Scan Magazine | Issue 61 | February 2014

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Scan Magazine | Contents




Nina Persson’s favourite game


She has been one of Sweden’s hottest pop rock singers since the mid-1990s, yet her first solo album is only out this month. What took her so long, and why now? Karl Batterbee talks to Nina Persson about Scandinavian music export, owning your artistic craft, and a potential future The Cardigans release.


Fine little love tag We spoke to Danish jewellery designer Jane Kønig about the Love Tag, and found out why it is a Fine Little Day for design e-tailer Little Red Stuga.


Returning ex-pats and mad swines Having spent a night in Stockholm, we know all about the sign: from the Egg Chairs and the ABBA lift to the fabulous breakfast spread. We also found a Danish housing agency providing an unbeatable service to returning expats, and a restaurant that calls its guests ‘mad swines’. Bonkers? Perhaps, but each of the four ventures in our feature section seems more successful than the last.


Five must-see places in Sweden As Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt predicts winds of change in regards to the previously cold financial climate, we present a top-five of must-see spots in Sweden: from a café haven to moose-dense forests…


A taste of Finland In regards to design and education, Finland really does what it says on the tin. But, speaking of tins, did you know that it also has a thriving food and drink culture, complete with super healthy breads and bottled delicacies?

42 64 42

Top-3 destinations in Denmark The Danes have it all: from generous parental leave and safe cycling lanes to Oscar nominations and the Eurovision – and here are three destinations that embody everything that is fantastic about Denmark, making for unforgettable getaways.


Discover Northern Norway Why go north? From jaw-dropping natural encounters to very special cultural heritage and the most unusual art attractions, we give you a handful of reasons to head for the northernmost part of Scandinavia.


Best of Norwegian Culture Scandi fans will all be aware that 2014 is the year when Norway celebrates the 200th anniversary of its constitution. We take a look at the cultural attractions that help native Norwegians and visitors alike to kickstart the celebrations with a bang.


Danish giants and a word on the selfie This month, we go all out when it comes to business, speaking to Allianz, Welltec and a couple more pioneers in Danish business. Expect a good bit of stomp in addition to some well-considered words from business columnist Paul Blackhurst on the Oxford Dictionary Word of the Year last year: the selfie.

CULTURE SECTION 106 Happiness and miss MØ Happiness is from 9 to 5, according to Alexander Kjerulf. And who are we to argue with a writer from the happiest nation in the world? Fast-forward to the culture section for some tips on finding happiness in work, and do not miss our exclusive interview with the next big thing to come out of Norway’s quirky music scene.

Iceland and the Faroe Islands Do not worry: we have not forgotten about the two island communities up north. This month, we consider for a moment how Iceland and the Faroe Islands went from Old Norse to Nordic cool.


We Love This | 12 Fashion Diary | 74 Hotels of the Month | 77 Attractions of the Month


Restaurants of the Month | 102 Humour

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Scan Magazine | Editor’s Note

Dear Reader, I have never been keen on the first few months of the year, the sparkle of Christmas a distant memory and brightness of spring feeling miles away. Therefore it was a particularly welcome piece of news that we would be spoilt with a bit of a heroine of mine on the cover of the February issue. From early The Cardigans recordings such as Emmerdale to more recent A Camp releases such as Colonia, I have always loved Nina Persson’s voice and lyrics, and as her first ever solo album, Animal Heart, sees the light of day, the Swedish singer reveals that a brand new The Cardigans album may not be as unthinkable as some might have thought. Signing off on a cover like this, February suddenly did not seem all that bad. Coincidentally, Persson is not the only big star featured in this month’s Scan Magazine. Lo and behold, the Prime Ministers of Sweden and Norway, Fredrik Reinfeldt and Erna Solberg, have penned a little something each to share with us their views on the year ahead. Both seem adamant that 2014 will be the year when the depressing downturn starts to resemble an uplifting upturn, and if our extra generous business section is anything to go by, they most likely have a point.

Speaking of uplifting, we have got a little something quirky and special for you in this issue, in the form of a spread about the most weirdly wonderful of Scandinavian competitions. Not sure what I mean? Never heard about the challenge of out-sitting your competitors atop a block of ice, or throwing your wife over your shoulder to hurry through varied terrain including a pool? The Nordics may be cool, but there is no shortage of madness. Our special themes this month take a look at the Finnish food scene, find out what the cultural hubs of Norway will do to kick off the 20th anniversary celebrations of its constitution, dip quickly into the island communities that are Iceland and the Faroe Islands, and much more. In the meantime, Paul Blackhurst, our business columnist, reflects on the Oxford Dictionary Word of the Year in 2013: the selfie. Through a poignant reflection, he highlights the importance for leaders to avoid the selfie temptation of only showing their most flattering sides. Which reminds me that a new year needs a new headshot – as did the last three, if I am honest.

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Scan Magazine | Contributors

This month’s contributors Mia Halonen has more than a quarter of a century’s worth of experience in journalism. She started working for the local radio while studying speech communication at the University of Jyväskylä in central Finland. Since then, she has hosted national radio and television shows, including the most popular TV show, Farmer wants a wife. Mia, who is now single and lives just outside Helsinki, has also lived in London and Los Angeles, where she worked as an actress. If you ask Mia, the best part of being a journalist, at least if you are an avid traveller, is getting to meet different kinds of people around the world. As such, Mia is one of the best-connected journalists in Finland. In this issue of Scan Magazine, Mia digs deeper into the world of delicious Finnish delicacies.

Karl Batterbee is Scan Magazine’s monthly music columnist. In 2008, Karl created the website, which to this day keeps the rest of the world up to date with what music is coming out of the Nordics. The brand has since been expanded to include an online record store, shipping Scandinavian music out of the region; a UK TV show on Sky channel Chart Show Dance; and a web-based radio station. Karl moved to Sweden in 2010 and lived there for over three years, working as a DJ on Stockholm’s club scene. In 2013 he returned to live in London and take up a job with BBC Radio, where he works now. As well as music, Karl’s great loves in life are tasty food and whatever red wine is on special offer at the supermarket that week. In addition to his regular Scandinavian music column, this month Karl brings Scan Magazine its cover feature, having picked Nina Persson’s brain on her new solo album, a potential future The Cardigans album, and the phenomenon that is Swedish music export.

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Sanne Wass is from Copenhagen but currently based in London, where she is pursuing an MA in International Journalism. When not busy studying or writing for Scan Magazine, she is learning Arabic, enjoying a glass of wine, or trying to catch up with the gym. Sanne has an endless passion for politics and discovering new places. In 2012, she spontaneously went back-packing on her own for two months across the Middle East. She then moved to the USA to work on Barack Obama’s presidential election campaign, before finding her way to London. Yet, her friends and family, and her never-ending addiction to Skyr and Danish rye bread, remind her that Denmark is home. For the February issue of Scan Magazine, Sanne set out to learn more about Danske Hoteller, a hotel family of sorts, and to understand how stomp can help boost the confidence of any business team.

Marjorie de los Angeles Mendieta is an Aalborg-based Danish freelance writer with a master’s in public administration from Aalborg University. She specialises in communication and the Danish welfare system. She loves to travel, her main passions being travelling, culture, music and fashion. When she travels, she likes to observe the differences and similarities between cultures and languages – especially those of Scandinavia. Marjorie loves to write about her subjects of interest, and when writing, her absolute key focus is to capture the reader and make them interested in the product she writes about. This month, Marjorie writes about some of Denmark’s top attractions, delving deeper into the country’s history, culture and natural wonders.

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Scan Magazine | Cover Feature | Nina Persson

Nina Persson Her favourite game Scan Magazine caught up with Sweden’s Nina Persson as she prepares for the release of her very first solo album this month, and asked why it has taken so long, what she has come up with after all this time, whether or not she will ever make music with The Cardigans again, and what impact that band had on Scandinavia’s success as a music export. By Karl Batterbee | Photos: Jorgen Ringstrand

As the unmistakable face and inimitable voice of The Cardigans, Nina Persson took a stronghold on pop music and its fans all over the world throughout the ’90s and into this century. American teenage years were soundtracked by Lovefool, and an even wider demographic fell for the undeniable charms of songs like My Favourite Game and Erase & Rewind. Their artistry gained more credibility, as if it were needed, in later years with For What It’s Worth and I Need Some Fine Wine And You, You Need To Be Nicer, and then, when the band split, we all inevitably went into waiting for the frontwoman’s solo album. Fast-forward to February 2014, and that solo album has finally arrived: Animal Heart.

“It was not until this point that I thought: wait, why not? But I was still so resistant to it before for some reason,” says the singer. Timing has also played a part – the stage at which Nina finds herself in her life. “For me it’s a good way to work right now, because I live in New York, away from my usual collaborators. I have a kid, and I need to be so meticulous about the planning and everything, so it just works well to be operating on my own for a while. I’m very flexible this way, and I’m also the only one who has to suffer the consequences if I turn things down or if something doesn’t work properly. So there were a lot of things that just made it seem like the right time. And also, I just wasn’t scared of it anymore.”

Not scared of it anymore

The hardest thing about going solo after being in a band for so long has, in Persson’s experience, also been the best: “The best thing is that I get to make all the decisions, and the hardest thing is that I have to make all the decisions. With a band and with all the decisions that need to be made, there are more people taking on the load. But then it’s often a big slog that’s hard to navigate – long and complicated email chains and all that. And now

What is unusual about this record is just how long it has taken for it to be made. The last time The Cardigans released any music was almost a decade ago, in 2005, and when they went on a break, many expected the first Nina Persson album to come out immediately. Instead, she got involved in another project: A Camp. So why did we have to wait so long for a Nina Persson solo album?

it’s really just me, so it’s a lighter feeling. But I do sometimes miss the companionship too.” Honouring the singer For Animal Heart, Persson has written everything with husband Nathan Larson (A Camp, Shudder To Think) and Eric D. Johnson (formerly of The Shins and Fruit Bats), but with a new approach: no lingering in studios and no super producers. Instead, they “hung around at the house in Harlem and played the songs with just a drum machine, a guitar and piano.” She speaks confidently about her role in writing songs for herself. “Both with the Cardigans and A Camp, I have done everything with very driven, career-oriented musicians, but now I wanted to put my own instrument first. Honour the singer. In my work, I have also understood that pop music is lodged deeper in me than I previously wanted to admit,” she says. “I have forced myself to follow my instincts with this album. I have simply no time to dwell on things anymore, something I did a lot of before.” The jazzy, playful pop melodies she made into an art form with The Cardigans are

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Scan Magazine | Cover Feature | Nina Persson

Now a mother and living in New York, away from her usual collaborators, Nina Persson felt that the timing was right for a solo album.

still there, but at the same time, she takes a couple of clear steps forward in her development with tracks that land somewhere between the melancholy of A Camp and a sort of blue-eyed soul genre. Several tracks also contain soundscapes reminiscent of one of Persson’s first musical roots: ’80s pop. “There are some elements that are quite new and quite different to anything I’ve done before. One is that I brought in a sound and a style that is a little bit more modern. It’s much more keyboard-based than before, and I’ve used a lot more synthesisers. It’s not as woody and guitar-driven. And perhaps it doesn’t sound as much like a traditional band, as The Cardigans was.” Scandinavian music is a massive export, now more so than ever. But does the singer feel that she helped shape the region’s reputation for making good pop music, as a member of The Cardigans? Her response is un-Swedish in all its pride: “I actually think so, because before

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we blew up, the big acts that came from Sweden – and this is with all respect, because I’m very much a fan – were ABBA and Ace of Base, and music that was often perceived as being superficial and commercial. I think what we did is that we tried to get that sort of recognition with a slightly different kind of music. ABBA gave a lot of confidence to Swedish musicians though, that not all music out there needs to be from an Anglo-speaking country. And I think that we probably helped give courage to Swedish musicians too, that more Swedish music and not necessarily radio hits could make it.”

thought than we’ve been in a long time, so it’s definitely more likely than it has been. We do talk about it; it’s just really down to the logistics of it. I live here, the other guys live in Sweden. So we would just have to figure out how and where and when. But we do have a lot of fantasies about it. I just spoke to Bengt (Lagerberg – the drummer) the other day on the phone and we were like, ‘I wonder what it would sound like!’ So yes, we’re curious about it.” So we had to wait for a Nina Persson album. But by the sounds of it, The Cardigans fans might not have to wait quite as long…

More likely now than it has been The big question that springs to mind when speaking of The Cardigans’ legacy is of course: will they ever make another album together? “To say if I foresee it or not is difficult. But we are at the point now where we are playing a lot together, and we’re having such a good time and loving it. And we’re more excited about the

Nina Persson’s solo album, Animal Heart, is out on 11 February. Nina is touring Scandinavia and northern Europe throughout February and coming to Scala in London on 5 March.

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Scan Magazine | Design | We Love This

We love this... Scandinavia is as renowned as ever for its great design tradition and multitude of timeless design icons. The industry keeps reinventing itself, and we see a continuous flow of beautiful new objects. For our February finds we have picked our favourite of these gorgeous old and new design classics. By Julie Guldbrandsen

The iconic Kubus candleholder designed by Mogens Lassen in 1962 is as modern-looking and covetable as ever. Since being made Practical yet very stylish, we love the children’s tableware in melamine by Design Letters. The

available in copper, it has become even

Bauhaus inspired black typography was designed by Danish architect Arne Jacobsen in 1937 and is

cooler and more current. £145.

still up-to-date and fresh. Cup, bowl and plate, £8.50 each.

The classic minimalist Lyngby Vase was designed 43 years ago and has recently

A simple and stylish magazine holder in

The Cover Chair is one of the newest

been re-launched. Available in black and

powder-coated steel by We Shop. Comes in

creations by Muuto – a modern

white. From £19.50 for the smallest (8 cm)

black, red and white. A taller version is also

interpretation of the classic wooden

to £222 for the largest (38 cm).

available as well as one that holds

armchair designed by Thomas Bentzen.

newspapers. £40.

From £349.

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Scan Magazine | Design | Fashion Diary

Fashion Diary... It might still be wintertime, but with pre-spring collections hitting the shelves this month we are lured into a few new wardrobe choices. Here is what you need for a Scandi-stylish February. By Julie Guldbrandsen

Up your off-duty fashion credentials in this edgy dark blue sweater with a roaring panther print by Weekday. £27.

Great transitional and multifunctional pieces are always high on our wish list, and this luxurious coat by Designers Remix fits the bill perfectly. Wear the boxy wool piece as a warm cardigan now and then use it as a coat in the spring. £310.

We are quite smitten with this figureMany argue that the best jeans out there

hugging dress by Vila. It is a cute evening

For an effortless and timelessly chic

are from Scandinavian fashion power-

choice but can also work with leggings and

look, pair a beautiful silk shirt with a

house Acne, and we tend to agree. The

a good knit during the day, and needless to

well-fitting pair of jeans. This shirt by

vintage look of these is spot on for now

say, it will get even more use come

Rodebjer makes an elegant yet

as well as the season ahead. £165.

springtime. £45.

contemporary expression. £210.

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Scan Magazine | Design | Little Red Stuga & Fine Little Day

Some favourites from the web shop.

Little Red Stuga and Fine Little Day – a match made in heaven Last summer, design enthusiasts were delighted to hear that two of the most popular Scandinavian craft makers, Little Red Stuga and Fine Little Day, were merging. With their strong graphic expressions and playful objectives, they are already a force to be reckoned with on the international design market.

design and craft from talents around the world,” she says. “Elisabeth has a great eye for that.”

By Astrid Eriksson | Photos: Elisabeth Dunker

“The fusion was a natural thing,” says Ulrika E. Engberg, who founded Little Red Stuga together with Kasper Medin in 2007. “We’ve known each other for a long time, and the companies have grown side by side from the start. It was time to merge.” Little Red Stuga comes from a background of storytelling and design, while Fine Little Day, founded by photographer and designer Elisabeth Dunker, has long been one of the hottest design blogs Scandinavia has to offer. Together, Little Red Stuga and Fine Little Day make a recipe for greatness. “The word ‘little’ unites us,” Engberg says. “It is a word representative of the playfulness and the charm that our products and visions are all about.” This playfulness has really hit home internationally, and roughly 60-70 per cent of the company trade is made up of international exports.

It all started with blogs and a huge response through social media, and from there the reputation of the Scandinavian designers continued to grow and spread. Today, Little Red Stuga and Fine Little Day have daily contact with customers from countries such as South Korea, USA and Australia to name a few. The international press loves them as well and they have been featured in publications such as Vogue Living, Elle, Milk Magazine, New York Times, and Martha Stewart Living. What will ensure future success for Little Red Stuga and Fine Little Day are their spontaneous designs, their inspiration from nature, and the never-ceasing love for the craft. Their blend of design, craft, and fashion is inimitable, and Engberg sees a bright future ahead. “We would love to create a visual experience with a mix of our own design and hand-picked

CEO Ulrika E. Engberg, and Elisabeth Dunker, designer and creative director.

Make sure to visit the web shop, where there is always something new and exciting to explore:

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Scan Magazine | Design | Jane Kønig

Jane Kønig’s jewellery designs are characterised by the designer’s fascination with, and use of, a wide range of handpicked materials.

With their elegance and simplicity, Jane Kønig’s Love Tags have become among the designer’s most cherished creations worldwide.

A tag of love Simple, adventurous and raw – all fitting adjectives when describing award-winning designer Jane Kønig’s globally popular jewellery. Among the Danish designer’s most popular collections is the Love Tag series, which with its simple yet personalised style has become an icon of the designer’s talent. Scan Magazine talked to Kønig about her inspirations, goals and passions. By Signe Hansen | Photos: Jane Kønig

Jane Kønig created her first jewellery when she graduated from the Danish Design Academy in 1989. But despite the fact that she has dedicated her time to the trade ever since, for more than two decades, she never struggles to find inspiration for her distinct designs. Mixing old objects such as antique precious stones with modern materials and designs she creates unexpected fusions of everyday items and treasured jewellery. “I find inspiration in everything: in historic art, craftwork and beautiful people. Besides, music, film and, of course, fashion continue to give me a new boost of inspiration – I love fashion, it is always going in

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new directions and places,” says Kønig, adding: “For me it is the outer which affects the inner and creates new creative motions.” Throughout the last decades, the work of Kønig has been exhibited at The National Museum of Denmark as well as numerous other places. It is also utilised in fashion shows and displayed in magazines and newspapers all over the world. A symbol of love Thirteen years ago, Kønig decided to create a simple yet personalised piece of jewellery that would suit all types and situa-

tions. The idea turned into a collection of 18-carat gold Love Tags. The elegant round pendants have today become not just the symbol of Kønig’s creative essence but also one of the designer’s most cherished creations. “The Love Tags have become so meaningful to more people than I ever imagined; there is something secret, private about them, sort of like a kind of amulet with loving thoughts behind it. I really love it,” says the designer. Today, the Love Tag collection is available in other precious metals as well as gilded versions, and its continued popularity underlines the timelessness of Kønig’s designs.

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Scan Magazine | Design | Jane Kønig

For the love of the work Kønig releases a new bijouterie and silver collection twice a year and a collection with precious metal and stones twice again. All jewellery is handmade and created from a wide selection of materials, from precious metals to horn, bone and stones found by the designer on her many travels. Kønig’s fascination with different materials goes all the way back to her very first works, which came about when she started making jewellery for students at the Danish Design Academy. “When I was at the Danish Design Academy, I started making jewellery, buttons and buckles in metal and stone for my different assignments. That led to other design students asking me to create jewellery for their collections, and before long I was spellbound by the opportunities of the materials and knew that was the way for me to go – and I still love my work,” she enthuses. Everyday items and precious treasures The materials in Kønig’s collections mean that many of her pieces are financially accessible to most people, but the price tag is never what leads the design process. “I never choose a specific person or target group when I design. I always follow my inspiration and just let that lead me; that’s a principle I always try to stick to,” says the designer. “Like many girls, I do like a bit of bling-bling, but at the core I am probably more in love with the understated and simple.”

The simple beauty of Kønig’s designs is very much on show in her newest collection, which captures the designer’s simple

yet dynamic and modern essence. One of the designer’s favourite pieces from the collection is a stunning set of 18-carat earrings with South Sea pearls.

Jane Kønig has received the Wonderful Copenhagen Design Award, the Golden Thimble and the Goldsmiths Sct. Loyd Award. Jane Kønig’s jewellery is sold through jewellery shops all over Europe, the USA and Canada as well as through her website.

For more information, please visit:

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facilitate the contact to possible tenants. For both landlords and expatriate tenants, Housing Denmark offers the security and safety much sought-after when making big life changes. “It’s very important that all practical things run smoothly and that the proper framework has been set when moving abroad,” CEO Steen Lundsfryd explains. Housing Denmark was founded in 2004 by Steen Lundsfryd, and has grown bigger and bigger ever since. With a background in marketing and sales, Lundsfryd is welltravelled and has always had a personal interest in the housing market. Combining his experience and passion, he noticed a gap in an otherwise sleepy industry, and decided it was time to take matters into his own hands. With years of experience of working with internet domains, Lundsfryd knew the importance of creating a searchable, precise and memorable brand name, and soon Housing Denmark was established in a private villa in Espergærde. Uncompromising focus on security and convenience

Steen Lundsfryd, CEO of Housing Denmark

If you can't beat them... buy them! With an uncompromising focus on security and safety for tenants and landlords, Housing Denmark celebrates its 10th anniversary as Denmark’s leading housing agency following the acquisition of the former market leader. Providing their national and international clientele with one-to-one, year-round housing services, Housing Denmark makes moving abroad every little bit less stressful. By Stine Gjevnoe | Photos: Housing Denmark

Housing Denmark is a professional housing agency that helps companies, embassies and organisations find appropriate housing when relocating staff to

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Denmark. Typically, landlords are moving abroad themselves, and with no interest in selling or giving up their property in Denmark, they employ Housing Denmark to

When tenants contact Housing Denmark, they are allocated a personal housing agent who will initiate correspondence even before the tenant sets foot in Denmark. Together, they prepare a list of wishes and specifics, which point the agent in the direction of an appropriate property. Upon arrival, the tenant and agent meet and view the potential properties together. As Steen Lundsfryd underlines, Housing Denmark is not a relocation agency, but it helps its tenants with all housing-related issues. In addition to its core business, it recently launched a full facility management programme, which offers tenants and landlords an array of service options, such as cleaning, insurance, and furniture packages, because “we wish to make the process of moving as easy as possible for our clients,” Lundsfryd insists. In February 2013, what was Scandinavia’s leading housing agency at the time, Scandia Housing, went bankrupt, and many

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Scan Magazine | Feature | Housing Denmark

landlords suffered great financial loss as all rent and deposits were paid to the agency as opposed to directly to the landlords. Housing Denmark made an offer, and on 15 March 2013 Housing Denmark officially bought Scandia Housing. The acquisition was welcomed by many, because Housing Denmark’s business model stands out in one very important area. “Our primary focus is on security for our tenants and landlords, which is why our business model features a cash flow that goes directly from tenant to landlord in the rental period. By doing this we, as an agency, can focus on what we do best: mediating rental housing.” Established network of clients In September this year, Housing Denmark celebrates its 10-year anniversary. The private villa in Espergærde might have been replaced with a much bigger space

in the mundane Hellerup, but focus is still on nurturing and developing client relationships. While a lot of competitors expand with additional products, Housing Denmark’s main objective is to improve the services they already offer. Most other businesses have experienced significant changes in recent years due to the financial crisis, but Housing Denmark has maintained a stable clientele of around 1,000 national and international companies due to two important factors: most properties are rented out to this network, providing landlords with the stability and security they need to leave their homes with piece of mind; and furthermore, the need for expatriate representatives remains the same regardless of cyclical and economic changes to society.

assume the market position Scandia Housing used to hold, build an even stronger team, and maintain and develop our crucially important website.” With offices in Copenhagen and Aarhus and agents covering the rest of the country, Housing Denmark is well on its way to meeting said aspirations.

When asked about future plans for the company, Lundsfryd says: “We hope to Facts about Housing Denmark: - Market-leading Danish housing agency - Strong network of worldwide corporations, embassies and international organisations - 10 years’ experience - List of references includes major Danish blue chip companies - Professional staff fully qualified to handle national and international clients

For more information please visit:

In September this year, following the acquisition of the former market leader, Housing Denmark celebrates its 10th anniversary.

Company address: Main office: Strandvejen 70, 2900 Hellerup, Denmark

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Scan Magazine | Design Feature | Clarion Hotel Sign

Photo: Åke Eson-Lindman

Photos: Andreas Teien Hallman

Many hotels boast that they will make you feel at home. Clarion Hotel Sign does everything but: you might wish that this was your home, but the experience is far from ordinary.

has been fitted with Swans and Lilies, with timeless materials like solid wood, leather and stone working together to create that unmistakably Scandinavian feel.

I saw the sign By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Clarion Hotel Sign

That is assuming that you do not live in a ten-storey top-architecture drawn glass and granite building at the heart of Stockholm, getting to your Bruno Mathsson designed bedroom on the third floor using an ABBA-themed lift and having a daily breakfast made up of Levain sourdough, scrambled eggs, freshly-squeezed juices and seedy muesli with yoghurt, sat in a Seven chair signed Arne Jacobsen while listening to live jazz. No, this only happens at Clarion Hotel Sign.

a characteristic signifier of this Sweden’s largest hotel. The foyer is understatedly confident, the staff friendly and efficient without being overbearing. Then you enter the lift, and a journey begins: through floors showcasing the most celebrated of Scandinavian designers and up to Selma City Spa with its sought-after heated outdoor pool. This is luxury the Scandinavian way: with simple lines, cleanliness, functionality and time to relax.

With views across Stockholm’s picturesque rooftops and service so seamlessly coherent you barely even notice it, Clarion Hotel Sign is like a miniature version of the Nordics, where healthy living and world-class design meet to create an oasis of relaxation. Comfortable? Absolutely. Ordinary? Far from it. But why feel at home when you can feel like you are in heaven?

A modern classic But the Sign experience begins before you even enter the hotel. The building, towering over Norra Bantorget in central Stockholm, just moments from the Central Station and Arlanda Express, was sketched by Sweden’s most famous architect, Gert Wingårdh, and has already been dubbed a modern classic. Its glass and granite façade reflects the park while the spectacularly sharp prow has quickly become

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Mecca for design lovers The Swedish capital is itself somewhat of a Mecca for design lovers, and this is the perfect place to stay when exploring the city’s museums and design shops. Whatever way you turn, there is a coveted piece of furniture: Egg chairs, Jetsons, E400s and everything in between. Even the popular bar and restaurant, renowned chef Marcus Samuelsson’s American Table,

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Travel Feature | Profil Rejser

Old boyhood dreams, family adventures and fun company trips Whether you dream of feeling the wind in your hair, travelling across America on the back of a legendary Harley Davidson, or experiencing maritime luxury on a cruise across the Seven Seas, there is a Danish travel agency that knows how to make the dreams come true. By Else Kvist | Photos: Profil Rejser

Profil Rejser, which started out focusing on independent travel to mainly Thailand and the United States some 30 years ago, has grown to incorporate a number of travel sections, specialising in different types of travel to a whole host of destinations across the world. Everything from motorbike and golf trips to cruises, along with trips for disabled, groups and companies wanting to incorporate a bit of fun for their staff has become the company’s speciality. Profil Rejser has been voted Travel Agency of the Year several times, and what sets it apart is its service level, according to company director Peter Rasmussen. “Our sales staff normally have significant experience of travelling through the country they deal with, enabling them to create a

dialogue with the customer that results in an entirely different and complete service. They’ve actually stood on the beach and can tell the customers how quiet it is or how much time they may need in each place.” A variety of adventures “Men come to us for help with everything from arranging an old boys’ trip or living out an old boyhood dream of crossing America on a motorbike to planning a golf trip with friends. Couples may want to go on a luxury cruise or take the family on a fantastic beach holiday,” says Rasmussen. Another dream came true for a disabled customer when the company arranged to take him and his wheelchair up in an air balloon across the South African savannah.

America, Thailand and the Caribbean remain popular, with up-and-coming destinations such as Borneo and Burma. “It’s very ‘in’ to find the small hideaways and untouched beaches without too many Danes – people don’t want to bump into their neighbours,” Rasmussen explains. “The Caribbean is perhaps no longer deserted, but you can still find beautiful bounty beaches. Borneo is a growing market for both couples and families who want to experience untouched nature with turtles, fish, orangutans and elephants, and Burma is like Thailand 25 years ago: almost virgin-like.”

For more information, please visit:

Top, from left to right: Golf trip to Argentina. Divers at the Danish West Indian Islands. Cruise ship outside the Italian fishing village of Portofino. Bottom, from left to right: A disabled customer in a wheelchair at the Golden Gate in San Francisco and Machu Picho in Peru (middle). Motor bike ride across the United States.

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Scan Magazine | Culinary Profile | Madsvinet

Despite Madsvinet’s name (the Mad Swine) and its location in an old butcher’s shop, the kitchen is not especially focused on pork or meat but presents a mix of meat, fish and vegetarian dishes.

Old butcher’s shop turned trendy restaurant In Copenhagen’s bohemian Vesterbro neighbourhood, an old butcher’s shop has been transformed into Madsvinet, a trendy eatery specialising in modern Danish dishes and biodynamic wines. By Signe Hansen | Photos: Madsvinet

When Madsvinet opened its doors in January 2012, guests swarmed in, intrigued by the restaurant’s ambiguous name. The name, Madsvinet, is a rather mischievous Danish term for a foodie; in a playful combination of his mother-tongue with the English language, owner Rolf Dylsing Nielsen uses the rough translation ‘the Mad Swine’. “There was quite the hype around our opening, partly because of our rather cheeky name, but, of course, the reason people have kept coming back after their first visit is that they like our product,” he stresses. Two years later, the small restaurant is still very much the buzz.

During Madsvinet’s first 18 months, Dylsing, an autodidact chef, personally headed up the kitchen. He put together a menu that presents a selection of à la carte dishes as well as five- and eight-course tasting menus with tailored wine menus for dedicated foodies. “Our kitchen focuses on modern Danish recipes with twists from all over the world – in other words, it’s a trendy Copenhagener’s kitchen,” explains Dylsing. On the menu, guests will find temptations such as sweetbread with yellow beets, lemon and pumpkin; biodynamic cheeses; and a charcuterie platter. As far as possible, dishes are created using organic and lo-

cally-sourced ingredients, and the restaurant has an impressive selection of organic and biodynamic wines. Diners at Madsvinet are welcomed inside the rustic restaurant by Dylsing, who has now left the kitchen to dedicate himself to the host role. Inside, they are met by an atmospheric combination of the butcher’s shop’s original rawness and the owner’s homemade interiors. “We spent five months stripping the shop down to its original state, and after that we started working to bring some warmth and atmosphere into the room,” he explains.The result is what is likely to be Copenhagen’s trendiest butcher’s shop with many old parts such as the original walls preserved alongside long, black plank tables and an open kitchen. In summertime, guests can also dine al fresco at the restaurant’s outdoor tables. Madsvinet is open Wednesday to Saturday 5.30 pm to midnight. For more information, please visit:

Madsvinet’s interiors still highlight the restaurant’s long history as a butcher’s shop. In summertime, guests at Madsvinet can enjoy their dinner outdoors.

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Top: Alingsås (Photo: Robert Persson). Below left: Norrköping (Photo: Peter Holgersson). Middle: Harbour in Vadstena (Press Photo). Right: Trollhättefallen (Photo: Roger Lärk).

From old saints to flea markets Sweden’s economic recovery may be slow, writes Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt in his message to our readers, but this is the year when it is likely to really take hold, hopefully growing stronger in the coming years. In many parts of Sweden, tourism is an important and more or less constant contributor to the local economy; however, this industry takes many different shapes, as exemplified by the five must-see destinations featured in this issue. In other words, Sweden has a lot to offer visitors: from wild, rugged nature to much-valued culinary traditions and spectacular events.

Though Norrköping boasts a fair share of proud local history too, much of the current buzz is around newer initiatives. With an exclusive exhibition and Sweden’s biggest music festival kicking off in the town this summer, there are plenty of reasons for Swedes and visitors from abroad to stop by.

By Linnea Dunne

Few could have guessed that the many cafés and bakeries that popped up in Alingsås as the industrial revolution made women go to work would lead to a café culture taking such a strong hold of the local community that it is now one of the main reasons why people visit the town. But this year sees The Fika Party return for the third time, celebrating all things coffee-and-cake related and marking the return of the sun with a flea market,

baking competitions and a host of other activities. Vadstena is another spot where women’s history is in the spotlight: its famous abbey was founded by Sweden’s only saint, Saint Bridget, and the renowned opera institution, Vadstena Academy, celebrates its 50th anniversary this summer with a production about women’s rights activist and writer Mary Wollstonecraft.

As far as nature is concerned, multifaceted is one word that springs to mind when considering the vast landscapes Sweden has to offer. From the orchids of the Alvar landscape on the island of Öland and peaceful archipelago of the town of Västervik to the powerful waterfalls and moose-dense forests of Trollhättan and Vänersborg, it is easy to see what inspired Sweden’s unique Right of Public Access. Read on, and you will make sure to know how and where to make the most of it, too.

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

Prime Minister of Sweden, Fredrik Reinfeldt, on the year ahead Dear readers, As the New Year sets in, Europe is still being weighed down by slow economic growth. The sluggish growth, and its impact on jobs, dominates the policy agenda, together with concerns over weaknesses in the banking sector.

I wish you a happy and productive 2014! Best wishes, Fredrik Reinfeldt Prime Minister of Sweden

Fredrik Reinfeldt, Prime Minister of Sweden

The Swedish government

Structural reforms to promote competitiveness and improve labour market conditions are needed in many parts of Europe, as well as measures to restore the financial system. It is also vital to continue ongoing trade talks with the United States and emerging economies, and continue our efforts to reduce trade barriers within the European Union.

Looking ahead, we see a slow and fragile economic recovery, hopefully taking hold and growing stronger in the coming years. With more businesses hiring and trade expanding, more people will enjoy the security and confidence that work provides. This, in turn, is the foundation for a stronger, more dynamic Europe in the years to come.

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

Harry Potter – The Exhibition is the world’s only touring exhibition about the fantasy books, and it makes its European premiere in Norrköping this summer. Photos: Harry Potter – The Exhibition

Hogwart’s house, dolphins, and rock’n’roll A lot is happening in Norrköping, also known as one of the twin cities that make up Sweden’s fourth metropolitan region. With a new festival that instantly became Sweden’s biggest, the European premiere of a much-anticipated exhibition, and a zoo with more than 500,000 visitors a year, this former workers’ town is likely to win hoards of new fans in the coming months. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Jörgen Ericsson and Peter Holgersson

Sofia Fäldt, marketing coordinator at Upplev Norrköping, is noticeably excited about the exhibition that is bound to put Norrköping on the map way beyond the borders of Sweden. “This will be the European premiere of Harry Potter – The Exhibition,” she says of the touring exhibition that opens its doors in May and spends the summer in Norrköping before moving on to other locations throughout Europe. “It’s the only touring exhibition about Harry Potter in the world, and this is the only place in Sweden where it will be shown.” With set décor, costumes and props from the film sets on display, the exhibition will allow visitors not only to experience the set atmosphere first-hand but also to try out Quidditch, the sport known from the

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films. Take a look at Gryffindor’s livingroom and the Forbidden Forest, or have a go at pulling a Mandrake in the herbal classroom. Visitors even get to pop into Hagrid’s Hut and try out his chair. It would

be an understatement to say that it is a magical world. Nature’s lesson But families with children have been travelling to Norrköping for years already, with everything from tigers and lions to monkeys and eagle owls greeting you at Kolmården Wildlife Park, just a short drive from the town. “Kolmården is the largest zoo in the Nordics, but what makes it even more special is the dolphinarium – you don’t get shows like these at any zoo,” says Fäldt.

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Marine World, which is what the area inspired by dolphins and pirates is called, promises goosebump-inducing experiences such as Captain Seasick’s seal show and the world-renowned dolphin performance, Life, taking its audience on a journey with a message: that taking care of nature and its inhabitants is crucial and should be a top priority. Expect worldclass technology, hugely skilled dolphin trainers, and music by Norrköping’s own symphony orchestra. Kolmården Wildlife Park boasts more areas than you could possibly explore in a day, with cable cars taking you tantalisingly close to lions and bears in the Safari, the Colosseum allowing you to say hello to elephants and rhinos, and Kulmården (‘kul’ meaning fun in Swedish) offering every possible way to stretch those legs and get your thrills on slides and jungle gyms. Best of all: there is no need to choose whether to get lost in Hogwart’s houses or Kolmården’s jungles. “This summer, we’ll be offering package deals to allow visitors to make the most of their stay,” says Fäldt. “You’ll get Harry Potter, Kolmården and accommodation, all packaged and ready to go.” Music and proud roots Hugging Bråviken Bay, the town of Norrköping is big enough to offer all the shopping, culture and culinary experiences of a decent-sized city while at the same time being close enough to nature to allow for some uplifting outdoor activities. A recent initiative has seen the stretch alongside the waterfront grow into a lively area full of attractions and things to do, with more and more of the hotels being fully booked when outdoor enthusiasts visit to make the most of excellent cycling, kayaking and hiking opportunities.



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With 52,000 visitors in its first year last year, Bråvallafestivalen quickly reached its goal of becoming Sweden’s largest music festival.

mer with headliners such as Iron Maiden, Kings of Leon and Mando Diao already confirmed. “The festival is a little bit different in that it targets a slightly older crowd,” Fäldt explains. “The programme tends to cover quite a wide range of genres, and even the camping sites have been planned with different festival goers in mind: there’s the usual festival camping site, a green site, and then a premium one offering slightly better facilities and, I suppose, a calmer vibe.”

Harry Potter – The Exhibition 29 May – 7 Sep Book in advance and avoid the queues!

Perhaps it helps, too, that Norrköping is known as a town full of character, its workers’ roots proudly flaunted by the redeveloped industrial area, home to Arbetets Museum (Museum of Work), and the picturesque Knäppingsborg quarters with its boutiques and cafés. But if you plan on visiting this summer, book early. “The hotels in Norrköping and the surrounding towns all get booked up around the time of Bråvallafestivalen,” urges Fäldt, and we doubt that Harry Potter will make for a quieter summer.

Bråvallafestivalen 26-28 June Confirmed acts include Iron Maiden, Kings of Leon and Mando Diao

Kolmården Wildlife Park More information and tickets:

For more information, please visit:

Norrköping offers all the shopping and café culture of a decent-sized city, as well as plenty of charm in old, well-maintained districts such as Knäppingsborg and the industrial landscape.

Still, it is in the town itself that the real booming appears to be taking place. Bråvallafestivalen, the music festival that launched last year with the aim of becoming Sweden’s largest music festival, reaching its goal with a bang and 52,000 visitors in its first year, is back this sum-

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

A long, thin island, Öland takes you close to the sea wherever you go. Another special treat is the island’s Alvar landscape, where a wide range of orchids bloom in the spring. Photo: Malin Arnesson

Beautiful pearls of southeast Sweden Ask a Swede, and they are likely to say that their favourite holiday spot is in the southeast of Sweden. Eastern Småland and Öland are like a smorgasbord of all the things dearest to the country’s natives, mixing the beloved children’s book author Astrid Lindgren with deep forests, long sandy beaches, endless perfect spots for that all-important ‘fika’, and a surprising amount of space, peace and quiet. By Linnea Dunne

Many come to Sweden for its nature, and no one can blame them. Eastern Småland and Öland boast more than their fair share of stunning scenery, from Öland’s Alvar landscape full of orchids to long coastlines with fishing and sailing opportunities and forests rich in moose and roe deer. This is also where Astrid Lindgren grew up, and the area is full of little red cabins and cobbled streets, all right next to well-preserved castles, a rich cultural life, and a glass blower’s district known as the Kingdom of Crystal. Get to the heart of Sweden with these picks from the Swedes’ favourite gems.

children, not only for attractions such as Astrid Lindgren’s World, where you can explore Pippi Longstocking’s Villa Villekulla and meet the people of Lönneberga, but also for the moose park, Virum älgpark, and Nils Holgersson’s

World. Top up on youthfulness, fantasy and adventure, and take a break by going for a swim in a nearby lake before returning to pop by Astrid Lindgren’s Näs, the writer’s childhood home with a museum about her and her work.

Vimmerby: for the child in you The town where Astrid Lindgren grew up is a popular destination for families with

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Visit the birthplace of Astrid Lindgren, Sweden’s most-loved children’s book authors. Photos: Astrid Lindgrens Värld

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

Vimmerby town is also a destination in its own right, making a great example of a genuine Swedish small town with shopping opportunities, historical sites, and great cafés and restaurants. This year, a new addition to the list of must-see attractions opens its doors: MX World Collection, a motocross museum with over 100 bikes from six decades on display.

Västervik: the archipelago town Take shopping, great food, picturesque 14th century streets and charming hotels, and bring them all right out into the heart of an archipelago. This is what gives Västervik its own special character: whatever you do, when you go to a gig or grab a drink, even when you go to bed at night, the sea is always right there.

Öland: marrying nature and culture

Naturally, the water and the 5,000 islands are themselves worth exploring, and indeed there are boats and beaches to help you do so – but why choose?

If you love the sea, go to Öland. The island is long but thin, so wherever you are on the island, you are only a short bike ride away from the coast. Nature has been generous here: the Alvar landscape offers fields full of orchids, there is a rich bird life, and the sunsets are simply magical. A total of 25 camping sites, all right by the sea, help you make the most of it. But Öland is not just for the summer. The cycling and walking routes are enjoyable all year round, and who said that spa experiences, museums, Renaissance castles, locally-sourced food and whisky tastings are for hot summer’s days? It has been described as a little part of paradise, so prepare to feel seduced. Glasriket: a kingdom of crystal Take 12 glassworks and put them all in one place, and it is bound to be referred to as some sort of kingdom. Glasriket, or the Kingdom of Crystal, is home to renowned Swedish crystal brands such as Orrefors and Kosta Boda, and visitors can take guided tours and have a go at blowing glass. Stay at Kosta Boda Art Hotel, where you can also grab a bite to eat, and do not miss the new exhibition that opens this year.

Enjoy the waterfront promenade, the old castle spa in a nature reserve area, and the cosy cobbled streets. Shop until you drop, and end the night in style with an ‘archipelago box’, a special meal with fresh seafood, and a glass of something refreshing while watching the sun set over the water. Kalmar: come alive in the city What first meets the eye is a beautiful old castle and an old ring wall, topped up with cobbled streets and green areas. And Kalmar is pretty – there are no two ways about it. But this small city has a buzz and a pulse that will satisfy both sports fanatics and culture vultures. Between the Ironman Kalmar, the brand new Guld Agility, and countless other races and sporting events, there is plenty to keep both legs and heart going. Add museums, a theatre, and regular live gigs at the central square, and you have got yourself a lively and exciting few days.

A town in the archipelago, Västervik offers quality dining opportunities and shopping to the sound of seaguls and crashing waves. Photo: Niklas Lind

If nature and charm are Eastern Småland and Öland’s buzz words, Kalmar sure is a good place to wrap up your trip. Now, who is up for a swim in the canal?

For more information, please visit: Home to renowned Swedish crystal brands like Orrefors and Kosta Boda, the Kingdom of Crystal lets you have a go at blowing your own glass. Photo: AB Glasriket

Kalmar brings the fun and energy out of anyone visiting, all with a beautiful backdrop of unspoilt nature, an old castle and cobbled streets. Photo: Magnus Bremefors

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

Alingsås has the highest number of cafés per capita in Sweden, and as such, the town is sometimes referred to as ‘the café town’.

Fika, fika, fika* – and a touch of vintage It makes perfect sense when you think of it: if the industrial revolution brings with it textile factories and the women go to work and stop baking bread, someone else has got to do it. As Alingsås was big in textiles, it ended up with plenty of bakeries and cafés. Behold the Swedish town with the most cafés per capita and a weekend dedicated to the Swedish phenomenon that is ‘fika’. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Robert Persson

Alingsås’s reputation as ‘the café town’ goes back to the mid-1700s, when Jonas Alströmer set up textile production in the town. A huge number of the previously home-based women started going to work, and bakeries and cafés started popping up all across the town. But Alströmer’s legacy alone was not enough to make Alingsås into the café-dense town it is today. “The industrial revolution created similar results in other parts of the country,” says Malin Helltén, head of communication and marketing at Alingsås council. “But in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s, with all the regeneration and new political ideas of that time, many town centres were almost completely knocked down in favour of big, new,

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

shiny buildings. But not in Alingsås.” The café town’s second hero was an architect called Per Henrik Rosenström, whose love for the picturesque town centre was great enough to help stop the demolition work. The café owners escaped sky-rocketing rents, and the cafés remained. Today, Alingsås is a pretty little town that smells of freshly-ground coffee and cinnamon buns. Small wooden houses line the cobbled streets and the old steamship Herbert and preserved railway AntenGräfsnäs remain popular visitor attractions. In fact, the latter paints yet another picture of the deep-rooted café culture here, as the old Gothenburg train used to stop here in order for its passengers to stretch their legs and get a coffee and bite to eat before continuing their journey. The Fika Party This May, for the third time, the town will throw a party in the honour of fika. As the weather picks up and people start coming out of hibernation, baking competitions and children’s activities will take over the many cafés, live music will fill the streets, and a big flea market will take place. “The flea market will naturally focus on all things fika-related, like old coffee cups, cake trays and porcelain,” Helltén explains. “But Alingsås also happens to be situated on the tourist trail known as the Retro Road, so there’s a huge interest in retro and vintage things here, which will fit really nicely with the market idea.” The Fika Party will take place during the first weekend of May, and judging by previous years, visitors can expect pancake buffets, cone-making sessions, cake decoration competitions, and plenty of special offers. Should you overdose on cream and buns, there are two big lakes and a handful of parks nearby, so you can channel the energy through a swim or some cycling. Turning on the lights Another happening that puts Alingsås on the map is Lights in Alingsås, Europe’s biggest lighting event, which takes place during five weeks starting on 27 September. While around 80,000 lighting design-

ers and other lighting enthusiasts from all over Europe will come for the fair alone, locals and other visitors also get to reap the benefits of the big show as the town’s cafés put up fairy lights and other decorative, spectacular lighting creations in their courtyards and stay open late throughout the month of October. The little courtyards at the back of the many wooden houses are characteristic of the town, which has won a cultural heritage award for its well-preserved centre. Whatever the time of year, a visit to Alingsås is adequately made complete by a guided café tour, tickets for which can be purchased at the Tourist Office all year round. A sign of the times is that, while the cafés are as old as they are cute, the coffee served and other products for sale are most often Fairtrade labelled. Alingsås is a proud Fairtrade town, so even if the countless independent shops and boutiques encourage consumption, they do so in the best possible way. One-third of Swedes admit to feeling that they do not ‘fika’ enough with their nearest and dearest. If you are like them, Alingsås is waiting for you.

*Fika is a Swedish verb that means to drink coffee or tea, usually with something sweet, most often as a way of socialising with a friend. - Swedes spend on average 227 hours per year on fika. - 60 of said hours represent fika during work. - Filter coffee is the drink of choice for 55 per cent of Swedes during a fika. - When discussing sex and love, 59 per cent of Swedish men prefer fika over social media as a platform. Facts from Fikarapporten 2013, published by Gevalia.

For more information, please visit: Alingsås Tourist Office 0046 322 616200

Lights in Alingsås is Europe’s largest lighting event and attracts around 80,000 visitors. When the event takes place in October every year, the town’s cafés bring out all kinds of weird and wonderful lighting devices and stay open late.

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

Vadstena is surrounded by water and is a popular stop for the many boats on Lake Vättern. By choosing one of the many different guided tours, you can experience Vadstena castle (top right) and Vadstena Abbey (below right), founded by Sweden’s only saint: Saint Bridget.

Renaissance by Vättern’s shoreline Through a number of different guided tours, everyone can choose according to their own interests how to experience Vadstena in 2014. By Sara Mangsbo | Photos: Visit Vadstena

Vadstena is nicely situated by the beautiful lake Vättern in Sweden. Despite a mere 7,500 inhabitants, the town is very wellknown to Swedes thanks to its rich and important history. In the summertime, Vadstena blossoms and welcomes visitors from all around the world. It is not hard to tell why: it might be because Vadstena is surrounded by water and has a beach in the middle of town, or thanks to the harbour that offers safe moorings in any weather conditions. Or it could be because of the picturesque town centre, where buildings from the 13th century accommodate second hand shops, guesthouses and charming cafés. Either way, Vadstena is a town that makes everyone feel taken care of.

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Exclusive shopping “It’s not every town that has a lake with 20 metres of clear visibility,” says Kicchi Lindell of Visit Vadstena proudly, as she explains that Vadstena is perfectly located next to the second biggest lake in Sweden, Vättern. “You can have lunch and then two minutes later find yourself on a beach,” she continues. And plenty of places take advantage of the setting. Skutan, Rojas and La Bocata are popular restaurants and cafés, and guesthouse Solgården is one of many places where couples, families and bigger groups choose to spend the night while in Vadstena. Solgården’s gorgeous, big, yellow villa was also the set location for the TV series Inga Lindström, which was seen by more than 100 million people all over Europe.

The shopping in Vadstena is noteworthy as there are no chain stores at all. Instead, unique, independent shops make the town an exclusive market area where you can find anything from the Swedish renowned jeans brand Cheap Monday at Mrs Manfred to carefully selected Scandinavian children’s garments at Krusbär. Vadstena Abbey Popular among foreign tourists is Vadstena Abbey, once used as a double monastery and founded in 1346 by the only saint in Sweden: Saint Bridget. The abbey was active until the late 16th century and the last one in the country to close down before Lutheranism was introduced as part of the Reformation in Sweden. Today, guided tours are offered throughout the summer and it is also possible to stay overnight, as parts of the abbey have been transformed into a hotel.

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

Renaissance castle by the House of Vasa The biggest attraction here is Vadstena Castle, building works of which began in 1545 on order by King Gustav Vasa with the intention to protect himself and the capital, Stockholm, from enemies. His son had other plans, however, and the finished building became a magnificent renaissance castle. Furniture, paintings and portraits are all well preserved and make an excellent example of European Renaissance style. Today, the castle welcomes hoards of tourists who come to learn about its rich history, and guided tours are held throughout the year. In addition to the Renaissance tour, one can choose to walk the trenches and moat as part of the Defence tour, follow a prince or princess throughout the Children tour, or visit the castle in total darkness during the Ghost tour. This summer’s exhibition, Ellen in the mirror, is inspired by feminist writer Ellen Key (1849-1926) who lived and worked close to Vadstena. 12 textile artists from

nearby Östgötatextil will exhibit beautiful handicrafts and fabrics. “The castle was also once used as a linen factory, so this exhibition feels like a nice way of telling the full story of its heritage,” says Lindell. An academy for promising opera artists Close to the castle is Vadstena Academy. The institution works towards a revitalisation of the art of opera and educates young opera artists, costume designers, lighting technicians and producers. The academy is the country’s biggest commissioner of newly-composed operas, and 2014 marks its 50th anniversary. The celebration takes the shape of a summer production, The Silvership, a new story written by Sophie Helsing about the English women’s rights pioneer and writer Mary Wollstonecraft, with early music by Joseph Martin Kraus (1756-1792). The opera is performed midJuly to mid-August and tickets are available from 1 April. Busy summer The Renaissance tour takes place every Saturday throughout the spring, with the

opportunity to arrange other dates if booked in advance. When the peak season kicks in, there are events and festivities happening every week.

Programme: 26 April:


28 May, and every Wednesday throughout the summer:

Nostalgic evenings with old cars and boats

27 June:


3 July:

Premiere of Shakespeare on the lawn

4 July:

Children’s day

4-5 July:

Flea market

16 July:

Rockabilly Festival

20 July:

Premiere of The Silvership at Vadstena Academy

9 August:

Kräftival (Crayfish party)

16 August: The grand castle party

For more information, please visit:

The abbey is a popular spot among foreign tourists. The opera The Silvership is a new story about the English women’s rights activist and writer Mary Wollstonecraft, performed this summer by the Vadstena Academy. Every summer several concerts take place in the castle’s courtyard. This year, the lauded Diggiloo will visit again.

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

When the sluice gates open at Trollhättefallen, 300,000 litres of water per second come tumbling down. Today, the waterfalls are regulated for hydroelectricity and help light up the area. Photo: Roger Lärk

Spotting moose and plunging into water – right in the middle of town “An earthly paradise!” exclaimed the visiting Carl Linneaus in 1746. With dense forests full of wildlife, magnificent rivers and a tranquil lake right at their doorstep, Trollhättan and Vänersborg are still just that: a paradise on earth. By Ulrika Kuoppa

The waterfalls, Trollhättefallen, where the Göta River under tremendous noise used to throw itself down the mountain flanks, have attracted visitors to the two towns of Trollhättan and Vänersborg for centuries. Now regulated for hydroelectricity to light up this part of Sweden, the falls have not lost their magic. Once a day during summer, visitors can enjoy a display of wild and immense force of nature. “It is a real thrill to watch the

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sluice gates open at 3 o’clock when 300,000 litres of water per second come tumbling down,” says Maria EngströmWeber, tourism manager and CEO at Visit Trollhättan Vänersborg AB. “Most tourists are amazed by the quality of the water, by how clean it is. When I give a guided tour, I give everyone a special outdoors mug, a ‘kåsa’, and then we all quench our thirst simply by scooping up mouthfuls of river water. It is crisp, clear and beautiful!”

‘Trollhätteturen’, a daily tour through the locks onboard the beautiful old river boat M/S Elfkungen, one of the oldest of its kind, is another way to explore nature. And as if that was not enough, ‘Lilla Edet turen’ will take you up the whole flight of locks, where the level raises 32.4 metres, passing some of the most beautiful parts of the Göta Canal. Lake Vänern is always near Closeness to nature, especially water, is what makes Trollhättan and Vänersborg so special, as they lie side by side next to Lake Vänern, Sweden’s largest lake and the third biggest in Europe. Vänersborg borders on 100 kilometres of coastline, where some of the country’s best beaches

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | 5 Must-See Places in Sweden

can be found – Skräcklan, for example, which is right at the city centre. Ursand is another lovely beach, popular among fans of camping and tranquil barbeques, alongside Nordkroken at Vargön and Gardesanna at Vänersnäs, where you will find child-friendly adventure water park Vattenpalatset (the Water Palace) – all places great for swimming, with the added value of being able to plunge into crisp and clean freshwater. There are various ways to go about exploring: rent a bike or kayak and slowly explore the peninsula. Lake Vänern has 22,000 islands you can hop on and off. Fishing in the area is easily accessible: pike, perch and zander are all found in the waters. Trolling for salmon and trout is also immensely popular. Moose encounters an attraction For many, meeting moose at the unique plateau mountains Halleberg and Hunneberg is the most exciting part of a visit to this part of Sweden. A big forestry area with plenty of untouched nature makes it possible to encounter wildlife. “The area has been royal hunting grounds since 1351, and HM King Carl XVI Gustav himself comes here with his entourage to control the amount of wildlife,” EngströmWeber explains.

The homestead Fagerhult at Hunneberg is famous: this is where the king meets the press during the royal hunt, and autographs, carved in stone by some very prominent hunters, can be seen on the surrounding rocks. Wildlife safaris by bus are hugely popular, and no less than 85 per cent of the passengers saw moose last year – not bad for this nature reserve, where no enclosures are permitted, leading to some comical situations, especially during autumn. “There is a good chance to spot moose when they leave their grounds, tempted by the irresistible smell of fruit in autumn, and make their way into people’s gardens to filch apples,” laughs Engström-Weber.

Photo: Joachim Nywall

Heaven for petrolheads and movie fanatics A must-see for many petrolheads, the Saab Car Museum is where the rise and fall of a true Swedish giant over 60 years can be fully experienced. Trollhättan has been the innovative centre of the car manufacturer and here, everything from the first Darth Vader-resembling prototype to the last, Phoenix, can be admired, all alongside the legendary rally cars and the famous sports version of Saab, Sonnett.

Photo: Saab Car Museum

Incredible nature is also one of the reasons why Trollhättan is the film centre of Photo: Atelje Clas

Sweden, aptly nicknamed Trollywood. Favoured by Dogme 95’s famous screenwriter Lars von Trier in particular, the spot has been used for many Scandinavian productions in addition to around 50 per cent of Swedish feature films. “We often receive phone calls from members of the public enquiring if any celebrities have been spotted whilst shooting,” Engström-Weber explains. “In fact, there’s so much filming going on in Trollhättan and Vänersborg that you just might stumble upon a set at any time!”

Meeting moose is for many the most exciting part of a trip to Trollhättan and Vänersborg. Here, the chances of spotting moose are very good, particularly in the autumn when they leave their grounds to filch apples in the gardens of the locals. Photo: Roland Johansson

For more information, please visit:

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abroad. VAASAN RUISPALAT is the mostsold rye bread in Finland, proudly carrying the Key Flag Symbol as a sign of its Finnish origin.


With a coffee consumption of 12 kg per capita, or an average of 3.8 cups per day, Finland is the biggest consumer of coffee in the world. The country boasts big coffee companies such as Paulig and Meira, as well as countless smaller roasteries. Visit the small café of Kaffa Roastery, an independent roastery with the Key Flag Symbol that buys its beans directly from selected farms and roasts them in a small roastery in Punavuori in the heart of Helsinki. Svante Hampf, CEO and co-owner of Kaffa Roastery.

Be a restaurater for a day

Love nature, love food Finnish food culture is a modern mixture, which has roots in both eastern and western food cultures. Nowadays, however, much like Scandinavian design, Finnish food is pure and genuine. By The Association for Finnish Work

A country with a 6,300-kilometre long coastline and thousands of lakes, Finland is known for its multitude of delicious fish. Moreover, 72 per cent of Finland is made up of forest, and the Finnish kitchen utilises nature during every season: for berries in the summer, and for chanterelles and porcinis later in the autumn. Countless are the strong, successful brands that are deeply rooted in Finnish

soil. Liquor brand Katajawiina celebrates the taste of juniper while Jellona Terwasnapsi and Aito Terwa Likööri bring pine extract to the open-minded foodie’s tastebuds. All of these brands hold the Key Flag Symbol.

One Finnish innovation that is spreading across the globe is Restaurant Day, a food carnival allowing anyone to open a pop-up restaurant for a day. Restaurant Day takes place in Finland four times a year and has already spread to 55 other countries. Finland offers its visitors tasteful experiences all year round, but if you happen to visit Finland on Restaurant Day, do not miss the opportunity to taste food cooked and served by the locals themselves. Welcome to Finland! New experiences and tastes are waiting for you!

The Association for Finnish Work is an expert organi-

Rye bread is a favourite among Finnish athletes who bring it to training camps and international competitions to get a delicious, healthy start to the day, even

sation whose duty it is to promote the appreciation of Finnish work. The organisation governs the symbols The Key Flag Symbol, Design from Finland, and The Finnish Social Enterprise, as well as online services promoting Finnish work and advocating innovation and entrepreneurship. The Key Flag Symbol is for enterprises wishing to stress the Finnish origin of their products or services to positively distinguish themselves from competitors. The Key Flag Symbol

Photo: Hulda Sif Ásmundsdóttir

instantly assures the consumer that the product or service has been produced in Finland. Restaurant Days in 2014 Sunday 16 February 2014 Saturday 17 May 2014 Sunday 17 August 2014 Saturday 15 November 2014 Photo: Fernanda Peruzzo

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Photo: Fernanda Peruzzo

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | A Taste of Finland

Natural and healthy delicacies from the top of the world Can something so tasty really be good for you? Roberts Berry Smoothie is made of something only a few people in the world know about yet: whole, pure Nordic berries. By Mia Halonen | Photos: Roberts

Taste for yourself: when berries such as blueberries, lingonberries, strawberries, raspberries and cloudberries grow in a clean environment, enjoying nearly 24 hours of sunlight a day, they certainly taste more aromatic. Roberts is a family business from Finland’s old capital, Turku. For 104 years, the company has been producing jams, juices and marmalades out of Arctic berries, and now, innovative fifth-generation entrepreneur, Mikko Roberts, is determined to let the rest of the world discover its pure and tasty delicacies.

“We can’t compete with the price, so we simply have to make better products than anybody else,” says Roberts. Those who have had the privilege of trying the premium jams or, for instance, the new Roberts Berry Smoothie can confirm that Roberts has succeeded in the task. Unlike other producers who just use the juice, Roberts uses the whole berry, skin and seeds included, and manages to produce natural smoothies with antioxidants and flavonoids intact. On top of being super healthy, Roberts Berry Smoothies also taste delicious. In its first year, Berry

Smoothie was chosen as one of the best food products in Finland, but last October the brand received an even bigger recognition: at the world’s leading food fair, Anuga in Cologne, the Berry Smoothie concept was chosen amongst the 53 best new innovations. Given that 6,777 food suppliers from all over the world took part, this was a real breakthrough. Naturally, Roberts made lots of new international contacts. Asians in particular seem to value products from Nordic nature. Nowadays, when more and more people are concerned about food safety, the pure ingredients are a great asset for Finnish food producers like Roberts. “Hopefully people will learn what wonderful, undiscovered products we have here in Finland,” says the entrepreneur, who promises more delicious and healthy innovations to come in the near future. To taste the FSSC 22000-certified Roberts gourmet products, keep an eye out for the Roberts global online shop, which will open soon, with an English language option, at

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Locally-harvested, pure Finnish berries and recipes steeped in romantic manor house traditions make for a concept that has turned Mustila Viini into a success story.

A berry good idea: delicacies steeped in natural goodness and manor house traditions With its northerly climate of cold winters and sunny summers caressed by the Gulf stream, Finland produces some of the best berries in the world. The unrivalled quality and health benefits of Finnish berries are now harnessed as never before. A forerunner in the field is Mustilan Viini, a berry-based wine enterprise planted firmly in Finnish soil. Located in the vicinity of a stately home, Mustila derives its inspiration and recipes straight from the manor house traditions familiar to its owner, Maria Tigerstedt. By Joanna Nylund | Photos: Mustila Viini

Mustila Viini in Elimäki produces berry wines and liquors in addition to jams, jellies, juices and an assortment of other products, such as mustard. “The preserves are based on original recipes I inherited from my grandmothers,” explains Tigerstedt. Indeed, they do not make them like this anymore: Mustila jams have a remarkably high berry content and are full of pure, whole berries. All berries are harvested via local producers and berry pickers, making Mustila Viini an important employer locally. “It takes a group effort to

create our products!” Tigerstedt laughs. However, it is wines and liquors that Mustila is most famous for. Some of the finest gourmet restaurants of the country, including Helsinki’s Nokka and Savoy, always carry an assortment of the brand’s popular berry liquors. Ranging from dry to sweet and carrying that unmistakably strong, natural berry taste, the liquors and wines feature locally-picked cherries, strawberries, blackcurrants, raspberries and cloudberries. The wines are made purely through fermentation. The most

popular sweet wine, named Country Wine of the Year in 2009, is called ‘The Dark Colonel’s Revenge’. It is a potent mix of blueberries and blackcurrants, named in honour of the ghost of Mustila manor. Locally-harvested, pure Finnish berries utilised for their great taste, and recipes steeped in the romantic manor house traditions of a bygone age – that is the concept which has turned Mustila Viini into a success story. But what does the future hold? “Expansion. We are outgrowing our current facilities, and it’s time to consider the next step,” says the owner. One thing is for sure – it will not involve any compromise on the genuine taste of nature and smiling service that have made Mustila Viini what it is today.

For more information, please visit: Owner Maria Tigerstedt

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | A Taste of Finland

The rose cultivar used in Finnish Plant Rose Petal Jam has been developed by the owners of the company specifically for the purpose of making jam, thus giving it that special, much-loved taste.

Beautiful ingredients, exclusive taste The Nordic climate and bright summer nights provide Finnish Plant Rose Petal Jam with its delicate aroma – made especially for you. By Karoliina Kantola | Photos: Finnish Plant

Extraordinary. One of a kind. Delicious. Those are words often used to describe Finnish Plant Rose Petal Jam, during tastings held all around the world. What is so special, then? Everyone knows the scent of a rose, and sure enough, there are plenty of rose products and delicacies our there – but the taste is always slightly different. Finnish Plant’s secret goes something like this: this rose jam is not made out of just any kind of rose, but a special rose cultivar developed for this purpose by the company, owned by Matti and Tuuli Kotaja. “The cultivar is the result of a long process of tasting, breeding and cultivating. The ingredient of the jam is made of flowers of the Rosa Rugosa Hybrid,” Matti Kotaja explains. The old family farm is located in the south-east of Finland, so the rose cultivar has been developed to grow in a Finnish climate – yet to suit international taste. After ten years of fostering, the seductive

Rose Petal Jam was born. Besides rose petals grown without chemical fertilisers, the jam contains organic sugar, water, and some currants and lemon.

The jam is currently available in grocery stores and special food shops in Finland, and the next step of Finnish Plant Rose Petal Jam is, well, the rest of the world. Considering its exquisite qualities, that target should not be difficult to achieve.

“The jam is low in sugar and therefore the restaurants use it also for cooking. Rose Petal Jam goes excellently with mushroom soup,” says Matti as an example. So not only perfect for desserts, Rose Petal Jam has been served with mains, too, as the assertive and fresh taste of the jam supports different kinds of strong flavours. Other delicious combinations are the jam with cheeses and wines, to mention a few. “In Europe, people have fallen in love with sparkling wine served with a little bit of our jam at the bottom of the glass,” continues the jam enthusiast. The Rose Petal Jam with its long, fine aftertaste has been praised by hedonists, but also thanked by health enthusiasts, since rose petals contain high amounts of flavonoids.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | A Taste of Finland

The pure taste of Lapland summers By Mia Halonen | Photos: Riuku-jotos Inarista

What happens when the sun does not set for 61 days? Herbs and berries get a fantastically aromatic taste. Family business Riuku-jotos Inarista from Finnish Lapland captures the exquisite arctic flavours in juices, jams, sauces and sweets. In the early ’90s, Liisa Puustinen decided to leave the hectic life in southern Finland behind and move permanently to her summer cottage in the very northernmost

corner of Finnish Lapland. She started making sweets from the arctic berries, and a few years ago, her daughter Kirsi Parkkali moved to Inari as well and took over the family business. Today, the wellcrafted Riuku-jotos Inarista brand also produces jams, jellies, juices, sauces and syrups. The natural, pure berries and herbs are picked by locals in the vast Inari area. “Here in Lapland, cloudberries are natu-

rally the most important ingredient, but black crowberries, blueberries, cranberries and garden angelica are big, too,” says Parkkali. “The garden angelica grows by the streams bringing cold water from the fells. The indigenous Sami people have traditionally used it for cleansing and renewing the body.” High quality is an important part of the company philosophy, as is sustainability. Even the cloudberry seeds are used: another small company needs them for cosmetics. But what does the name, Riuku-jotos Inarista, mean? The Sami call non-Sami women ‘riuku’, and ‘jotos’ means path, Inarista stating the origin of the company. Follow the path of Riuku-jotos Inarista to the rich flavors of white nights.

For more information, please visit:

The taste of natural luxury By Elin Berta | Photos: Eva Tordera Nuño

In the spirit of environmental awareness, fish farmers in the Savonian region of Finland wanted to develop a way to harvest sturgeon roe without harming the already endangered species. The result is Carelian Caviar, a guilt-free delicacy used in fine dining restaurants across the world. “The wild sturgeon has been over-fished over the last 100 years. We wanted to find a sustainable way to keep enjoying the delicious roe,” says Carin Holmqvist, board director at Carelian Caviar. ”Our indoor fish farm has carefully-developed technology that allows us to take advantage of the crisp water in this region, without having any negative impact on the environment. And we are not depending on weather and wind to be able to have a good harvest, which is another great advantage.”

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Today, Carelian Caviar offers four different products, separated by size, colour and the amount of salt that is added to the roe. “Except for the salt, no preservatives are added,” Holmqvist says. A collaboration with the Finnish Culinary Team has already been established, with Carelian Caviar sponsoring the team with both caviar and sturgeon meat. “You can tell by the taste of the sturgeon that it comes from the freshest water in the world,” says professor Gert Klötzke, the Finnish Culinary Team coach. ”We highly recommend both grilled and smoked sturgeon, and I have no doubt our dishes, where we use the meat combined with the Carelian Caviar, will become popular at the finest restaurants around the world.”

Team leader of Finnish Culinary Team, Tapio Laine, holding a sturgeon.

Professor Gert Klötzke, Finnish Culinary Team coach.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | A Taste of Finland

Left: Anyone can start a franchise of Mr. Panini, and marketing materials are supplied in a starting package. Right: Vice president Tommy Snellman makes sure that his customers get top-quality food in their paninis. Flavour ‘Mangoraja with chicken’ is a best-seller.

Crisp and tasty, hot from the grill Perfectly baked bread and fresh, locally-sourced ingredients are the two most important components in Mr. Panini’s crispy sandwiches. By Sara Mangsbo | Photos: Mr. Panini

The best taste

made extraordinary. The company takes pride in the bread, baked according to their own recipe, and the mayonnaise, made in-house from scratch. These factors are, according to vice president Tommy Snellman, what make the paninis stand out from those of competitors. “We believe that people today not only want to eat well; they also want to know what the food is made of and where it comes from,” he says. As Mr. Panini is part of the family-owned corporate group Familjen Snellman, it benefits from the group’s own charcuterie and maintains absolute control of its product throughout the whole process.

By using as few additives as possible and making sure the raw materials have top quality, the Mr. Panini taste has been

Mr. Panini’s flavour range is in constant development, following seasons and

It has been 20 years since entrepreneur Ilkka Wikholm began to offer a warm, stuffed bread with carefully selected fillings at his café in Pori, Finland. The rumour of a new amazing sandwich spread quickly and it did not take long until a company that delivered pre-made paninis to a whole nation was founded. Three years ago, Mr. Panini expanded as the company launched a new kitchen in Stockholm, and in 2013, Norway and Denmark had the same pleasure. Today the company is producing more than four million paninis every year.

trends, but today you can find anything from Mangoraja (chicken with mango chutney, chilli and curry), Tex-Mex with minced meat, and BBQ chicken and bacon. Good-quality meat is guaranteed. An appealing concept for franchise Mr. Panini is sold at more than 2,000 different vendors, including gas stations, pubs, and ferries, all over the Nordic countries. Snellman explains how easy it is to start a franchise on the concept, as you need no investment. “The paninis come freshly pre-made, so all you need is a sandwich grill and 30 seconds of your staff’s time.” The grill and marketing materials are included in the starting package, making it easy for anyone to get going. “You don’t even need a kitchen,” concludes Snellman. For more information, please visit:

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Modo Ltd offers its clients 70 different products: everything from fruit syrups to purees and powder mixers. And word is spreading.

From an old milk shop to the coolest bars Once there was an old milk shop in a quiet town in southern Finland. And in the backroom of the shop there was a kettle of 80 litres, a group of friends, and their neighbour’s granny. These young men were restaurant owners, and they had a problem. By Aija Salovaara | Photos: Modo

Liquorice shots were very trendy in Finland at the time, but the quality of the drink mixers available was poor. The blokes had decided to do something about it; since they needed a better product, why not produce it themselves? They started experimenting and the granny was there to help. Luckily, she knew a whole lot about cooking syrups. “By the time we launched our first selection of syrups, we had developed a variety of thirty different

shot and fruit mixers. We started calling our friends in the restaurant business, and before we even had time to realise it, the company began to flourish,” says Niclas Levälampi, CEO of Modo Ltd.

bour’s granny lives on. “We still strive for the best quality in everything we do. Just as she advised us,” Levälampi explains. “And our products continue to be as natural as can be.”

13 years have passed since that day in the milk shop, and today Modo is leading the fruit syrup and mixer business in Finland. The kettle has been replaced with a much bigger one, but the legacy of the neigh-

Modo’s syrups and mixers contain pure fruit juice and sugar – no chemical dye. The Modo Ltd of today offers its clients 70 different products: everything from fruit syrups to purees and powder mixers. And the client list has expanded from Finland to include other Nordic countries as well as Estonia, Russia and as far afield as Spain. “We keep up with the latest trends by visiting events around the world, and from our friends in the restaurant business we receive valuable tips that help us constantly develop new and exciting flavours,” says Levälampi. “We have come far from that tiny backroom. Our next goal is to conquer the rest of Europe.”

13 years on from the moment at the back of a milk shop when the idea to start making syrups and mixers was born, Modo’s business is booming and the legacy of the milk shop’s neighbour’s granny lives on.

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For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | A Taste of Finland

Sweet and sour Malax Loaf Recommended by the Swedish master chef Leif Mannerström “The positive thing about it being minus 20 degrees in Vaasa, Finland, is that the cold temperature kills all bacteria,” is the first thing Jarmo Latvasalo says when speaking to Scan Magazine. By Christina Toimela | Photos: Maalahden Limppu Oy

Latvasalo’s family-run business, Maalahden Limppu Oy, is very keen on cleanliness and hygiene. It is at the core of the business, which makes Malax Loaf (Maalahden Limppu in Finnish) using the traditional method of sourdough starter. Despite Malax Loaf production taking place in modern production facilities in Vaasa, the use of traditional recipes without preservatives or additives demands exceptional discipline when it comes to cleanliness in order to achieve the refined, natural taste and long shelf life. As a result, the Malax Loaf can be kept at room temperature for several weeks. According to Latvasalo, the Malax Loaf has taken Finland by storm. It has 90 per cent of the market share and is reaching the same level in Sweden, where it has been praised by Leif Mannerström, Sweden’s own master chef.

to be used not only in starters and main courses but also in desserts. Malax Loaf for health and fitness lovers Malax Loaf is made using wholegrain rye, which is high in fibre, and the fact that it lacks all e-numbers makes it a healthier option as a source of carbohydrates than any processed food. “I love my food and I would eat anything. However, after my heart attack I got doctor’s orders for eating more healthily,” says Latvasalo. When asked about the health benefits of Malax Loaf he declines going into details, but he happily recommends trying Malax Loaf as an ingredient for vegetable steaks and with fish dishes.

Today, it is also sold in Russia as well as several shops around Europe as a prestige product. Maalahden Limppu Oy’s focus for the future is on export through Malax Loaf Export Ltd, which is part of Finnpro’s Team Finland, a government-supported network promoting the internationalisation of Finnish businesses. The company will have an easy job in the sense that it focuses exclusively on one product with multiple uses: Malax Loaf for gourmet lovers The international sweet and sour taste of the Malax Loaf complements the flavours of other food ingredients. It allows the loaf

For further information and recipies by Leif Mannerström and Antti Puromies, please visit: +358(0)63577100

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Photo: Páll Steffansson/

Photo: Páll Steffansson/


From Old Norse to Nordic cool With languages rooted in Old Norse and populations largely descended from Vikings and Nordic settlements, Iceland and the Faroe Islands have more than a thing or two in common. Here is what you need to know about the island communities that add a touch of magic to the Nordic cool.

course extensive National Day celebrations on 17 June every year. In other places, highlights include the Orkugangan Ski Marathon (April), the Gafnarfjörður Viking Festival (May), and the Medieval Trading Weekend (July).

By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Visit Iceland

In its survey based on sustainability and integrity of place, the National Geographic Traveler voted the Faroe Islands the best island community in the world. With surprisingly mild summers and winters and a nation of Faroese speakers who are generally good at both Nordic languages and English, this archipelago of 18 islands has become the go-to destination for an exotic version of a Nordic holiday. Iceland, on the other hand, has garnered a lot of media attention for its liberal politics, brave reaction to the recent financial

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crisis, and lesbian Prime Minister. Stars like Björk have contributed to giving the country a glow of unquestionable coolness, and countless music festivals see avant-garde music fans head for the glaciers every year. Whether it is a sign of happiness or not is moot, but this island of around 320,000 inhabitants has a higher birth rate than any other place in the EU. The majority of the population lives in the region of the buzzing capital Reykjavík, which is also home to the Reykjavík Folk Festival (March), the Gay Pride (August) and of

Boasting Europe’s largest national park, Vatnajökull National Park, and 11,922 square kilometres of glaciers, Iceland takes the most extreme of sceneries from the northern hemisphere and spices things up with edgy, lively cultural excitement. The Faroe Islands are perhaps a little more modest, the population of the capital Tórshavn just about circling around the 20,000 mark. Yet it makes the perfect spot for a break in the name of fresh air and nature, full to the brim of stunning mountains, serene waters and cultural heritage.

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Scan Magazine | Mini Theme | Iceland & The Faroe Islands

Welcome to the home of Nordic culture Do you fancy going to a concert or watching a play? Or how about seeing an exhibition or arranging a conference in beautiful surroundings? If the answer is yes, you definitely want to pay a visit to The Nordic House in the Faroe Islands, offering a wide range of cultural experiences. Last year, more than 60,000 people stopped by The Nordic House in the Faroe Islands to experience some of the many cultural events they offer every year. For instance, there was the literature festival, where famous authors such as Kim Leine,

Sara BlĂŚdel and Leif Davidsen came by. The year of 2014 has only just begun, but a number of interesting events have already been scheduled. “We host around 280 events on an annual basis. We try to divide the themes equally between the Nordic countries throughout the year, but this year we start an annual project where we spend an entire week focusing on just one of the Nordic countries, starting with Finland,â€? says Ann Ellingsgaard, project manager at The Nordic House in the Faroe Islands. The house collaborates closely with

ok bo room r y ls

By Nicolai Lisberg Photos: The Nordic House

the other Nordic countries as well as the Baltic states, and welcomes anyone with a good idea, as well as companies who wish to rent the house for a MICE event. “Our purpose is to convey Nordic culture to the Faroe Islands and Faroese culture to the Nordic countries,� says Ellingsgaard. “We aim to act as a tool and workshop for innovative initiatives that strengthen the Nordic countries and the Faroe Islands in a global world.� For more information, please visit:

$"1 )03/ /ZIBWO t $PQFOIBHFO



fresher faroes affordable no frills hotel with free internet and low cost guest car service Experience the Faroe Islands on your terms. Our reasonable prices include everything you need to make the most out of your visit to the Faroes. Central location in TĂłrshavn, seaside view from the comfort

of your room. Breakfast included. Always. And with our low cost guest car service, you’re free to explore the islands the best way possible. On your terms.

yviri viĂ° strond 19 fo-110 tĂłrshavn faroe islands tel. +298 355 500 s s



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Scan Magazine | Mini Theme | Iceland & The Faroe Islands

The conditions in the south of Iceland are optimal for experiencing the Northern Lights, and at Hotel Rangรก and Hotel Highland, staff stay up on watch throughout the night to give you a wake-up call when the magic begins.

World-class hotels in the Icelandic wilderness Whether you are looking for an action-packed adventure, a romantic getaway or an inspiring spot for your conference, the south of Iceland is the perfect destination. If you are heading there this winter, you could even have the added bonus of seeing the Northern Lights. Make sure to stay at either Hotel Rangรก or Hotel Highland, where the hospitable staff will provide exceptional service, ensuring you experience all the natural wonders the area has to offer. By Stephanie Lovell | Photos: Hotel Rangรก and Hotel Highland

The Aurora Borealis is surely one of the main reasons why people are drawn to the northernmost countries in the middle of the winter. For some it becomes a kind of a quest, as they travel from one location to the next, braving the cold and darkness in the hope of experiencing this aweinspiring sight first-hand. If you have never seen them before, now is a better time than ever to try. Wake up to the Aurora Borealis In the south of Iceland, a rural area with minimum light pollution, conditions are optimal for enjoying this breath-taking

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natural phenomenon to the fullest. Enhance your chances of seeing it even fur-

ther by staying at either Hotel Rangรก or Hotel Highland, where staff stay up on watch throughout the dark hours, ready to give you a wake-up call whenever the lights begin to dance across the sky. Hotel Rangรก has also recently opened an observatory, equipped with two state-ofthe-art telescopes for gazing at the sun, moon and stars, which has proved extremely popular among guests. The wonder of a starlit night may well go some way towards making up for the disappointment if you are unfortunate to miss the Northern Lights during your stay.

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Scan Magazine | Mini Theme | Iceland & The Faroe Islands

Land of opportunity “The exciting part about coming to Iceland to see the Northern Lights is that we have so many other activities to offer during the day, so it’s really just a bonus if they appear in the evening,” says hotel owner and manager Friðrik Pálsson. The vast glaciers, mighty waterfalls and active volcanoes that attract so many tourists to Iceland are just moments away from both hotels. Guests can go on Super Jeep tours across the rugged highlands, dog sledding on Langjökull glacier, and hiking through Landmannalaugar and Þórsmörk national park. While everyone wants to walk behind the magical Seljalandsfoss waterfall and marvel at the notorious Eyjafjallajökull glacier and volcano, the hotels can also arrange for you to go on trips to some of the lesser-known gems that not even many Icelanders have seen. There are even more stunning waterfalls hidden away, like Dynkur, Fagrifoss and Gljúfurleitarfoss, and by Köldukvísl river you can find some of the most beautiful canyons in the country.

Modern amenities off the beaten track As the name suggests, Hotel Highland is situated up in the vast Icelandic highlands, far away from any human settlements. It is the only hotel of its kind in the country’s interior, offering the same kind of modern facilities and services that you will find closer to civilisation. Hotel Rangá, located near the coast, received seven awards at the International Hotel Awards, including the World’s Best Resort Hotel. At both hotels you can choose from standard and luxury rooms and dine on Nordic cuisine with a Mediterranean twist in the acclaimed restaurants. Both hotels also cater for business meetings and conferences. With its peaceful surroundings, the south of Iceland is the ideal setting for fostering innovative ideas and creativity, miles away from any distractions. It is also the perfect midway point for companies and clients in Europe and America to come together and share their ideas and experience. As well as top conference facilities, Hotel Rangá also specialises in wedding and honeymoon services. Southern Iceland is

proving a popular location for more unusual wedding ceremonies. Couples have been known to tie the knot on riverbanks, beside waterfalls and even up on glaciers. Afterwards, the guests head back to the hotel for a fully catered reception to celebrate the special day. “As the tourism industry grows in Iceland, we must ensure that we maintain service of the highest possible quality,” says Pálsson. “At Hotel Rangá and Hotel Highland, we provide our guests a personalised service, tailored to their wants and needs – whether it is accommodation, food or arranging trips and activities.” Whatever you are after – be it non-stop thrills and amazement, or relaxation in complete solitude, surrounded by beautiful nature – a stay at Hotel Rangá or Hotel Highland promises to be an unforgettable experience.

For more information, please visit:

The tourism industry is booming in Iceland, so providing world-class service is crucial. Hotel Rangá has won numerous awards, including the World’s Best Resort Hotel, and both Hotel Rangá and Hotel Highland pride themselves on offering personal service with plenty of insiders’ tips.

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Left: The Erna Solberg government. Right: Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway

Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg, on the year ahead Dear readers, Despite the challenges facing countries in the current global economic landscape, we have seen signs of positive developments in the British economy in 2013, and it gives me great pleasure to wish travellers between Scandinavia and the UK a prosperous New Year. British–Norwegian relations are stronger than ever. We remain close allies and trading partners, and our cultural links are particularly rich and diverse. Today, more than 300 Norwegian companies are established in the UK. Several of these are engaged in shipping and the offshore sector. The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global is one of the largest state investors in the UK stock market, as well as a substantial investor in British real estate. Similarly, the UK is one of the largest investors in Norway, with more

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than 600 British companies operating in Norway, employing about 28,000 people. At the same time, British tourists continue to cross the North Sea to enjoy Norway’s spectacular natural beauty, while Norwegians love to visit the UK – especially for football and shopping. The UK is by far Norway’s largest export market, accounting for 26 per cent of our total exports of goods in 2012. Trade and cooperation in the field of energy is a cornerstone of our relationship. In 2012, oil and gas accounted for 90 per cent of Norway’s export of goods to the UK, and Norway supplied about 20 per cent of the natural gas delivered to the UK. Norwegian natural gas is helping to reduce British carbon emissions, and is thus providing a bridge to a low-carbon future. Renewable energy is another area of close

cooperation. Several Norwegian companies are involved in the development of offshore wind power in the UK. Norwegian and British universities and research institutes continue to cooperate closely on a number of energy related R&D projects within the framework of Horizon 2020. I am confident that there is great potential for further strengthening the economic ties between the UK and Norway in 2014. But it is not all about the economy – far from it. You who are travelling between the UK and Norway, whether on business, in connection with studies or as tourists, are also helping to forge important personal and cultural ties between our countries. For us Norwegians, future opportunities are great in Britain! Erna Solberg Prime Minister of Norway

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St Olav’s Rose is awarded to outstanding heritage attractions and points the way to more than 100 products whose roots are planted in Norwegian heritage.

St Olav’s Rose points the way to outstanding heritage attractions The Norwegian constitution became a reality on 17 May 1814. On that day, the constituent assembly ended its work and signed the document at Eidsvoll. Thus, we can celebrate our 200-year anniversary as a modern, independent nation this year.

The cultural monuments are non-renewable resources. And so our emblem stands for the combination of development and protection in modern society.

By Norwegian Heritage Foundation

Culture is an important element in every nation’s history. History tells us that today’s culture is tomorrow’s heritage. In this respect, it is important to bring heritage attractions to people’s attention. The Norwegian Heritage Foundation’s primary objective is to help preserve Norway’s rich cultural heritage for the benefit of future generations. The Foundation’s motto is ‘preservation through utilisation’, and the medal of approval, ‘Olavsrosa’ (St Olav’s Rose) is awarded to outstanding heritage attractions as the exclusive hallmark of its kind in Norway. St Olav’s Rose is an ancient symbol, a magical sign associated with the protection and preservation of secrets.

Today, the symbol also represents enjoyment, usefulness and exciting attractions. St Olav’s Rose points the way to more than 100 outstanding products whose roots are planted in Norwegian heritage. It is awarded after a strict evaluation with emphasis on the product’s cultural and historical values, how they are preserved and how they are presented to the public. We regard it as important to maintain the credibility of the hallmark in the future. St Olav’s Rose is supposed to be a symbol of what binds together our unwritten history and our own time. It embraces the global perspective and the historical landscape, both literally and metaphorically.

The motto, ‘St Olav’s Rose – our best travel experiences’, makes demands on the standards and maintenance of the quality presented by the owners of the hallmark.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

Left: Bergen National Opera, page 52 (Photo: Yaniv Cohen). Top right: Fartein Valen festival, page 53. Below: Geilo, page 54 (Photo: Bjørn Furuseth).

To Norway, democracy, and cultural exchange As Norway prepares to celebrate the 200th anniversary of its constitution, St Olav’s Rose reminds us that today’s culture is tomorrow’s heritage, and that bringing heritage attractions to people’s attention is of the essence. At the same time, Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway, writes in her greeting to our readers of the many British tourists who continue to cross the North Sea to visit Norway, and how BritishNorwegian relations are stronger than ever. What better way, then, to warm up for the anniversary celebrations than to showcase some of Norway’s very best cultural heritage attractions? By Linnea Dunne

Signed and dated on 17 May 1814 by the Norwegian Constituent Assembly at Eidsvoll, the Constitution of the Kingdom of Norway was at the time one of the most liberal and radically democratic constitutions in the world and is today the second oldest extant national constitution. The celebrations this year are bound to be both emotional and magnificent, and, aptly, the museum Eidsvoll 1814 will be hosting the official opening of the jubilee. Many are the organisations and individuals who proudly cite the democratic values

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of the constitution as crucial to the Norwegian culture and psyche, but the ways in which they will honour the document vary widely. At Geilo, for example, the celebrations will take place alongside an ongoing tribute to the destination’s own history of cultivating responsible and sustainable tourism and travel, a tradition almost as old as the constitution itself. At Bergen National Opera, freedom and independence take centre stage as a new production of composer Orlando Gough’s

Voices & Votes brings together singers from a wide range of backgrounds from all over the world, marrying protest music with traditional music, jazz and more. The Fartein Valen festival, on the other hand, highlights the importance of Norway’s development of an independent national culture of music, art and literature, by celebrating the composer who, according to the festival, put Norwegian music on the world map. There is no right or wrong way to celebrate the Constitution of the Kingdom of Norway; there are many, all equally exciting and proud. At the same time, as Prime Minister Solberg insists, those travelling between Norway and other countries also help forge personal and cultural ties between the countries – ties without which we would be lost in a globalised world. Here’s to Norway, and to many beautiful cultural exchanges in the year ahead!

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

Left: Reconstructed basement kitchen cooking fire in the Eidsvoll building. Middle: Paté sandwhich from ‘The taste of 1814 served 2014-style’. Top middle and right: The renovated Eidsvoll building.

Celebrating Norwegian democracy – past, present and future 16 February 2014 marks the official start of the most important celebration in Norway for years to come: the 200th anniversary of the Norwegian constitution. Nowhere will this occasion be more thoroughly celebrated than where the basis of Norway as a democracy was formed: Eidsvoll. By Hannah Gillow Kloster | Photos: Eidsvoll 1814

Aptly famous for being the birthplace of Europe’s oldest constitution, the Eidsvoll building is now the museum Eidsvoll 1814. In addition to the house and its grounds, the museum will as of 2014 include a democracy centre where young people can learn about the constitution and the values that surround it, as well as an events schedule ranging from 24-hour lecture series to International Women’s Day celebrations. Before re-opening to the public, Eidsvoll 1814 will host the official opening of the jubilee. Following extensive renovations, visitors to the museum will be greeted by a historically-accurate 1814 interior, and the anniversary menu, ‘The taste of 1814 served 2014-style’, will let visitors experi-

ence what the pioneers of Norwegian democracy ate – with a modern twist, of course! Astrid Galstad, head of communications at the museum, says that the aim was for visitors to not only experience 1814, but also take it home. “In true democratic spirit,” she explains, “every staff member was asked: what story of 1814 touches people the most?” Almost unanimously, the story that resonated the strongest was that of the chain of brotherhood: on 20 May 1814, after signing the new constitution, the Eidsvoll men laid aside their differences, joined hands as brothers, and all swore to be ‘enig og tro til Dovre faller’ – or, united and loyal until the mountains of Dovre crumble.

A jubilee collection by Strømme Throndsen Design includes everything from glassware to playing cards, designed to reflect the above maxim. Accompanied by a small piece of text about the 112 men who laid the cornerstone of Norwegian democracy, the series exhibits the patriotic spirit of the 1814 events. Led by Eidsvoll 1814 and NRK (Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation), the powerful story will also be recreated on 20 May 2014. “Norwegians will be encouraged to join hands with whomever is nearby,” says Galstad. “By swearing the same oath that our countrymen swore 200 years earlier, we promise each other a future of democracy, together.” Leading the nation in its celebration of democracy and freedom, Eidsvoll 1814 represents not just the past, but also the future. Here is to another 200 years! For more information, please visit:

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Cylindra’s furniture is inspired by the wild nature of western Norway, and at Gallery Cylindra in Tusvik, visitors can experience the furniture surrounded by the landscape that inspired it.

Where straight cylinders meet mythical landscapes With Norway’s beautiful mountains as the backdrop, the Cylindra furniture materialises in the picture almost as a part of the mythical landscape. And in a way it is: many of the pieces are inspired by the stunning wild nature in western Norway and the alps around Sykkylven in particular.

cabins designed by Opsvik and made in solid wood are handcrafted by skilled workers. And with the beautiful setting between the mountains and the fjord, Tusvik says “inspiration comes easily.”

By Signe Hansen and Cylindra | Photos: Kjellbjørn Tusvik

“The Mountain Peak chair, table and cupboard are inspired by the landscape in this area. They look like sharp, craggy mountain peaks. As with the other pieces in the series, the top of the cupboard represents a majestic range of mountain peaks, which in this case rises up to two metres in height,” says its renowned creator, Peter Opsvik. Workshop and gallery At Gallery Cylindra in Tusvik, visitors can experience not only the furniture, but also the landscape it is inspired by. “Even if

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these objects are meant for indoor use, I like to bring them out into the nature because it creates some very beautiful photos,” says Kjellbjørn Tusvik.

Some of the objects are decorated. The designers use acrylic colours, and each object is painted individually. That way, they are completely unique. The village of Tusvik

“Peter and I have been working together for almost 25 years now – the best period of my life. Not everybody gets the chance to work with the most famous designer in Scandinavia, so I feel very privileged,” says Tusvik, who owns the Cylindra workshop and gallery in Tusvik, where the objects are produced. At the 100-year-old workshop inherited by Tusvik from his grandfather,

A very interesting history connects Liverpool to this small village. On 10 July 1876, a small luxury steamship hit a rock outside Cylindra. The ship, Argo, was owned by Alfred Holt and the Ocean Steam Ship Company (The Blue Funnel Line) in Liverpool. Friends and family had been invited on this tour to see the fjords on the west coast of Norway.

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

Among these people was John Swire, who established Swire Group and was a good friend of Alfred Holt’s. To make a long story short, both passengers and ship were rescued. Alfred Holt came back to Tusvik many times, as did his friend John Swire. The anchor from the ship can still be found at the bottom of the sea where they had to leave it. “One of my sons is a scuba diver, and he has taken photos of the anchor,” says Kjellbjørn. From barrel to furniture Cylindra was founded to produce the wooden barrel-inspired furniture by Peter Opsvik in 1989. The idea for the design came into being when Opsvik was experimenting with the cylindrical shape at the beginning of the 1980s. “When I worked in graphic art and paintings on paper or canvas with only two dimensions, I often wished I’d had a basic form that could be shaped freely and yet be functional,” says the artist. “The solid wood cylinder made my wish come true. If we roll up a sheet of paper or a canvas, we get a cylinder. The surface has no end horizontally, only vertically.” In 1984, Opsvik’s desire was fulfilled when a Norwegian barrel maker contacted him about a furniture venture. But instead of using the barrel shape, Opsvik crafted the straight cylinders that still make the basis of his playful, slightly provocative yet functional furniture design. “Most of the things

we surround ourselves with should be designed for use. But in a hallway, for instance, where you sit down and tie your shoelaces every day, you don’t need an ergonomic chair. It is more important that this chair bids you welcome home, like the Embracement chair,” stresses Opsvik. In 1989, Opsvik teamed up with Tusvik, and the development of 20 objects, such as chairs, tables, cupboards and wardrobes, started. Today, the cylindrical furniture’s combination of artistic expressions and practical function is renowned all over the world, with objects exhibited at museums and art shows in cities such as Chicago, New York and London. An extraordinary experience At the gallery in Tusvik, visitors can buy many of the pieces from the exhibition, such as the Sense of Summer – a hanging wall cabinet. The piece, designed by Peter Opsvik and decorated by Åshild Tomassen, does not have much space inside but looks decorative on the wall, and you will admire it for years to come. But the gallery is not just about buying furniture, Tusvik insists: “It’s nice to have our own gallery, a place where we can meet people with an interest in our furniture, listen to their opinion and test our theories of how to work with our pieces. You see, working with objects that are both art and furniture is very special. We

are not just offering an object; we are also selling a story.”

To complement the stories of the furniture, Tusvik arranges many different events at the workshop and gallery. In early 2014, there will be a concert highlighting the 100-year anniversary of the Norwegian writer and musician, Alf Prøysen, and on 25 April, the gallery will host the retro dinner party with live music for 130 guests. 19 September will see Opsvik, who in addition to being a designer is also a jazz musician, perform at a jazz concert. On the night, he will join the Blue Horn Jazzband, and together with the vocalist, Margrethe V Ødegård, they will put on a memorable evening. Tours around the workshop combined with short mountain hikes, live music and dinner at the gallery have also become very popular. Thanks to the company Furniture Guiding, it is possible for groups to visit both Ekornes and Cylindra in Sykkylven. Whether you are looking for a new piece of furniture, an inspirational art exhibition, or simply a very different night out, Cylindra Gallery might just be the place. Cylindra workshop and gallery in Tusvik is open Monday to Friday 10 am to 4 pm, and Saturdays and Sundays by appointment.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

Left and top middle: The Cunning Little Vixen (Photo: Yaniv Cohen). Top right: Marco Polo (Photo: Thor Brødreskift). Below: Voices and Votes (Photo: Fredrik Arff).

Adventurous opera performances Despite being based in a relatively young opera nation, Bergen National Opera has already established itself as a major contributor to world-class opera. With a number of great performances and projects every year, Bergen National Opera is committed to developing opera in Norway even further. By Kjersti Westeng | Photos: Bergen National Opera

Unlike many European nations, Norway lacks a long-standing tradition within opera. Since 2006, Bergen National Opera has committed itself to developing opera in Norway through a multitude of projects from top-level productions to specialist development schemes. “It’s also important that we give our audience a unique experience. We often combine young, Scandinavian talent with big, international stars – a unique learning opportunity for the younger ones, and a fantastic sharing of energy on stage,” says general and artistic director Mary Miller. With a number of participatory programmes for children and youths also available, all kinds of young creative talents are given the attention and mentor-

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ing needed in order to flourish and perhaps go on to develop a career in opera. Bringing famous operas to Norway Miller continues to explain that opera is not just about people standing on stage singing; it should be a compelling theatrical experience telling a great story, and the choice of director is particularly critical. As well as work by less established composers, Bergen National Opera presents renowned operas not yet known to Norway. “There are a number of great operas that are performed all over the world, yet they have never been produced in Norway,” says Miller. One example is The Golden Cockerel by Russian composer RimskyKorsakov, to be performed in Scandinavia for the very first time this spring.

Celebrating freedom Marking the 200-year anniversary of the Norwegian constitution, Bergen National Opera has produced a new piece with composer Orlando Gough, celebrating the fight for freedom across the world. In collaboration with Bergen International Festival, Voices & Votes brings singers from Palestine, Sri Lanka, South Africa and the Nordic countries together on stage. Looking at countries where the fight for independence has been incredibly tough, this thought-provoking piece features a fantastic mix of music, people and nationalities. “It will be a monumental operatorio with glorious singing from all over the world, along with highly dramatic texts and speeches. The artists involved come from an amazing mix of backgrounds: world music, protest music, traditional, classical, jazz and improvisation,” says Miller. For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

The Fartein Valen festival celebrates the anniversary of Norway’s constitution by promoting art and culture.

A festival to put the constitutional celebrations on the map In a year of constitutional celebrations, the Fartein Valen festival wants to promote a composer who put Norwegian music on the map. Developing an independent, national culture, including music, art and literature, was on everyone’s mind after the Norwegian constitution was signed in 1814, and now, 200 years on, who better to celebrate than a person who made this possible? By Camilla Fredstad Huuse | Photos: Fartein Valen festival

On the west coast of Norway, more precisely Haugesund and Sveio, the Fartein Valen festival does exactly this. The main purpose of the festival is to spread knowledge of the music and life of composer Fartein Valen, who Ole Jørgen Furdal, the festival manager, describes as “the most exciting Norwegian composer who ever lived.” “He is remembered as the composer who made us known in Europe,” says Furdal. “He was inimitable and very important to Norwegian history. Our festival is about promoting his music in the surroundings where he composed it.” The festival promises everything from international participants to local youth

choirs. Founded in 1982, it mainly promotes Valen’s pieces, but there will also be music by composers such as Beethoven and Bach before the festival ends with an outstanding concert set in the composer’s own home. “We are celebrating the anniversary of Norway’s constitution by promoting art and culture, which are very important to our country and democracy,” says Furdal. “Democracy is not only about voting, but about expressing yourself freely. We want to encourage people to do this through music.” Furdal explains that the festival aims to attract more visitors from overseas this year. He adds that those tourists who

stumble upon the festival whilst on holiday in Norway are astonished by the beauty of Fartein Valen’s music. “I have been a conductor of Fartein Valen’s music for many years, and his music has always been important to me,” says Furdal. “Every year, I am stunned by the beauty of it. I have devoted many years to trying to make his music more widely known.” The composer, of whom the region is very proud, also deserves international recognition, Furdal insists. After all, Valen placed Norwegian culture on the map and made the country’s music worthy of a reputation in Europe. In a year devoted to celebrating Norway itself, recognising individuals who contributed to its reputation overseas is increasingly important. Beautiful notes, performed in the striking, natural surroundings where they were originally composed – what better way to celebrate? For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

Where nature and culture are inseparable Geilo’s head of tourism, Pål Knutsson Medhus, thinks that nature can often be the source of new cultural experiences and hopes to encourage travel to destinations that are not only attractive, but also sustainable. Geilo has itself been cultivating tourism for a very long time, and along with celebrations of the 200-year anniversary of Norway’s constitution, Geilo will play tribute to its own parallel history of responsible travel and tourism – a cultural treasure in its own right. By Maya Acharya | Photos: Bjørn Furuseth

One of the reasons that Geilo, a small mountain village between Oslo and Bergen, stands out from other destinations, claims Medhus, is the fact that there is such a complete array of activities and natural sights to experience in such a compact area. There really is no skirting around the fact that Geilo is an outdoor person’s paradise. In summer you can go rafting, horse-riding, fishing, biking down The Navvies’ Road (one of Norway’s most popular cycling routes) or take a refresh-

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ing dip in the mountain springs of one of the two national parks situated just a stone’s throw away. With 39 downhill skiing slopes, miles of cross-country tracks, ice fishing, dog sledding, and the novelty transport of kick-sledge safaris, you would be hard pushed to run out of options during winter too. Playing on nature Medhus has lived in Geilo his whole life and has been arranging travel-related

events since the age of ten. Drawing on this lengthy expertise, his opinion is that culture and nature make the vital and ultimate combination that gives Geilo its status as such an enchanting holiday destination. “A key factor in Geilo’s very long and rich cultural heritage of hosting visitors is the lifestyle and values of the people here, closely connected to the natural surroundings,” Medhus asserts. “In a way it’s quite difficult to talk about nature and culture separately in a place like Geilo – they are so entwined that they are often the same thing.” One of the most illustrative examples of this is Geilo’s annual IceMusic festival – the world’s only festival that relies on sub-zero temperatures. Everything at the festival is made from natural ice and snow, including the artists’ instruments,

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Geilo stands out from other destinations in that it offers a complete array of activities and natural delights, from ice fishing and dog sledding in the winter to horse riding and rafting in the summer, in a very compact area.

so that they are, as Medhus says, “literally playing on nature.” Small things make an impact Geilo is not just home to natural delights; it is equipped with all the cultural offerings of a modern town, including museums, a library and a bowling alley. It is also widely known for its hotels, which rather than simply being categorised as lodgings are more akin to historic artefacts and hubs of traditional culture and locally-sourced cuisine. The food at Sofias Café & Bar, for example, has been noted as one the best culinary experiences in the country by the Spis her Norwegian food guide. “It is often simple things that allow people to understand and experience local culture,” says Medhus. “For example, Geilo’s

history as a centre for iron production, particularly knives, tools and axes – products that are still exported today – is something that both old and young can get a taste of at Geilo Smithy. Here, you get the chance to forge your own hook. We find that it often has a strong impact on children and that they appreciate being able to connect with Geilo’s cultural heritage through these kinds of practical experiences.” Responsible travel In terms of Geilo’s future as a travel destination, Medhus hopes that the town will continue to develop tourism based on the town’s cultural heritage. “I think we’re very lucky in Geilo to have so many people who are very talented when it comes to creating experiences that are grounded

in nature and natural resources. We have a healthy lifestyle and economy, both based on responsibility and sustainability. I hope that more people will seek out places like Geilo to ensure that tourism can have a positive effect on the community and the environment,” he says. “Geilo is a place that has actually been cultivating tourism for almost as long as the Norwegian constitution has existed. In fact, this year is the 200th anniversary of the Norwegian constitution, but along with celebrating this national history, we’ll be celebrating Geilo’s own parallel history of travel and tourism, which is a cultural treasure in its own right.” At Geilo’s IceMusic festival, absolutely everything is made from ice and snow – even the instruments.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Best of Norwegian Culture

Investing in people The small island community of Kvarøy, just south of the Arctic Circle, only has around 70 inhabitants, yet it is home to a number of businesses. There is a restaurant, there is aquaculture, and unusually for a place of its size, Kvarøy still has its own school and kindergarten. By Karin Modig | Photos: Kvarøy Sjøhus AS

With more and more people leaving rural areas in favour of towns and cities, this is one community that is consciously trying to buck the trend of urbanisation and fighting to keep its inhabitants. Lack of work opportunities are often the reason people leave, so one way of ensuring a thriving community is ensuring there is enough work for everyone. The story of Kvarøy Sjøhus is part of the story of how Kvarøy is investing in its own

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community and people as a way of keeping the place alive. Modern accommodation on the waterfront The traditional red rorbu is a common sight on the coast of northern Norway. The waterfront huts that once used to house fishermen are now popular places to stay for visitors. Both brand new and renovated original huts can be found, and Kvarøy Sjøhus has five modern huts available for visitors.

“Kvarøy Sjøhus itself is a relatively new venture,” says general manager Alf-Gøran Knutsen. “The idea and the preparation started in 2007, and two years later, we had three houses that were ready to be rented out. In 2010, a further two were built, so altogether we now have five three-bedroom houses that each sleep six people.” Situated right on the water, they all have views of both the sea and the mountains, and the terraces provide great spots for watching the northern lights in winter and the midnight sun in the summer. “Right from the beginning, we decided that we were going to provide quality accommodation, so we have been 100 per cent

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focused on making sure there is a very high standard throughout,” says Knutsen. “We provide hotel-standard linen and towels, the kitchens are fully equipped, there is Internet, and the living room has a TV, DVD and CD player.” In partnership with other venues, Kvarøy Sjøhus has also recently started offering fully catered courses, conferences and team building sessions. Two local meeting rooms are available, and Kvarøy Sjøhus can arrange for events with up to 60 people. The conference rooms are modern and come equipped with Internet connection, projector and so forth. Food is provided by local restaurant Olea’s Kjøkken - another of the island’s small businesses. The restaurant, in a renovated building from the 1880s, only opened last year, and in keeping with the community trend, the kitchen uses local produce as much as possible.

Knutsen. “Our aim is to create as many jobs as possible in the community and invest money in creating these jobs rather than spending it elsewhere. Kvarøy Sjøhus is part of that vision.” With the sea outside their front door, many of the guests at Kvarøy Sjøhus take the opportunity to rent one of Knutsen’s 19foot fishing boats to try their hand at sea fishing. Guided tours of the area in larger boats are also on offer. You also have the chance to find out more about commercial aquaculture with tours of Kvarøy Fiskeoppdrett, where you can learn more about both salmon and crab production. Although fishing is a very important part of Kvarøy’s identity, there are many more

experiences to be had. The surrounding nature is unique and very much worth exploring. In the middle of summer, with the midnight sun shining 24 hours a day, a bike ride across the islands comes highly recommended. The area is also home to a number of eagles, and an observation point offers a great opportunity for photographing these majestic birds. A daily boat from Bodø means that, despite its location, Kvarøy is easily accessible from the mainland.

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Kvarøy Sjøhus offers tailor-made packages for groups, and conferences or team-building sessions can easily be combined with a number of activities in and around the area. Find your perfect fishing spot and explore the nature The area is known for its good opportunities for fishing, and the largest employer on the islands is Kvarøy Fiskeoppdrett, a fish farm that employs 15 of Kvarøy’s inhabitants. A well-established business, it is also run by Knutsen, and it was the success of this company that allowed Kvarøy Sjøhus to be set up. “The businesses that I run are part of the drive to keep people on the island,” says

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Rockheim is Norway’s national museum of pop and rock music.

A journey through Norwegian popular culture Popular music has always played a part in our lives. It brings people together, creates memories and offers new experiences. At Rockheim, Norway’s national museum of pop and rock music, visitors can travel back in time to learn about the history and importance of pop and rock music.

Norwegian musical and cultural history. Looking at popular music throughout the last 60 years, the exhibition is separated into six different rooms, one for each

By Kjersti Westeng | Photos: Rockheim

Unlike other music genres such as jazz and opera, pop and rock music have not always been given the recognition and respect they truly deserve. However, in 2005 Norwegian politicians initiated the creation of a museum where Norwegian pop and rock history could be preserved. Situated in Trondheim, Rockheim first opened in August 2010 and has since enjoyed a constant stream of visitors eager to learn more about what Norwegian popular music really is. Rock music historian

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Terje Nilsen was very pleased to be a part of the opening of Norway’s first museum of its kind. “Rockheim gives us the opportunity to tell the history of popular music in Norway. We are now able to preserve this for future generations, which is extremely important to us,” he says. Travel through time Rockheim’s permanent exhibition, The Time Tunnel, is found on the 6th floor and can be described as a journey through

Pattie Boyd

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decade. Starting with the ‘50s, The Time Tunnel tells the stories of famous musicians and bands through the use of sound, imagery and music videos. “It is very much an interactive exhibition with screens, iPads and other items for the audience to interact with,” explains Nilsen. Another of the museum’s popular exhibitions is Rockheim Gallery, which focuses on both international and local music history. On 7 March, the gallery will open a new exhibition called Skiensrocken, where photographer Ketil Hardy takes a closer look at the rock music history in Skien and the county of Telemark. Pattie Boyd exhibition The temporary exhibitions on the 4th floor feature both Norwegian and international pop and rock artists. This is where the exclusive opening of Rockheim’s exhibition on Pattie Boyd will take place on 27 March. Boyd is an English model and photographer best known for her love triangle with George Harrison and Eric Clapton; despite the close friendship between the two men, Boyd went from being Harrison’s wife at the height of Beatlemania to marrying Clapton in 1979. “The story itself is interesting, especially because we know that Harrison’s Something is about her, just like Clapton’s Wonderful Tonight is about her too,” says Nilsen. Having photography as a hobby at the time, Boyd captured a number of valuable moments from her time with both men. The exhibition will feature around 45 of her pictures, ten of which have never been exhibited before. Pattie Boyd will be present at the opening of the exhibition and will most likely return a few times to host workshops and seminars, before the exhibition closes at the end of August. “This is an incredible opportunity and very exciting to us,” says Nilsen. “Apart from Yoko Ono, she is the only woman still alive to share stories from that time.” Get involved Rockheim offers plenty of opportunities for visitors to take part in all the fun, either by playing instruments, jamming to popular Norwegian songs, DJing or even breakdancing. There is also a quieter area

Top: A lot of famous artists have both performed and recorded music on Rockheim’s stage. Below: Get involved and have fun at Rockheim.

called Mediateket, which can only be compared to a large musical library with books, magazines and, of course, Norwegian pop and rock music. Rockheim is also famous for its beautiful stage, where famous Norwegian musicians have performed, practised and recorded albums.

heim’s Hall of Fame. “A spot in the Hall of Fame has proven to be the most prestigious proof of honour within the Norwegian music industry, something we are very proud of,” says Nilsen. This year’s Hall of Fame ceremony takes place on 13 August and will be broadcasted on Norwegian TV2.

Hall of Fame Nilsen explains that the museum works closely with a number of famous rock and pop museums across the globe, including Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the US and the O2’s British Music Experience, England’s national museum of popular music. What a lot of these museums have in common is that they like to celebrate and honour influential pop and rock musicians, and in order to honour Norwegian musicians in the best way possible, Rockheim has created its own Hall of Fame. Every year, a jury consisting of both musicians and influential people within the music industry nominates musicians they think deserve to be included in Rock-

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Rustic accommodation in spectacular scenery Brekkeseter at Hoevringen is a resort with a hotel and cabins offering comfortable accommodation located between Norway’s capital Oslo and Trondheim, at the border of Rondane National Park. “The original mountain farm was built in the 17th century, and tourism started as British lords came to hunt wild reindeer in the 1820s,” explains general manager Kari Setsaas. By Stian Sangvig | Photos: Tor Ivar Boine

“The hotel has 12 rooms and 20 timber cabins, the oldest dating back to the 18th century,” Setsaas continues. Brekkeseter also has a restaurant run by chefs and hunters, serving international dishes made from seasonal Norwegian ingredients and wild game. “Moose, red deer and trout are sourced locally and offered whenever available,” says Setsaas. “We also accommodate vegetarians and take into account any allergies that visitors may have.” Brekkeseter makes a great spot for skiing in the winter, with 170 kilometres of marked trails with dual tracks for crosscountry skiing. For downhill skiers, the

former Olympic slopes of Hafjell are only a 90-minute drive away by car. In addition, Brekkester offers a wide range of hiking tours on marked and unmarked trails in the mountains in the summer time. “Activities include mountain hiking, horse riding, bird watching and nature photography,” says Setsaas. “We have ten mountain peaks higher than 2,000 metres above sea level nearby.” “With the 200th anniversary of the Norwegian constitution in mind, I believe it is worth adding that several of Asbjornsen and Moe’s classic fairy tales and also some of Ibsen’s works are inspired by stories told by local farmers,” concludes Setsaas.

Making trolls come alive for 100 years The deep and dark forests of Norway have enticed many a child’s imagination. Legends of trolls are an important part of Norwegian heritage, and in 2014 we celebrate the artist who made the trolls come alive. By Anette Berve | Photo: Tor Kornstad

January marked 100 years since Theodor Kittelsen’s passing. The artist might be most known for his remarkable and detailed illustrations accompanying Norwegian fairy tales, especially those of trolls. In Kittelsen’s home at Lauvlia, man-

ager Åse Tangerud is ready to celebrate his life surrounded by the very landscape that inspired him the most. Every year, Lauvlia features a new exhibition focusing on different aspects of Kittelsen’s life. This year, the museum will display its most extensive collection yet. His artistic paradise Kittelsen settled down with his family at Lauvlia in 1899, which is also where he had his

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most productive creative years. “With our new exhibition we want to showcase the broad variety of his skills,” Tangerud explains. “In addition to drawings and paintings, he also created works of wood. His house is a testimony to his skills as a woodcarver.” The house overlooks Norefjell and Andersnatten, two mountains that feature in many of his most famous landscape drawings, including Soria Moria. “He managed to capture the solitude and peace of the Norwegian landscape,” Tangerud continues. “I think he appeals to so many people due to his ability to engage both young and old through his drawings. He had a true talent for seeing motifs in his surroundings.” Lauvlia is a private museum in the home of Theodor Kittelsen. The museum is located in Prestfoss, an hour and a half’s drive from Oslo. Lauvlia is open 24 May – 28 September.

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Right: Valdres Folk Museum is home to around one hundred houses and other constructions, some of dating back as far as the 14th century. Photos: Laila Duran (top left) and Anne Marit Noraker.

Living folk culture The hills of Valdres are alive with Norwegian folk music and culture. Valdres Folk Museum aims to preserve both the material and the intangible folk traditions of Norway, serving as a bridge for people to discover a vibrant historical heritage. By Maya Acharya

Valdres Folk Museum is one of Norway’s largest open air museums, idyllically situated on a ridge leaning out into a fjord just outside Fagernes in NordAurdal. The museum is home to around one hundred houses and other constructions, some of them dating back as far as the 14th century. The museum also has its own study centre, and collaborates with The Norwegain Insitute of Bunad and Folk Costume. Ole Aastad Bråten, conservator at the museum, says that the museum is not just a collective memory bank of folk culture such as music, dance, food, textile and steel craftsmanship, but it also supports their continuance by actively engaging in the local culture of Valdres. “Taking care of non-material aspects of Norwegian cultural heritage is vital, and

something the museum has focused on ever since it was founded in 1901,” Bråten explains. “Organising courses, concerts and festivals and collaborating with local associations is an extension of our role as an active player in a living folk culture.” Aside from the museum’s extensive exhibitions and collections, traditional folk culture is also preserved in the country’s oldest folk music archive and presented in music workshops that produce instruments like the magical-sounding langeleik and hardanger fiddles. Bråten is pleased with the positive responses he has had from those who partake in the museum’s activities, young and old alike. “Recruiting young people is an important part of our work, especially when it comes to Norway’s folk music tradition. There are almost no instrument makers in the

country at present, so this is an area that we are keen to develop,” he says. This year the museum will also be busy preparing for the bicentenary of the Norwegian constitution. So far, the museum has planned a debate that will be attended by the president of the Norwegian Parliament, Olemic Thommessen, along with other government and local politicians. “The debate will focus on important issues derived from the constitution of Norwegian sovereignty. Today this relates in particular to Norway’s relationship with the EU,” says Bråten. “But we’ll also be inviting young people to participate, asking them what terms such as freedom and independence mean to them.”

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Above left: The newest addition to Akershusmuseet, Oslofjordmuseet, is located at Vollen, southwest of Oslo. This museum aims to give insight into the nature, culture and technology that all play important parts in the area. Top right: The Asker Museum in the renowned Valley of Artists. Bottom right: Gamle Hvam Museum, a picturesque garden and traditional farmhouse museum.

Discovering Norwegian culture at Akershusmuseet Indulge in a myriad of fun and entertaining events, enjoy scenic landscapes, and gain a deeper understanding of some of the most important historical sites and events in Norway. By Oda Marie Eidissen | Photos: Akershusmuseet

Akershusmuseet has, since its establishment in 1982, played an important role in communicating, collecting and documenting the history and cultural diversity of Akershus county. With a wide range of exhibitions and events, and a large archive covering different areas of Norwegian history, Akershusmuseet is the perfect place to explore the unfolding of Norwegian history and culture. Akershusmuseet consists of 19 museums packed with local history. Here you will find something for everyone, with transport, industry, rural and coastal culture, gardening and art binding these museums together. The region lies as a green belt around Oslo, and the scenery as well as the stunning gardens and buildings of the museums make it an attractive destination. The Norwegian Armed Forces Aircraft Collection, located next to Oslo’s Airport

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Gardermoen, is very popular with tourists. Others come to visit Fetsund Lenser, one of Norway’s notable timber floating plants, while quite a few have fallen in love with Gamle Hvam, the charming visitor farm that has served as inspiration for many famous illustrations of Norwegian folk tales. With 197,000 visitors last year, Akershusmuseet has demonstrated its position as a conveyor of the historical and cultural development of the county. Throughout 2014, the museum will be crucial in the celebration of the bicentenary of the Norwegian constitution, focusing on the democratisation of Norway through exhibitions, family activities and celebrations. Head of communications at Akershusmuseet, Kjersti Lillebø, explains that the exhibition Frihet – Likhet – Brorskap (Liberty – Equality – Fraternity) “explores how the democratisation has

given visible results in today’s society, focusing on the years of 1814, 1914 and 2014.” Guided tours will be held at Eidsvoll local museum, exploring what the housing of the representatives of the national assembly was like at the time around 1814. “Akershusmuseet is an important participant and provider for national commemorations and celebrations,” says Lillebø. “The introduction classes, May 17th for Beginners, where newcomers to Norway are introduced to how and why the constitution anniversary is celebrated, is popular, and using historic events to explain the current affairs and the multicultural complexity of Norwegian society is of great importance to us.” Through fun activities and events, the museum invites visitors to get a better understanding of Norwegian culture.

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Photo: Gaute Bruvik -

Culture in the wilderness Visitors hoping to experience breathtaking views across a fjord from a high mountain do not need to venture far north in the long, thin country that is Norway. Yet, for the best chances to see the Northern Lights, experience the midnight sun, learn about Sami culture, and try out a wildlife safari, it might be worth that extra few miles – and, as our northern Norway special shows, you will be rewarded culturally too. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life -

Northern Norway treats its visitor to both alpine mountains and narrow fjords, vast tundra and deep wilderness. Scooter safaris and dog sledding help bring the wildlife that much closer, but even whales, eagles and king crabs can be spotted here. At first sight, much of northern Norway may seem uninhibited,

but there is more to this area than first meets the eye. The indigenous people of Norway, the Sami, has its parliament here, in Karasjok. With their own language and traditions, they are at one with the harsh weather conditions and the rugged land-

scapes, their livelihood heavily dependent on fishing, hunting and reindeer herding. Norway’s largest municipality, Kautokeino, can be found here, and this is also where you should go to visit Juhls’ Silvergallery. A community of 3,000 people and 100,000 reindeer, Kautokeino was in 1852 the site of a Sami uprising, the only confrontation of its kind resulting in the loss of human lives. Today the area is considered somewhat of a cultural centre, with several well-known Sami cultural events taking place throughout the year. In addition to the exceptional fishing conditions of Lofoten and the northnernmost place on mainland Europe, The North Cape, this area is home to a range of unusual cultural attractions: from Artscape Nordland with its intriguing sculptures dotted out across 33 municipalities to Tromsø University Museum in, as it has become known, the city that never sleeps.

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Artscape Nordland presents 35 works of art across over 40,000 square metres of the beautiful landscape of northern Norway. Above: Man from the Sea by Kjell Erik Killi Olsen. Photo: Øystein Lunde Ingvaldsen.

A manifesto of international sculpture art The question was as ambitious as it was alluring: what could be created if 35 artists from all over the world were invited to the stunning landscapes of northern Norway, given a municipality each to draw inspiration from, and granted the chance to create a unique piece of sculptural art for the local community? The answer surpassed all expectations. By Julie Lindén | Photos: Skulpturlandskap Nordland

It was in 1988 that Nordland County Council, one of the northernmost counties in Norway, in collaboration with participating municipalities conceived the idea to found Artscape Nordland. The idea was to create one sculpture for each municipality that wished to take part in the project, building an international open-air art collection. This was to be done by inviting a range of artists from all over the world to come and experience the uniqueness of Norwegian nature, and ask them to present

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an artwork idea to be installed at a chosen spot in the designated municipality. “These artists came to stay for long or short periods of time, but common to them all is that they formed a relationship with the scenery around them, as well as with the people they met. Many of the artists met and spoke to the local community and made it a key point of their creative process to come up with a work of art that was going to serve the people as

well as the surroundings,” says Kristoffer Dolmen, head of communications at Artscape Nordland. An extensive area The project, executed over two phases in the 1990s and 2000s respectively, incorporates an extensive breadth of art forms and expressions, and covers a geographical area of more than 40,000 square metres when all participating areas are taken into consideration. The topography and nature types are greatly varied across the whole area, inviting the spectacular openair collection’s visitors to take part in an incredible journey. “Some visitors have set a goal for themselves to visit each and every single one of the 35 works, and that is indeed very lovely

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to hear,” says Dolmen, adding: “But this is naturally not something we expect. All we wish is that people who set out to visit the sculptures experience them in the best possible way, and get something out of the trek,” says Dolmen. The local identity One of the sculptures, Man from the Sea, by Norwegian artist Kjell Erik Killi Olsen, in Bø municipality, has since its construction become a welcome addition to the topography. Situated at the peak of a small hill, the 4.5-metre tall sculpture forms part of a lookout point that is regularly visited by hikers and locals, many of who feel the work has become a symbol of their village. “These works add a kind of identity to their local communities, and many feel incredibly proud of the pieces they have to show. When I hear of people who visit one of the artwork locations almost daily to take in the view or relax in the serene nature, I feel like the art has accomplished what it set out to do in this project,” Dolmen says. The all-round experience of northern Norway Although many of the 35 artists have chosen nature sceneries as locations for their

Il Nido / The Nest by Luciano Fabro. Photo: Ernst Furuhatt

artwork, not all of the statues require hikes and mountain treks to be experienced. A popular series of sculptures is located in the harbour of Bodø, the largest town in Nordland, and consists of seven large, individually marked granite parts. Conceived by British sculptor Tony Cragg, the series plays with the notion of individuality and the contrast between water and land. In addition to fantastic and rare cultural encounters embodied in the art collection, Dolmen points out that visitors to Nordland will leave with a spectacular allround travel experience. “Northern Norway has always been a popular travel destination, with the Northern Lights and midnight sun grabbing a natural centre focus. In the last couple of years we have seen the tourism operators

make great improvements to facilitate and promote tourism, and so I am confident that anyone who comes here to experience art will also taste wonderful local food and be able to take part in local events like music festivals and more,” says Dolmen. “The very essence of Artscape Nordland represents a mix of nationalities and cultures, and how they can all be merged with the exceptional nature Norway has to offer. This union is very intriguing to people, and shines a new light on this beautiful part of our country.”

For more information, please visit: Facebook: Skulpturlandskap / Artscape Nordland

Head by Markus Raetz. Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life

Around by Waltercio Caldas. Photo: Erlend Haarberg

Untitled by Tony Cragg. Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life

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Art in the land of the Northern Lights

Based in Tromsø, within close proximity to the fjord cruises, the museum exhibits historical and contemporary art alike, with main focus on art from the Arctic region, dating back to the romantic depictions of wild nature of the early 1800s. The museum recently opened the exhibition Still Life in Motion, which explores motifs ranging from 17th century Dutch paintings to contemporary new media art. Curator Sandra Lorentzen explains: “Whether it is exhibiting contemporary Sámi art in New York or bringing historic European art to Tromsø, our aim is to display cultural history, and the diversity of northern Norway.” Visitors get the opportunity to see works ranging from Norwegian classics such as Edvard Munch and Peder Balke to major international artists such as David

Hockney. “It goes to show that the Arctic has inspired artists for centuries,” says museum assistant Henrik Somdal. “Balke was a true revolutionary – an innovative romantic Norwegian painter who has been compared to the great British landscape painters Turner and Constable.” The museum is dedicating a major exhibition to Balke’s work during the summer of 2014. Although the museum is quite the toddler compared to many others around Europe, it has already gathered an impressive selection of artworks that many are pleasantly surprised to stumble upon in what might appear as a secluded part of the world. Top: Work of Peder Balke will be showcased at a major exhibition this summer. Below: Still Life in Motion displays work of artists such as Frants Bøe

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Little joy to everyday life WELCOME TO OUR ONLINE STORE AT:

By Line Elise Svanevik | Photos: Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum

Despite being the youngest and northernmost art museum in Norway, Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum (Northern Norway Art Museum) has managed to set its mark on the Norwegian and international art scene.

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Tromsø University Museum had 132,000 visitors come through its doors last year. Northern Lights photo: Bjørn Jørgensen. Exhibition photos: June Aasheim/Tromsø Museum

Explore Norwegian history and culture in a city that never sleeps The cultural capital of northern Norway has more to offer than cold weather, mountains and the famous Northern Lights. In the Norwegian city that never sleeps, tourists and families alike can visit Tromsø University Museum to explore everything from old treasures and Sami culture to, perhaps somewhat puzzling, tropical snakes. By Camilla Huuse | Photos: Tromsø Museum

“Yes, we’re staging a temporary exhibition of snakes, something we look forward to with, er, mixed feelings,” says Per Helge Nylund, exhibition manager at Tromsø Museum, and confirms that the 32 snakes on display this month have nothing to do with northern Norway. “You won’t expect to see many snakes this far north, which is why we want this exhibition for our local audience.” The museum is more widely known for displaying cultural heritage than reptiles, but its wide range of exhibitions might be the reason for its success. Despite the cold weather, tourists keep flocking up north, and the learning institution had 132,000 visitors coming through its doors

last year. The museum is a part of the Arctic University of Norway, and the four different departments, including a Northern Lights plasma chamber and a botanic garden, offer plenty to discover for every age group. The museum has new exhibitions every year alongside historical objects, such as the best-preserved sealing vessel in Norway. It is located near the centre of Tromsø – a city so far north that occasional visitors will not listen when Nylund explains that people live there all year around. “Tourists have asked me when we shut and I answer that we close at 6 pm,” he says. “But what they really want to know is when we shut for the winter

and migrate to southern parts of Norway. They can’t imagine anyone living through the cold winters here,” he laughs, before adding that Tromsø is a cultural metropolis where festivals and family activities happen on a daily basis. Roaming the streets of Tromsø is an experience in itself and with its cafes, restaurants, shops and street musicians there is always something to explore. When the restaurants close and the street singers go home at night, there are still the Northern Lights to be seen dancing away on the frosty sky. After a day at the museum, grab a hot chocolate, a blanket and enjoy the company of one of the world’s most beautiful natural phenomena. Tromsø truly is a city that never sleeps.

For more information, please visit:

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Artistic pearl in the wilderness On your way across the tundra of Norwegian Lapland, in the midst of its wonderful expanse, you will find Kautokeino, the secret capital of the Sami people. And a little way out into the countryside, with a prime view of the town, there is Juhls’ Silvergallery, one of the most visited destinations in northern Norway. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Juhls’ Silvergallery

is an important part of Juhls’ Silvergallery’s work.

Agreeing that life in isolation, away from the city and its trends, was a prerequisite for freedom of creative expression, Frank and Regine Juhls started out with nothing and built a house in the wilderness. Back then, in the fifties, there were no roads across the tundra; yet the result, Juhls’ Silvergallery, is a building full of artistic craft – a building that has grown over decades to become the pearl of personal architecture that it is today.

Nonetheless, Regine and Frank are modern artists, as is their daughter Sunniva, who has inherited her mother’s love of jewellery-making. The pieces produced may take inspiration from the arctic nature, but they hold their own in any Scandinavian design context: timeless, simple collections made on site in the workshop.

Gold- and silversmiths were unheard of here at the time; fixed workshops were unthinkable for the Sami people because of their unsettled way of life. But the jewellery-wearing tradition was very much alive, and still today celebrating the Sami enthusiasm for self-adornment

“This is rare in this day and age,” says Sunniva. “It is a sad fact that a lot of what we consume today has been produced in a different part of the world, so we are very proud that absolutely everything we do, and every aspect of our work, we do here at our workshop in Kautokeino.”

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Juhls Silvergallery’s jewellery is all available in the webshop, but customers who want to try on a specific piece or feel the jewellery with their own hands do not have to trek all the way up north – unless they want to. “We’re delighted to also have a shop at Bryggen in Bergen,” says Sunniva. Still, people do trek all the way up north, and they do come to the gallery – perhaps because of the special atmosphere, created by the dedication of the artists who made the journey to come here. The special Juhls Silvergallery mood runs through the whole building, from one room to the next. And it provides a framework for the rare, beautiful jewellery and artistic craft.

For more information and to purchase Juhls’ products online, please visit:

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duce. Most of the fish is local and based on the catches of the day,” he explains. “For example, right now the cod with roe and liver is an absolute delicacy not to be missed. “As we leave the winter fishing season behind, spring and summer bring shellfish, arctic char and, in particular for Norway, the whale season, an important sustainable and cultural tradition. Whale meat has a beautiful flavor, very much like a fine piece of steak; it’s not to be missed on our menu. Some of our guests are a bit sceptical at first but soon change their minds.

A seafood institution If you are after the very finest catch of the day, Fiskekompaniet is your recommended culinary destination. Overlooking the harbor of Tromsø, this beloved fish restaurant has become an institution in the northern region of Norway. By Emelie Krugly Hill | Photos: Fiskekompaniet

Quality and freshness are the underlying principles at Fiskekompaniet. Having served hundreds of thousands of guests over a 15-year period, the team of talented chefs behind its success knows how to impress and indulge its clientele. “The idea is remarkably simple: genuine flavours from the sea – that’s what we’ve always aimed to achieve,” says managing director Anders Blomkvist.

arating you from Blomkvist’s busy team of chefs. The menu draws inspiration from all over the world and uses elements to enhance and complement fantastic locally-sourced produce. “Having the bustling kitchen on view is our way of giving our guests a personal and insightful welcome while adding to the excitement and sense of anticipation,” says Blomkvist.

As you enter the restaurant, you pass through the kitchen with glass walls sep-

“The menu keeps changing, as we always focus on sourcing seasonal and fresh pro-

“We don’t have a signature dish as such, but seafood so often speaks for itself: king crabs, mussels, lobster and oysters with careful preparation all look very impressive when they leave the kitchen. Presentation is key to us, and traditional dishes with a modern twist are served on beautiful porcelain.” Blomkvist, a native Swede, also likes to add a touch of Swedish influence to his dishes; for example, bleak roe from Sweden is used, including a type from Kalix in the northern parts of the country, which is particularly excellent. The interior of the restaurant is contemporary and stylish, and attentive and knowledgeable staff are always on hand to ensure that your experience is flawless. The summer period is particularly busy, when no less than 1,500 visitors per month pass through the doors every month, so booking is recommended.

For more information, please visit:

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Denmark: winning everything Recently voted the world’s happiest nation for the umpteenth time, and ready to celebrate by wrapping all of Europe’s attention around its little finger for a night as host of the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest, Denmark is on a roll. What is the secret?

Thy, one of our featured top destinations – and it is becoming increasingly clear why they loved it so much.

By Linnea Dunne | Photo: Østdansk Turisme

Give peace a chance, on a spiritual or political level, and head for the best destinations of a brilliant country, where the winds are so generous that surfers relocate here; the tallest museum does not even reach ground level; and a 34,000 square metre arena welcomes some of the biggest stars of the world.

Everyone knows that cycling is the way to go. Denmark is heading up the big health and eco trend. Slowly but surely, European countries are catching on to the fact that paternity leave, or shared parental leave, might not be such a bad idea after all. Who is leading the way? Denmark. While electoral turnout is going down, and rapidly so, in other parts of the developed world, close to 90 per cent of Danes still take their democratic duty seriously and vote at general elections. And now they have gone and been nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. No wonder they are happy! Tourists with a love of beaches, design and the simple life have long been heading for Denmark, both in the summer

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when sun-bathing and surfing conditions are good and in the winter when museums, award-winning restaurants, and Christmas markets attract a lot of visitors. With the recent Nordic Noir success, thanks to hit drama series such as Borgen and The Bridge, tourism is likely to pick up even more. Add the fact that Nordic food has never been cooler, and we can probably reiterate: Denmark is on a roll. They are a generous nation, paying amongst the highest taxes in the world for an exceptionally high standard of living, one that visitors very much reap the benefits of, while contributing with around 0.8 per cent of their gross national income to foreign aid. Legendary hippie couple John Lennon and Yoko Ono spent some time in

Photo: Kim Wyon


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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Top 3 Destinations in Denmark

The Thy landscape is characterised by wind-swept dune heaths and bathing beaches, and fishing has always been important to the area’s economy. In surfers’ circles, Thy goes by the name of Cold Hawaii, and many renowned surfers have even made it their home because of the unparalleled training conditions.

Spectacular views and winds full of promises Thy is the famous ancestral home of the Teutons who threatened Rome itself in ancient times. But the Thy of today offers the holiday guest some of northern Europe’s most intense outdoor experiences. By Marjorie Mendieta | Photos: Visit Thy

In the Thy National Park one can experience the gnarled, wind-swept dune heaths of the Jutland west coast in its majestic beauty. The protected area covers the entire west coast of Thy and boasts a huge variety of rare landscapes, flora and fauna. The heath environment is so pristine that it has attracted a very special but not entirely wanted migration: a wolf was sighted here in recent months despite having been extinct in Denmark for more than 200 years. But do not worry: the many trekking routes and bathing beaches of the park are entirely safe. The waters that kiss the shores of the park are harsh but rewarding. In the town of Hanstholm lies the largest fish auction in Denmark, and the abundant marine life

also promises a treat in coastal and open water angling for recreational purposes. Off the west coast of Thy lies the Yellow Reef, which attracts anglers all year round and from all over the world. Harnessing the wind The ever-present west wind places Thy at the forefront of sustainable energy technology, as it supplies a steady flow of raw material for harnessing. At Østerild, Danish know-how is showcased at the test centre for some of the world’s tallest windmills, and off the coast, a test power plant is exploiting the concept of wave energy in the waves of the North Sea. The west wind has also sparked international notoriety for the small hamlet of Kl-

itmøller. The wind combined with unique hydrological conditions create a Mecca here for windsurfers, with 30 different surfing spots to die for, contributing to its new nickname: Cold Hawaii. Culture and recreation The few larger towns of Thy, especially the district capital of Thisted and Hurup, offer shopping experiences, cafés and nightlife. The open countryside bears an open invitation to various sports such as golf. It is also host to quite a number of galleries and museums, each telling their story about historical and contemporary subjects. In 1970, Thy was guested by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, who were on a family visit and decided to stay for a whole month. The couple made a poster commemorating their stay, today only available at the Thy tourist office. Thy is now home to an annual musical and theatrical event in memory of the couple’s stay. All in all, Thy offers the promise of an exciting stay regardless of your preferences. For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Top 3 Destinations in Denmark

The heart of culture in Northern Jutland With more than half a million visitors per year, Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre is one of Scandinavia’s largest and most flexible congress and cultural centres. By Sophia Stovall | Photos: Courtesy of Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre and the artists

After 60 years, Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre attracts an ample audience, offering an inspiring range of cultural events including classical and contemporary music, exhibitions and fairs, conventions and conferences, while also housing two restaurants and a hotel. A recent refurbishment has seen the whole centre updated with cutting edge technological and conference facilities and a thoroughly Danish interior design approach.

audience of 12,000 and attracts top artists from across the world, including Beyoncé, Stevie Wonder and Take That. With two restaurants in-house and its very own hotel adjacent to the main building, Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre offers the option of culture packages for those who want tickets for events from the dynamic programme while hoping to enjoy good food and a peaceful night’s sleep in a stylish setting.

Music and theatre With more than 100 major performances every year, Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre is one of Scandinavia’s largest suppliers of culture, offering everything from international names in opera, ballet and musicals to revues, classical concerts, children’s theatre, and of course pop and rock concerts. Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre also programmes events and performances outdoors and at Gigantium arena, which with its 34,000 square metres can accommodate an

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number of visitors since 1953,” says CEO Ernst Trillingsgaard. “It shows that Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre each year consolidates its position as one of the largest cultural, meeting and exhibition houses.” Meetings and conferences Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre provides the perfect setting for a variety of conventions and meetings, whether it is a conference for 2,500 participants or a meeting for only ten. Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre also boasts excellent catering and entertainment possibilities to complement the client’s agenda, ensuring the best possible experience for visitors, supporters and clients alike.

Fairs and exhibitions Located in the heart of Aalborg, Denmark’s third biggest town, and with more than 7,000 square metres of exhibition area, Aalborg Congress & Culture Centre is suitable for all kinds of fairs and exhibitions, from small product presentations to large consumer fairs. “It is a great achievement to crown the house’s 60-year history with the largest

The centre is located close to Aalborg Airport, the central train station and the motorway, making it not only accessible but also extremely appealing to the increasing international and national audiences it attracts. For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Top 3 Destinations in Denmark

The permanent exhibitions of the museum have been designed by the exhibition architects kossmann.dejong of Amsterdam to give a feeling of life on board a ship, and the corridors are in themselves integrated interactive, filmic and scenographic experiences.

Spectacular seafaring stories On the Elsinore seafront, a remarkable piece of architecture serves as the setting for the Danish Maritime Museum (M/S Museet for Søfart) showcasing the history, present and future of seafaring in Denmark. By Marjorie Mendieta | Photos: M/S Museet for Søfart

One of the most famous places in Denmark, the city of Elsinore, the setting of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, sits at the entrance to Øresund. The guns of the famous renaissance castle of Kronborg, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, still point out to sea as they did during the 430 years when the merchant ships of the world had to anchor in Elsinore on passing the sound to pay the Sound Toll. Well situated in a city that breathes maritime history, the museum lies just a stone’s throw from the historic castle; but to see it, one virtually has to stand on top of it. The internationally-renowned Danish architect company, Bjarke Ingels Group, has designed the museum, which consists of several slightly tilted bridges spanning the chasm of a disused dry dock from top to bottom. The structure is anchored 42 me-

tres below ground, making it the tallest museum in Denmark despite the fact that it does not reach above the ground level. The daring innovative design of the museum has won international acclaim and press appraisal, and it was recently named Building of the Year by the world’s leading architecture website, Archdaily. The spectacular building holds great promise, and the interior delivers. The museum covers naval history spanning more than 400 years, but those who turn up expecting shelf upon shelf of dusty artefacts and documents will be sorely disappointed. The corridors of the museum are in themselves an integrated interactive, filmic and scenographic experience. The permanent exhibitions of the museum have been designed by the exhibition architects kossmann.dejong of

Amsterdam to give a feeling of life on board a ship. Walk through the dimly-lit claustrophobic corridors of a merchant steamer onto the deck of the vessel to find yourself surrounded by walls of ocean waves and the floor littered with showcases in the form of icebergs and buoys. Have your lunch in the ship’s galley or visit the museum shop and browse through some of the exotic commodities that have made 400 years of merchant seafaring worthwhile. Alternatively, try out your logistics skills as a ship owner through an interactive game. The experimental design of the museum layout will appeal to people of all ages.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Hotel of the Month | Denmark

Hotel of the Month, Denmark

Experience the charm of Denmark – outside the capital From northern Jutland to southern Zealand: with its sixteen hotels all over Denmark, Danske Hoteller (Danish Hotels) gives you a welcoming and cosy experience of this fascinating country. By Sanne Wass | Photos: Danske Hoteller

The wonderful country of Denmark is much more than just Copenhagen. “Denmark has so many amazing historical landmarks and beautiful nature outside the capital. They are all worth visiting when experiencing the life of Denmark,” says Lars Ylikulju Jensen, business manager at Danske Hoteller. Danske Hoteller is an umbrella organisation of sixteen individual inns, hotels and conference centres around Denmark, offering a high-quality stay whether you

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are on a business trip, romantic weekend, family getaway, or at a corporate meeting. But Danske Hoteller is anything but a standardised hotel chain. Every hotel has its own local and individual expression, making the hotels much more than just a place to sleep. From northern Jutland to southern Zealand, the hotels are all in beautiful surroundings and close to Denmark’s many sights and attractions. In central Jutland a variety of hotels gives

you easy access to the famous Legoland, Givskud Zoo, and Herning with lots of major sporting events, concerts and shows. Or how about staying in southern Zealand with the country’s highest cliffs, the amusement park Bonbon Land, and Knuthenborg Safari Park? Feel the historical ambiance Next year, Danske Hoteller will be celebrating its 25th anniversary. But the history of the hotels dates much further back – in some cases to the Middle Ages. Thus, the hotels take you closely through some incredible Danish history. At Hotel Vinhuset in the city of Næstved in southern Zealand, you are housed in an astonishing building originally owned by a

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Scan Magazine | Hotel of the Month | Denmark

Right: Hotel Dagmar in Ribe was built in 1581 and as such is the oldest hotel in Denmark.

wine merchant with a royal privilege to sell wine – hence its name, ‘The Wine House’. The restaurant is located in the basement with ceilings of charming vaulted arches dating back to the 15th century. Another of Danske Hotelller’s historic buildings is found in the northwest of Jutland: the gorgeous Hotel Ringkøbing. It was built around 1600, which makes it the city’s second oldest building, second only to the church. It is located in the middle of the town square among the old wellpreserved houses and the historic cobbled streets, just a stone’s throw away from the lovely Ringkøbing Fjord. Lastly, you find Hotel Dagmar in Denmark’s oldest city, Ribe, in southwest Jutland. The building from 1581 with its red walls and red tile roof is Denmark’s oldest hotel and considered a historical landmark. “These three hotels are the precious jewels in our collection. They have been renovated with great care to maintain the original look and historical ambience. When you step inside, you immediately feel the special and nostalgic atmosphere

in everything from the crooked floors to the old murals on the walls. You indeed feel the presence of history,” Jensen says. The real Danish ‘kro’ experience Another curious part of Danish history can be experienced in one of the traditional

inns across the country – the so-called ‘kro’ in Danish. In year 1283 the Danish King Erik Klippinge decided that inns should be built on all major Danish roads to make sure that travellers could get accommodation and supplies. Many of these royal-privileged inns, such as Menstrup

Above left and opposite page: Hotel Vinhuset in Næstved was originally owned by a wine merchant with a royal privilege to sell wine. Middle and right: Hotel Ringkøbing from around the year 1600 is located among old well-preserved houses and the historic cobbled streets in Ringkøbing.

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Scan Magazine | Hotel of the Month | Denmark

Experience the homely ‘kro’ atmosphere. Above left: Hjallerup Kro. Right: Menstrup Kro.

Kro in southern Zealand and Årslev Kro just outside Aarhus, still exist, ready to give you a real Danish ‘kro’ experience. In northern Jutland, you find Danske Hoteller’s most popular inn, Hjallerup Kro. Here, the innkeeper is more than just a landlady: she is what in Danish one would call a typical ‘kromutter’ – just like a mother. “She is everything you would associate with a ‘kromutter’. She emphasises old virtues and won’t compromise on quality. She’s always cheerful, welcoming, and knows a lot of fun anecdotes and interesting stories about the house and the area,” Jensen explains. “She makes the visit quite special.” As a visitor at one of Danske Hoteller’s inns, you are greeted as though you were coming home to your grandparents: with warmth, smiles and laughter. In addition to the genuine and cosy inn atmosphere, the kitchens provide delicious traditional Danish meals. A hotel family With sixteen hotels in the country, Danske Hoteller meets a wide range of needs, and visitors return whenever they are

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looking for a new place to go in Denmark. In addition, companies use Danske Hoteller for conferences and meetings. They benefit greatly from the serious and professional approach to work. The secret is happy, experienced employees: “In most places we have employees who have been there for 20, 25, even 30 years, and we almost only have permanent staff. All this is very important in order to make the customers feel comfortable, because they meet experienced people who know the house and have tons of knowledge about the area,” Jensen says. Thus, the welfare of the employees is given high priority. Every year, Danske Hoteller hosts an annual staff party, attended by several hundred employees from all the hotels. The party includes a cooking championship for the hotels’ many chefs’ students. “During a financial crisis, solid employees are alpha and omega. So we do our best to motivate our staff. Even though we are sixteen individual hotels, we always help each other – because we are a kind of family and know each other well – and we have done so for many years,” Jensen ends.

Danske Hoteller includes sixteen hotels all over Denmark: JUTLAND: -

Hotel Phønix Brønderslev Hotel Hjallerup Kro Hotel Søparken Dronninglund Hotel Hotel Limfjorden Hotel Vildbjerg Hotel Falken Hotel Ringkøbing Østergaards Hotel Hotel Medi Hotel Årslev Kro Hotel Dagmar

FYN: - Hotel Vissenbjerg Storkro ZEALAND: - Hotel Frederik d. II - Hotel Vinhuset - Hotel Menstrup Kro

For more information, please visit:

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Photo: Funny Livdottor

Photo: Fotoalle

Scan Magazine | Attraction of the Month | Sweden

Lakritsfestivalen is a fun-packed party in honour of the much-loved, nostalgia-inducing delicacy. Expect tasting sessions, baking workshops, creative liquorice art and much more. Middle: Festival founder, liquorice fanatic, and owner of Choklad & Lakrits, Tuija Räsänen.

Attraction of the Month, Sweden

Liquorice lovers ahoy From an all-liquorice dress to liquorice baking masterclasses and liquorice earrings, Lakritsfestivalen puts the black root delicacy on a pedestal and throws a big party in its honour. But this two-day festival is not for the faint hearted. No, as festival founder and owner of delicatessen company Choklad & Lakrits, Tuija Räsänen, explains: liquorice is rock’n’roll. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Inger Bladh

“I’m off to Denmark to visit a liquorice factory tomorrow,” says Räsänen, the chocolate entrepreneur turned liquorice fanatic whose insatiable hunger for learning has taken her to factories in Italy and festivals in England, all in the name of becoming a liquorice expert. That liquorice was the delicacy that got to complement her already established assortment of chocolate was somewhat of a coincidence, but her customers’ overwhelmingly positive response and many uplifting stories about liquorice-related memories quickly turned her curiosity into passion. “Chocolate is like classical music. It’s the all-rounder,” she explains. “Liquorice is rock’n’roll – everyone’s got an opinion: you either love it or hate it. And I think rock suits me better.”

Räsänen first decided to put on a festival in 2009, and since then it has become clear that Sweden is full of liquorice lovers. The festival more than doubled the number of visitors and exhibitors in its second year, the third being such a success that people had to queue for over an hour just to get in. “Over 5,500 people turned up at a venue with a max capacity of 4,000, so we were outside giving out free liquorice to the people queueing,” Räsänen recalls. Last year, 9,000 liquorice fans joined in. Now in its sixth year and fourth venue, at Annexet by the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm, the festival boasts around 50 exhibitors, restaurant and bar facilities, an artist collaboration, themed tasting ses-

sions, and of course the Sweden’s Favourite Liquorice competition. This year’s festival chef, Elisabeth Johansson, is a lauded chef known as the liquorice queen, due to publish a book celebrating salt liquorice, and visitors can taste her festival dishes or go to one of her tasting sessions. The world’s largest liquorice festival, Lakritsfestivalen is a celebration of the root that, in the founder’s own words, seems to make people nostalgic and happy. Returning to Stockholm in March and conquering Helsinki for the first time in May, it promises to inspire visitors to use liquorice in new, exciting ways. Expect balloons, wizards, lighting displays and much more. You see, liquorice, it seems, is the new black gold.

Lakritsfestivalen 22-23 March, Stockholm Main sponsor: Lakritsfabriken and Lakritskungen

Lakritsi- ja Salmiakkifestivaalit 10 May, Helsinki Main sponsor: Fazer

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Scan Magazine | Attraction of the Month | Denmark

Attraction of the Month, Denmark

Innovative forum for the future of education Taking place for the first time on 25 and 26 March 2014 in Bella Center, Copenhagen, the Danish Learning Festival is an annual exhibition and conference for the education community, seeking to further improve Denmark's world-renowned education system. By Stine Gjevnoe | Photos: Danmarks LĂŚringsfestival

The annual Danish Learning Festival provides the education community with a framework for knowledge sharing, inspiration and networking. With the recent government agreement on an improvement of standards in the Danish state school, the festival also offers its attendees the opportunity to explore the latest updates on the forthcoming changes. The festival functions as both an exhibition area and a conference, and presents new initiatives within the areas of teaching and learning. The conference attendees have access to 45 different lectures in the areas of didactics, political initiatives, national and international research results, and increased IT usage in the classroom, all

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presented by leading professionals. The exhibition offers attendees the opportunity to meet more than 150 leading producers of inspirational teaching materials, in both digital and print, and to attend 65 free presentations. A strong, new gathering point The Danish Learning Festival is arranged by UNI-C, an agency under the Danish Ministry of Education promoting digital development within the area of learning, and the Danish Center for Teaching Materials (CFU), the latter a unique feature of the world-renowned Danish education system and closely linked to the Danish University Colleges. CFU is a service organisation for schools and education in-

stitutions in Denmark, its primary task to advise on teaching and educational materials, whereas UNI-C’s main focus is on the promotion of digital development. The two organisations have teamed up to create a strong, new gathering point for anyone interested in the world of education. The festival opens its doors exactly 200 years after compulsory education for children was written into the Danish constitution. The Danish school has undergone many changes since, and the 200-year anniversary marks a celebration of the past, present and future of the school system. The Danish Learning Festival takes the lead on the future of education, and invites anyone interested to come along on 25 and 26 March 2014 in Bella Center, Copenhagen. For more information and to buy tickets, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Feature | Sweden’s New Beer Capital

Left: Adam Norman, left, and Richard Bull, right, the two head brewers at Beerbliotek. Top right: Darryl de Necker trying one of the new beers ready for sale. Photos: Martin Niklasson. Below: A range of beers from local brewery Oceanbryggeriet.

“You don’t go back to the library to take out the same book, so why would you want to drink the same beer?” asks Darryl de Necker, one of the partners. “We try to be a little bit more like a home brewer. Changing. There are only three beers that we brewed more than once.” Trend that is here to stay

A new brewery is opening each month in Sweden. The beer trend is booming here more than anywhere else in Scandinavia, and the new innovative beer capital is found on the west coast. By Ellinor Thunberg

Gothenburg was the Food Capital of Sweden in 2012. Two years later, Swedish meatballs, seafood and cinnamon buns are competing with local craft beer. Five years ago, there were 30 breweries in Sweden, and ten years before that, only eight – a staggering contrast to the current trend. “We’ve got a monthly average of 1.5 new breweries being set up at the moment, and the number of professional breweries is close to 90,” says Cecilia Giertta, CEO at trade organisation Sveriges bryggerier (Brewers of Sweden). At least eight new breweries opened in Gothenburg last year, but Giertta says there is no fear of negative competition in Sweden. “All breweries welcome the new ones as a way to spread the word.”

Creative, new concepts Small-batch brewery Beerbliotek is one of the latest additions to the Gothenburg beer scene. Four friends from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Sweden launched a contemporary take on brewing by making no less than 40 different beers in a year. The idea is to create a beer library (‘bibliotek’ is Swedish for library – hence the name).

Beerbliotek launched with a bold black ale with chilli, and de Necker still has the receipt from the first beer he ever bought that he had made himself. It has been a crazy journey, he concludes, but he is happy with the response so far: “We create something that people use for enjoyment, and people love it.” Below: The beer trend is booming in Gothenburg right now. Kino, left, is one of many popular pubs and bars in Gothenburg. Photo: Beatrice Tornros

For more information, please visit:

Photo: Krister Engstrom

Say hello to Sweden’s new beer capital

Local brewery Oceanbryggeriet has been around since 2007. Starting off with distribution at fewer than ten restaurants and one Systembolaget branch, things have truly taken off. “Today, our beer is available at 110 restaurants in Gothenburg and 13 Systembolaget branches. Both restaurants and the Swedish beverage monopoly want locally produced beer now,” says Rodrigo Arvidsson, CEO. “The beer trend is here to stay and in many ways will be expressed through local produce,” he adds.

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Scan Magazine | Restaurant of the Month | Sweden

David Berggren was working with super chef Jean-Christophe Novelli in South Africa when he had the idea for what was to become active cooking venture AVEQIA. The business now has three successful venues: in London, Stockholm and Gothenburg.

Restaurant of the Month, Sweden

Connecting through gastronomy What happens on the road may well stay on the road, but what happens in the kitchen goes much further. Combining celebrated chefs and an uncompromising passion for top-quality food with a setting best described as social glue, AVEQIA promises to let its guests be the stars in a concept with a twist that brings knowledge and pedagogy to the forefront – and makes things happen. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: David Bicho

“They had calculated that it’d take me nine minutes to run really fast and catch the last train from Stockholm back to Linköping, so they never let me go more than 11 minutes before the train departed,” David Berggren recalls of his sought-after internship at Grand Hotel back in 1993, when he was still a student at Sweden’s best chef’s school, Troiseme Anne. Back then, Stockholm felt big. Fast-forward to today, and Berggren is the proud CEO of AVEQIA, a so-called active cooking venture offering gastronomic meeting places with star chefs in

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Photo: Michael Björkqvist

Stockholm, Gothenburg and London. What happened? The answer is perhaps somewhere between plenty of determination and hard

work and some good advice from renowned chefs like Werner Vögeli, who became Berggren’s mentor during his first real job at Operakällaren in the Swedish capital. But it was not until years later, after a stint as representation chef at the Department of Foreign Affairs, that the idea for what was to become AVEQIA was born. Berggren had ended up in South Africa, working alongside super chef JeanChristophe Novelli who was as temperamental as his cooking skills were groundbreaking. When Novelli refused to leave the kitchen to present his dishes to some guests, Berggren stepped out in his place – and something intriguing happened. “I grabbed a stool, sat down beside the guests, and started jotting down recipes and answering their questions,” Berggren explains. “They loved it so much they asked if they could come and learn from

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Scan Magazine | Restaurant of the Month | Sweden

me in the kitchen, and off I went shopping for ingredients.” A seed was sown, and Berggren returned to Stockholm. Food that breaks down barriers The name AVEQIA takes inspiration from the Latin language: ‘ave’ meaning welcome; ‘q’ representing quorum, the meeting place for the senate; ‘i’ standing for inspiratio; and ‘a’ for accubo – an invitation: take a seat! “Welcome to meet, feel inspired, and dine together!” Berggren summarises. “What’s so exciting is the relationship that is fostered by the kind of meeting that takes place by the stove. It’s amazing how cooking breaks down barriers and power structures; we focus on the power of gastronomy as a connection creator.” So what came first, the food or the meeting? “If you go to a restaurant academy, you’re there to learn to cook. When you go to AVEQIA, you don’t come for the learning but for the relationships you build,” Berggren insists. “Much like it is not about sports when you play a round of golf with your clients, this is not about food but about business and making things happen. The only difference is that you can come here anytime – you don’t need green cards or good weather.” While business comes before food, the food, naturally, is also absolutely crucial. A topquality venture, AVEQIA insists on using not

just organic ingredients but also state-ofthe-art kitchen equipment from Gaggenau and Siemens. The company’s key words – community, enthusiasm, and personality – are manifested in the award-winning chefs that lead the kitchens, their social skills and ability to make guests feel included, and, obviously, a love for food. The menus are unmistakably Scandinavian, as is the décor.

CEO. “We are connoisseurial in everything we do. Now, that’s not even a word in Swedish, but we’ve made it up because it hits the nail on AVEQIA’s head.” And organisations in Sweden, London and beyond have embraced the spontaneous yet carefully-considered concept with eagerness: the phones seemingly will not stop ringing.

“With the opening of AVEQIA London last year, we created the largest Swedish meeting place in London, and that is evident in everything from the Nordic ingredients to the Carl Malmsten furniture,” says Berggren. “But while the food is predominately Scandinavian, it’s no secret that we’ve got a fondness for Italy, too. Apart from Italian influences on the menu, that should be apparent in our name.”

Welcoming groups between eight and 150, AVEQIA offers an experience that blurs the lines between business and pleasure. Fun and sociability are at the heart of it, and out comes fruitful relationships – and delicious food, of course. Not a bad way to do business, right?

The London venue adds an additionally luxurious touch through a collaboration with Champagne house Krug, a partner particularly sympathetic to AVEQIA’s ethos of undisputed quality and innovation. In the intimate Krug kitchen, up to ten guests can enjoy a private fine dining experience, perfectly matching exquisite food and Champagne. A connoisseurial promise “Our promise is all about the meeting – our recipe is unbridled passion,” says the

AVEQIA London Groups of up to 100

AVEQIA Stockholm Groups of up to 150

AVEQIA Gothenburg Groups of up to 80

For more information, please visit:

Right: In the luxurious, intimate Krug Kitchen at AVEQIA London, up to ten guests can enjoy a private fine dining experience matching exquisite food with Champagne. Photo: Krug.

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Scan Magazine | Restaurant of the Month | Norway

Cornelius Restaurant on the islet of Bjorøy. Photo: Truls J Løtvedt

Restaurant of the Month, Norway

Stories from the sea Every restaurant has a story, but few have a story like Cornelius Restaurant on the islet of Bjorøy, a 20-minute boat trip from Bergen in Norway. As Owner Alf Roald Sætre tells Scan Magazine, it contains all the themes a good story needs: love, death, dramatic fjords, aphrodisiacs – and resounding success. By Linnea Dunne | Photos: Cornelius Restaurant

As a third-generation oyster farmer, Sætre had fallen in love. He had set eyes on an islet owned by an old man, and as he could not afford to buy it, he went after the daughter who would inherit the land. “Unfortunately she married a friend of mine instead, a cool guy with a motorcycle,” he says and explains how he decided to venture out to Seattle to explore ideal fish farming conditions that had so far been ignored. Seventeen years later, drained of his enthusiasm for a project

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that had been a great success, with Sætre becoming co-owner, he returned to his homeland only to discover that his childhood sweetheart was widowed. “So I started feeding her lots of sea urchins, known for their aphrodisiac effect on women. And it worked!” Cornelius Restaurant, named after Sætre’s grandfather, was finally set up in 2003 and has been a real success story. Situated on the five-acre islet of Bjorøy in

a beautiful fjord, it offers not only magnificent views but also dream conditions for an aquaculture enthusiast. Here, nothing has been left to fate: a lot of effort has gone into the architecturally admirable main building with modern, stylish décor throughout, and a small platform has been built to accommodate guests who arrive by helicopter. A meteorological concept Purpose-built tanks of constantly pumping salt water have been installed so that guests can watch scallops and shellfish in action, picking exactly what tickles their fancy that particular moment, and big widescreen projectors in the restaurant allow the diners to watch staff dive for the seafood that will shortly be served – absolutely fresh.

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Scan Magazine | Restaurant of the Month | Norway

Cornelius Restaurant serves fresh fish and seafood caught on the day and according to the season.

“We call it ‘a meteorological concept’,” Sætre explains. “The weather and natural conditions are in charge, and we always serve up the very best fish we can get that day. On a cold and windy day, we make sure that the food is particularly hearty, with hot, warming sauces, and on warmer summer’s days, we keep it light and fresh.” With a wine cellar of over 7,000 bottles of wine, it promises to be an impressive allround gastronomic experience.

aquaculture tradition first-hand. “We’ll tell them about the local fishing culture and show them exactly how the fish is smoked. They get to taste cod or salmon straight from the smoking oven, as well as our special fish chowder,” says Sætre. During two hours of walking and talking, with treats for the eyes as well as the taste buds, the guests get a refreshing break from the fine dining environment of the cruises to soak up the real deal of aquaculture.

Walking and talking A recent development is a collaboration with local cruise companies, offering a package deal that gives cruise guests the opportunity to experience the Norwegian

“I also keep some cages of a type of small hake fish unique to the local area, which, upon the cruises’ arrivals, we cook in front of the visitors and serve with butter and a

special Norwegian flatbread.” And with each food sample comes a story or two from the founder himself. Sætre’s love of and knack for storytelling permeates the entire experience of Bjorøy and Cornelius Restaurant, from the moment visitors step off the boat from Bergen on the mainland and are told the story of how the little island was first acquired, to the high-technological devices that show how the food reaches the plate, every step of the way, and the food itself, which tells a tale not only about Sætre’s passion for fish farming but also about local history and culture. Every restaurant has a story – but why settle for just one?

Facts: How to get here: Boats leave Dreggen Quay in Bergen city centre every evening at 6pm and return at 10.30pm or 11.30 pm. Package deals: Boat return ticket plus meteorological three-course meal: 845 NOK per person; or ‘Holmen Spesial’, including boat return ticket, a talk about seafood, food samples from the tanks and aquariums, and meteorological three-course meal: 995 NOK per person. Sail-away menu: Available upon request, including lobster, crayfish, shrimps, mussels, crab etc. Prices vary.

For more information, please visit:

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Restaurant of the Month, Denmark

Proving that veggies can have fun At Botaniq, Copenhagen’s most trendy vegan restaurant, greens are transformed into refined food experiences. Forget about the unaesthetic veggie mishmash of the ’70s; in its place, you will find an inspirational mix of crunchy RAW foods, Nordic cuisine, velvety desserts and feisty, organic cocktails. By Signe Hansen | Photos: Botaniq

Founded by Bettina Baunbaek in 2011, Botaniq (previously named FireflyGarden) trashes any prejudices that non-veggies might have against a vegan restaurant (apart from the obvious one, that there are no animal products – there are not). The food is stylish, the interior cool and the drinks menu is crammed with biodynamic wine, organic beers and cocktails, as well as super healthy juices and smoothies. To avoid stereotyping, Baun-

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baek and manager Thomas Veber use the term ‘botanic’ when describing their kitchen. “We call it botanic or plantbased because we only use ingredients from the plant kingdom and the word vegetarian, or vegan, might scare some people off. Sometimes we do have guests who are surprised to find that there is no meat on the menu, but having tasted our food they always leave delighted,” Veber says.

Baunbaek, a natural vegan, has been shying away from animal products ever since she was old enough to push the spoon away. In Florida, where she studied Living Raw Foods, she was inspired to start her

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Scan Magazine | Restaurant of the Month | Denmark

own place. “When I settled down back in Copenhagen, I missed my urban vegan lifestyle. As a vegan, you also want to hang out with your friends at a hip restaurant and have delicious drinks all night. That’s why we created Botaniq – here, everyone can join in,” explains Baunbaek. Botaniq’s green living is not just available in the Copenhagen city restaurant but also through its mobile street kitchens and events and catering service. Unsurprisingly, the green food has become especially popular within the health-conscious fashion industry, with brands such as Christian Louboutin and Stella McCartney among Botaniq’s clients. Letting the food do the talking French culinary aesthetics, locally-sourced organic produce, and exotic spices are some of the ingredients that you will be presented with when visiting Botaniq. The kitchen is headed by French executive chef Arnaud Hauchon, who as a dedicated vegan has worked in top vegan and vegetarian restaurants all over the world, including in Reykjavik, Brighton and San Francisco. Attracted by the Nordic food revolution and Botaniq’s high ambitions, Hauchon came to Denmark to work at Botaniq in 2012. With dishes such as liquorice ‘cheesecake’, smørrebrød, and pumpkin-sage gnocchi, Hauchon aims to inspire guests to think in new ways when it comes to vegan food. “My mission is to inspire and show Danes and tourists from around the world that food from the plant kingdom can seduce all your senses. As head chef, I feel that it is my duty to take the lead and present the good green taste. The taste is truly the best argument for a greener lifestyle,” stresses Hauchon. Luckily for those who, like Hauchon, swear to a green lifestyle, all of the day’s meals can be enjoyed at Botaniq. Yes, it can be good for you and fun Though it might sound boring, there is no way around it: the food you will find at Botaniq is very likely to be a good deal more nutritious than your regular meal. On top of the vitamin-rich food, you can enjoy an array of health-boosting drinks such as super healthy kale juices, locally-

produced Kombucha, homemade acai smoothies, birch juice and coconut water. And you will do something good, not just for you, but also for the environment, by eating an all-green, organic dinner. “We do have our own belief system: we strive to use ingredients in their natural state or as close to that as possible, like wholemeal flour, agave syrup or raw cane sugar (if someone wants sugar for their coffee), and all our products are handpicked. We have one supplier for our organic cola, one for our apples and one for our beets; we are probably the restaurant in Denmark with the most suppliers,” jokes Veber and adds: “That also means that we have a lot of invoices, but we do all of that electronically to save paper, and all our menus, business cards and even straws

are made from recycled paper, just like our lamps, tables and chairs are made from natural or recycled wood. We care a lot about sustainability.”

Botaniq is located in Frederiksborgsgade 26,

During 2014 Botaniq will open an online vegan shop. For more information and opening hours, please visit:

a two-minute walk from Nørreport Station. Botaniq has been granted the organic silver label (Det Økologiske Sølvmærke), which documents a use of 60-90 per cent of organic produce.

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Scan Magazine | Business | Key Note

Scan Business Key Note 86 | Features 88 | Conferences of the Month 97 | Business Calendar 101




“Alright, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up” As a father of four daughters, I am very familiar with the selfie*. Like most young people, my children take endless photographs of themselves on their phones. They post the best of these pictures on Facebook so that the world can ‘like’ their undoubted beauty, and, of course, their father takes 50 per cent of the credit for their good looks. The ‘selfie’ represents the face they want the world to see; however, it is a self-conscious pose lasting a split second in time, and the captured images that result bear little resemblance to the faces I see as they navigate their daily lives. By Paul Blackhurst, client director, Mannaz

This gets me thinking about a conversation I had with a client recently about the difference between assessment and development and the risks of muddling the two. Most of Mannaz’s work is in leadership development, and, in that context, it is essential that people are able to be themselves and open to real feedback, which reveals both the beauty and the beast in the person. It is not always comfortable to face up to the less appealing parts of our behaviour or beliefs, but it is incredibly healthy and useful. Creating the environment of trust, honesty and openness amongst a group of ambitious senior managers is a real art, and facilitators who can achieve such an environment bring a great service to their participants. In this environment, it is not the selfie that gets the feedback but the authentic human being without the make-up, the carefully-chosen angles, and the artfullyfashioned expression.

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The selfie is more appropriate in an assessment centre where the people taking part need to show their very best side in order to demonstrate that they are ready for bigger, and better, things. They logically select their behaviours and choose which weaknesses and fears to reveal or to hide. The real competence is to be able to manage both aspects of who we are. We have a public face that we can manage and which our colleagues and friends deserve to see in order for them to give their best. In private, we need to be able to look in the mirror and honestly assess the face that looks back at us. As consultants, we need to be very clear with our clients that assessment and development are not the same thing. It is tempting to try to mix the two, and to assess people whilst they are under the impression that they are in a development programme. But this is unfair, unethical and ineffective.

*Selfie – Oxford Dictionary’s word of the year in 2013: a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam, and uploaded to a social media website.

By Paul Blackhurst, client director at Mannaz

For more information, please visit: or email

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Calling all Finnish freelance writers! Scan Magazine is currently looking for experienced writers fluent in Finnish and with excellent written English to write for us on a freelance basis. Writing skills and a positive, professional manner are crucial. To apply, please email your CV and an English writing sample to Linnea Dunne at



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Scan Magazine | Business | Allianz

Moving in locally to insure globally Breaking new ground for the Allianz Group, Allianz Global Corporate and Specialty (AGCS) set up office in the Nordic region in 2008. Since then, the world-spanning conglomerate has received a warm welcome by multinational Nordic corporations appreciative of its AA Standard & Poor rating and cross-border insurance solutions. AGCS Nordic Region’s ambition is to make its core products – liability, property, financial lines, cargo and engineering insurance – widely available to the market and then to expand geographically, aiming to establish itself as the benchmark for industrial insurance. By Signe Hansen | Press Photos

Founded in 1890, German insurance group Allianz is today active in virtually every sector and corner of the insurance market. Until Allianz AGCS Nordic Region

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was established in 2008, the Nordic region was, however, one of the last pockets in Europe in which the group was not represented. The timing of the office’s opening,

Stig Jensen, CEO of the Nordic Region & CEE.

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Scan Magazine | Business | Allianz

Combining local know-how with global reach and in-depth industry expertise, Allianz offers its clients the right solutions for their business challenges.

Nordic region, because all the domestic players are highly developed in each market. But they lack what we are adding to the market: the global market and the high ratings. So we would never, well you should never say never, but we would not compete with a domestic player on purely national risk,” stresses Jensen and adds: “Where Allianz can add value in the Nordic market is when a company has international or global exposure; this is where we have a competitive advantage.” With offices in more than 70 countries and network partners across the globe, Allianz services clients in more than 150 countries. This means that AGCS Nordic Region can follow their clients’ risk across borders and countries and set up local insurance policies in each of the markets in which the company is represented. “In short, you could say that Allianz adds value where you have high exposure and need complex insurance solutions,” Jensen sums up. Local knowledge

at the height of the financial crisis, seemed unfortunate, but it proved to be everything but. Stig Jensen, AGCS’s chief executive of the Nordic Region and Central and Eastern Europe, explains: “It actually turned out to be very positive because during the financial crisis AGCS not only kept its AA rating from Standard & Poor’s but was also upgraded to A+ by A.M. Best. A lot of the big corporations in Sweden, Denmark and Finland asked their internal risk managers to look for a highly rated company, and then everybody was looking at Allianz.” With sales representatives in Norway, Finland, and a new branch office in Sweden and 30 people at AGCS’s Nordic Region’s

Copenhagen headquarters, the insurer has continued to build on its initial success. But there are, says Jensen, specific challenges within the Nordic market, which an insurer needs to understand to be successful. Global reach When it became official that Allianz would move into the Nordic region, discussions started around whether price competition would put pressure on the premium in the already highly competitive and cost efficient market. But it was not Allianz’s intention to use its size and name to steal market shares from domestic competitors. “We definitely have competitors; the competition is actually very fierce in the

Global coverage, however, is not enough to win over the Nordic market. Knowing and recognising the differences within the Nordic market and the local legislations is essential, stresses Jensen. “A lot of people have a tendency to look at the Nordic countries as one risk area, but doing business in the Nordic region is actually very different depending on where you are; we have different cultures and different ways of doing business. If I, as a Dane, would go into Sweden and do business as I do in Denmark, I would definitely fail and it would be the same in Norway. Denmark is an old seafaring nation – we are very internationally-minded and we like to make quick decisions; in Sweden you have this consensus mentality, which means that you have a lot of discussions before you enter into anything.” One of the advantages that Allianz AGCS has on the Nordic market specifically is that it is the only Allianz entity represented here. This means that the office does not have any internal conflicts about segments and thresholds, lending it greater flexibility. An annual turnover of 500 mil-

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Scan Magazine | Business | Allianz

Europe, with a particular focus on Russia, Turkey, Poland and Slovenia. But although Jensen sees great growth opportunities there, as well as in the Nordic market, the main goal is not, he stresses, market share but rather long-term relationships with clients and through them profit for the shareholders. “We are hungry for growth, but not greedy; we want to create organic, controlled growth and profit to shareholders. That is what we have done since 2008, and I would like to continue to do that. Already within these five-six years, we have become a market leader in certain sectors, such as liability for complex pharmaceutical risks; we have underwritten a lot of insurance policies in very complex Danish and Swedish companies. But we are not finished yet – there is still a lot of business left in the Nordic region.”

Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE worldwide

lion DKK (70 million Euros) is normally the minimum threshold for AGCS to underwrite a business, but thanks to that flexibility the insurer can underwrite smaller businesses with the same needs in the Nordic region. Complex risks, complex solutions As more Nordic companies grow multinational and new risks arise, complex, cross-border insurance solutions become increasingly essential. “Definitely, in our segment (industrial and corporate risk solutions) no two companies are the same, so all our products, all our insurance solutions, are tailor-made for each client. This means that you cannot just push a button and produce a policy – you really have to go into in-depth analysis of the company, work very closely with global brokers and then come up with an insurance solution that fits exactly this corporate,” explains Jensen. Last year, many Danish and Swedish companies were hit by the flooding in Bangkok, to where they had outsourced their production. Increasingly, as the internationalisation increases so does com-

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panies’ risk of being hit by natural catastrophes but also the dangers of misunderstanding local legislations. Jensen stresses: “You really need to have a global player, a global insurance company, that can service you locally in the territory you are in. We like to say that we do a global insurance programme but think locally, which means that you have to adapt to all local legislations, insurance stamps, tax duties and so on, to make sure that you fulfil all the legislative requirements of the local market; you will have to make sure that you put this into a global insurance programme.”

• Writes B5.3 billion globally (gross premiums 2012) • Provides insurance for more than half of the Fortune Global 500 companies • Extensive international experience – leading over 1,700 International Insurance Programs, with more than 7,000 corporate client policies • Combining a network of Allianz-owned offices in more than 70 countries with network partners across the globe, we can service clients in more than 150 countries worldwide • Market-leading capacity – to handle the largest risks • Diversified risk portfolio – by geography and by product – offering stability and long-term consistency

Natural catastrophes are not the only new risk facing Nordic companies: cyber attacks have also become a potent threat. In order to help its clients analyse and map these risks, Allianz has collected information across different lines of business and come up with the Cyber Protect policy, which offers comprehensive protection against online threats. Hungry, not greedy As of 2010, the AGCS Nordic Region assumed regional responsibility for Eastern

• Employs over 3,500 employees worldwide • Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE’s estimated solvency ratio (as of December 2012) was 293% • Works with Allianz specialist companies such as Euler Hermes and Allianz Assistance to develop tailor-made risk management solutions for clients’ specific needs

For more information, please visit:

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Allianz Cyber Protect Your No. 1 choice when all else fails.

Digital business & data protection insurance. Cyber attacks are on the rise and are becoming highly sophisticated. Securing your network with firewalls, filters, malware prevention software, etc. are all vital parts of a well designed security policy. However, the threat from cyber criminals continues to grow and the potential business impact is enormous. Allianz Cyber Protect is our answer to your evolved IT risks. It is a comprehensive cover that ranges from protection which can be issued at short notice, to a completely tailor-made solution based on your individual requirements.

Allianz Cyber Protect offers a broad range of coverage. Third-party liability such as: • Loss of personal or corporate data including claims from e-payment service providers • Network breaches and media liability • Regulatory proceedings

Please call us for more information: Nordic head office, Copenhagen: + 45 32 70 00 00 Norway office, Oslo: +47 2312 0558 Sweden office, Stockholm: +46 8463 1017 Finland office, Helsinki: +358 92516 6432

First -party liability such as: • Business interruption • Notification costs • Incorrect transfer of funds due to a cyber attack And of course, we provide a full range of IT and communication services in case of a claim. Are you interested?

The material contained in this publication is designed to provide general information only. Please be aware that information relating to policy coverage, terms and conditions is provided for guidance purposes only and is not exhaustive and does not form an offer of coverage. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, this information is provided without any representation or warranty of any kind about its accuracy.

With you from A - Z

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Scan Magazine | Business | Energi Danmark A/S

Stay on top of your company’s energy consumption, today, tomorrow and next year Offering tailor-made energy portfolio solutions and sustainable energy, and connecting an extensive network of independent energy suppliers with the energy exchanges, Energi Danmark A/S has become a market leader within the electricity trade in Denmark. With subsidiaries in Sweden, Norway and Finland, the company offers an unmatched ‘one-stop shop’ for companies with divisions in more than one Scandinavian country. By Signe Hansen | Photos: Energi Danmark A/S

In 1993, Energi Danmark A/S (then DISAM A/S) was founded by six regional energy suppliers. Combined with a staff of professional advisers and analysts, the owners’ experience and resources securely stirred the company towards its goal of becoming the preferred partner of private and public enterprises wishing to obtain

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financial benefits from the deregulated energy markets. Today, Energi Danmark A/S provides power to almost 45 per cent of the Danish market. The success of the company builds on its well-documented track record of optimising value while reducing risk for small

CEO Jørgen Holm Westergaard

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Scan Magazine | Business | Energi Danmark A/S

as well as major international clients. CEO Jørgen Holm Westergaard explains: “When we founded the company, we started out with small- and medium-size clients. For them we created an extensive internet platform through which they could trade energy and forecast their short- or long-term energy usage. We have continued to develop that concept, and today we can offer the biggest panNordic corporations the same service.”In 2007, Energi Danmark A/S opened its first subsidiary in Sweden, and eventually subsidiaries in Norway and Finland followed. The growth is reflected in the company’s annual turnover, which in 2013 reached an impressive 10 billion DKK. Trust and security “We sell power, but what we provide for our clients is trust and security,” stresses Holm Westergaard when asked what the key to his company’s great success and continued expansion is. (A newly established subsidiary in Germany will commence deliveries in 2014.) He continues: “Yes, we sell electricity, but behind our great market share and many major clients is the fact that we also sell security and risk management through what we call our ‘One Stop Shop Nordic Solution’. This model enables us to service a Swedish client in one location but also provide the exact same service in Finland and Norway from the same IT-platform. This allows our clients to minimise ad-

ministrative tasks, while giving them a fantastic opportunity of forecasting and optimising their energy consumption and minimising their risks in all countries at the same time.” Through the subsidiary Energi Danmark Security A/S, all larger physical electricity clients of the Energi Danmark Group are also offered portfolio management as well as risk management, fundamental and technical analysis; consultancy, reporting and tailor-made portfolio agreements. A green profile Having always offered its clients the choice of purchasing their electricity from sustainable energy sources such as hydro power and wind power, four years ago, Energi Danmark set up its own wind turbine scheme. This scheme sees Energi Danmark construct new wind turbines specifically for its clients. “Basically, we construct new wind turbines so that our clients can buy their own wind turbine and source their energy from it,” explains Holm Westergaard, adding: “We started out with this offer to be able to provide our clients with a good dynamic in the mix of products. But it also means that those of our clients who so wish can create a positive environmental profile to highlight themselves on their respective markets.” Energi Danmark also helps companies become CO2 neutral by trading CO2 quotes.

Energi Danmark A/S services corporate and public clients all over Scandinavia from enterprises using just below 1 million kilowatt hours a year to public bodies with an annual usage of up to 2 terrawatt hours. The Energi Danmark Group consists of: - Energi Danmark A/S, situated in Aarhus, Denmark - Energi Danmark Vind A/S, situated in Aarhus, Denmark - Energi Försäljning Sverige AB, situated in Malmö and Stockholm, Sweden - Energia Myynti Suomi Oy, situated in Vantaa, Finland - Energi Salg Norge AS, situated in Oslo, Norway - Energi Danmark Securities, situated in Copenhagen, Denmark - Energie Vertrieb Deutschland EVD GmbH, situated in Hamburg, Germany The Energi Danmark Group’s services and activities include: physical and financial electricity trading in all of Europe’s energy markets, CO2 trading, trading with gas and wind energy, currency hedging, portfolio management, portfolio contracts and associated trading in derivative financial instruments.

For more information, pleae visit:

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In founding Welltec in 1994, Jørgen Hallundbæk got the opportunity to bring to life his idea of the Well Tractor, a robotic device for conveying tools and performing well interventions.

Leading the way in well solutions Welltec is a leading provider of robotic, electric line (e-line) tools for every stage of the production of oil and gas wells – from well completion to well intervention and maintenance. During its 20 years of operations, the company has stayed true to its vision of transforming the oil and gas industry by challenging existing practices and offering innovative technology that is both safe and sustainable. By Stephanie Lovell | Photos: Welltec

Back in 1994, fresh from the Technical University of Denmark, Jørgen Hallundbæk founded Welltec, which allowed him to bring to life his design of a robotic device for conveying tools and performing well interventions. He was convinced that this tool, named the Well Tractor, would be extremely valuable for an industry that invested huge amounts of money and resources in well production. Thanks to his relentless drive and hard work to educate oil and gas companies about what was then novel technology, the Well Tractor remains Welltec’s signature product to this day – the flagship of an established range of leading oilfield solutions.

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Always a step ahead “Our vision is to transform the upstream oil and gas industry such that it becomes safer and more sustainable while achieving higher recovery,” explains Brian Sidle, vice president of Corporate Marketing at Welltec. “Simply put, this means the adoption of innovative technology to achieve higher production and total recovery while using fewer resources.” In the almost 20 years since it was founded, Welltec’s long list of records and achievements has continued to grow. More often than not, it is the first brand in the field to come up with any solutions

Brian Sidle

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needed. “We are continuously working to meet our customers’ needs and quite often this entails developing solutions that currently don’t exist,” says Sidle. “I like to think that we have a certain reputation as the go-to guys. If someone else can’t do something, we are usually challenged to make it work.”

“Compared to the conventional alternatives in the marketplace, we inherently provide a greener, more sustainable approach,” says Sidle. “While remaining agile and nimble, we provide a mobilisation package that has a reduced carbon footprint and puts less people at the well site.”

As well as conceiving pioneering solutions, Welltec is constantly driving change within the industry as whole. At the moment, the company is particularly concerned with pushing for increased maintenance checks on wells. “Through planned, scheduled interventions on producing wells, they can be continually optimised,” says Sidle. “This in turn will extend the life of the well and the reservoir, boosting overall recovery for the field and simultaneously the value of the asset.”

The safety of personnel on-site is a key consideration in all services and technology offered by Welltec. The recently developed Well Cutter, an e-line tool that can cut through tubulars without using explosives, has already gained significant recognition in the industry, receiving the ICoTA Woodlands 2013 Technology Award and the OTC 2013 Spotlight on New Technology Award. Not only does this tool leave behind a polished surface after cutting, but it also contributes to an overall safer operating environment.

To illustrate his point, Sidle likes to compare well production to a jet engine. Much like a jet engine, a producing well is an expensive, complicated machine with high amounts of fluid flow, moving parts and forces acting on it. For a jet engine to remain in peak condition and perform to a high standard, you must implement regular maintenance. Ensuring safety and sustainability Apart from benefitting from cutting-edge technology, clients have the added bonus of simultaneously reducing their carbon footprint. One of Welltec’s core competencies is providing solutions that have minimal impact on the surrounding environment.

Within its field, Welltec has managed to build up the largest portfolio in terms of size, variety, and number of tools. Now with offices in 26 countries across the world, the company operates in all major oil and gas fields. Constantly striving to exceed client expectations, Welltec has experienced rapid growth over the past five years, thanks primarily to its value proposition and its ability to respond rapidly to the needs of clients and developments in the industry. With its clear vision, solid reputation and even more innovative products in the pipeline, Welltec can expect to enjoy continued growth and success.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Business | Stomp Up Front

Stomp Up Front has worked with team building in small groups as well as at major events with 2,000 participants.

Building team spirit – with stomp It is more than just a good beat. It is a mental energy boost. The Danish Stomp Up Front takes the discipline of stomp to a higher level. By Sanne Wass | Photos: Stomp Up Front

Drumming, shaking, and moving. The popular percussion discipline ‘stomp’ is about performing with your body and everyday objects. But it is more than just entertainment. “In my interpretation, stomp is about creating energy between people and building motivation and team spirit,” says Peter Glahn. Mix the energy of a child with a high level of professionalism and a musician at heart, and you get Peter Glahn, the man behind Stomp Up Front. He and his team create what they call a ‘rhythmic and energy-packed experience’ for both small and large groups at conferences, corporate events, and training courses. It takes just half an hour with metal pails, sticks, and bottles. The symptoms are teamwork and enjoyment. “When I step

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into a room I often meet people who find the stomp a little wacky. But within a short space of time, the atmosphere changes totally, and mostly it’s the sceptics who afterwards turn to me with ‘that was incredible’,” Glahn smiles. The last seven years, Stomp Up Front has worked with more than 400 companies and groups in Denmark and abroad, adding up to 30,000 people. Positive psychology The foundation is the stomp, but in reality it is about psychology. All the instructors are professionally trained, and Glahn himself is a teacher with a master’s in Educational Psychology and a background as a drummer. He explains how the stomp can be used strategically by emphasising certain points and bringing the participants’ mental state to new places. “With the stomp, I ask them to step out of their comfort zone, and I make them consider how they handle the challenge. Afterwards, most people leave the room feeling ‘I did it, and I did it well’. And they have seen the amazing results the group can

create together. This is a very effective tool in any company.” The principles behind the stomp have proved successful. Thus, Glahn increasingly works with companies over longer periods. He recently founded the consultancy Inmovement, which works with strategy implementation and development, based on the same philosophy as the stomp: experiential learning and positive psychology. “To create serious and energising results, it takes emotional involvement from the people who make things happen. Working with stomp and experiential learning helps people move faster through a process and reach goals more efficiently,” Glahn ends.

Peter Glahn

For more information, please visit:

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Conference of the Month, Finland

Rejuvenate in nature at Haltia How about organising a conference or a meeting in the middle of pristine nature? The new Haltia Nature Centre by Nuuksio National Park in the capital region of Finland may be just the place. Moreover, Haltia is the perfect destination for a relaxing evening after a business meeting in bustling Helsinki or to arrange a conference addon side event.

your hiking gear: it is all there for you to hire. But, as Niskanen assures, some of the paths are accessible even in high heels! At Haltia, you can be sure to experience Finnish nature at its best.

By Mia Halonen | Photos: Metsähallitus

Just jump on a bus or train in Helsinki city centre, and in 45 minutes you will be in another world. By a pristine lake, organically nested in the middle of tall evergreen trees, is an amazing wooden building. That the architect, Rainer Mahlamäki, was inspired by the Finnish folk anthem Kalevala is plain to see. The stunning architecture provides an excellent framework for a conference or a meeting. The auditorium hosts 200 people and, just like the smaller meeting rooms, it has breathtaking views across Lake Pitkäjärvi. The Haltia Restaurant boasts organic and locally-sourced delicacies, which, in the summer, can be enjoyed on the terrace while admiring the sunset. During meeting breaks or after a conference, one can delight in the multifaceted

nature of the Finnish National Parks. The exhibitions on offer at the venue showcase the forests, rugged fells, glittering archipelago, and thousands of lakes, which change completely depending on the season. In Haltia, you can experience summer in winter, and winter in summer. Haltia’s partners put on a range of different outdoor activities in Nuuksio National Park, literally just a stone’s throw from the doorstep of Haltia. Maybe go on a hike, or try out canoeing or some bird watching? Or how about a sledge ride pulled by huskies or some meditation in the forest? “Clean air, pure water and silence – in today’s hectic world those are rarities. It’s a wonderful experience to make a simple cup of coffee by the campfire after a brisk walk,” says service manager Petra Niskanen. And do not worry if you did not bring

Photo: Voitto Niemelä

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Conference of the Month | Sweden

Covering 24,000 square metres and situated within easy reach from Oslo, Stockholm and Gothenburg, Karlstad Congress Culture Centre is thriving during what has been dubbed a conferencing boom.

Conference of the Month, Sweden

Leading the way for modern meetings Karlstad is known for its close proximity to breathtaking nature and friendly people, and now it is also the home of one of the biggest and most modern meeting centres in Scandinavia, making it the ultimate place for any event, conference or congress. By Astrid Eriksson | Photos: Karlstad CCC

Work congresses and conferences generally tend not to bring too much excitement. Most people picture long meetings, uncomfortable chairs and, if you are lucky, some small pub where you can get served a flat beer before going to bed and start all over the morning after. Well, those days are over. There has been a recent boom in meeting centres and venues. Employers are putting extra effort into rewarding their em-

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ployees with a nice experience at the end of a working year, or simply just because they are worth it. One of the leaders of this boom is Karlstad Congress Culture Centre (Karlstad CCC). Its location offers great transport links and easy access to cities like Oslo, Stockholm and Gothenburg, making it perfect for head office gatherings or corporate jamborees. The giant centre covers 24,000 square metres, and at full capacity it can host

events for 4,500 people. Inside the centre is an exhibition space of 1,800 square metres and 18 meeting halls, the largest being the main congress hall with room for 1,604 seated guests. Boasting such numbers, Karlstad CCC is one of the biggest meeting centres in Scandinavia and most

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Scan Magazine | Conference of the Month | Sweden

Jonas Jacobsson, sales and marketing manager at Visit Karlstad AB. “Karlstad CCC is cooperating with approximately 60 local businesses to make sure that all that is needed will be provided.” These businesses vary from taxi companies to restaurants and bars, even department stores. The bigger events at Karlstad CCC engage the whole town. Karlstad CCC is also in almost constant contact with the airports, train companies and other larger transportation players. “A late flight has a tendency to make for a bad start of a conference,” Jacobsson explains. “This is why we always make sure to be on top of any eventuality and make the transitions as smooth as possible for everyone involved.”

Karlstad CCC’s restaurant is one of only 40 restaurants in Sweden that have been entrusted with the official Nordic Ecolabel Licence.

certainly a popular choice for people looking to host an event of any kind. Karlstad CCC opened in January 2011, and already people are returning for their annual conferences and happenings. For such a young venue, this is fairly unusual, but taking a closer look at Karlstad CCC, it is hardly surprising. Pulling all the strings “One of our main focuses is the reception and the welcoming of our guests,” says

Karlstad CCC is not only a centre of firstclass service and care. It is also a visual apple of the nature lover’s eye. Situated on the riverbank at Klarälven, it makes for a perfect place to enjoy barbecues, a quick evening dip, or simply a quiet stroll before, after, or in-between conference activities. And if you happen to be there during spells of bad weather, there is a marvellous restaurant inside offering delicious, eco-conscious meals made of fresh, locally-sourced, organic ingredients as well as knowledgeable staff, tending to you at all times. In fact, Karlstad CCC’s restaurant is one of the 40 restaurants in Sweden that have the official Nordic Ecolabel Licence to their name. More ecofriendly than that is hard to find! Karlstad CCC really has it all when it comes to hosting large gatherings, happenings, conferences or congresses. Already, a wide range of different, very suc-

cessful events have been held at the three-year young venue. Political congresses, medical conferences, and annual general meetings for large businesses – you name it, and Karlstad CCC can host it. Modern, clean and bright The spaces inside the venue are modern and bright, making it easy for guests to decorate the rooms with company logos, colours, or themes for conferences. The four-storey tall building leaves no one unimpressed, be it by the grand conference rooms, the large open spaces, the restaurant, the bar or the café. Everything here is clean, bright and at your service. In a festive mood? The restaurant accommodates 1,400 people; there is room for performances, speeches, a disco, DJs, and whatever else you may need to get into the party groove. To top it off, there are 1,500 hotel rooms and 3,000 beds in town. 1,000 of these hotel rooms are within comfortable walking distance of Karlstad CCC – convenient to say the least. Karlstad CCC is a place for you and your chosen guests to enjoy yourselves, the scenery, the service and each other. The venue is among the very best of meeting centres in Scandinavia, ensuring that once you have experienced it, it will be unthinkable for you to put on a conference anywhere else.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Conference of the Month | Denmark

The hotel and conference centre was in the past a family farm; perhaps the owner’s hands-on approach stems from an urge to make visitors feel at home in what is, indeed, his home.

Conference of the Month, Denmark

The conference hotel that lets you be the chef Benniksgaard Hotel provides all the essentials for long and short business meetings. You can also play a round of golf, shoot clay targets or even help out in the kitchen. By Thomas Bech Hansen | Photos: Benniksgaard Hotel & Conference

‘More than just a meeting’ – this is how Benniksgaard Hotel introduces its conference offerings on its website. Renate Asmussen, head of marketing and reception, is keen to emphasise the promise as more than a catchy strapline. “We really do everything to make our guests feel that they get that little bit extra. We are attentive to individual wishes, and make sure we are always available. Guests do not need to run to us – we make sure we are there for them.”

discussing that all-important business strategy. It is a chance to shake up the usual set-up of the business meeting.

More than just a restaurant, the Benniksgaard kitchen invites conference guests to help the in-house chef prepare meals and taste wines.

Benniksgaard Hotel covers all the essentials but makes a point of avoiding the anonymous, uninspiring business setting. “All our rooms are different,” says Asmussen. “We aim to surprise those who think all meeting rooms look alike. Part of the ambience comes from the hotel’s past as a family farm. The owner, Mads Friis, grew up on the farm and spent some time as a farmer before refurbishing the place into a hotel. “He is always around and very hands-on. Perhaps because of his personal association with the place, he does that little bit extra to make guests feel at home in what, in a way, is his own home.”

Help the chef Apart from outdoor options, one of the most popular diversions is the so-called ‘Mads in the kitchen’. Here, groups of up to 14 people are invited to help the hotel’s chef prepare meals, with a bit of wine tasting included. “Our business visitors really appreciate these chances to loosen up, have a bit of fun and get to know each other in different ways,” says Asmussen.

Near fjord and forest With Flensburg Fjord and the Gendarm Path on its doorstep, Benniksgaard Hotel has the surroundings to make meetings more than just meetings. For outdoor activities, walks, rounds of golf and clay target shooting offer different platforms for

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The meeting rooms can accommodate up to 50 people. All rooms include flipchart, blackout facilities, whiteboard, overhead and fixed-line and wireless internet, free of charge. One of the rooms also has a smartboard installed.

While at a conference at Benniksgaard, choose from a wide range of outdoor activities, such as clay target shooting or golf.

For more information, please visit:

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Scan Magazine | Business | Scandinavian Business Calendar

Scandinavian Business Calendar – Highlights of Scandinavian business events

Squeezed in between jurisdictions? Even in regard to the most straightforward questions, things can get complicated when more than one jurisdiction is involved. At this talk and networking event, organised by the Swedish Chamber of Commerce, SEB’s Helena Whitmore and North Star Law’s Benedikte Malling Bech guide you through all the problems and mismatches that can potentially pop up when trying to comply with

more than one jurisdiction. Date: 26 February

Nordic Thursday Drinks at MASH Join the Norwegian, Danish and Finnish Chambers of Commerce at their monthly Nordic Networking Drinks event, this time at MASH in Soho. And make sure to get there early – the first 50 people get a free welcome drink! Registration from 6 pm. Date: 27 February

Lunch o’clock with the Swedish Chamber The boutique 4-star London hotel, Radisson Blu Edwardian Mercer, is the venue for this networking luncheon for members of the Swedish Chamber of Commerce. Get out of the office, exchange ideas, and make new friends. Date: 28 February

THØR: T HØR: LÖVES LÖVES CRISPBREAD C RISP PBREAD HE H E JJUST US T D DÖESN’T ÖESN LIKE L IKE T TØ Ø SH SHØW Ø W IT. Crispbread: o Crispbread: one ne o off o over ver 6 600 00 d delicious elicious Swedish, Danish S wedish, D anish aand nd Norwegian Norwegian foods foods UK our online aavailable vailable aacross cross tthe he U K ffrom rom o ur o nline sshop hop and and in in our our London London store. store. SCANDIKITCHEN.CO.UK SCANDIKITCHEN.CO.UK GOOD G OOD FOOD FOOD W WITH ITH L LOVE OVE F FROM ROM S SCANDINAVIA CANDINAVIA


Do you have nowability? Nowability concerns the capacity to transform the present’s opportunities into long-term value, according to Kerem Yazgan, partner of Prime Group and CEO of United Minds. In other words, it is all about now. Find out more at this Swedish Chamber of Commerce event with a key note speech, a panel discussion and, of course, great networking opportunities, all at the Grange Holborn Hotel. Date: 13 February

Is there a bubble in the stock market? Most people have heard about a bubble in the property market, but in the stock market? This presentation and Champagne reception arranged by the Swedish Chamber of Commerce and Nordea Bank Luxembourg aims to answer that question. Nordea’s equity strategist, Martin Guri, talks on the current risks in the global stock markets. Date: 5 March

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Scan Magazine | Humour | Weirdest Competitions in Scandinavia

Ice-pole sitting in Vilhelmina. Photos: Visit Vilhelmina

All in good sport A man in a voluminous ski jacket glances left, noting a grimace on his hunched-over neighbour, furiously rubbing his gloved hands together. He smiles to himself, peeling back one of many layers of clothing, peeking discretely at his watch. The woollenhatted adversary to his right gave up hours ago. Now, just three contestants remain.

Now in its 19th year, the event has seen other countries follow suit, with their national champions contributing to the field of competitors at this the original chamBelow: The Wife Carrying World Championships. Photos: Pekka Honkakoski

By Emmie Collinge

Last year, a new world record was set as all six contestants stayed seated at -28°C. Around the ice blocks, Wilhemlina Winter Weekend is in full swing, with dozens of market stalls, snowboarding events, icefishing, concerts and an exquisitelycarved ice church where couples can get married on offer.

It might not seem like the most fun, or comfortable, sport, but for the inhabitants of Vilhelmina, Sweden, this ice-pole competition is a highlight of the annual Winter Weekend. The premise is simple: who can sit on a block of ice the longest? The competition begins with six contestants clambering onto two-metre high ice blocks, endeavouring to remain there the longest for the prize money of around £2,000.

Man steals woman

It is mid-February, and the average temperature hovers around -10°C. In such harsh conditions, what would make anyone perch on an ice block for 48 hours? Only the three frozen men, gritting their teeth against the cold, can answer this, but now they concentrate.

Surprisingly, sitting on an ice pole is not the only eyebrow raising sport in Scandinavia. Just as popular and equally as competitive is the Wife Carrying World Championships in Sonkajärvi, Finland, 400 kilometres north of Helsinki. Perhaps the most talked-about of Scandinavia’s fringe sports, it sees competitors race 253.5 me-

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tres across varied terrain with three obstacles: two to climb over and a onemetre deep pool to wade through.

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Scan Magazine | Humour | Weirdest Competitions in Scandinavia

can. I think this is fantastic. The race itself is always amusing and surprising.” If brute force and power are not your strengths, then you could be better suited to Norway’s Yukigassen. Originating in Japan, Yukigassen, literally translated as snow battle, is a team-based game requiring skill, strategy and precision. Nimble-footed players shelter behind blocks, putting their agility to the test as they pelt the opposing team with snowballs. To win, competitors have to hit all of the other team or steal their flag; it might sound simple, but it is far more advanced than your typical snowball fight. Shuck that oyster

Yukigassen. Photos: by Knut Ramleth

pionships. If the concept of being thrown over your husband’s shoulder baffles you, event photographer and organiser Pekka Honkakoski explains its appeal: “Lots of people like the traditional story: ‘man steals woman’. Others just find it entertaining. That is our aim.” His eyes light up as he continues: “But there is a deeper meaning about carrying: whether it’s in the race or in life, the man is carrying the woman but she is helping as much as she

For those with dexterity and a love for all things, well, oyster, there is the Danish Oyster Cup and World Oyster Cup. The latter is a global tour that was in Copenhagen last year and travels to Montreal in 2014, returning to Scandinavia in 2015.

the competitors mostly comprise top chefs from seafood restaurants who attempt to open 30 oysters in the tidiest and quickest manner possible. The Trophy Week surrounding the competition has much to offer, with trips out to the fjords for visitors to catch their own oysters as a highlight. These events demonstrate relentless enthusiasm from their organisers and participants, comparable to the devotion shown by Olympic athletes. United by strict rules, the contests are far more than just entertainment, binding local communities and attracting hordes of spectators. The 3,000-strong crowd gathered around the remaining three contestants in Vilhelmina is testament to this. The determined trio grit their teeth, preparing for the ensuing 16 hours of darkness. They might be almost frozen, but they have their Scandinavian pride. After all, “if you’re not first, you’re last.” Below: Danish & World Oyster Cup

Taking place during October’s Oyster Trophy Week, this event demands fast, precise oyster shucking and has centuries of history behind it. “The oyster season was a pivotal occasion for the Danish monarchy as the king was granted the very first oysters of the season from Limfjorden,” explains David Mouritzen, the driving force behind Oyster Trophy Week. “We want to reawaken the passion for oysters.” Today,

Snowball battle 26–30 March 2014, Vardø, Norway Entry limit: 48 teams Closing date for entries: 20 March

Ice-pole sitting 6–9 February, Vilhelmina, Sweden

Danish Oyster Cup Part of Oyster Trophy Week every October, Copenhagen, Denmark

Wife Carrying World Championships 4-5 July 2014, Sonkajärvi, Finland

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Page 104

Scan Magazine | Humour | Columns


By Mette Lisby

Who is not excited about the Winter Olympics? First of all: why would anybody do sports in sub-zero temperatures? It seems unnatural. People in sub-zero temperatures are too busy trying to survive to come up with games. The only discipline that seems logical is ‘igloo building’. Summer Olympics, on the other hand, have disciplines that seem relatively normal or at least within reason: ball playing in a number of variations, running, swimming, throwing stuff – all perfectly good disciplines, activities you might actually do, enjoying the great outdoors, enchanted by the sunlight. Winter Olympics disciplines seem constructed and made up: Curling – a sport where the objective is for two men or women to broom in front of a stone being pushed down a frozen pond to a painted circle. Biathlon – cross-country skiing mixed with shooting. Yes! You ski and stop every

five minutes to shoot at something. I mean, maybe in Sarah Palin’s Alaska, but nowhere else would that be considered an even moderately reasonable activity. Luge – you find an icy stretch of mountain, then don your spikes and run as fast as you can for 40 yards, then throw yourself on a piece of plastic wearing a super tight and super slippery outfit in order to maintain a speed of 100 miles an hour, in case you fall off your piece of plastic. Ice hockey – a form of ice rugby meets roller derby, where the ball (puck) is way too small to see for the spectators and you can’t see if the players are good-looking, but you know for sure that they don’t have all their natural teeth. It doesn’t further my enthusiasm that neither Denmark nor the UK is any good at the Winter Olympics sports. Apart from figure skaters Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean, and the Danish curling team,

School lunch

Sweets were banned at my Swedish school. Lunch was provided for free, something we did not appreciate in all its healthy dullness. The well-behaved majority watched in horrified envy as a few rebel pupils occasionally snuck off to the local shop to pinch chocolate bars and chewing gum. It was not until we graduated to high school at the age of 13 that we were able

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Brits and Danes don’t really seem to have a knack for it. So count me out. I feel more like a bear that has to go into four years of hibernation between the Summer Olympics, thus having another two years of sleep left until Rio 2016. PS. I have to set the snooze button for the World Cup this year though.

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 versions of “Have I Got News For You” and “Room 101”.

By Maria Smedstad

to purchase sweets at school. And these were not in fact sweets, but cakes – two types of cakes: it was either a booze and chocolate flavoured roll or a sugar dusted chocolate ball. Wild with consumerism excitement we purchased chocolate balls and boozy rolls like there was no tomorrow. We were also now given two choices for lunch: there was the standard, free hot meal, or we could have crisp bread and yoghurt. Faced with this, it somehow seemed cooler to drop the ‘childish’ hot food and go for ‘adult’ yoghurt. Finally we were grown-ups, eating crackers and chocolate. Then of course I moved to England. I remember vividly the first time a dinner lady scooped a ladle of cold, soggy, fried matter onto my plate and demanded money for the favour. This was not fair. This was not food. I started bringing my own packed lunches, which was a mixed

blessing – it was bad because I was so terrible at putting them together that I never had enough food, which in turn was good because it helped me shed the puppy fat that I had somehow stored on my face. (Too many boozy rolls.) And finally, I woke up to just how good we had had it in Sweden – just before I discovered the miracle that is a giant Yorkshire pudding, filled with chips and gravy, and realised that some school lunches are worth paying for. 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.

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Scan Magazine | Humour | Blogger’s Corner

The ‘Viking leg session’ Bloggers’ Corner: The very best of the Anglo-Scandinavian blogosphere: from films to fitness By Faya Nilsson Being half-Swedish myself, I am all too aware that Swedish women are fiercely independent and cannot stomach gender inequality; after all, we are of Viking descent, and that spirit of conquering accomplishment lives on strongly! So why is it then that, more often than not, in the gym, women are found performing less effective, and perhaps less intimidating, exercises than men? We all broadly seek the same results: to trim body fat percentage, build strength, grow leaner, become healthier and improve endurance. Although the gym is meant to be fun, surely everyone would like to reach their goal sooner rather than later? In my view, a productive workout should include heavy weights – and that does not necessarily mean that you will become bulky. Women naturally produce far less growth-promoting testosterone; those women who are muscular and bulky have most likely been training very hard for a very long time. Men can no longer claim sole custody of the weights

area; they must share it with us ladies so that we, too, can bench press, deadlift, squat, sweat and work out hard. I know that the Swedish lifestyle of living outdoors is difficult to replicate in London, but I find that the same endorphin rush I get hiking the hills of Kebnekaise, sailing in the Stockholm archipelago, or skiing down the slopes of Åre, can be accessed through a good, proper weights session. Here are a few of my favourite benefits of deadlifting: - It develops the entire core holistically. - It strengthens the forearm ‘crush grip’. - It builds broad muscle mass and encourages you to get functionally stronger. - The intensity of the deadlift also really pushes your cardio-respiratory stamina. - It develops your explosive strength. - When performed correctly over time, it encourages fewer injuries throughout an active life.

Faya Nilsson is a Swedish personal trainer living and working in London’s West End, and is the author of, one of the UK’s leading fitness blogs, full of workout tips, yummy recipes and fitness fashion looks.

Afterwards, replenish through a full, hearty and healthy meal! If your goal is to reduce body fat percentage, it may seem counterintuitive, but it is absolutely necessary. Your system needs energy to recover, repair and grow stronger for next time. Also, your body’s metabolism is at its peak after your workout, so try to get something into your system within the hour. Low-GI carbs with some spicy, lean protein is my recommended way to round off what I like to think of as my ‘Viking leg session’!

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Scan Magazine | Culture | MØ

porting established artists such as AlunaGeorge and Major Lazer. 2013 became an amazing journey for the 24-year-old singer, and it seems that there is much more to come. Diplo, the producer behind Major Lazer, has taken her under his wings and features on her track xx88, which has received heavy rotation on radio stations worldwide to further add to the Cinderella-esque story of MØ. “2013 has been the most intense and crazy year of my life,” says Ørsted. “I have played 104 shows in 20 countries, boarded a plane 82 times and travelled approximately 169,625 kilometres – that is more than four times around the world! At the same time, I had to finish recording my debut album, No Mythologies to Follow.” The singer’s career started in the punk movement with feminist band MOR, performing at the now legendary Ungdomshuset, or ‘the Youth House’, in Copenhagen. The music has changed, but MØ still carries some of the old virtues from her more rebellious past.

Cinderella with a touch of punk It is rare that a new, emerging artist from Scandinavia is dubbed the ‘next big thing’ by leading magazines and blogs, and even more exceptional considering that this is without even releasing a full-length studio album. But that is what has happened to Danish future-pop artist Karen Marie Ørsted, also known as MØ. Embracing a mix of indie, pop, hip-hop, electro and soul, she has created her very own sound. By Nicolai Winther | Photo: Katrine Rohrberg

The massive hype started after the two first singles were released and has since

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materialised into several major cover stories, as well as extensive touring, sup-

“If my music helped, motivated or inspired just one person out there who felt alienated, like an outsider or someone who went through a difficult time, then my mission is accomplished,” she says. “For that, I'm deeply thankful. Together we shall prevail. I honestly can't wait for all of you to listen to my album – chances are that part of it was written on the road or in some crappy hotel room in whatever country you’re from.” The stage is set for an international breakthrough, and with a signed major label deal with RCA Victor / Sony Music in the United Kingdom, the future looks very bright indeed. MØ’s debut album, No Mythologies To Follow, is out on 10 March 2014. For more information, please visit:

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Culture | Happy Hour is 9 to 5

Dane Alexander Kjerulf, chief happiness officer at his consultancy firm, Wohoo Inc, is an expert on happiness at work.

Happy Hour is 9 to 5 Danish chief happiness officer Alexander Kjerulf lets Scan Magazine in on the secrets to getting through February without screaming at your boss – and building a happy long-term relationship with your work. By Signe Hansen

February – the temptation to sneer at your boss is just about as strong as the likelihood of being drenched in the rain on your way home in the 5 pm darkness. But maybe there is a better way to go about it? In his bestselling book, Happy Hour is 9 to 5, Alexander Kjerulf from Denmark, the world’s happiest country, insists that happiness at work is achievable for all. The bad news? Any change has to come from you, not your boss, colleagues or the canteen. “I think the most important thing is to realise that happiness at work is possible. At lot of people, especially Britons, don’t think so; they accept that their job sucks and think that’s just the way it is. The second thing is that you can do something yourself. Actually, you must start with yourself; you cannot wait for you boss or co-workers to better things,” stresses Kjerulf. Speaking at and conducting workshops for companies such as Hilton, Microsoft,

LEGO and IKEA, Kjerulf is, according to his consultancy firm, one of the world’s leading experts on happiness at work. But does happiness have to come from work? Not necessarily, Kjerulf admits, but it can, he says, be a major source of both happiness and unhappiness in all realms of life. Besides, studies show that being unhappy at work leaves you more prone to serious diseases such as cancer and heart attacks. In other words: if you are unhappy at work, it is time to do something about it. But what? “An important thing is to realise what makes us happy at work. A lot of people think that it’s the salary or perks: that getting a better coffee machine or a football table will make us happy. It doesn’t,” Kjerulf insists, concluding: “You have to focus on the right things: results and relationships. Results are about being good at your job and feeling that you do some-

thing meaningful; the relationship part is about liking the people you work with. So you have to ask yourself: what can I do to become better at what I do and create better relationships? It can be little dayto-day things like praising people who do a good job, saying good morning or getting someone an unexpected cup of coffee.” Sounds easy – why not give it a go?


Happy Hour is 9 to 5 is Alexander Kjerulf’s bestselling book on how to achieve happiness at work through small changes.

To buy Happy Hour is 9 to 5 or book Alexander Kjerulf for a workshop or talk, visit:

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Page 108

Scan Magazine | Culture | Scandinavian Music

Scandinavian Music

Eagle-Eye Cherry is back. That’s a turn-up for the books, isn’t it? The Swedish singer last heard in the 90s with Save Tonight has returned, and it is all for charity. He has recorded Dream Away with Swedish Idol alumni Darin, for children’s charity SOS Barnbyar. The song is a mid-tempo uplifting track with inspirational lyrics about having dreams, doing all you can to achieve them, and relying on your loved ones to help you do so. It has the guitar sound of Eagle-Eye’s most famous hit,

and the sort of epic pop chorus that is associated with Darin, so in that sense it feels like a proper collaboration between the two artists: they each bring their sound to the table. The song is out now worldwide, if you fancy doing your bit. Danish singer Nabiha is back with a brand new single, on a larger-scale platform than normal. She sings Bang That Drum, the official theme of the 2014 European Handball Championships. It is quite the departure from the laidback, R&B, retro Motown kind of sound that we normally associate with Nabiha (and love). This one is super charged electrohouse with a bonkers production, an epic chorus, and as the title suggests: a shed load of electronic drumbeats. I didn’t know Nabiha had it in her, but she can do this genre just as well as the best of them. Finland’s biggest popstar, Jenni Vartiainen, has just put out the latest single to be taken from her new album, Terra. She has gone with Selvästi Päihtynyt, which all starts off a bit WTF, but soon reveals itself to be a brilliant piece of pop. It is bizarre in places (particularly the 90s Europop production in the second verse), and it is odd to hear an artist like Jenni

By Karl Batterbee

revel in being so pop-tastic, but it is obviously very refreshing, too. The best bits are the bombastic instrumental middleeight and outro sequences – euphoric pop triumphs the pair of them. They take the melody of the chorus and not just hammer it home, but board it up inside too. It is the sound of unashamed, unbridled joy. Finally, a newcomer: meet Sa’ra Charismata, and, more importantly, the superb Gold Digga that she has just put up on the internet. She is a Swedish born and raised (of Eritrean heritage) singer and songwriter who has spent her most recent years living in New York and is now heading home to focus on music. Gold Digga finds Sa’ra sounding a bit like a cross between MØ and Soso: it is trippy and downbeat electro with a gorgeous melody going on over the top of it, and delivered by a jaded vocal. This one is so good it has two choruses. And a cool middle-eight breakdown. And a bizarre intro and outro. And even better - Gold Digga is available as a free download online.

Scandinavian Culture Calendar – Where to go, what to see? It’s all happening here! Teitur on tour (Feb) Faroese singer-songwriter Teitur is touring Denmark with his 2013 album Story music this month. For more information, please visit: Anni Leppälä (Until 22 Feb) Finnish photographer Anni Leppälä’s small-scale works take on an aura of frozen time, recording both fleeting moments and the small glimpses of larger tales from which they are taken. Mon-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat 11am-6pm. Purdy Hicks Gallery, London, SE1.

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Anni Leppälä, Small Forest, 2013, pigment print 41.5 x 60.5 cm

By Sara Schedin

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Scan Magazine | Culture | Culture Calendar

Turisas 2013. Photo: Stephanie Cabral

Turisas on tour (Feb/Mar) Finnish folk metal band Turisas are touring Europe with their album Turisas2013 this spring. For more information, please visit: Anders Sletvold Moe: Site related (Until 1 Mar) The works in Norwegian artist Anders Sletvold Moe’s solo show were conceived during his visit to the gallery, where he began his conceptual and visual studies of the space. He then took these enquires back to his Oslo studio to create two new site-specific works, which have the geometric grid of the single gallery window as their starting point.

Thu-Sat 1pm-6pm. Centre for Recent Drawing, London, N1. Osmo Vänskä and the London Philharmonic Orchestra (19 Feb) An evening of music conducted by Finnish Osmo Vänskä featuring works by Balakirev, Khachaturian and Kalinnikov. Royal Festival Hall, London, SE1. Soderlund-Davidson at Heal's (Until 16 Feb) The Anglo-Swedish sculptural design duo will be exhibiting at DISCOVER: The Heal's Modern Craft Market, introducing inno-

vative designers at the Tottenham Court Road store where they will exhibit products, talk to customers, and run workshops - all to raise awareness of the craft process. Mozart undone: A theatre concert (25 Feb-1 Mar) Danish director Nikolaj Cederholm brings his show, which explores themes from some of Mozart’s most famous works, from the Betty Nansen Teatret in Copenhagen to London. Barbican Centre, London, EC2Y..

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Total immersion: Villa-Lobos (8 Mar) Finnish Sakari Oramo and the BBC Symphony Orchestra will treat the audience to a night of Villa-Lobos’ raw and zestful music. Barbican Centre, London, EC2Y. Johan Rheborg in Stockholm (Until 9 Mar) For years, Swedish actor, comedian and script writer Johan Rheborg has been photographing his colleagues behind the scenes at theatres and film sets, resulting in the exhibition Backstage.

Sun-Wed 9am-9pm, Thu-Sat 9am-11pm. Fotografiska, Stadsgårdshamnen 22, Stockholm. Martina Hoogland Ivanow in Berlin (Until 22 Mar) Swedish photographer Martina Hoogland Ivanow’s dark and poetic series, Speedway, focuses on the sport of speedway and the people who watch it. Wed-Sat 12noon-6pm. Swedish Photography, Karl-Marx-Allee 62, Berlin.

The Vikings are coming (6 Mar - 22 June) This spring, the British Museum will open its first major exhibition on Vikings in over 30 years. The Vikings will be viewed in a global context that highlights the multifaceted influence arising from extensive cultural contacts. The exhibition will capitalise on new research and thousands of recent discoveries by both archaeologists and metal detectorists, to set the developments of the Viking Age in context. Open daily 10am-5.30pm. The British Museum, London, WC1B.

Pernilla. Photo: Johan Rheborg

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Your Shortcut to Scandinavia Bergen


Oslo Stockholm Bromma

SWEDEN Aalborg







London City

GERMANY Brussels





S n a cks

Me als


Pap ers



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Globalskolen – education where you are

Globalskolen is an institution which offers free education in the subjects Norwegian, Social studies and Religion & Ethics for pupils in primary and secondary school age living abroad. The teaching is online and is weekly based. The students and their teacher do not have to be online DW WKH VDPH WLPH 7KLV LV D ÀH[LEOH SURJUDP IRU WKH IDPLOLHV EXW VWLOO ZLWK D ¿[HG VWUXFWXUH WKURXJKRXW WKH VFKRRO \HDU 7KH RIIHU LV VXLWDEOH for families who want to stay in touch with Norway and the Norwegian language.

Application deadlines

The education

Autumn term: 30th August

Globalskolen offers courses with an emphasis on reading and writing. The curriculum of Globalskolen is based on the Norwegian national curriculum considering both content and methodology. The program has been approved by the Education Directorate and is a part of “Complementary education for children abroad�. The offer also applies to students who have Norwegian as a second ODQJXDJH 6WXGHQWV DUH H[SHFWHG WR VWXG\ IRU DW OHDVW PLQXWHV SHU ZHHN

Spring term: 30th January

Criteria for participation ‡ • • • •

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KDYH D UHVLGHQFH DEURDG IRU DW OHDVW RQH VHPHVWHU VL[ PRQWKV attend a local or international school. have a Norwegian citizenship. be between 6 and 16 years old. submit 15 plans.

Where you are • Globalskolen offers education where the student is in the world. • Globalskolen offers tutoring according to the student´s progress. • Globalskolen offers teaching where the student is in every day life. E-mail: Phone: 0047 70 05 61 40

About Globalskolen • Globalskolen is approved by the Education Directorate. • The school was started in 1998, and with its more than 1500 students in the spring 2013 it is the biggest complementary school for students abroad. • Annual parent surveys show a high degree of user satisfaction. • We cooperate with academic communities in Norway and similar schools in Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands. • Our teachers have high expertise in ICT and broad experience from the primary and secondary schools in Norway. ‡ *OREDOVNROHQ LV D QRQ SUR¿W corporation.