The almost century-old hotel and conference manor Vår Gård offers visitors a chance to get away this summer. Just 20 minutes from the city centre of Stockholm, here you can enjoy fine dining, recreational experiences and an energizing weekend stay in the scenic east coast archipelago.

Vår Gård, in its modern form, was established in 1924, when the Swedish Cooperative Union acquired the buildings and grounds from brothers and business moguls Ernest and Arthur Thiel. They began to offer educational and corporate training for the union’s sales employees. A few years later, in 1929, the union also acquired the neighbouring manor, Villa Skärtofta, and expanded their business.

Today, Vår Gård offers a whole lot more than conference and training facilities. Other than world-class sustainable and local food and wine, they offer nature experiences, bike trails, swimming and kayaking activities from their own bathing jetty. “Everyone is welcome,” says Frida Janneson, marketing coordinator at Vår Gård. “This is a destination for young, old and families. It’s also the perfect place for weddings and parties. Close to Saltsjöbaden, you’ll find golf, padel tennis courses and sailing.”

Vår Gård: Summer breeze and recreation at Swedish resort and conference manor

Sweden’s biggest art collection by Axel Törneman.

In full bloom

The summer season is a perfect time to visit Vår Gård. The gardens are in full bloom, while the surrounding nature calls out to be explored. Or you might be interested in an outdoor gym session, or paddleboarding. “Other activates such as yoga, breathwork and cold bathing are popular too,” she adds. “Vår Gård even has a unique art collection and arranges popular art shows for groups and private guests.”

No matter what, you’ll find something new to experience, or a wind-down space in which to escape the stresses of city life. During the summer season, Vår Gård offers package deals – three hotel nights, with breakfast included, at a 30 per cent discount.

Vår Gård: Summer breeze and recreation at Swedish resort and conference manor

In later years, Vår Gård has become a destination for private guests and locals. Its scenic location near the sea and a short distance from Stockholm draws guests from near and far. “Just a stone’s throw away is the ferry, that will take you to Stockholm, starting with a scenic trip through the sparkling archipelago,” says Janneson. “We want our guests to find relaxation, energy and inspiration – to find that they can disconnect for a while and be taken care of. A visit to Vår Gård also offers opportunities to make acquaintances and gain insights by meeting new people. It’s a place for inspiration and self-development.”

On that note, Vår Gård has launched a unique and exciting cooperation concept, a community that offers exciting sustainable development opportunities for individuals, groups and organisations. “Today, we have a variety of lecturers and coaches available for companies and organizations to use in connection with their own conferences hosted by us,” explains Janneson.

Vår Gård: Summer breeze and recreation at Swedish resort and conference manor

A good book and a sunchair for a relaxing moment at Vår Gård.

A complete experience

“We want to positively influence everything from self-leadership, communication and stress management, to mindfulness, health and well-being,” she continues. “A visit here is more than a hotel night with breakfast, or a conference room with tables and chairs. Our desire is to create a holistic experience that encourages collaboration and strong sustainable relationships between us, our guests and partners.”

This autumn marks the grand opening of their new restaurant in Villa Skärtofta. Here, you’ll experience fine dining in a turn-of-the-century atmosphere with a one-of-a-kind menu. “The main focus is innovative dishes made from local and seasonal produce,” Janneson explains. “Groups can also book a ‘chambré separé’ for private dining in gorgeous tower chambers, for an exclusive and intimate culinary experience.”

Vår Gård: Summer breeze and recreation at Swedish resort and conference manor

The atmosphere is nothing less than magical at Vår Gård. Both indoors and outdoors, art collections by celebrated artists, both Swedish and international, such as Isaac Grünewald and Marc Chagall, are on display. Meanwhile, the interiors are a stunning blend of turn-of-the-century and 1950s architecture. “When we develop the building, it’s always with huge focus on sustainable design,” Janneson says. “But most important is that we preserve the heritage, in fine-tuned harmony, reflecting the varying eras.”

Vår Gård: Summer breeze and recreation at Swedish resort and conference manor

A refreshing swim down by Vår Gård’s own jetty.

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