I recently returned from a full three weeks (yes, three weeks, what luxury) in Norway. Despite the fact I visit on average twice a year to pay respects to my family and ancestral home, I have not ventured properly through the dramatic western Fjordland since I was a child. And let me tell you, it was about time. Wow. Dark woods abound, stark rock faces abound, waterfalls abound, well, actually, all kinds of water abounds. And while the nature is pretty fab on its own, it is made even more stunning by the juxtaposition of both charming traditional and minimal contemporary architecture. I always have a hard time fully appreciating raw nature without something man-made in the foreground.
I will absolutely require more than one post on this trip, but thought there was little reason not to start with the best. I was lucky enough to spend two nights at the Juvet Landscape Hotel, a most remarkable place tucked away between small working farms and dramatic cliffs. The hotel opened in 2008 and has been gaining admirers in steady number ever since. No doubt its recent turn in the sci-fi thriller Ex Machina has helped its exposure. The place is extraordinarily special, and I do not think I have been more relaxed in many a year. Each room is a separate building perched on a cliff-side overlooking a fast-flowing river. And each room is nothing but pure, unadulterated glass towards the view. No other room is visible once you are inside, and there is a remarkable connection with the landscape that overtakes you immediately.
I can describe this place until I a blue in the face, but as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words, so...
Here is the spa building including a hot tub and sauna with a sod roof and a few guest rooms tucked back in the woods behind.
The room was very simple, the bed and bath areas tucked away at the back with a simple pair of loungers in front of the glass.
The event facility with its dramatic random cross beam ceiling and traditional benches and wool hangings lining the concrete walls-
I hope to return in the winter for a slightly more eerie and stark version of this lush, green, watery trip!