Mälsåker Castle

Strängnäs, Sweden

The history of Mälsåker palace stretches back to the Middle Ages when it probably was a simple stone house. During Sweden’s period as a great power in Europe in the 17th century the palace was owned by the Soop family. The famous architect Nikodemus Tessin was engaged to alter the building into one of the grandest baroque palaces in Sweden. The house was extended, wings and a terrace with stairs facing the see were added in 1660-1670s. During the 18th century the interiors were partly changed into the rococo style. At the end of the 19th century the house was modernized with electricity, water and central heating.

The 1940s turned out to be the most dramatic decennium for Mälsåker. Between 1943-1945 Mälsåker was owned by the State of Norway and used for training of approximately 2,000 soldiers living in hutments. The palace was used as an office and accommodation for officers and commands. A very cold day in January 1945 all fireplaces in the palace are used, which causes the chimney shaft to crack, the roof catches fire and the catastrophe is a fact. The roof fell in and the richly ornamented stucco ceilings on the third floor were destroyed. A great deal of the noble baroque palace had turned into a ruin.

In the 1990s Mälsåker started to regain its former glory. A building workshop was established and parts of the palace were restored using old building techniques and traditional materials. Stucco ceilings were re-created as was the beautiful patterned wooden floors.

Since 2007 an association is responsible for making the palace available for visitors. During summertime the palace is open for individual visitors as well as for pre-booked group visits. In the palace you will find an exhibition from the “Norway-era”, an exhibition from the period around 1900 and also several artists showing their work in the beautiful rooms. You are welcome to have some refreshments in the newly established café- and exhibition building, located just next to the palace with an astonishing view of the lake.

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Details

Founded: 1660s
Category: Castles and fortifications in Sweden
Historical period: Swedish Empire (Sweden)

Rating

4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

John Benjamin (12 months ago)
Not so large area to hike/walk. Beautiful though. Castle looked a bit decrepit.
John Benjamin (12 months ago)
Not so large area to hike/walk. Beautiful though. Castle looked a bit decrepit.
Josephine Hiller (13 months ago)
So green, lots of trees, free entry to the castle
Josephine Hiller (13 months ago)
So green, lots of trees, free entry to the castle
Chris vw (14 months ago)
I think the Norwegian state should pay for the restoration of the castle to the shape it was as the Norwegian resistance force came. The fire that destroyed most of the inside was caused by the soldiers trying to heat the castle burning in the large fireplaces. The chimney fire turned the roof on fire. The inside is entirely ruined, only partly restored due to lack of funds. Norway have forgotten the service, housing several thousands of Norwegian soldiers during the German occupation ->1945
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