Destination Dreaming: Luxury Floating Sauna Opens In Norway

Don your slippers (and maybe your flippers) – a luxury floating sauna with views of the Northern Lights is now gracing the shores of Norway

Picture this. You, the Northern Lights and a stunning floating sauna to drink it all in. Positioned in the middle of Tromsø Harbour in Norway, this unusual sauna offers visitors a chance to relax and enjoy a truly unique perspective of the Northern Lights.

Elegantly adorning the stunning coastline of Tromsø, the architects and designers of the impressive project selected Kebony wood, a global leader in the production of sustainable wood, for the exterior façade, and both the roof and ocean terrace decking – contributing to the striking appearance of the sauna. 

Handcrafted furniture company Ekte, sauna specialists Pust and Skapa Architects worked through various challenges over the past year to create the floating masterpiece. It’s undeniably a symbol of calmness, perceived by locals and visitors as a space to breathe and disconnect from the world whilst connecting with each other. 

Over 2,000 metres of Kebony Character was used for the external cladding, the decking, both on the roof and ocean terrace, and most uniquely for the shingled cladding around the entrance to the sauna.

Of course, it’s all in the detail. Kebony was the perfect choice for the unique project as it complements both the structural design and the natural arctic surroundings of North Norway, whilst requiring little maintenance. In addition, Kebony wood will develop a silver-grey patina as it ages, helping the sauna achieve its goal of displaying a weathered aesthetic over time, without losing any dimensional strength. 

Commenting on the popularity of the Tromsø Sauna, Kim Daniel Arthur at Ekte stated,“Seeing people enjoying the Northern Lights whilst relaxing in the sauna, or daring themselves to a dip in the arctic sea is such a rewarding feeling. To imagine that we built something that gives people a joyful escape, a little oasis in the middle of the town, is amazing!” 

Erik Stange Ankre at Pust, continues,“The public has really embraced the sauna and made it a part of their daily lives. People come at all hours of the day: either for a morning swim, a lunch time bath or a night time session as late as10pm.The supreme finish provided by Ekte has really made the sauna feel like a little bit of everyday luxury for the people of Tromsø, and of course, the beautiful Kebony makes it stand out as well.” 

An intense and collaborative project was run in building the sauna, where the lines between customer and provider were almost non-existent, with customers themselves making and installing over 1,000 shingles from Kebony Character in order to achieve the desired final appearance. Due to extensive planning and support from Kebony, and the other partners involved, the challenges of building a weather-resistant outdoor floating sauna were minimised and all project goals and timelines were met. 

Commenting on the use of Kebony, Ekte added,“Working with Kebony, on short timelines, was a smooth experience where we got both technical help and inspiration from their previous projects. We are thrilled with how the project has turned out and look forward to working with Kebony again in the future!” 

Images credit: David Jensen

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