“We have been called lifestyle entrepreneurs, and that sums us up nicely. We do this with great passion and because this is exactly how we want to live our lives”
It all started one All Saint’s weekend when Maria Bystedt and her partner, Janne Holmberg, were back home where Maria grew up as a child. They had heard rumours that Skottvångs Grufva was going to close down. The inn had been open since the 1960s and had become something of a cultural institution in the area. Maria had worked summers at Skottvång and remembered the excitement, free speech and many cultural personalities who came to visit.
“We started to brainstorm that dinner. At the same time we felt a longing to live in the country. After 20 years in Stockholm we were more than ready to move on.”
And that marked the start of a long process that would lead to Maria and Janne taking over and running Skottvångs Grufva. And with great success. After major renovations and a huge amount of work the couple opened in 2006 with their first Christmas buffet. And that was that. Skottvångs Grufva is now a restaurant to contend with, offering a rich cultural offer, good food and live music stage that would make most city bars jealous.
“We are a cultural centre in the middle of the forest. We’ve always had an interest in culture and a great passion for music. That’s of course one of the main reasons why we’re here today,” says Maria Bystedt.
And the couple have really succeeded in attracting some major artists to humble Skottvångs Grufva in the depths of the Sörmland forest. Artists such as Stefan Sundström, Miss Li, Moneybrother, Ebbot and Magnus Carlsson are just some of the names. And there’s something about Skottvång that attracts both artists and audiences alike.
“People usually comment on just how well taken care of they are here. I’m not sure but for us it’s mostly about treating people well and showing a keen interest. Spending time and socialising here is quite uncomplicated,” says Maria.
“I think our location is a bonus as well. Many share the desire to do something completely different from everyone else. And right in the depths of the forest.”
As well as an impressive music scene visitors can experience everything from art exhibitions in the nature to theatre productions and children’s entertainment. In the mining area you can also visit Skottvång’s mine museum, walk a stretch of the Sörmlandsleden hiking trail, visit a yarn shop and glassworks, stroll around a market or watch as a real charcoal stack is lit.
“We have been called lifestyle entrepreneurs, and that sums us up nicely. We do this with great passion and because this is exactly how we want to live our lives. I would never swap this with a nine-to-five job again – not a chance!”
Skottvångs Grufva is a cultural, historic and cosy oasis in the heart of the Sörmland forest. Live music, food, entertainment, cultural treasures – all under the one roof.
Skottvångs Grufva AB
647 92 MARIEFRED
Skottvång’s mining museum; a display of above all items and images connected to work at the mine and the charcoal burning process, as well as objects from everyday life in the forest. More information on the website
Blacksmiths; yarn and handicraft hut with exhibitions
Art in the Green Box; a permanent year-round exhibition which can be seen in the forests around Skottvång. The exhibition renews and changes each year and consists of about thirty works by some twenty artists.
More information about Art in the green box
Sörmlandsleden hiking trail; sections 15 and 16 pass by Skottvång mine and are a popular hike. You can hike the long route from Läggesta, through Skottvångs Grufva and then on to Gnesta, or just park the car at the carpark outside Skottvångs Grufva and take a short hike.
For more information about the Sörmlandsleden click here.