Earlier this year we travelled to the idyllic mountains on the western coast of Norway, where we visited the Juvet Landscape Hotel. Described as a synthesis of “raw Norwegian nature, cultural history and modern architecture”, this unique hotel and breath-taking location provided the perfect backdrop for our latest photoshoot.
L-R: RBM Sweep & RH Lounge
The geography of Norway is defined by its mountains. With nearly the entire country covered by a thick ice sheet during the last ice age, deep valleys and gorges were created as the glaciers retreated, leaving behind an awe inspiring landscape, and the most rugged coastline in the world. Valldal is one such valley, located north of the Norddalsfjorden, which feeds into the 110km long Storfjorden, a name which literally means “big” or “great” fjord.
It was in this remote mountainous region that Norwegian Knut Slinning bought a holiday retreat in 1986, and 30 years later, he is the proud owner of the Juvet Landscape Hotel, the perfect place to escape the worries of the world, and feel the power of nature.
RBM Noor, various configurations
RH Mereo, various configurations
Designed by architects Jensen & Skodvin, The Juvet Hotel is not your conventional hotel. Faced with the challenge of creating a comfortable retreat taking advantage of the epic views, whilst having the minimal effect upon the environment, the design is quite unique. Instead of one large building, the hotel is made up of small individual houses. Each of the 9 wood paned pods scattered throughout the woods has one or two walls entirely of glass, which through careful orientation offer each room an exclusive view of the surrounding environment, without seeing any other building. Curved steel bridges, which, in places, wind over fast flowing rapids, are the only way to reach some of the pods.
An aerial view of the Juvet Landscape Hotel
It was this combination of astonishing natural beauty and remote isolation which led director Alex Garland to select the Juvet Landscape Hotel as the location to shoot his 2014 sci-fi thriller Ex Machina. The film, which won an oscar for Best Visual Effects, follows the trials of a billionaire genius building an artificially intelligent robot in his super modern mountain getaway in remote Alaska. Speaking about his choice of Juvet, Alex says, "We knew that if we found a spectacular landscape it would provide a lot of the power of the guy. If he owns this landscape, he must be spectacular too."
Alicia Vikander starring in Ex Machina, filmed on location at the Juvet Landscape Hotel, Norway
Constructed mainly of wood, the interiors are treated by a transparent oil with black pigments, minimizing reflections from the inner surface of the glass. Shelves, benches and tables are all built by the same massive wooden elements to maintain a degree of monotony that goes well with the complex nature views, and to keep the visual presence of the interior at a minimum.
With sustainability high on the agenda for both architect and hotelier, great pains were taken to leave the environment as untouched as possible. Each of the 9 cabins are designed differently due to the topography and vegetation, with no blasting or major earthmoving necessitated. The site itself is a nature reserve, and only after extensive negotiations with local authorities, and sureties given, permission was finally granted for an overall plan of 28 buildings to be built all without the need for rock blasting or alterations to the terrain.
L-R: BMA Axia, RBM Ana
RBM Noor, Various configurations
Everything about the Juvet Hotel is breath-taking, and we can’t recommend a visit enough. AS for the photoshoot, the muted minimalistic interiors contrasted beautifully with the bright colours of much of the Flokk furniture, whilst the Scandinavian design intrinsic to both furniture and interior brought it all together.
Reflecting on the project, Kari Nost Bergem, Senior Architect at Flokk & the visionary behind the shoot, says “I thought it would be astonishing to put a selection of Flokk’s precise furniture into this setting, and it was quite an experience to realise this crazy idea. The staggering natural beauty alongside the calm architecture gives our furniture the best company, whilst our grand traditions of sustainable action and Scandinavian heritage is reflected in the design and management of Juvet."
"The furniture truly pops out of the dark interiors, interacting with the wild themes beyond. The colours of the fabrics are partly bright in order to be exposed and in a warm palette - as a contrast to the cold, snowy winter - but also in dialogue with the evergreen trees outside. Special thanks go to the whole team at Juvet for everything they did for us.”
RBM Noor, Various configurations
L-R: RH Lounge, RBM Flip & Fold, RBM Ana