located on a street of preserved wooden houses that once belonged to the labourers at the ironworks – now home to several artisanal shops. In this scenic setting, old and distinctly Norwegian crafts come to life, ranging from wood carvings to paintings and traditionally blown glass. One of Norway’s oldest taverns – Værtshuset – dates back to 1640 and remains a local hub of fine foods, offering 82 | Issue 128 | September 2019

high-quality Norwegian cuisine made from fresh, local ingredients. Foodies will also love the upcoming Thanksgiving market on 29 September, where flavours of the harvest can be experienced. “I think the strength of Bærums Verk is in the genuine experience of history, and the contact with the authentically Norwegian – connecting all senses,” says Vilde Holte Lerbak, marketing coordinator. “Beyond that, we’re also very accessible – locatEnjoy the market houses, many of which offer local foods and beverages.

ed in beautiful nature scenery very close to Oslo, and open all days of the week, throughout the year.” She emphasises the detitanation's relevance to all members of the family. “The marketplace and sculpture park bring the family together, and there are activity offerings for kids, such as an art club for exploring one’s creativity.” The sculpture park, nestled among the old houses and the riverbank, offers a modern complement to the ironwork’s extensive history. This collection of contemporary sculptures receives a new contribution each year, carefully growing with the times. “The park adds a living element to the surroundings, incorporating contrast and encouraging wonder, which makes the area feel like a living museum,” says Holte Lerbak. Handelsstedet Bærums Verk offers guided tours by appointment. Contact baerumsverk@lovenskiold.no to book.

Web: www.baerumsverk.no Facebook: Bærums Verk


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  A Culture Vulture’s Guide to the Nordics — Norway

Photo: Erika Søfting

Photo: Frode Inge Helland

A journey back in time Kjerringøy Trading Post is Norway’s best-preserved old fish and jekt-trade site, consisting of 15 authentic buildings with interiors still in their original state. Located 30 kilometres north of the town of Bodø, this little gem is not like an ordinary museum, but instead, truly like a journey back in time. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Ernst Furuhatt

A visit to this historical landmark provides a great example of coastal heritage set in magnificent scenery. In fact, it is one of the country’s most important collections of buildings from the 19th century. Here, you can not only sense the past, but also take part in the typical daily life in a northern coastal community. Kjerringøy Trading Post is a unique and well-preserved piece of Norwegian cultural heritage. “We have restored the buildings and taken care of the original interiors, but otherwise everything is in its original condition,” says department manager at Nordland Museum, Erika Søfting. She explains that Kjerringøy is not like an ordinary museum, but instead an exciting experience that draws you

into the history of the village. “Coming here is like a journey back in time. It’s like time has stood still, creating a very special feeling for those who visit.” In this authentic environment, guests can shop in the old shop Kramboden or enjoy refreshments at Nyfjøsen Café. “The cafe serves temptations typical of the area, and in beautiful surroundings. It is a popular place, visited by both tourists and locals who appreciate homebaked cakes and the cosy atmosphere,” says Søfting. Throughout the summer season, Kjerringøy Trading Post is open to visitors daily, and during the rest of the year it is open on Saturdays. “In No-

vember and December, we offer exciting Christmas events for kids, where they can, for example, learn about and try to find Godbonden. He is an ancient Norwegian Christmas goblin from the pagan times,” Søfting smiles. Earlier this year, Nordlandsmuseet opened the new Jekt Trade Museum nearby – a museum Søfting strongly recommends travellers to visit in combination with a trip to Kjerringsøy. “We have gained new knowledge in relation to jekt trade, and the exhibition has a uniquely preserved jekt – a traditional, Norwegian single-masted cargo vessel, typically used in stockfish freight – as its main attraction. The two different museums complement each other in a nice way and help show how extraordinary the history of trade in circumpolar Norway is,” says Søfting. Web: www.nordlandsmuseet.no Facebook: KjerringoyHandelssted Instagram: @kjerringoyhandelssted

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Experience the heart of the Norwegian winter at Mesna Weaving together Norwegian history, a uniquely captivating story, horseback riding and a novel approach to film location tourism, Mesna offers a truly unique experience. Add unbeatable scenery, warm hospitality and close proximity to the Olympic town of Lillehammer, and your active Mesna experience is fit for the big screen.

Peer Gynt at Gålå, the couple decided to make theirs a winter play. And what better story to start with than that of the Birkebeiners, which retells one of most dramatic events of Norwegian history?

By Julie Linden  |  Photos: Ian Brodie

It was after the Norwegian blockbuster Birkebeinerne (The Last King) in 2015 that the area rose to cinematic fame. Filmed around Mesna Farm on the shores of South Mesna Lake, a mere 25-minute drive from the Olympic town of Lillehammer, the historic storyline was brought to life by the stunning natural scenery as well as the star performance of Mesna’s herd of Icelandic horses. The story of the 12th- and 13th-century Birkebeiner rebels was cinematically woven into the local landscapes, and film locations have become an important part of what Mesna has to offer. Since then, numerous TV series, comedies like the acclaimed Netflix series, Lillyhammer, 84 | Issue 128 | September 2019

and promotional films have been shot in the area and on the farm.

The story of the Birkebeiners – a wintery drama From that first connection to the Birkebeinerne film, Mesna has now developed another show. This unique piece of local theatre – the Birkebeinerspelet outdoor play – is set in the middle of the snowy winter fields. Camilla Li and Kristoffer Hauger, owners of Mesna Farm, had acquired some of the sets from the film, and drawing inspiration from the Norwegian tradition of staging historical plays outside, like the outdoor production of Henrik Ibsen’s

The play is set at the end of the Viking era, when Norway was ravaged by a civil war. One side, the poorer Birkebeiners, were based in the province of Trøndelag. Their opponents, the Catholic Baglers, came from the Oslo area and further south, supported by the church and ultimately the pope in Rome. For either side, power depended on succession to the throne, and both sides had royal claims. When King Håkon Sverresson, leader of the Birkebeiners, died without an heir, the Baglers saw an opportunity for greater power. But King Håkon had fathered an illegitimate son by his mistress Inga from Varteig, and the baby boy, also called Håkon, was now a threat to the Baglers’ ambitions.


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences

What followed was an excruciating race to save baby Håkon before the Baglers could kill him. The flight over the mountains to safety in Trøndelag was a dangerous 60-kilometre trek, fit only for two of the very best Birkebeiner warriors. They made it, and 11 years later – in 1217 – the 12-year-old Håkon Håkonsson could claim the Norwegian throne. He would go on to rule over a unified Norway for almost 60 years, changing the course of Norwegian history.

Birkebeinerspelet – from Viking politics to live action The Birkebeinerspelet play brings to life the central event: the flight across the mountain and the escape from the pursuing Baglers. During a 60-minute live action show, told in true Viking style in the wintery landscape, the play features famous Norwegian actors as well as local talent. In dramatic fight scenes, with fire displays, real snow and Icelandic horses galloping across the snowy stage, the play is made all the more dramatic by the lakeside location, in the area where these historical events actually took place. The audience is brought into the middle of the action in a truly immersive experience that starts up at the farm with a medieval-style market, offering a grand array of local foods, refreshments, crafts and souvenirs. As the play begins, you may follow the actors and the action on a torch-lit walk down to the amphitheatre and the stage – all made from snow. There, you are seated on haybales under the stars, wrapped up in your warm winter clothes. You are then transported back to another age – the darkness, the fresh, cold night air, and the fiery drama on stage altogether heightening this genuine Norwegian experience. The play is offered in Norwegian, with a summary in English provided separately. However, the story’s thrilling action and breathtaking scenes hit home with each spectator – regardless of language. Presenting universal themes of loyalty and love, Birkebeinerspelet presents an immediately accessible piece of theatre that will enthral everyone.

Birkebeinerspelet sees several well-known Norwegian actors take to the outdoor stage.

Wrap up in a warm blanket and let the story of the Birkebeiners fill you with excitement and wonder.

The wintery setting of the play adds to the traditional, Norwegian feel.

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences

Live action – from fights to riding – makes Birkebeinerspelet a unique winter theatre experience.

Mesna and beyond – events, Olympics, and skiing Beyond offering an acclaimed outdoor theatre production, Camilla and Kristoffer also accommodate company events, family gatherings, weddings and conferences through Mesna Activities and Accommodation. State-of-the-art facilities for conferences and team-building events are available, and the picturesque barn is the perfect setting for weddings and other private celebrations. With a herd of around 60 Icelandic horses at the farm, you may also choose to combine your stay at Mesna with a unique horseback experience – taking in the gorgeous views on a horseback trek tailored to your group’s desires and abilities. Riding camps and private lessons are also available, where those interested in the magnificent Icelandic breed can benefit from Camilla and Kristoffer’s more than 40 years of riding experience. Accommodation is offered only a stone’s throw from the farm, at Mesnabakken, a restored pension where visitors can relax in peaceful and comfortable surroundings after a day of adventures.

Wrap up in a warm blanket and let the story of the Birkebeiners fill you with excitement and wonder.

History buffs and Viking fans get their fill with this spectacular show.

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Further accommodation is available within the Ringsaker area. The Clarion Collection Hotel Hammer in Lillehammer offers a special Birkebeinerspel package that includes transportation to Mesna and tickets to the play. The popular ski resort Hafjell Resort is located a mere 40 minutes away, also offering a cosy place to stay. The close proximity to Lillehammer and surrounding skiing areas, like the famous Sjusjøen Resort, gives visitors plenty of opportunities to enjoy one of Norway’s most popular winter destinations. Visitors will also want to take some time to visit the many landmarks from the 1994 Winter Olympics, as many of the Olympic skiing and skating arenas are still in use. Add a rich line-up of cultural centres and museums, such as the Norwegian Olympic Museum, and your visit to the region will be packed with wonderful winter experiences. Web: www.mesna.no and www.birkebeinerspelet.no


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences

Arctic mountains and northern lights — right on your doorstep With stunning views of northern lights, the Arctic Ocean and majestic mountains, visitors at Hav og Fjell can enjoy breathtaking nature in the north of Norway, staying in comfortable sea cabins with everything northern Norway has to offer right on your doorstep. Hav og Fjell, which translates to ‘sea and mountains’, offers five spacious two-storey sea cabins, each with a balcony and dazzling views. The cabins also include a fully equipped kitchen, a sauna and a fireplace, and the resort offers wellness facilities including an outdoor Jacuzzi and a log cabin with a wood-fired sauna. “We’re located in an area where there are no houses around, only nature, which gives our guests an authentic experience of the spectacular Arctic nature,” says manager Marit Mydland. “Tromsø and the surrounding areas are famous for high northern lights activity, so usually, as long as there’s a clear sky, there’s a good chance of seeing the northern lights.”

The resort is located only 30 minutes from Tromsø airport and a 40-minute drive from Tromsø city centre. The Hav og Fjell staff are always ready to go that extra mile for their guests, offering collection at the airport and transport to Tromsø and nearby activities. They also offer boat trips for up to eight people. Hav og Fjell is well suited for business trips and conferences, for which they offer all the required facilities, local, traditional

Photo: Juan Fran Torres

By Synne Johnsson

dinners, and a range of activities. “Because we’re so close to Tromsø, there are so many opportunities here, like going on a whale safari or ice fishing. We are of course more than happy to help our guests find and book activities or transport,” says Mydland. “You’re truly at one with nature here; it’s just extraordinary. It’s something you’ll never forget.”

Photo: Jan Arne Olsen

Web: www.havogfjell.no Facebook: Hav og Fjell / Arctic Sea & Mountain Instagram: @havogfjellas

Close to nature, adventure and history Nestled between the Arctic tundra and the Arctic Ocean in the northern part of Norway, you will find Gargia, the perfect place to start your Arctic adventure. Surrounded by unspoilt nature, this historical site was once used by the Sami people as a place to give their herds a rest. By Bianca Wessel

Today, reindeer roam on the tundra nearby, and the cosy hotel, Gargia Lodge, is the perfect base for walks, snow mobile safaris, ice-fishing and dog sledding tours. The main attraction, however, is the spectacular northern lights. The earth’s natural display of colourful, dancing lights is only visible during the winter months, and in only a handful of locations. From early September to late April, Gargia Lodge is the place to observe the aurora borealis, as it is situated far north, with no light pollution from nearby cities. Guided tours and activities are all offered exclusively for small groups, providing guests with the opportunity to tailor their own authentic Norwegian experience.

Gargia Lodge is truly a hidden gem, with 11 en-suite rooms and a cosy lounge area complete with an open fireplace, as well as an in-house restaurant serving local specialities, and a fully licensed bar. There is also a traditional sauna and outdoor hot tub, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscape.

Comfortable en-suite rooms in a home-fromhome environment. Photo: Gargia Lodge

Gargia waterfall and the spectacular northern lights dancing across the skies. Photo: Finns Foto / finnhaug.com

How to get there? Fly to Alta, Norway, with SAS or Norwegian. Gargia Lodge is a 30-minute drive from Alta, and airport transfer is available upon request.

Web: www.gargialodge.no Facebook: gargia.lodge Instagram: @gargialodge

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Photo: Kodiak Photography

A gem in the heart of the Lyngen Alps Idyllically situated between snow-covered mountains and the Arctic Ocean, Lyngen Experience offers guests a brilliant way to see northern Norway, with the perfect combination of nature and luxury.

restaurant. In the wellness area, guests can relax in a sauna with large windows to enjoy the view, or enjoy a dip in the outdoor Jacuzzi.

By Synne Johnsson  |  Photos: Lyngen Experience

The front of the hotel is made of mostly glass, so the spectacular view over the Arctic nature is impossible to miss. The sitting room is where guests can enjoy a good book or a glass of wine in the evenings, and in the restaurant, local, traditional food is served – from fresh fish to local reindeer.

Opened as recently as in 2018, Lyngen Experience Lodge provides its guests with brand-new facilities. With only nine rooms, the lodge provides the best service Lyngen has to offer, and the staff are always prepared to go out of their way to fulfil their guests’ wishes. “We sort out everything for our customers, from the moment they land at Tromsø Airport to their departure. We pick them up from the airport either by car, boat or helicopter, and we offer a broad range of activities and provide local gourmet food,” says owner and manager Reidun Nilsen.

the captain of their boat and responsible for all the activities they provide at sea. Every full-time worker at Lyngen Experience is local, something that guarantees the guests a truly authentic visit. “We started Lyngen Experience because we wanted to show people from across the world how beautiful Lyngen is. I think everyone who lives here is extremely proud of the place, and we simply think it is the most beautiful place on earth,” Nilsen smiles.

A lodge beneath northern lights and midnight sun

“I think the place has a very homely feel, and guests have described it as a ‘home away from home’. When our guests feel like home, we know we have succeeded,” Nilsen says. “However, I do think it is the nature we’re surrounded by that is the most astonishing thing about this place.”

Nilsen owns Lyngen Experience alongside Tommy Wikerøy, a local fisherman. While Nilsen is the director, Wikerøy is

The lodge, which Nilsen describes as a boutique hotel, consists of nine brandnew rooms, a sitting room, a bar and a

Lyngen, which is located in Troms, is mostly famous for the untouched and

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences

breathtaking Lyngen Alps, a mountain range that follows the shore of the Lyngen Fjord, with the highest mountain top rising no less than 1,833 metres above the ocean. “The nature is so extreme and steeped in history. It is also a very genuine place, with local farmers and fishermen, so our guests get to experience the real northern Norway,” Nilsen says. “The coastline goes around almost the whole of Lyngen, and we have deep fjords and an exotic wildlife. There is nothing here that shields us from the weather, so we have some incredible climate here – from calm and sunny to extremely windy and rainy. That’s an experience in itself.”

Tailor-made activities in spectacular surroundings Among the many activities Lyngen Experience provides, there is everything

from snow scooters and whale safaris to skiing and dogsledding. The main product is, unsurprisingly, a northern lights tour. The hotel has its own northern lights guide, who is renowned for being one of the best northern lights guides and photographers in Norway, known as ‘the Aurora Chaser’, Kjetil Skogli. “We mainly work with groups of six, to ensure that everyone involved is seen and gets their needs and wishes met,” explains Nilsen. “What makes it even better is that all the activities start on our doorstep, so we can spend all our time doing the actual activity, instead of having to drive for hours.” However, Lyngen is not only a place for the winter. In the summer, you can camp under the midnight sun and enjoy spectacular hikes and fishing trips. The area offers incredible hiking possibili-

ties for all levels, and the hotel has certified guides to show visitors the way in the mountains. Lyngen Experience also offers photography courses, kayaking trips and outdoor yoga. The hotel even tailormakes activities for larger groups and organisations that wish to rent part of, or the entire lodge. “We have done so many fun things with different visiting groups. Once, we did a survival camp for a bigger group, where we set up a camp in the forest with lavvos, traditional tents,” says Nilsen. “Only the imagination can limit what we do for our customers.” Web: www.lyngenexperience.no Facebook: Lyngen Experience Instagram: @lyngenexperience YouTube: Lyngen Experience

Lyngen Experience offers a broad range of activities, from dogsledding to whale safaris.

Co-owner Tommy Wikerøy.

Guests can book northern lights tours with one of the most famous northern lights guides in Norway. Photo: Kjetil Skogli

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences Hornindal ski resort. Chase the powder and the perfect slope at nine Norwegian resorts with Alpepass.

Harpefossen ski resort. Photo: Thomas Bickhardt/BicFoto

Hornindal ski resort.

Explore the powder snow of the Sunnmøre and Nordfjord alps The Norwegian alps offer a multitude of breathtaking locations for nature lovers and ski enthusiasts alike, with varying degrees of difficulty and challenge. If you love trying out new mountains and areas throughout a season, then Alpepass might just be the perfect option for you. By Alyssa Nilsen  |  Photos: Hornindal Skisenter

Alpepass is the ski-pass that lets you experience nine skiing resorts in the areas of Sunnmøre and Nordfjord, situated on the western coast of Norway. The area is known for its Alpine mountains, its spectacular views, and its free-riding skiing opportunities. The pass gives you access to the slopes, the lifts and the experience without the hassle of booking each resort separately. The resorts Arena Overøye, Harpefossen Ski Centre, Ørsta Skisenter, Strandafjellet, Stryn Vinterski, Volda Skisenter, Ørskogfjellet, Fjellseter and Hornindal Skisenter are all covered by the pass, with full access to lifts and slopes across the nine destinations. Whether you are a professional athlete looking for new 90 | Issue 128 | September 2019

challenges, a skiing enthusiast chasing the perfect powder snow, a family looking for holiday fun, or a group of friends going on adventures together, there’s a multitude of experiences to choose between. “It’s ideal for families with different needs,” says Stein Bjørhovde, chairman of Alpepass. “There are children’s slopes for the youngest to enjoy, while the adults can go off-piste and enjoy the powder.” The promise of off-piste skiing and powder snow is unique for a region where the location would suggest that there wouldn’t be any snow at all. But even with the climate changing and the weather becoming more unstable and extreme, Bjørhovde explains that the

snow-covered areas are substantial at all of the resorts. “The powder areas are surprisingly large,” he says. “Even as people use them and the prepared areas expand, the areas are so big that there’s always more powder to be found.” And if the season or weather isn’t up to scratch, the snow canons ensure that the slopes are ready for enthusiasts to enjoy all winter long. “We actually have more stable skiing seasons now than we did 50 years ago, when the weather was more stable,” Bjørhovde laughs. The area can be reached by car or bus and is located a short drive away from Ålesund Airport, with international flights to Europe and access to all major cities in Norway. It is also possible to enter the region via the STOL network, primarily through Ørsta Volda Airport.

Web: www.alpepass.no Facebook: alpepass


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences

An exciting blend of Arctic history and nature at the world’s northernmost distillery At the world’s northernmost distillery, Aurora Spirit, you can wake up to the stunning view of the clear fjord and steep Lyngen alps, and go to sleep gazing at the northern lights dancing right outside the window. By Åsa Hedvig Aaberge  |  Photos: Aurora Spirit Distillery

Aurora Spirit was founded in 2016 in Lyngen, on the outskirts of Tromsø, an area world-famous for its tall mountains and dramatic nature. “What started as something that felt like a crazy idea among friends is now a successful business,” says manager Tor Petter W. Christensen. Under the brand name Bivrost, Aurora Spirit Distillery produces world-class gin, whisky and other spirits, based on Arctic botanicals and fresh water from the local glaciers. “Bivrost is considered to be the Viking word for describing the northern lights. The Vikings saw the northern lights as a magical bridge between earth and heaven,” Christensen explains. 92 | Issue 128 | September 2019

Now, the distillery has also evolved to include an award-winning visitor centre, inspired by Scottish whisky distilleries, where guests can see how the drinks are made and get a taste of the variety of beverages. “In addition to traditional whisky tastings, Aurora Spirit also offers accommodation in cabins, locally sourced food and snacks, as well as experiences in the surrounding area,” says Christensen. The distillery is located at the mouth of the Lyngen fjord on an old, abandoned NATO fort originally built by Germans during World War II. “For adventurous visitors, we can tempt with activities ranging from RIB tours on the fjords to Arctic axe throwing and guided tours in

the old, subterranean defense structures,” Christensen continues. The visitor centre abounds with local history, and the guides happily share Arctic stories and Viking tales. The distillery attracts a great deal of international attention, which is no wonder considering its spectacular location with mountains, northern lights and Arctic wilderness.

Web: www.bivrost.com Facebook: auroraspiritnorway Instagram: @bivrostspirits


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Autumn & Winter Experiences

A unique date with the dancing northern lights xxx

Northern Norway is renowned as one of the best places in the world to get a glimpse of the magic green and violet northern lights. In the north, it is dark outside from early afternoon until morning, from September to April. The dark sky makes these months the perfect time to experience the unique aurora borealis dancing in the sky. By Åsa Hedvig Aaberge  |  Photos: Dan Steinbakk xxx

“I do anything in my power to find the lights,” says Dan Steinbakk. He goes by the nickname ‘Dan the aurora man’ and is the guide and owner of Arctic Experience, a company giving people from all over the world an opportunity to experience the northern lights in Tromsø. Steinbakk is a northern Norway native of Sami heritage and has had a life-

long fascination with the northern lights. “When I realised that I could make a living off sharing this alluring phenomenon, it was an easy choice to start a business. Ever since I started the company back in 2013, I have had the pleasure of guiding thousands of delighted guests in the pursuit of finding the lights,” he says. The tours are intimate, with a maximum

of eight guests on each tour. Steinbakk offers professional and authentic guiding based on local knowledge, while showing guests a rare view of Mother Earth’s art. Arctic Experience offers guided tours every other day between September and April. “By planning tours every other day, I have the flexibility to move a tour if the weather is bad. People don’t pay me to see clouds,” smiles Steinbakk. The winter months can be freezing in Norway, so appropriate clothing, homemade soup, a hot drink, and a cosy bonfire guarantee the comfort of the guests on every tour. After the trip, the guests get high-resolution images from the tour featuring the northern lights and themselves, to bring a piece of the aurora borealis back home. Web: www.arcticx.no Facebook: ArcticEx Instagram: @arcticexperience

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Visit Narvik Hiking trails in the area lead you through untouched nature.

Spectacular view of the northern lights from the restaurant. Photo: Jan-Arne Pettersen

Mountain biking. Photo: Rune Dahl

The resort provides breathtaking views – even from the kids’ slopes.

Narvik is the host for the FIS Alpine Junior World Ski Championships in 2020. Photo: Kjell G. Karlsen

The new gondola was designed by Porsche Design Studio. Photo: Jan-Arne Pettersen

Unique skiing resort with spectacular views Surrounded by majestic mountains and deep fjords, Narvikfjellet is an excellent destination with spectacular views all year round. Here, in Norway’s most urban, unique skiing resort, there is something for everyone – with or without skis. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Narvikfjellet

With the urban city life of Narvik close by, yet based amid the raw, northern Norwegian wilderness, the world-class skiing resort Narvikfjellet has become a popular spot for everyone from extreme sports enthusiasts to families with children, during both summer and winter. “All those who enjoy the great outdoors will have a pleasant and fun time with us,” says manager Jim Ove Johansen. The resort is open all year round, and Johansen tempts visitors with countless activities. “Our six ski-lifts transport you around the 14 different slopes, with levels ranging from beginner to experienced – all of them with amazing views. We were voted Norway’s and Scandinavia’s best off-piste, so there are plenty of areas for the more extreme skier to explore,” he adds. The largest pre94 | Issue 128 | September 2019

pared slope is over 3,200 metres long, rising 900 metres high. In addition to slopes and trails, there are also many opportunities for great experiences for those who do not want to ski. “We have something for the whole family. Outdoor activities such as hiking are available in all seasons, and during winter we have snowshoes and sledges at your disposal,” Johansen says. As of next season, Narvikfjellet will also have its own accommodation offering. In February this year, Narvikfjellet proudly opened its modern, new gondola lift, a great way to experience the view of the stunning Ofotfjord, the historic Malmhavnen, Narvik town and the massive mountains embracing the city. “The new gondola lift is the heart of the facil-

ities. It is a spectacular attraction and a great starting point for hikes in the area,” Johansen enthuses. The gondola trip takes about four minutes, bringing you on a 1,100-metre-long journey up the mountain. From Narvikfjellet Restaurant, which is located at the top, you can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding landscape as well as delicious, local food. With a capacity of 1,600 people per hour, the gondola is an excellent year-round experience worth trying. “In the summer months, you can enjoy the midnight sun from the lift, and during the winter, the beautiful northern lights dance over the city,” Johansen smiles. “When the lights are switched off in the resort, the northern lights are very prominent. Whether you are in the lift or out skiing, it is something quite magical, and truly a once-ina-lifetime experience.”  Web: www.narvikfjellet.no Facebook: Narvikfjellet Instagram: @narvikfjellet


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Visit Narvik

Photo: Kim Green

The couple owns 16 huskies and offers an authentic dogsledding experience. Photo: Andreas Røstad

Bergbjørn Fjellservice offers tailor-made and personal guided tours in the majestic, northern nature.

Tailor-made mountain tours in majestic nature After meeting through mountain climbing and bonding over their love for nature and physical activities, Karin and Tore Bergbjørn started Bergbjørn Fjellservice – a mountain guide service that tailor-makes activities for its customers, including skiing, mountain climbing, dogsledding and more. By Synne Johnsson  |  Photos: Bergbjørn Fjellservice

Based in Skjomen outside Narvik in the north of Norway, Bergbjørn Fjellservice offers spectacular nature experiences, tailor-made to their guests’ ability and often combining different activities like skiing and dogsledding, or mountain climbing and biking. “Neither Karin nor I is from up north, but when we looked to find a place to settle down, we had some very specific criteria as we wanted to be close to the mountains and the nature,” Tore says. “We met through mountain climbing in Spain. We have also been to South America, where Karin was the first Scandinavian woman to reach the top of Cerro Torre, so our joint love of nature and pushing our limits is what brought us together.” Now they live in the shadow of Norway’s majestic national mountain, Stetinden, which is where a lot of Bergbjørn’s tours take place, but the mountain has

a unique place in the couple’s hearts since it’s where they got engaged. Karin and Tore jointly own not just their business, but also no less than 16 huskies. The dogs let them offer authentic dogsledding experiences while helping to carry equipment for longer, overnight guided tours up in the mountains. “I used to work as a professional jockey in France when I was younger, but had to quit after an accident, so to be able to work with animals is something I value highly,” Karin says. “Right now, we have 16 huskies, which is the perfect number. We care a lot about our dogs’ welfare and would never put profit before their wellness. The dogs’ needs will always come first. It takes a lot of time and I spend my entire day on the dogs, so it’s fair to say that it’s a lifestyle.”

Bergbjørn Fjellservice keeps the groups small, with a maximum of six people per session. They don’t mix different bookings, so regardless of how few people are in your group, you will not be in the same session as visitors you don’t know. This ensures a personal tour, suited to your capability. “Life is too short to wait until you’re retired to start doing what you love, which is why we chose to start this business together. It is amazing to be able to do what we love every day, and even better that we can do it together,” says Karin.

Both Karin and Tore Bergbjørn have always loved being outside in nature and pushing their limits.

Web: bergbjorn.com Facebook: Bergbjørn Fjellservice Instagram: @bergbjornfjellservice

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  95


Accommodation at the gateway to the Atlantic Ocean Road Situated at the gateway to the Atlantic Ocean Road at Kårvåg in Averøy, Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer is the perfect stop on your trip through Norway. The cottages are idyllically located just off the seafront, with stunning views of the surrounding nature and numerous activities and day-trips on offer. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer

Fancy waking up surrounded by some of Norway’s best scenery? Idyllically located just off the seafront, with stunning views of the surrounding nature, Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer offers a range of cosy seaside cabins as well as a large campsite area. “We have an amazing view west over the ocean, with stunning sunrises and sunsets – a great starting point for lovely days and evenings here in 96 | Issue 128 | September 2019

scenic and peaceful surroundings,” says owner Morten Holen. Since the Atlantic Ocean Road opened in 1989, it has become an extremely popular place to drive through. Many say it is a must when in Norway. Holen bought the land at the gateway to the famous road in 2005, with plans to create an area fitted to accommodate the growing tourism

after noticing a high demand for a place where travellers could stay while on the road. After working to get approval and developing the site, Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer opened in spring 2007 and, ever since, has been an attractive stop for national and international guests who want to stay comfortably close to the Atlantic Ocean Road.

Traditional seaside cabins and camping possibilities Constructed in wood using old building traditions by a local carpenter who was inspired by the traditional style of the area, the seaside cabins have everything you need for a comfortable stay. Guests


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: A Journey on the Atlantic Ocean Road

can choose from two small cabins with one bedroom or six large, three-bedroom cabins, three of which come with a private sauna. “The cabins have a typical Norwegian look with grass on the roof, which makes them stand out – something the tourists seem to appreciate, as they take lots of photos,” says Holen. Inside, the interiors have been kept in the same traditional, charming style to convey a homely atmosphere with details like fresh flowers in the windows. “We want it to feel like a real and comfortable home, and not just a typical cottage at a campsite,” the owner continues. For camping enthusiasts who prefer staying in a caravan or tent, Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer is set up for a pleasant stay. Along the seafront, the site offers a large spot for caravans, a prime location for enjoying the beautiful views from the comfort of your own home away from home. In addition, Holen tells of a special and unique tent site out on a pier, as well as a larger area near the road. “The pier is especially popular

and always full of tents during the summer season,” Holen says.

Numerous experiences waiting for you With Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer as your base, there are numerous experiences available both onshore and offshore. Open all year round, the site offers guests plenty to discover and do through every season. “There’s a great amount of sea-related activities nearby – everything from scuba diving and kayaking to windsurfing. Fishing is a very popular sport too, with many excellent fishing spots both on the shores and from boats, where you can catch pollock, cod, haddock, catfish, mackerel, salmon and more,” Holen explains. Atlanterhavsveien Sjøstuer has six Kværnø boats and four Øyen boats available for hire. Guides and fishing equipment can also be rented, if needed. For anyone wanting to experience the area on land, there are possibilities to go cycling, wildlife watching, or hik-

ing. Averøy has an impressive mountain range in the middle of the island, with Meekknoken being the highest mountain at 750 metres above sea level. A hike here provides breathtaking panoramic views. Holen also suggests a day trip to nearby towns such as Kristiansund, Molde, Ålesund with its aquarium, or Grip, for a chance to see a 500-yearold stave church, as well as a trip to one of Norway’s most visited fjords in Geiranger, or the dramatic Trollstigen (The Trolls Road). “Many people describe Averøy as a miniature of Norway. We have everything: high mountains, fjords, sea and forests. It is a great starting point for exploring many different parts of our beautiful country, and there are so many great destinations to discover nearby,” Holen concludes. Web: www.atlanterhavsveien.org Facebook: atlanterhavsveiensjostuer Instagram: @atlanterhavsveien_sjostuer

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  97


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: A Journey on the Atlantic Ocean Road

Family-friendly camping site in idyllic surroundings Looking to find the best destination for your camping trip in Norway? Located in a quiet, beautiful setting near the sea in Romsdalen, in close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean Road, Tornes Fjordcamping is a great, family-friendly choice. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Tornes Fjordcamping

Tornes is quite the little gem in Romsdalen. When staying at Tornes Fjordcamping, you are in the midst of some of the best Norwegian nature, with fantastic views of the mountains and fjords. It is the perfect place to discover peace and relaxation. “Many people come here to get away from their busy everyday lives. With its beautiful scenery and great location, the campsite is a great starting point for many hiking trips and adventures,” says owner Raymond Årsbog. “It is a favoured spot especially for Germans, Dutch and Belgians, and we have many regular guests who come back year after year because they enjoy themselves so much.” The idyllic camping site offers six homely cottages and 30 caravans for rent, in addition to an area for tents. “We have 84 permanent housing options for guests to stay in all year round, as well as all the facilities needed to have a pleasant and 98 | Issue 128 | September 2019

comfortable holiday,” Årsbog explains. Situated right on the seafront, with a wonderful backdrop of the surrounding landscape, the site is perfect for fishing enthusiasts with boats and watercrafts for rent. In recent years, the campsite has also become a popular place to book for events such as weddings. If you are a family travelling with children, Tornes Fjordcamping is the place for you. “It is a fact that if the kids are not happy, then the parents are not happy either, so it’s important for us that the area is facilitated for the whole

family,” says Årsbog. The family-friendly camping site has an exciting playground for kids to explore, its own artificial turf football field, a large swimming pool and beach area for warm summer days, and plenty of outdoor space for the children to run around freely. “There are no busy roads or distractions close by, so the whole family will have a quiet, safe and happy holiday time with us,” promises Årsbog. Described by many as a little Norwegian paradise, situated only a 20-minute drive from the famous Atlantic Ocean Road, Tornes Fjordcamping is an ideal stop when travelling across Møre og Romsdal in Norway.

Web: www.tornesfjordcamping.no Facebook: TornesFjordcamping Instagram: @tornesfjordcamping


Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  Explore Norway: Visit Namdalen Arial shot from 1968. Photo from Norsk Sagbruksmuseums archives.

Lunch break outside the sawmill in 1954. Photo from Norsk Sagbruksmuseums archives.

Spillum Dampsag & Høvleri in the spring of 2019. Photo: Kjell Roger Eikeset

A unique Norwegian time warp The sawmill industry was one of Norway’s most important industries for centuries. Norsk Sagbruksmuseum is working hard to preserve the unique Norwegian cultural heritage of Spillum Dampsag & Høvleri, by creating an educational and exciting museum experience in a truly authentic setting. By Ingrid Opstad

Spillum Dampsag & Høvleri, located just south of Namsos, is the country’s only preserved steam sawmill and today one of just 15 technical-industrial cultural monuments of national importance left in Norway. A visit here is much like stepping into a time warp from the 1800s. “Our main focus has been on preserving the sawmill, along with the knowledge of the machines and products made while it was in operation from 1884 to 1986. When entering, guests can smell sawdust, shavings, oil and the smoke from the old workshop, adding to that authentic feeling,” curator Kjell Roger Eikeset explains. The museum’s staff still produce using some of the traditional machines in the museum. Norsk Sagbruksmuseum is both an educational and exciting museum, and has become especially popular among tourists and school classes. You can choose

to walk around freely along adapted trails with information in Norwegian, English and German, or be guided through the facilities, making it possible to follow the production line from wood log to finished product. “We offer academic programmes tailored to different levels, from kindergarten up until high school. This summer, for instance, we arranged quizzes and fun activities for children so that they could learn in a fun and playful way,” says Eikeset. In June 2020, a new visitor centre opens at the museum, which will be marked with a festival and a family day at Spillum. “The new facilities will help modernise the museum, with additional exhibitions and extended opening hours. It allows us to go deeper into the Norwegian sawmill and social history, while also focusing on sustainability in connection with woodwork and plastic,”

says Eikeset. “It will be a great complement to the unique cultural heritage that is Spillum Dampsag & Høvleri, and a great way to promote the local and national identity that we believe is important to preserve.”

Fun activities for kids. Photo: Linda Trøen

Opening hours: Monday to Friday: 9am to 3pm. Guided group tours are available outside opening hours by   appointment only.

Web: www.sagbruksmuseet.no Facebook: norsksagbruksmuseum Instagram: @norsksagbruksmuseum

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  99


e:

LÄ Y K in ÄS M V JY T SI VI em

h iT

La Kala has also staged performances at the restored Suolahti railway station, which is part of the Keitele Museum. Photo: Visit Äänekoski

Outstanding opera for everyone Starting with a few locals listening to Marie Finne-Bray’s rehearsals during summer evenings, and growing into an opera house performing unique versions of well-known operas, the story of Marie Finne-Bray and Piers Bray and their La Kala Opera House is nothing short of exceptional. By Mari Koskinen  |  Photos: Katri Hernesmaa

Finnish-born Marie Finne-Bray and her Australian husband, Piers Bray, moved from Australia to Sumiainen, Finland, in 2010. “We wanted to move to Finland for its pure nature and green forests. We had never visited Sumiainen before, nor seen the house before we moved in, but we used online maps to look around and loved what we saw,” says Marie. 100 | Issue 128 | September 2019

When Marie and Piers moved into their new home, they found out that there was a spacious garage downstairs – a tractor repair shop back in the day. During the hot summer, Marie noticed how pleasant and cool it was down there and, more importantly, that the space had exceptional acoustics. She started to use it for rehearsing and opened the double doors to the garden – though

slightly worried that the new neighbours might be disturbed. But, as it turned out, the opposite happened: the neighbours started to ask around to find out who sang so beautifully, making polite enquiries about her practising at specific times so that they wouldn’t miss it. The rehearsals soon grew into performances, where Marie and Piers sang to the locals. In 2012, they started their own opera house – La Kala Opera House. The name La Kala is a humoristic version of the worldfamous La Scala, loosely translating as ‘La Fish’ – and to complete that, there is actually a pike in their logo.


Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Visit Jyväskylä

Picturesque settings The La Kala is located in a stunningly beautiful landscape surrounded by two lakes, in Sumiainen in central Finland. Sumiainen is a small village of less than 1,000 inhabitants, situated in Äänekoski. The Äänekoski area is known for its beautiful forests, numerous lakes and friendly locals, who welcome visitors open-heartedly. La Kala has visited many venues in the area and has been awarded for its great cultural achievements. La Kala often gives performances in Jyväskylä, too, which lies about an hour’s drive from Sumiainen. Jyväskylä is a vibrant city located in the heart of the Finnish Lakeland, known for its universities, promoting an active lifestyle, and a top-class culture scene. La Kala has taken part, for example, in Jyväskylän Kesä, a ground-breaking cultural event in Finland.

Popular productions “We perform a wide range of music, including everything from opera, musicals and jazz to church music, contemporary classical and all the most-loved evergreens,” explains Marie. “We aim to make opera inviting and available to anyone. You don’t have to be an expert in classical music, nor do you have to follow any strict protocol – just come as you are. We get hardcore opera fans like us, too; they rarely get to enjoy intimate

performances like these, where the ensemble is performing right at your feet.”

Events:

La Kala puts on about six or seven productions every year, and its repertoire includes many familiar titles, such as Così fan tutte, Jesus Christ Superstar and Phantom of the Opera. La Kala is also available for private commissions.

— 12 October at La Kala, Sumiainen: Prana Pauliina and La Kala Opera: Joy of Life – yoga and live music

Marie’s wide connections in the opera world also brings big names to Sumiainen, including one of Britain’s most distinguished baritones, John Morgan. “John Morgan held a masterclass with a grand finale for the week at the local church, where both the students and the master himself performed. We are planning another masterclass with him, as well as with another top Finnish composer and artist. It will be yet another wonderful collaboration!” Marie enthuses.

— 14 and 15 September at Nikolainsali, Jyväskylä: Evita, dramatised concert

— 2 November in St Mary’s Church, Shinfield, UK: Marie Finne-Bray’s concert Aurora Borealis: warm musical greetings from the North Part of the 950th Anniversary year of St Mary’s Church Shinfield — 23 December at La Kala, Sumiainen: La Kala Christmas Concert — 6 January at Taulumäki Church, Jyväskylä: For the Kings, the Star, dramatised concert Tickets: www.lippu.fi

At the moment, La Kala is busy with upcoming performances of Evita, in the form of dramatised concerts. The opera house is known for the quality of its performances, both musically and visually, so Evita promises to be a great experience, too. “We are also working on a new project, but I don’t want to reveal too much about it yet. It will be on stage next summer,” Marie reveals. In any case, it looks sure to be yet another fantastic production to continue the exceptional story of La Kala Opera House.

Information about Äänekoski: www.visitaanekoski.fi Information about Jyväskylä: www.visitjyvaskyla.fi Information about the venue for Evita in Jyväskylä: www.nikolainkulma.fi Facebook: La Kala-Ooppera Sumiainen, Keski-Suomen Kamariooppera

Maria Finne-Bray.

Cast from Mozart Soirée. Photo: Harri Anttila

From Evita, dramatised concert at Nikolainsali, Jyväskylä.

Issue 128 | September 2019  |  101


Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Visit Jyväskylä

No ordinary hotel

By Maria Pirkkalainen  |  Photos: Solo Sokos Hotel Paviljonki

Located in the city of Jyväskylä in Central Finland, Solo Sokos Hotel Paviljonki offers a unique combination of charming details, highly personalised service, and magnificent lake scenery – all guaranteeing a fantastic stay during your visit to Finland. A modern classic – that’s what comes to mind when you see Solo Sokos Hotel Paviljonki, a state-of-the-art hotel in the vibrant, Finnish city of Jyväskylä. Built in 2012, with a recently completed extension, all 210 rooms of the hotel are to die for. And that’s a popular opinion: Hotel Paviljonki has already been recognised at the World Luxury Hotel Awards three times. In addition to the Scandinavian-style rooms, the hotel boasts a large gym and,

of course, saunas. “Our customers’ wellbeing is a priority for us. For example, in the women’s sauna, you can try a chocolate face mask or enjoy a cup of tea,” says hotel manager Linda Rastela. Solo Sokos Hotel Paviljonki is located in central Jyväskylä, right by a beautiful forest yet only a stone’s throw away from the city centre. With good transport links from everywhere in Finland, Jyväskylä hosts plenty of events and fairs throughout the year.

“Our hotel is especially revered for our staff’s exceptional, personalised customer service,” Rastela adds. And you’ll notice the prioritisation of customer service when you arrive at the breakfast, too. “There’s no shortage of staff available, with tea and coffee served to your table,” promises Rastela. At Solo Sokos Hotel Paviljonki, you’re guaranteed an unbeatable hotel experience.

Web: Search for Sokos Hotel Paviljonki on sokoshotels.fi/en Facebook: solopaviljonki Instagram: @solopaviljonki

With nature just beyond its doorstep When thinking of Scandinavia, many think of forests – woods with waterways, animals, the old, the new, the lively, and the silence. If you want to discover all of this and more, visit Varjola – a resort with nature just beyond its doorstep. By Hanna Andersson  |  Photos: Varjola Resort, Julia Kivelä

With over 35 activities and adventures to discover, Varjola has something for everyone. “You could say we have three parts of our organisation. We have the relaxing bit, where our visitors can experience the Finnish sauna, go for a walk in the forests, or enjoy our locally produced food in one of our restaurants. Then we have the adven-

ture bit for the adrenalin seeker. Here, we offer quad bike and snowmobile safari, hiking and rafting. Finally, we have a wide selection of team-building activities, which we have developed for our visiting conference groups,” says Riikka Ruunaniemi, sales and marketing manager at Varjola. The accommodation differs depending

on what you are looking for in your stay, but comfort is a promise at Varjola regardless of what you choose. “We have hotel standard accommodation, and our focus is on making it as comfortable as possible for our guests. Just because you are staying close to nature, that doesn’t mean you have to live in a tent.” Although Varjola encourages visitors to discover nature in the most exciting ways, the resort also sees the beauty in just being. “We have focused a lot on our activities for a while, but after reading studies on what tourists wants from Scandinavia, we have seen that the interest lies in the calm and the silence. I just had a couple from Italy checking out, and they were so pleased with how quiet it could be. People seek places where they can just breathe,” concludes Ruunaniemi. Web: www.varjola.com Facebook: varjolaan Instagram: @varjolaresort

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Scan Magazine  |  Mini Theme  |  Visit Jyväskylä

Happy art from Finland Traditionally, melancholy has been the flavour of Finnish art, but Paavo Stenius flies in the face of preconceptions with his bubbly personality, contagious optimism and a portfolio of delightfully quirky paintings that stem from nothing but the sheer joy of living. It’s been said that there are two kinds of artists – those who want to become one and those who have to become one. The latter is true for Paavo Stenius, who left his career in nursing in order to paint. “I felt that I can add more value to people’s lives through my art,” he says. Today, the Jyväskylä-based artist follows just one guideline: “I only paint when I’m feeling happy – otherwise, I’ll just go to bed,” he laughs. The result is a line of work that has won praise and a growing following – not least thanks to the light-hearted sense of humour that shines through the whole portfolio. The links between art and happiness are a scientific fact. A 2011 University College London study showed that the brain’s dopamine levels and prefrontal ac-

By Jo Iivonen   |  Photos: Paavo Stenius

country’s collectively more traditional and melancholic artistic expression. But, with Finland having been declared the happiest nation on Earth this year, it is perhaps just the right time.

tivity increase while observing a beautiful piece of art. The neural response is comparable to that of falling in love, no less. Stenius’ signature style features distinctively Finnish settings seen through a rich filter, and with plentiful quirky details thrown in. It’s in stark contrast against the

The Long Run of Winter.

Paavo Stenius next to a self-portrait from 2010.

Web: www.paavostenius.fi

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Scan Magazine  |  Special Theme  |  xxxxx

Scan Business Fostering Sustainable Growth and Innovation 106  |  Business Profiles 108  |  Business Calendar 110

106

107

You can have it both ways Our children went to a Quaker school where they enjoyed a daily period of silence during the morning assembly – to think, reflect, meditate or doze. They didn’t sit in age groups, so 11- and 18-year-olds might be side by side. I won’t say there was no bullying at all in the school, but there was certainly a general atmosphere of mutual respect, and I think this daily practice contributed to it.

More recently, some organisations have introduced reverse or upward mentoring. Now the senior manager becomes the learner. How can companies and individuals benefit from this? One answer is that, when instructed by tech-savvy youngsters, the senior staff can make better strategic decisions in a technological environment they don’t have a clear grasp of.

In large business organisations, the big ones and little ones rarely mix, which is why two-way mentoring is an interesting way of weakening hierarchical division.

I’m more interested in the soft processes going on. The seniors might learn to listen better. People with a 40-year career ahead of them can communicate a

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By Steve Flinders

different organisational and world view to people who are only thinking five or ten years ahead. Two-way mentoring can strengthen communication and culture in your business. Now, who could I ask to upwardly mentor me? Steve Flinders is a freelance trainer, writer and coach, based in Malta, who helps people develop their communication and leadership skills for working internationally: steveflind@aol.com.

A mentor is usually a senior manager who meets periodically with a more junior member of staff to advise on the latter’s career and professional development. The only person I’ve ever met – from among thousands – who didn’t find mentoring really useful was someone whose mentor was forced on him through a corporate programme. If you don’t have a mentor, the best way to get one is to ask: think of someone higher up who you admire and who could help you. The worst thing that could happen is a refusal. Most managers feel flattered to be approached in this way. Issue 128 | September 2019  |  105


Scan Magazine  |  Fostering Sustainable Growth and Innovation  |  Watrec

Founded in Finland, Watrec now also runs projects in Asia.

Powering the world — sustainably Watrec is a Finnish pioneer when it comes to utilising waste in producing energy. In the 16 years since the company was founded, sustainable, reliable and continuously improving solutions have become increasingly sought-after all around the world. By Hanna Heiskanen  |  Photos: Watrec

The two owners of Watrec, Juhani Suvilampi and Kimmo Tuppurainen, first met at university. Halfway through their studies, they wondered how to best put their newfound knowledge into use. “We wanted to do something for the benefit of people and the environment,” Tuppurainen explains. Fast-forward to 2003, and Watrec, an environmental engineering company, was founded by Suvilampi. Tuppurainen later joined the waste-to-energy solutions specialist. What in 2003 was a marginal business – Watrec had to address gaps in environmental regulations of the day – has become a key player in the field of sustainable energy. The company provides waste treatment solutions to a wide variety of industries, from food and beverages to pulp and paper. Watrec continues to offer consultancy services, but nowadays also covers all the stages of building and 106  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

operating a biogas plant. In terms of the number of plants and capacity, it’s the largest operator of its kind in Finland. There is no typical Watrec customer. “Our strength lies in tailoring solutions. The starting point is the customer’s unique problem, which means that no two projects are the same,” says Tuppurainen. The company also operates abroad, particularly in south-east Asia, where the demand for sustainable waste solutions is growing exponentially. The projects might differ, but partners everywhere appreciate a trustworthy provider. “When you talk about infrastructure support functions, there is no room for error. Our desire to provide genuine solutions and ensure that those solutions work is in our DNA.” In an always-evolving business environment, staying afloat calls for continuous improvement. Long customer relation-

ships produce invaluable feedback, and It’s best to remember that it’s less about reinventing the wheel and more about combining tried and tested technologies in new ways. Waste to energy is a global megatrend. The demand for processing organic waste sustainably and utilising carbon neutral solutions to produce energy is guaranteed to grow, which means new opportunities for Watrec, too. “It’s not only processing the waste, but also recycling those nutrients back to nature. We won’t be able to solve all sustainability issues, but believe we can play a key complementary role,” Tuppurainen concludes.

Web: watrec.com LinkedIn: Watrec Twitter: @watrecoy


Scan Magazine  |  Fostering Sustainable Growth and Innovation  |  Soil Scout Ltd

Underground scouting for precision agriculture The much-improved local weather forecasts of today help farmers hugely in their daily planning, but they still do not reveal anything about what happens underground. “A lot of the information we need to build an accurate picture is underground, in the soil. My aim was to figure out how we could get precise data of the ‘underground weather’,” says Johannes Tiusanen, co-founder and chief science officer of Soil Scout.

the conditions. “They are also not affected by above-ground animals or vehicles, so they give true data of the actual field,” adds Tiusanen, himself a 19th-generation farmer.

By Mari Koskinen  |  Photos: Soil Scout

Once set up, the sensors send data every 20 minutes, giving accurate data of moisture content, temperature and salinity. Other types of sensors, including third-party equipment, can also be integrated with the scouts.

After years of scrupulous research, Tiusanen had come up with a solution to this problem, and that was the start of Soil Scout. At the moment, Soil Scout’s system is helping farmers, golf courses and sports arenas to maintain their fields and turfs – but the company has set out to make an even bigger impact. “In the long haul, we aim to decrease the amount of water and energy used for agriculture globally, which also reduces loss of expensive fertilisers caused by over-watering.” Another environmental project is testing the Soil Scout sensors in Sri Lanka, where they do extensive research to be able to forecast landslides. “Our system can help predict the time and scale of possible landslides by giving data on soil plasticity,” Tiusanen explains. This helps

the authorities to respond early and prepare the area for evacuation, for example.

Simple implementation Soil Scout consists of wireless underground sensors, called scouts, and overground equipment that helps to transfer the data to the Soil Scout Analytics platform for online viewing and analysis. The service can also upload the data to other applications. “The advantage of the Soil Scout system is that the small sensors are easy to dig into the field without hardly any interruption to the growth – something especially crucial at golf courses and sports arenas,” Tiusanen explains. The underground sensors are completely maintenance-free for the whole lifespan of ten to 20 years, depending on

The company is now ready for expansion and has secured substantial growth financing. “We will invest in developing the hardware further, enhancing the online service including the mobile app, and improving data compatibility with other farm data management services.” By these measures, the future of precision agriculture is elevated to a new level, and Soil Scout’s global goals are another step closer. Web: www.soilscout.com Facebook: soilscout Twitter: @Soil_Scout

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Invest in a bright future The world was still reeling from the doom and gloom of the recession in 2009, when Anders Marcus and Peter Krogsgaard Jørgensen saw the light: investors like themselves were looking for safe and reliable investment opportunities, and what could be more reliable than the sun? The sun, as Annie assures us, will, after all, come out tomorrow. A decade later, their company Obton and its 2,500 investors have made a large and positive impact, setting up and managing solar cell farms across Europe and securing a steady return on investment year on year.

pertise as the sector itself grew, and today, we’re big and experienced enough to have influenced the industry on an international scale,” Marcus continues. “No one single private investor would

By Louise Older Steffensen  |  Photos: PR Foto

2018 became the best year yet for the Obton Group, which saw pre-tax profits rise to 19.5 million euros. Obton, which is Denmark’s largest and oldest solar asset owner, also rose six places to become the 11th largest in Europe. “We were lucky to get into the market at just the right time,” says CEO Anders Marcus. “Back in 2009, we were just at the brink of sustainable energy really taking off and becoming big business. 108  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

We knew next to nothing of the industry at the time, and in truth, solar energy investment wasn’t even a field yet – we had to employ experts from the wind industry who then had to convert their knowledge to fit the solar sector.”

Regular, reliable ROI Such an early start meant, however, that Obton also got to shape part of the industry. “We gained experience and ex-

Anders Marcus.


Scan Magazine  |  Business Profile  |  Obton A/S

be able to do what we do together – we work like a fund, similarly to the really big players, such as pension funds.” All in all, Obton has been responsible for more than 600 solar projects in Germany, France, the Netherlands and several other European countries. “We have to look further south when we’re positioning our projects,” Marcus explains. “The sun in Scandinavia, let’s face it, can be a cruel and capricious mistress, so we look for and build our farms in regions with lots of good, old, reliable sunshine, as well as reputable local authorities with whom we can develop a good partnership.”

How the money is made Several years ago, Obton changed from passive investments to actively building and managing its own solar cell farms, enabling the company to control and carefully monitor every detail of their investments, making the output as reliable as possible. Apart from its green investment experts, Obton employs scientists, researchers, engineers and an entire management and service team, now more than 130 people in total, who plot out, build and maintain the company’s numerous farms.

been paid as forecast to the more than 400 investors. Most of the 250 solar cell farms acquired for the new Obton Solenergi Stabil project so far are already up and running, and in 2018, the portfolio’s overall production was three per cent better than predicted. For 2019, output is no less than ten per cent ahead of forecast, which is already resulting in good earnings for Obton’s investors.

About Obton:

What’s next for the growing solar investment industry? Marcus believes that the sun is about to make an impact on the energy market in a whole new way. “So far, we’ve had to rely on governments and politicians being able to see the mutual benefits of green investments, but now, with solar technology becoming cheaper and better by the day, we’ll soon be able to deal directly with large businesses looking to have their energy supply on-site. We’re on the edge of an energy revolution and, though we entered the industry to make a profit, it feels fantastic to be doing something that’s actually helping the world too.”

Obton is part of the investment house Obton Group and has been granted an AIFM (FAIF) license by the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority, providing extra security for investors. Obton budgets conservatively: its production budgets deviate by no more than +/- 1.2 per cent for the overall portfolio.

Obton is a Danish investment company that specialises in creating stable ROI through investment in solar cell farms. With more than 600 European solar projects and an overall capacity of more than 600 MWp, Obton is one of Europe’s largest solar power investors, with projects in countries including Italy, Germany, the Netherlands and France.

Obton’s farms currently produce enough energy to supply 160,000 households a year.

Web: www.obton.com LinkedIn: obton-a-s

Funding for new solar farms is raised through new investments, which are made into Obton’s current fund project. The company is currently growing its third project of its kind, Obton Solenergi Stabil, which consists of one of Europe’s largest ever solar farm portfolios, following the successful approach of Obton’s first two projects. Once the farms are set up, the amount of solar energy that each entity puts out becomes highly stable, and the energy converted is sold to the local grid according to agreements with local government entities, which is where Obton’s stable and steady profits come from. “Because of the size and range of our farms,” Marcus adds, “we’re able to easily absorb and cover any deviations in energy output at any one location with all the others.”

Profiting off a better world Both of Obton’s former projects are unfolding as predicted, and dividends have Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  109


Scan Magazine  |  Business  |  Morning Train / Calendar

A winding road to success Morning Train took off in 2010 and has been going at full speed ever since – but it hasn’t always been a smooth ride for the four young entrepreneurs behind the fullservice digital agency located in Odense, Denmark’s hi-tech hub. By Camilla Pedersen  |  Photo: Morning Train

“I ended up growing a beard, hoping that it would make me look older,” recalls Peter Thomsen, co-founder of Morning Train. “It was not easy to start something from scratch with close to zero work experience and money. The biggest challenge was our age. Even though people saw our talent, it scared them off that we were so young.” Nonetheless, hard work, high ambition and an endless drive compensated for any perceived shortcomings in the age department, and slowly but steadily, more and more clients joined Morning Train on its journey – and they have stayed on board. Morning Train not only specialises in web development and design, but also

digital marketing. “We have a razor-sharp analytical and business-minded approach to digital marketing. Today, everything can be measured. Our skilled online marketing experts combine their know-how with data and create tailored strategies that scale

Morning Train is a full-service digital agency driven by four young Danes who are defining their own roadmap for success – also for their clients.

businesses – always with a strong focus on a client’s revenue and bottom line.” Return on investment is key in everything Morning Train does – and that is also why they invest heavily in their growing team, which now counts more than 25 people with an average age of 25. “Our crew is our most important asset, and happy employees mean happy clients,” says Thomsen.

Morning Train grew its revenue by 80 per cent in 2018 and reached a revenue of ten million DKK (around 1.2 million GBP) that year. Clients include both local Danish businesses and international brands such as Schneider Electric and Royal Unibrew.

Web: www.morningtrain.dk Facebook: Morning Train LinkedIn: Morning Train

Business Calendar

By Sanne Wass

Scandinavian business events you do not want to miss this month Business breakfast: The UK’s industrial strategy The Swedish Chamber of Commerce for the UK continues its breakfast briefing series, a programme of interactive roundtable discussions with interesting speakers. This event’s guest speaker is Mark Slaughter, director general for investment at the UK’s department for international trade, who will give an overview of the UK’s industrial strategy. The nationwide plan invests in skills, industries and infrastructure across sectors such as artificial intelligence, green economy and future transport systems. Date: 17 September 2019, 8-10am Venue: Danske Bank UK, 75 King William Street, London EC4N 7DT, UK www.scc.org.uk

Panel discussion: Ethical Production Hosted at the Finnish Institute in London, this panel discussion will focus on sustainable materials and production. Four designers – Eva Spoof (Finand), Reet Aus (Estonia), Michael McManus and Matthew Grant (UK) – will share

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their knowledge about sustainable design, environmentally conscious production and the processes behind them. The event is arranged in collaboration with NID, a concept store focused on Estonian and Finnish design, and Disegno, a design journal. Date: 20 September 2019, 7-9pm Venue: Finnish Institute in London, 3 York Way, London N1C 4AE, UK www.eventbrite.co.uk

eTail Nordic eTail Nordic returns to Copenhagen for the fifth time, gathering Scandinavia’s e-commerce leaders, innovators and disruptors to discuss and share solutions to the key challenges they face. According to the organisers, eTail differs from other retail conferences in that it focuses on small working-group activities rather than just formal presentations, enabling delegates to learn from each other and make connections in an intimate setting. Date: 2-3 October 2019 Venue: Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel, Amager

Boulevard 70, 2300 Copenhagen, Denmark www.etailnordic.wbresearch.com

Nordic Business Forum Whether you are a CEO, a business executive or an entrepreneur, this two-day event will help you strengthen your leadership skills and take your business to the next level. The Nordic Business Forum will bring together 7,500 like-minded people in Helsinki to network, build connections and hear from some of the world’s foremost business experts. This year’s event will focus on growth, challenging you to identify your goals and direction. Date: 9-10 October 2019 Venue: Messukeskus Expo and Convention Centre, Messuaukio 1, Helsinki, Finland www.nbforum.com


Photo: Erik Nissen Johansen

Restaurant of the Month, Sweden

Flamboyant cocktails in a quirky pharmacy — just what the doctor ordered When strolling around the picturesque Old Town, Gamla Stan, on your visit to Stockholm, you’ll soon find yourself at the famous square Stortorget. Opposite the Nobel Museum, in amongst haphazardly scattered, colourful old houses is a place of magic, dating back to the year 1575 – an old pharmacy turned cocktail bar, where some of the medicinal herbs are turned into the most divine cocktails with an unexpected twist. Pharmarium is the talk of the town. By Ulrika Kuoppa-Jones  |  Photos: Pharmarium

Even if you’re not a history buff, Stortorget in Gamla Stan will spark a fascination with the past. You can almost hear precarious hoofs trotting past on the cobbled streets. The cannonball fired in 1520 at the Danish King 112  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

Christian Tyrant can still be seen in one of the walls surrounding the square, once the place of the infamous Stockholm Bloodbath. Stortorget is riddled with history – there’s no escaping it.

With that in mind, six years ago, the creators of Pharmarium set upon recreating the atmosphere of the pharmacy’s past. Sweden’s first apothecary, Master Lucas, was cleverly placed on these premises in 1575. Only a stone’s throw away from the royal palace, it could offer help in haste in case of emergencies. Lucas’ successor, Anthonius Busenius, looked after the famous King Gustav Vasa, the king who, legend has it, skied 90 kilometres cross-country through the forest to escape Danish soldiers, later commemorated in the world’s biggest ski race, Vasaloppet.


Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Sweden

To get a vibe of the medicinal magic created here, the pharmacy theme is clear to see in the interior: dark wood, mysterious labels, dried herbs, curious bottles and drawers with thoughtprovoking content. This is a great place for an easy-speak date night, a cosy get-together after work, or sipping drinks with friends. With close proximity to the Opera, this place is also perfect for a pre-show meet-up.

Award-winning alchemy The fascination with alchemy and the search of eternal life have also rubbed off on the drinks and food served here, all combined with foraging for unusual Swedish food. It is a winning concept: Pharmarium was awarded the prestigious Gulddraken for Best Bar in 2015. Simon Epale is the new bar manager. Love brought him from his native France via London to create magic in Stockholm: “I know, I am a love refugee,” he says with a big laugh. “We see Pharmarium as a high-end bar, closer to the feel of quirky London bars than traditional American luxury lounges. We’re playing on the ambiance of this place, the flamboyance and the alchemy when we’re creating our cocktails.” He continues: “We’re focusing on the taste and the flavour of the drink, to perfect it. One of our most famous cocktails

Photo: Erik Nissen Johansen

Photo: Erik Nissen Johansen

is smoked in birch wood; we won’t take the lid off until it’s served. We use a lot of uncommon things as garnishes, to create interest as well, like neroli, St John’s wort, cumin and beetroot.” One Norwegian reviewer enthuses: “The drinks cannot even be described, you just have to taste them: the Wolf Pack or the Forest Floor – the latter with powder of moss, mushrooms and other things found on the floor of a Swedish forest. Sounds rather strange; tastes great.” The pharmacy reflected the beliefs of the time when medicine was prescribed and sold over the counter alongside horns of unicorn, exotic ivory, essence of the moon and pulverised Egyptian mummies. No, really! But don’t worry, you won’t find any of these ingredients in the food. “We mainly rely on Swedish produce for our food,“ says Epale. “Our menu has an international feel, but its heart is defi-

Simon Epale.

nitely Swedish. That’s why we like to add typical things like pine shoots and lingonberries as ingredients on the menu. We are not offering a huge selection of food, but tasty treats in generous portions that complement our drinks menu. We’re trying to match them to create the perfect symbiosis.”

Customised service Pharmarium’s winning concept is the combination of eccentric cocktails, vibe and customer service. “The service is impeccable, atmosphere unparalleled and the drinks? Don’t even get me started! As a fellow bartender, I admire the expertise, friendliness and knowledge of all the staff and couldn’t recommend this place highly enough,” writes a reviewer from Scotland. “We’re a well-forged team; we’ve worked together for a number of years now. We have fun at work and we aspire to be chatty. But on the other hand, we also respect the customer’s privacy,” says Epale. “We like to read our guests, to break the ice and give customised service. We spend time giving that little bit of extra care, like helping out with directions and offering suggestions.” Suggestions might include the nearby Royal Palace, the renowned Christmas market or a visit to the Nobel Museum and the Swedish Academy. Or just watching the world go by, with another flamboyant cocktail in hand. You never know what you might see… Web: www.pharmarium.se Facebook: pharmarium Instagram: @pharmarium

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Scan Magazine  |  Restaurant of the Month  |  Norway

Restaurant of the Month, Norway

A meeting place for generations At Stortorvets Gjæstgiveri, you can eat, drink and enjoy yourself in beautiful, historical surroundings. Located in the heart of Oslo in one of the city’s oldest buildings, this charming restaurant has been a popular meeting place for generations, ever since the early 1700s. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Stortorvets Gjæstgiveri

The next time you visit the capital of Norway, we suggest you take a trip downtown to visit Stortorvets Gjæstgiveri. The characteristic yellow wooden building was originally built in 1699 as a residential home, and was later transformed into a restaurant in 1863. The building’s exterior has been kept in its authentic state, but the interior has been

through numerous changes throughout the years. “The restaurant has seen several different styles – everything from white tablecloths and stiff waiters to a brown, darker look,” restaurateur Rune Johansen recalls. He took over the historic restaurant in January 2018 with the aim to bring it back to its original appearance while creating a typical Norwegian eatery with a focus on quality and exciting taste experiences. With a varied lunch and dinner menu, the restaurant has something for everyone. “Our chefs use locally sourced ingredients as often as possible, in particular delicious seafood, and our menu is characterised by typical Norwegian dishes done in a modern and exciting way,” Johansen explains. “Real, hearty food with a lot of flavour.” When it comes to the drinks menu, there is a great focus on preserving the Norwegian brewery

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traditions, with a significant selection of Norwegian beer, but also wine from the most important regions of the world. Traditionally, the building consisted of Stortorvets Gjæstgiveri and Gamla, a backyard that is today used for events and concerts with a wide range of music. The backyard was recently renovated and has become a popular hang-out spot for the younger crowd. “Stortorvet was in fact the first place in Norway to have a 17 May celebration back in 1829, and the backyard is to this day the best place to spend the national day – the waiting list grows each year,” Johansen proudly states. “Our goal is to emphasise the pleasant and homely atmosphere both inside and outside this historic building. Stortorvets Gjæstgiveri has always been a meeting place where people from different generations can meet and enjoy themselves – something we want to maintain,” says Johansen. Web: www.stortorvet.no Facebook: stortorvet.no Instagram: @storgjest


Scan Magazine  |  Brewery of the Month  |  Denmark

Nordic Mjød has created the port wine of the Nordics – a modern take on mead, the world’s most ancient drink.

Brewery of the Month, Denmark

A modern take on the world’s most ancient beverage It started out as a quest to create the perfect mead, but turned into Nordic Mjød – a company founded by three Viking enthusiasts who realised that their versatile mead, also known as the port wine of the North, was too good to not be shared. The recipe? Endless research on ancient brewing methods, a monk recipe from the 17th century, and the perfect combination of sweetness, acidity and bitterness from honey, quince and chamomile respectively. By Camilla Pedersen  |  Photos: Samson Blay Steiner

“We went to a Viking market many years ago and were all really excited to try mead. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was so underwhelmed with the overly dry and alcoholic drink that I went home and started browsing for and trying out recipes in my kitchen,” recounts Jesper Ohlrich, co-founder of Nordic Mjød. After almost 13 years of testing and tasting ingredients, flavour combinations and fermentation processes, they cracked the code and perfected the recipe so that it was as true to ancient brewing methods as can be. “We wanted to use organic and all-natural ingredients, so we chose to use quince and chamomile – both for the excellent taste and because they were available in the Viking Age,” says Ohlrich. Nordic Mjød describes its mead as a Nordic port wine, in part because mead is often mistaken for a type of beer.

“Mead is an ancient honey drink that’s often associated with the Viking Age. Honey was a costly ingredient back then, so when beer was invented many years later, it was mixed with the mead to make it stretch longer,” Ohlrich explains. Just like a port wine, the versa-

tile alcoholic beverage can be enjoyed as an aperitif or with dessert and cheese. “It works wonders in front of the fire on a cold day, but it works equally well in summery cocktails or in marinades for meat,” says Ohlrich. “We have several ideas for new flavours, so I guess we’ll never stop testing and tasting.” Nordic Mjød was founded in 2018 by Jesper Ohlrich, who works as a driving instructor; Søren Møller Nielsen, a plastic processing technician; and Henrik Forsdahl Renvaktar, who is a train driver.

The bottle design was created by Danish artist Maj-Britt Møller Nielsen and depicts Thor’s battle with the Midgard Serpent.

Visit the website for inspiration on how to use the mead and find recipes for cocktails such as Nordic Storm, Loch Ness and many more.

Photo: Nordic Mjød

Web: www.nordicmjoed.dk Facebook: Nordic Mjød

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Hotel of the Month, Sweden

Heart and soul in Saltsjöbaden The conference hotel Vår Gård is much more than its beautiful setting and charming buildings. It has a long history, Sweden’s most fascinating art collection, and delicacies by award-winning chefs and bakers. Take a peek inside and meet some of its people. By Malin Norman  |  Photos: Vår Gård

Vår Gård in Saltsjöbaden has a lot of history to it. The beautiful old buildings were constructed by industry tycoons such as Thiel and Wallenberg over a hundred years ago. Eventually, the estate was purchased by the Swedish Co-operative Union (KF) in the 1920s, and became an educational hub for its many employees. Over the years, tens of thousands of people came here for training courses. “The spirit of Vår Gård has remained, but in a more modern way,” explains Frida Janneson, marketing co-ordinator. Vår Gård is still a popular venue for confer116  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

ences as well as private stays and weddings, appreciated for its tranquil setting in the Stockholm archipelago. “Our oldest building is from the 1800s, the main building is from the 1950s, and every room has its own character. It’s a bit like coming home.”

Award-winning service Vår Gård has been awarded for its fantastic service and atmosphere. One of the dedicated staff members is pastry chef Patimakorn Padtum Söderström, crowned Sweden’s Baker of the Year in 2017. Her treats include mouth-

watering delicacies such as petit choux with custard cream and raspberry jam, and banana cake with chocolate mousseline. She loves both the setting and


Scan Magazine  |  Hotel of the Month  |  Sweden

the opportunities at Vår Gård: “I live in Tumba and travel by public transport. It takes three hours per day and is not optimal, but well worth it when I get here. The water makes me calm. And I have the luxury of being both a baker and a pastry chef, whereas at most places in Sweden you do either-or.” Another of Vår Gård’s stars is Abdo Merjans, who washes the dishes in the kitchen. “I love everything here – the environment, the people, the food. It’s never boring; I’m always busy. Sometimes I listen to the radio, but it’s more fun to chat with the girls in the kitchen. Their food is so good. I love Swedish home-cooked food.” Dedicated gardener Anders Grönqvist also praises Vår Gård: “It’s hard to imagine a better working environment. I look out the window and have the archipelago right outside. And the food and fika are amazing.”

No waste, just taste

tainability is also central at the popular Christmas dinner. “We are continuing our focus on no waste, and instead of a huge Christmas buffet, which is common in Sweden, we have limited it to the most popular favourites.”

The talented chefs at Vår Gård have initiated a dinner concept called No Waste, Just Taste. The first no-waste dinner took place last spring, and more are in the pipeline. Here, guests are taken on an inspiring culinary journey, where waste produce is transformed into a gastronomic experience. “By doing this, we highlight the importance of reducing food waste, and guests are surprised that a bit of creativity and innovation can achieve such a tasty and versatile dinner,” says Janneson. Sus-

In addition to the spectacular setting and nothing but delicious cuisine, Vår Gård has one of Sweden’s best art collections, and guests can explore the works during art tours around the estate’s buildings and park. Here, you can find art by famous Swedish painters such as Olle Baertling, Hertha Hillfon and Lisa Larsson. And there is plenty more to keep guests active, with fitness and yoga classes, outdoors adventures, tastings and much more.

Patimakorn Padtum Söderström.

Abdo Merjans.

But what gives that special feeling of heart and soul at Vår Gård? According to the CEO, Kadi Upmark, it’s the people who work there, such as Patimakorn, Abdo and Anders. Upmark writes in the hotel’s own magazine: “What is a hotel? A building, of course, with a reception and bedrooms. Maybe a restaurant. Beds and a lot of coffee cups. But really, a hotel is more of a feeling, an experience or a state of mind. Our guests say that it’s in the walls. Personally, I think that the atmosphere has to do with our people and the warmth they give.” Web: www.vargard.se Facebook: Vår Gård Saltsjöbaden Instagram: @vargardsaltsjobaden

Anders Grönqvist.

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Hotel of the Month, Norway

Gudvangen Fjordtell: Learn about Viking history – for real Go Viking in the Fjords is a new Fjord Norway concept for the season between October and April, allowing you to explore the western part of Norway in a way that is a little bit rougher, a little bit tougher, and just that bit more real. The UNESCO area of Gudvangen and the Nærøyfjord has a long, rich Viking history. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Frode Hansen and Georg Hansen

“Now that we have electricity all winter, a steady supply of water, and the roads are open 98 per cent of the time, it’s a walk in the park, really. Of course, we have our regular avalanches, but with the huge defences built, we can enjoy the snow more and fear for our homes and properties less,” says Torill Hylland, designer of Gudvangen Fjordtell, which she owns and runs along with her husband, Olav.

and the location, so the hotel was built with the purpose of guests being able to enjoy the fantastic views of the glorious Næøryfjord. One-third of the main building is covered in glass, making it possible to enjoy the view no matter the weather conditions. The materials chosen also reflect the surrounding nature, and the use of triangles throughout the structure mimics the shape of the majestic mountains in the area.

Inspired by the Viking heritage of the area, Gudvangen Fjordtell was designed to capture the spirit and style of the past. “The main reason why people come to visit Gudvangen is the scenery

The chairs and tables in the restaurant are decorated with patterns from Urnes Stavechurch, and so too is the impressive blacksmith work on the staircase and the central fire in the building.

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Along the massive beams, the Oseberg dragons are guarding the building. “I have a great passion for our Viking heritage, a passion that grew throughout the process of researching for and designing the hotel. Now I am fully immersed in the world of the Vikings,” says Hylland.

Fjord activities in a magical landscape Situated in an old Viking area full of character and charm and with countless adventures waiting to be discovered, Gudvangen Fjordtell ensures that visitors are spoilt for choice, between breathtaking landscapes, fjords and historical sites. “We have everything from the impressive Flåm Railway and several ski resorts to ferry trips through the fjord, spectacular kayaking tours and a range of mountain hiking opportunities right on the doorstep of the hotel. There is something for everyone to enjoy here,” says Hylland.


Scan Magazine  |  Hotel of the Month  |  Norway

But the most popular highlight, after the fjord cruise, of course, is the Viking Valley – a truly unique experience, situated only 100 metres from the Fjordtell. For the last three years, winter tourism in the fjords has really been growing, and it is easy to see why. “It’s breathtaking here in the summer, but the winter is an experience for all your senses,” Hylland continues. “The days are short and the sun is almost gone for four months, but the daylight is something special, and at the dawn of the day and in the afternoon, we have this magical, blue light. If you are lucky with the weather, the sun makes all kinds of colours on top of the snowy mountains, and when the moon shines, it all turns into a fairy-tale landscape.” Throughout the winter, there is a bonfire outside the Fjordtell at all times, so guests coming on the Norway in a Nutshell tour can warm up before they get on the ferry. There’s one on the hotel’s terrace every evening for the guests, too. The latest addition is some heated glass pagodes by the fjordside. Here, you can sit and enjoy the fjord landscape, being outdoors yet just as comfortable as though you were inside. This is without a doubt a place to find silence and an inner calm. During the first weekend of Advent, Hylland recommends stopping by to experience the large Christmas mar-

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Scan Magazine  |  Hotel of the Month  |  Norway

ket in the Viking Valley. “The charming old street spanning all the way from the hotel into and around Njardarheimr is adorned with old-fashioned, yellow Christmas lights,” she says. “We focus on creating a good atmosphere, with local food and traditional drinks as well as crafts from the area – a great way to get into the Christmas spirit.”

Gudvangen Fjordtell was built in 1991. It is owned by Olav and Torill Hylland, fourth-generation hotel owners in Gudvangen.

Web: www.gudvangen.com

Welcome to Njardarheimr in Viking Valley The Viking Village is not a museum or an amusement park: it is a real, genuine Viking village. For 24 years now, there’s been a Viking society here, with a Chieftain elected for life. “Unfortunately, it took us 20 years to get the permission and land to build it all, but stubborn Vikings don’t give up easily,” Hylland laughs. Together with Georg Hansen, the dream about this place was kept alive, and it is now a living, growing centre for learning about and living as in the Viking Era. “Together with Frode Tufte, we have created this place where we make history come to life,” Hylland enthuses. Visitors get to enjoy a 45-minute guided tour called the Viking Experience. The Viking guides don’t have a strict manuscript; they tell the story about the Vi120  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

kings, their everyday life and traditions from their own perspective – so even though the facts are the same, every tour is different; a land-worker telling it from their point of view will be a very different experience from a warrior telling it from their perspective. Visitors can also try out different activities such as axe throwing and archery, visit the blacksmith or the Chieftain’s hall, or try out different handicrafts. “Most importantly, our guests can always ask questions, chat to the Vikings and even sit down around the fire with us,” says Tufte, concept developer and CEO of the Viking Valley. “In museums, everything is behind glass walls with written explainations. We don’t have any of that. We make it, use it, mend it, and also let you try it. That’s a different experience.”

The Viking Village is a 100 per cent local project, and all of the income goes back into the village, to maintain and develop it, to fund experimental archeology and education. In other words, the more visitors, the more they can work with the theme, and the better the product gets. This is a win-win situation for visitors as well as the educational prospect. “Being a private project like this gives us the opportuni-


Scan Magazine  |  Hotel of the Month  |  Norway

ty to play and have fun, as well. Vikings loved having fun as much as they loved to look good and use colourful jewellery and outfits,” says Tufte. “We are very serious about the historical facts, but that doesn’t mean we have to be too serious about ourselves.” Of course, you can also host a Viking party or another private event at the Viking Village – why not consider a Viking wedding? But it will be in real Viking style, as will the food served. “Come visit us in the winter and experience the real Viking atmosphere with the fire and drums and rough weather, and understand how this incredibly beautiful landscape created the Vikings. Go Viking! Go real!” concludes Hylland. The Viking Village was built in 2016. It consists of more than 2,000 square metres of buildings on 10,000 square metres of land. Open 10am to 6pm every day, all year round. Built and owned by the locals.

Web: www.vikingvalley.no Facebook: vikingvalley Instagram: @vikingvalley.no 

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Project in Miami. Photo: Azure Development/Florida

Interior Designer of the Month, Finland

Designing practical and beautiful spaces “Every time, it is an honour for me to step into the client’s home and help them create the space they have been dreaming about,” says Päivi Kaivola, owner of interior design firm Sisustamo. “My aim is to make interior design accessible to anyone, no matter what size their budget or project is.” By Mari Koskinen  |  Photos: Sisustamo

“My earliest memory of great interior design is from my childhood friend’s home, which I visited often. The whole house was exquisite. It left a strong impression on me – I still remember every detail there,” Kaivola recalls. “I believe the aesthetics around us affect our wellbeing and, for example, bringing clarity to spaces can make it easier to breathe and live there. The improved home improves the quality of life, too.” Kaivola has designed many different kinds of spaces, from one-bedroom apartments 122  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

to large villas and public spaces. “Whether it is a new-build, a renovation or a quicker makeover, I enjoy helping to make the client’s vision come alive.” The projects often include the implementation phase, where Kaivola makes sure that everything will be completed according to the plan. “I also do turnkey projects, where I take care of everything with minimum effort for the client.”

Fulfilling interior design dreams The starting point in any project is that the client has a space that needs a change.

According to Kaivola, one of the key factors in successful projects is good communication. “I listen to the client to find out what they want, even if they don’t always have a clear picture of it yet. With today’s enormous amount of different design styles, it can become overwhelming for anyone,” she says. Then, she creates the design and presents it to the client. “Often, the project includes many rooms, and there is always a common thread running throughout the building,” she explains. Functional design and aesthetics are both essential elements in the process. The end result is a balanced, practical and beautiful space. Sisustamo celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, and the work is taking


Scan Magazine  |  Interior Designer of the Month  |  Finland

Project in Spain.

Project in Spain.

Kaivola further from home. “I am based in Naantali in south-west Finland, but I work wherever clients need me. Recently, I have done projects abroad – two houses in Miami and one in Spain. Working abroad adds to the challenge, but it’s totally worth it. I get to work with exciting projects and spend time abroad, a combination that I find inspiring and fulfilling.” Web: www.sisustamo.fi Facebook: sisustamopaivikaivola Instagram: @sisustamo.fi

Project in Spain.

Project in Miami. Photo: Azure Development/Florida

Designer Päivi Kaivola. Photo: Emma Kaivola

Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  123


Gallery of the Month, Norway

Positive art with mysterious, curious undertones If you visit Gallery VY in Verdal, you can discover beautiful and expressive art by the Norwegian artist Randi Antonsen, along with selected guest artists. Her paintings present a combination of bold colours, shapes and nature with a sense of mystery, which comes to life through little stories the artist herself constructs. “When I work, I somehow build a world for myself – a positive place I enjoy belonging to and want to invite the observer to discover,” Antonsen explains. By Ingrid Opstad  |  Photos: Randi Antonsen

Randi Antonsen was born in Harstad and raised in the small fishing village of Gryllefjord at the far end of Senja. Here, in the midst of the contrasting nature, the towering mountains and the huge ocean, she discovered an interest for art. 124  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

“Art has been with me through my whole life in different forms, but coming from a smalltown in Norway, it was difficult to pursue it as a career,” she says. This resulted in her moving to pursue her artistic passion. Her journey started in Oslo,

Norwegian artist Randi Antonsen.


Scan Magazine  |  Gallery of the Month  |  Norway

Mirror.

where she studied art, before working as an art educator in the northern part of Trøndelag. After this, she opened her first gallery in Inderøy. Antonsen has over the last 20 years worked as an artist and art educator while participating in numerous exhibitions both in Norway and abroad. In the autumn of 2016, she opened her own gallery inside an old, charming former retail space. With the short and catchy name VY, which loosely means ‘view’ in Norwegian and is a nod to its location, the gallery has become a cosy addition to Verdal. Inside the gallery, the artist also has her own workshop, making it possible for visitors to experience her in action as they walk through the exhibition space. Gallery VY primarily showcases work by Antonsen, but she occasionally also invites guest artists to exhibit in the space, making it possible for art lovers to discover new and exciting artists they might not have heard about before. “I find it exciting and inspiring to invite guest exhibitors to my gallery. It makes the space more vibrant and alive when I can connect their art with my own. The artists I choose are not the most famous ones, but simply those I admire and like, those I want to showcase to my visitors,” Antonsen explains. She has hosted guest artists from Guatemala, France, and Sweden, but lately the focus has been on displaying local, Norwegian art.

‘Art must be seen and experienced’ “I am very fond of and work closely with nature when I express myself through my

A spirit in the sky.

art, and I love working with colours. I am also passionate about dreams and subconsciousness, something I’m actively trying to understand,” Antonsen says. “After all, I believe art must be seen and experienced, and it can therefore sometimes be difficult to put it into words without doing so. It is all about intuition, to understand something instinctively without the need for conscious reasoning.” The artist works with acrylic paint, which has a myriad of properties, and a method of layers where elements and techniques meet to bring out different depths and new connections. With a colourful, emotive and expressive style, Antonsen manages to captivate the spectator and bring them into her own little world. “I want my art to be perceived as something positive, but it can often have a slightly mysterious and curious undertone,” she says. “And it is important to me that it’s beautiful!” Antonsen often creates images in the technique described as digital graphic artwork, a relatively new technique in the art world, which the Norwegian artist Pushwagner is known for. The procedure is reminiscent of screen printing, but the difference lies in how the colour and ink are attached to the sheet. It also gives the artist greater control over the finished product.

Summer.

the past. For this, I created a series of round images with female figures, which all relate to the question: what is a memory?” The artist invites the observer to discover what their own answer to this question is. With its colourful and vibrant expressions, Antonsen’s work has become popular on social media. “I sell my art in the gallery and through my webshop, but I actually sell quite a lot on Facebook, too, these days. It’s so nice, because I can connect with people from different parts of the country and the world to help give them a unique piece of art for their home,” she smiles. Her artwork can also be experienced in various exhibitions throughout the larger cities of Norway. Guest exhibitors at gallery VY this autumn: Kine Hellebust, known from the Norwegian performance group Tramteatret in the ‘80s and ‘90s, will exhibit her photography. Maria Irina Larsen, originally from St. Petersburg, is a puppet maker who will display artwork created with dolls. Opening hours: Thursday to Saturday, 12-4pm Also open by appointment

What is a memory? Lately, Antonsen has been especially fond of memories and has worked hard to try to capture these on the canvas. “The theme of my last collection relates to our recollection and reminiscence of

Web: www.randiantonsen.com and www.vygalleri.blogspot.com Facebook: randi.antonsen Instagram: @randiantonsen

Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  125


Golden Myths of Ancient Greece.

Artist of the Month, Norway

The artist’s book Norway-based artist Julia Mordvinova Gilje is known for alternating between different techniques to explore the world of dreams, the inner self and identity. With the project Golden Myths of Ancient Greece, she is blurring the lines between visual arts and traditional craftsmanship with rather intriguing results. By Bianca Wessel   |  Photos: Julia Mordvinova Gilje

Julia Mordvinova Gilje was born in Russia and studied for her Master of Arts degree in St. Petersburg, before moving to Norway in 2003. Her work alternates between graphics and painting, inspired by theatre, music and literature as well as visual arts. The artist finds herself fascinated by the complexity of common human feelings such as strength and weakness, fear and longing. These feelings are often kept private and even suppressed. 126  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

Through her psychological portraits, the artist uses her work to create a space to explore what lies deep within. “Emotions, dreams, the inner world and identity of humans intrigue me,” Julia explains. As part of her upbringing and studies, she would often find herself drawn towards the powerful stories; the fables told by the ancient Greeks to explain the existence of the world. Julia found these stories to be deeply captivating and inspiring.

Golden Myths of Ancient Greece From Narcissus, who fell in love with himself, to Aphrodite’s never-ending allure, Greek mythology has a continued presence in contemporary art as the characters are highly relatable in terms of their emotions, desires and struggles. This inspired Julia to dive into the project Golden Myths of Ancient Greece. With great respect for the craft of the artwork, and with idea and implementaJulia Mordvinova Gilje.


Scan Magazine  |  Artist of the Month  |  Norway

tion given equal importance, the visual art has been blended with the ancient fine craft of bookbinding. The artist’s book, Golden Myths of Ancient Greece, is a uniquely expressive piece of work, arguably reaching far beyond traditional work on canvas.

Slowing down Julia decided early on that there would be no shortcuts in the process. Everything in the finished work of Golden Myths of Ancient Greece was to be handmade and crafted by the artist herself. The finished work has 20 myths included in total, all carefully applied with meticulous attention to detail. From start to finish, the artist spent anywhere from three to four months on each. Julia believes the slowness of the process is a vital part of the piece: “You can feel it when someone’s put a lot of work into something. There’s an extra depth and warmth to the work, encouraging the audience to take their time in ex-

periencing the artwork and the creative process,” she reflects. Everything is exclusively handmade: the hand-written stories and the illustrated etchings, interlaid with Japanese silk paper, building the book by a complex and time-consuming process, sewing the leaves together with linen thread, and covering the whole artwork with a combination of leathers – soft, radiant goat, and exotic, sparkling stingray. To complete the cover, the artist recreated an illustration from within the book, etched in luxurious, patinated brass and fastened to the front cover.

Golden Myths of Ancient Greece is not only a splendid showpiece, but truly a coming together and celebration of Julia’s artistic craftsmanship and her love for working with various techniques. “A lot of different techniques and craft skills have gone into this, many of which are hidden within the piece,” Julia smiles.

In the process, the artist has also experimented in creating other variations. In a more contemporary direction, almost like origami, this also makes a powerful display. “The artistic process in itself makes me happy. I feel fortunate to be able to work with something I love and feel so passionate about. I also like the thought that my books might have a lasting legacy, as they will still be around in a couple of hundred years’ time,” Julia concludes.

Psychological portrait.

Julia Mordvinova Gilje, born on 28 January 1978, is a Russian artist living in Stavanger, Norway. She has an MA in graphics and book illustration from the Institute of Design, Applied Arts and Humanities, St. Petersburg, and a professional grade as artist/ art pedagogue in visual arts from St. Petersburg, N. Roerich’s Art College.

Golden Myths of Ancient Greece book cover.

Golden Myths of Ancient Greece has been completed in a total of four copies, in Norwegian, Russian and English. The work has been exhibited worldwide, at the International Grafikk Triennale, St. Petersburg; as part of Heroic Works, showcasing entries from Designer Bookbinders 3rd International Bookbinding Competition (2017) in Oxford, Birmingham and London; at the Baltic Art Book Biennale, St. Petersburg (2016); and as part of Hvem bestemmer, Stavanger Kunstmuseet (2014).

Web: www.juliam.no Instagram: @juliam.no

Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  127


Scan Magazine  |  Artist of the Month  |  Finland

Genome.

Brothers in Arms.

Päivi Latvala.

Artist of the Month, Finland

Animal portraits with a Pop Art edge A deep love of the Finnish countryside underpins the work of Päivi Latvala, an internationally acclaimed animal artist on a mission to promote compassion, environmental awareness and sustainable development. One portrait at a time, her Warholesque cow paintings act as a catalyst for positive change. By Jo Iivonen  |  Photos: Päivi Latvala, Hanna-Kaisa Hämäläinen

“Just like people, cows do all look different,” Latvala says of her approach to art. Bovine expressions from pensive glances to cheeky smirks are at the core of the Finnish artist’s rise to fame as a genredefining animal artist. Visually striking representations of that which is nonverbal yet heartfelt is, however, just a means to an end. “I really just want to tease out emotional responsiveness, a connectivity that leads to increased environmental awareness.”

Cows that fly Following a career spanning graphic design and over a decade spent working as a technical illustrator for the Finnish Air Force, Latvala then took the plunge to become a full-time artist. “I always loved drawing, and I always had this thing about cows,” she ponders. “Then, one day, the time was right to bring it all together.” 128  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

It didn’t take long for the concept to take flight. By combining her technical skill as an illustrator and graphic designer with an intuitive understanding of animals, Latvala quickly created her signature style – animal portraits with a distinctive Pop Art edge. The striking paintings are a perennial favourite among Finnish galleries and, increasingly so, also internationally. This year, Latvala was invited to collaborate with Singaporean Tatinis Art Show, while earlier commissions have come from places as far flung as Australia and Scotland. “I have a deep appreciation of Highland Cattle,” Latvala adds. “These animals are an absolute joy to portray.”

Alajärvi instilled a lifelong appreciation of living in tune with nature in the budding artist. “At the end of the day, it’s really all about the purity of the Finnish countryside,” Latvala concludes. “I feel very lucky to have had that kind of childhood. Not many kids get to experience that anymore. I want to do what I can to help more people find those precious experiences through genuine encounters.”

Cowsmopolitan.

Upcoming exhibitions:

Dos Toros, Q-galleria, Tampere, Sep 2019 Retrospective Cows, Sarka The Finnish Museum of Agriculture, Nov 2019 to Feb 2020

Finnspiration Latvala’s fascination with cows dates back to her childhood. Vast chunks of time spent at her grandparents’ farm in

Web: www.paivilatvala.fi Facebook: Eläintaiteilija Päivi Latvala


Scan Magazine  |  Humour  |  Columns

IS IT JUST ME…

By Mette Lisby

… who has noticed how customer service departments everywhere have taken note from every kids’ playbook? They exhaust you ‘til they get their way. Their complaint system is specifically designed to suck the will and effort out of you. One recent example was when our air-conditioning unit broke. Luckily, we had homeowners’ insurance – a great deal, we thought, when we had signed up for it. Anything breaks in your home; they will send an expert to fix it. However, it would have been better – probably cheaper, and definitely faster and less aggravating – to not have had it. It might even have been easier to invent and prototype an entirely new kind of air-conditioning system ourselves, but we didn’t know that when we signed up. We called the insurance company. They sent out an expert who expertly concluded that to fix it, he needed some parts he didn’t have, so he would order the parts and come back. The insurance company authorised the whole thing and we could be looking at a solution within perhaps 48 hours. Great! Except 48 hours later, when we called to

check up on things, nothing had happened. Because our “order wasn’t authorised yet”. “But it was,” we argued. “Two days ago.” “No! Really?” the customer service agent said: “I don’t have that on my screen.” Four weeks and 700 phone calls later, the coveted parts finally materialised, and we were trying to make an appointment for the guy to come back and fix it. Suddenly, there was an extra fee for that. “Do you not want to pay that?” the 807th person I spoke to asked. “No!” I said, and she said: “Great! Then he

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.

National horror A while ago, we decided to watch a British horror film, set in Sweden. It promised “an ancient, evil Nordic legend”, and I was very excited about being able to keep a running commentary throughout, being fairly at home with Nordic ancient evils. How wrong I was. The film was good, but I was at a complete loss as to what was happening, and even more so when it came to classifying the lead-monster in question. It certainly wasn’t one of the things we were gleefully warned about as kids, and we were gleefully warned about a lot of things. The film did, however, leave a lingering impression. My sister recently visited from Sweden, and when, one evening, she showed me some photos from a camping trip back home, all I felt was horror. Could she not see how ominous the shadows were between those tall, forbidding spruces? The dark, bottomless lakes that used to appear full of magic wonder now just looked dark

can’t fix it. But we can give you a cash deal and give you 150 USD to fix it yourself.” We caved in, paid the fee, and made the appointment for the guy to come and fix it. He didn’t show up. I’ll keep you posted! Exhaustion is a shrewd business plan, and it works on all of us. Just think about the terms-and-conditions paragraphs you encounter everywhere online. I always click ‘read the terms and conditions’, but if it’s more than two pages long, I give up and skip right through to ‘Accept’. Unknowingly, I have probably signed away my firstborn, every right to every photo I ever took, any thought I ever had, plus any accidental leftovers in my fridge. Businesses exhausting us in this way is genius, really: it means that customer service ends up being really easy for them. Like child’s play, one might say.

By Maria Smedstad

The following morning, she set off for one of her customary runs, having plotted out a route across the fields and lanes by my house. Returning an hour later, she looked somewhat sweatier than usual. “I’m not doing that again!” she declared in a frightened voice. “I forgot that the whole of the British countryside is just one giant set of Midsomer Murders!”

and bottomless. And that lonely gravel road next to the fields? Pure Wallander. In my absence, thanks to Nordic Noir and films like the one featuring the unknown Nordic monster, rural Sweden has taken on some much darker associations. My sister couldn’t see it, describing it as ‘jättemysigt’ (‘super cosy’) with a raised eyebrow at my unpatriotic silliness.

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 128  |  September 2019  |  129


Photo: Lee Carter

Rising from the ashes Camilla Strøm Henriksen has just reached the end of a 13-year journey, with the release of her first full-length feature film, Phoenix. But for Henriksen, the film represents more than her transition from actress to fully-fledged director. It tells a very personal story.

130  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

Fledglings Henriksen and her younger brother grew up in Oslo, raised by a single mum

By Paula Hammond

Phoenix is a gripping Bergman-esque family drama, starring Maria Bonnevie   (Insomnia), Sverrir Gudnason (Borg vs McEnroe) and Ylva Bjørkaas, in a startling debut as 14-year-old Jill.  From a young age, Jill has been the responsible adult in her family, caring for her loving but mentally unstable mother and her younger brother, Bo. When her estranged father calls to tell her that he

Henriksen says, “as I survived, as a child of a dysfunctional family.”

plans to visit on her birthday, Jill will stop at nothing to have the best day ever – even if fate has other plans. It’s a compelling film, crafted with skill and lots of heart, but there are no easy answers or Hollywood happy endings here – just a family in crisis trying to survive as best they can. “I think, yes, that’s the central theme – survival,”

Sverrir Gudnason (Borg vs McEnroe), Ylva Bjørkaas and Casper Falck-Løvås as Jill’s father, Jill herself and Jill’s brother Bo in Phoenix. Photo: Courtesy of Hummelfilm and Lukas Salna


Scan Magazine  |  Culture Profile  |  Camilla Strøm Henriksen

– very much like Jill in the film. “It’s not an autobiography,” she explains, “but it’s inspired by events and the dynamics in my own family group. My mother was, mentally, quite ill, but at the time, it wasn’t really addressed. It was something that me and my brother had to cope with and, because I was the oldest, that responsibility fell largely on me.” Growing up, Henriksen longed to be an actress but, after 12 years in the business, she decided it was time to try something new – directing. It was while studying at the London Film School that she made a discovery. “I loved directing, but I also loved writing. That came as a real surprise. I hadn’t harboured any dreams of writing, but once I started to pen my own stories, there was really no turning back. I don’t miss acting at all.” Getting Phoenix from that initial script to the cinema hasn’t been easy. “I had,” Henriksen admits, “a couple of down periods, but what kept me going was that I wasn’t tired of the story myself. Whenever I went back to it, I felt quite curious about the material. So, even though I lost hope from time to time that it would ever get made, I didn’t lose faith in the material.” A chance meeting with David Yates, who directed four of the Harry Potter films, finally turned things around. “Five years into my work on Phoenix, I asked him if he wanted to be my mentor, because I

Camilla Strøm Henriksen on set. Photo: Lukas Salna

felt really stuck, and he said yes. And he read it, and he loved it, and he said ‘I’m going to help you get this to the screen’.”

don’t mean to idolise it, but it’s important to recognise and appreciate your history and also break free from it.”

Taking flight Phoenix is told from Jill’s perspective,

For Henriksen, the need to break free informs her as a director too. “I would say that my default setting is to be more closed off, because of my background. So I have quite consciously tried to let go, let people take total control. Even if it’s my vision, I have the responsibility to involve people as much as possible in every stage of the film making, so that they have ownership of the project. I think that’s one of the most important things as a director, and that’s the way I want to work.”

and there’s an atmosphere of quiet, bottled-up anxiety within the film that those who have lived with trauma will recognise: that strain of trying to present a calm, controlled face to the world in the presence of chaos. “It’s Jill’s story, and the most important thing for me was trying to express her feelings,” says Henriksen. “I wanted to tell the story through her eyes, and her emotion colours everything. She is very calm and controlled because, I think, that’s one of the things that children who are in these situations often experience. There’s very little room for them to express their needs. They don’t take up too much space, because all that space is taken by the parents.” Having survived her own dysfunctional family, Henriksen believes that the key is using those experiences “to become yourself” while recognising that the trauma does leave its marks. “My childhood has really shaped me. I would say it’s been a theme in my life that I needed to work out: how do I feed myself and benefit from those experiences? Because there is also rich material there. I wouldn’t have become what I am – and I’m quite happy about now – without it. I

Henriksen now has new roads to travel, and new journeys to make. She’s enjoying stints as a director on Hotel Caesar, Hvaler and Occupied – with a collaboration with David Yates in the pipeline. But, after 13 years, does she feel any sense of closure now that her Phoenix has finally taken flight? “My parents are dead, but I have a brother who I’m very close to. He has been one of my biggest supporters… But when Phoenix was finally finished, he was surprised by how hard it was to watch. It’s all been quite tough for him, and for me but, yes, it’s a big release and a relief too.” Phoenix is released in UK cinemas on 13 September.

Ylva Bjørkaas makes her film debut as 14-year-old Jill in Phoenix. Photo: Eirik Evjen

Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  131


Scan Magazine  |  Culture  |  Music

Scandinavian music It’s fair to say that the Alphabeat comeback has been going quite well for them. The first single, Shadows, has spent 22 weeks (and counting) in the top ten of the Danish airplay chart, and scored them a string of gigs (one of which was in the UK this summer). But never ones to rest on their laurels (well, aside from that six-year break they took), the group of Danes are back with single number two. They’ve ramped up the joy even further on I Don’t Know What’s Cool Anymore, a song that proudly declares that it’s ‘past it’, having been born in that ever-so-ancient era of the ‘80s. But if this is the sound of not understanding what’s in, then I want to be on the outside of it all, too. Scan Magazine cover girl Josefine Frida isn’t the only SKAM actor making waves post-viral superstardom. Thomas Hayes, who played her (eventual) love interest, William, has just released his first single under the moniker HAYES. It turns out that he’s a dab hand at this whole music production lark, and has roped in fellow

132  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

Norwegian talents Nico & Vinz (of Am I Wrong fame) to feature on his debut release, Where I Belong. It’s a pensive slice of mellow electronica elevated by a rousing, soulful vocal, and I’m already excited about what’s to come from him next. I’ll end on what is a very nice, new chapter for someone else. Lise Cabble was a member of the Danish group Miss B Haven, which rose to fame in the late ‘80s. But after the band downed tools in the mid-‘90s, Lise went on to instead forge a career writing for other artists: a songwriting career that peaked (thus far) in 2013, when she penned an actual Eurovision Song Contest winner for her native Denmark, Only Teardrops by Emmelie DeForest. She’s still writing for others (and, once again, wrote the Danish Eurovision entry back in May), but has now also finally gotten around to writing for herself, too. And so, at the grand age of 61, she now launches her solo career as an artist, after over 30 years in the business. Debut single Tjekker Ind Og Ud eschews sound-

By Karl Batterbee

ing like any pre-conceived notions of what a 61-year-old might sound like, and is instead more akin to something you might hear on Norwegian DJ Alan Walker’s recent debut album. So there you go.

Web: www.scandipop.co.uk

Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  132


Klaus Bondam. Press Photo

Scandinavian Culture Calendar – Where to go, what to see? It’s all happening here! Helsinki Design Week (until 15 September)

Film screening: Adam’s Apples (15 September)

The largest design festival in the Nordic countries, Helsinki Design Week presents design from multiple disciplines, including fashion, architecture and urban culture. The programme contains around 250 events every year, targeted at professionals and the general public. Various locations, Helsinki, Finland. www.helsinkidesignweek.com

This free film screening is part of the Scalarama 2019 programme, a monthlong celebration of cinema across the UK. Wharf Chambers in Leeds will show Adam’s Apples, a Danish black-comedy  drama film directed and written by  Anders Thomas Jensen. The film follows Adam, a former neo-Nazi who is sent on community service in a religious

By Sanne Wass

enclave. 6.30pm. Wharf Chambers, 2325 Wharf Street, Leeds LS2 7EQ, UK. www.wharfchambers.org

Berg showcase (18 September) Alexandra Berglof, known as Berg, will appear at St Pancras Old Church in  London before embarking on a tour around Europe and the US. The Swedish  Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  135


Scan Magazine  |  Culture  |  Calendar

Snorre Kirk. Photo: Sterphen Freiheit

singer and songwriter will perform songs from her debut album, Fake Love, which was created together with Faris Badwan, the lead singer of the Horrors.  7.30pm. St Pancras Old Church,  Pancras Road, London NW1 1UL, UK. www.eventbrite.co.uk

Concert: Scotland and Norway in harmony (27 September)

Morten Schantz Godspeed. Press Photo

136  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

Scotland and Norway will meet in harmony in Edinburgh this month for a selection of songs from both countries, performed by Scotland’s Rolling Hills Chorus and Norway’s Vang Sangforening. The concert will also see the guest appearance of Norwegian folk singer Bjørn Sverre Kristensen. 7pm. St Augustine’s Church, 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1  1EL, Scotland. www.eventbrite.co.uk


Scan Magazine  |  Culture  |  Calendar

Trondheim Soloists. Photo: Nikolaj Lund

Issue 128  |  September 2019  |  137


Scan Magazine  |  Culture  |  Calendar

Sølvguttene. Photo: Max Emanuelson

Different by Design event: Klaus Bondam (2 October) This event in Leeds will give you the chance to meet Klaus Bondam, CEO of Danish Cyclists Federation and former technical mayor of Copenhagen, for a discussion about sustainable travel and what it will take for Leeds to become an exemplar UK city when it comes to healthy, sustainable transport. All proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to Wheels 4 Fun, a local cycling charity. 5.30pm. Number One, Great Exhibition Way, Kirkstall Forge, Leeds LS5 3BF, UK. www.eventbrite.co.uk

Sølvguttene in London (3 October) Sølvguttene (‘Boys of Silver’), a famed boys’ choir founded in Norway in 1940, is coming to London in October as part 138  |  Issue 128  |  September 2019

of the group’s first UK concert tour in over a decade. They will perform a programme of sacred and classical choral music, as well as Norwegian folk songs, by Webber, Mozart, Franck, Händel, Tye, Schubert, Nystedt and Sommerfeldt. 7.30pm. St James’s Church Piccadilly, 197 Piccadilly, London W1J 9LL, UK. www.eventbrite.co.uk

Trondheim Soloists and Alisa Weilerstein (16 October) The Trondheim Soloists, a leading Norwegian chamber ensemble of string players, will perform three of the finest string sextets of the 19th and 20th centuries together with American soloist Alisa Weilerstein. The ensemble, which is based in Trondheim, Norway, regularly appears on the international stage, but says that ‘the unmistakable Trondheim sound’ always shines

through in its performances. 7.30pm. Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XX, UK. www.southbankcentre.co.uk

Sounds of Denmark revisited (16-19 October) Sounds of Denmark returns to London for the fourth time, celebrating the vibrancy and eclectic nature of the contemporary Danish jazz scene. Over four days, this special ‘revisited’ programme will feature some of the stand-out artists since its inception in 2016, including Morten Schantz Godspeed, Makiko Hirabayashi Trio, Hess is More, Hess/ AC/Hess Spacelab, Kathrine Windfeld and Snorre Kirk Quartet. PizzaExpress Jazz Club, 10 Dean St, Soho, London W1D 3RW, UK. www.pizzaexpresslive.com


Profile for Scan Client Publishing

Scan Magazine, Issue 128, September 2019  

The September issue of Scan Magazine aims to nurse you into the cooler, darker season with a design section full of hygge and a brand-new cu...

Scan Magazine, Issue 128, September 2019  

The September issue of Scan Magazine aims to nurse you into the cooler, darker season with a design section full of hygge and a brand-new cu...