Situated on the small island of Vestvågøya in Norway’s idyllic Lofoten archipelago, Hattvika Lodge is a group of restored fishermen’s cottages overlooking the harbour. Together with newly-built, freestanding hotel rooms set into the hillside with mountains towering behind, one family are offering accommodation to those who like to think differently when it comes to holidays.
Privately-owned by the same family for six generations, Hattvika Lodge combines the authenticity of life in Ballstad, a picturesque fishing village just above the Arctic Circle, with the comfort and stylish design for which Scandinavia is so well known.
In 1862 the Jentoft family bought Ballstad and developed this beautiful village into one of the largest fishing villages in Lofoten. They controlled several companies that produced a range of fish products, like fresh fish, fresh and frozen fillets, salted fish, roe for caviar production and cod liver oil. The main product was stockfish, (air dried cod) for the Italian market.
The parent company, Rolf Jentoft AS, was passed down from father to son through five generations, and today the main business is property, trading stockfish and running a cod liver oil factory. The old manor house, dating back to 1862, has been fully restored and is still a landmark on the island. As the old fishermen’s cottages no longer fit their original purpose, they have now been restored and renewed for tourism, and are run by Hattvika Lodge where Guri, a 6th generation Jentoft, continues the history of Ballstad.
The recent restoration and refurbishment of 13 original fishermen’s huts dating back to the 1880s, has resulted in a selection of luxurious accommodation in one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom cabins.
Modern upgrades include bathrooms with under floor heating, fully-equipped kitchens, and contemporary artwork, all of which meld seamlessly with traditional features such as wood cladding from the original 150-year-old buildings.
High ceilings, clean lines, comfortable sofas, soft furnishings, log burners and clever lighting ideas, all add to the homely, yet exclusive ambience created by the owners, husband-and-wife duo, Guri and Kristian Boe.
The newly refurbished cabins include Seaside Suites for two, right by the waterfront, which include breakfast in the property’s new restaurant just a short walk across the quay, and use of a private hot tub, overlooking the harbour.
In addition to the fishermen’s cabins, the Boes have also created Hattvika Hillside, ten newly built, modern freestanding hotel rooms, partly nestled into the rocky terrain, partly perched on impressive steel supports.
Huge picture windows offer truly spectacular panoramic views over the Norwegian Sea and the mountains behind. It’s even possible to enjoy the Northern Lights during the winter months from the comfort of your hotel bed!
In terms of accommodation, the pièce de résistance at Hattvika is the main Lodge, a beautiful villa with annexe and small fisherman’s cottage, ideal for larger families and groups.
Whichever accommodation type is chosen, a warm welcome awaits all guests from Guri and Kristian, who are always happy to share their extensive local knowledge and to work closely with local suppliers and guides to ensure their visitors have the ultimate Lofoten experience.
Numerous guided activities are possible, such as sea kayaking, hiking, trail running, mountain biking and stand-up paddle boarding, as well as ski touring in the winter and photography tours taking in the spectacular landscape and the magical Northern Lights between September and April. Fishing trips, boat rentals, surfing, diving and RIB tours are also available through local operators, as well as the possibility of hiring a private chef.
Plus, the newly-opened bistro-style restaurant, Fangst, (meaning ‘catch’) aims to provide a memorable dining experience for its guests by producing a range of tasting menus based on sustainable ingredients sourced locally.
An expert team of chefs create ‘delicate experimental’ dishes, prioritising local foods such as cod, stockfish and sustainable seaweed harvested from the Arctic waters of the Lofoten archipelago. Organic cheese products from a nearby goat farm and marbled lamb from the islands also feature on the tasting menu: ‘Gateway to Ballstad – from the sea to mountains.’
For an additional taste of Lofoten and its history, Hattvika is also the only place in the world with a cod liver oil tasting booth. This pays homage to the islands’ rich heritage in producing Omega-3 oils and using them for everything from health benefits to painting the fishermen’s cabins red!
It is also possible for guests to join an excursion with local fishermen to learn more about the significance of Lofoten Fishery, its history and importance to the islands’ inhabitants.
Prices per night for accommodation at Hattvika Lodge range from approximately £172 to £645 in a Fisherman’s Cottage, from £293 in a Hillside Cabin, from £516 in a Seaside Suite, and from £680 for the Lodge.
To get to Hattvika from the UK first fly UK to Oslo, Norway then onto Bodo (BOO). There are regular 25-minute flights with Wideroe from Bodo to Leknes (LKN) Lofoten. Hattvika is 11 kms / 15-minute drive from Leknes. There is also the option of a three-hour scenic ferry journey from Bodo to Moskenes or Svolvaer, from where the drive to Hattvika is around one hour 15 minutes.