The Glacial Grandeur of The Bolder Lodges, Lysefjord, Norway

Located at the southernmost end of a series of majestic Norwegian fjords and encircled by a mountainous stretch exists a landscape where even the most oversized personality can be made to feel humbled by nature’s grandeur. Lysefjord, renown amongst hikers, campers, kayakers, mountain bikers, and adventurers drawn to its awe-inspiring scenery, was till now mostly off the radar of the design-first traveling set. The Bolder Lodges is a small enclave of architectural cabin-style retreats furnished into a warm womb with a view that may tempt the architectural set to “rough it” within the gentlest of accommodations.

View of the untreated red cedar cladding covering the exterior of the cabins, with conifer trees in the foreground.

Two cabins shown situated upon large concrete pillars to further near the tree line along a snow-covered mountain landscape.

Each of the four cabins stand upon large concrete pillars to further elevate the structure and view.

Designed by Norwegian architectural firm Snøhetta, four 35m2 cabins – Stylten, Myra, Stjerna, and Eldhuset – are snuggly situated on the mountainside to offer guests exemplary views of Lysefjorden from above the tree line. Sheets of glass maximize the sensation of being part of nature even when safely nestled into the comfortable confines of each structure.

A majestic panoramic view of the nearby fjord located below the series of cabins from the glass facade covered bedroom. Interior is furnished with armchair, bed and pouf.

While the cabins themselves are comfortably cozy in dimension, the architecture’s tall ceilings and large panoramic windows create a “cliff’s edge” effect, inviting the sensation of hanging over a naturally occurring edge.

A majestic panoramic view of the nearby fjord located below the series of cabins from the glass facade covered bedroom, with light blue bedding and off-white blanket.

Two Scandinavian modern armchairs and small coffee table with white ceramic vase planter with small arrangement of dried flowers and "LOFTS" book on the surface; gray soft fabric pouf in the foreground.

Black detailing and wood cabinetry appointed modern kitchen with small collection of white natural ceramics staged on top shelf over a kitchen sink.

Dark cozy bedroom with white linens and view of surrounding forest through side windows. Small black sconce to the right of the bed.

Natural materials such as wood, marble, and leather lean toward the darkly minimalistic, accentuated by an earthy palette and organic textures across the built-in bed and bathroom located on the ground floor. Each of the cabin’s upper floors is dedicated to a kitchen and dining area appointed by Vipp.

Overhead shot of off white fabric pouf with two books and a drinking glass set on top of it to the left of a bed.

Side by side photos of The Bolder Lodge interiors; left image shows panoramic view looking out onto the fjord from a slim dining area, the other a dark small kitchen with a circular black kitchen vent and black countertops done by Vipp.

Guests can choose to pre-order provisions to stock their Vipp designed kitchens for in-cabin dining, with a refrigerator, induction cooktop and oven, Nespresso coffee machine, tea kettle and a selection of kitchen utensils provided.

Dining table with Scandinavian modernist design tea kettle, candle holder, mug, creamer and small bowl with two dining chairs face to face with majestic view of the Norwegian fjord waters below.

Clad in untreated red cedar, the cabins’ exteriors reference the surrounding forest and are intended to patina into a natural gray finish as the elements blend the structures into the surrounding landscape. In contrast, oak wood dominates within, but Snøhetta has made sure to avoid uniformity in the layout to give returning guests a unique experience within each cabin structure with every visit.

Snow covered mountains with several of the The Bolder Lodges obfuscated by the trees, with clouds blanketed across the large fjord to the right.

Overhead photo of The Borders Lodge during winter, with the entire roof blanketed in a thick layer of snow.

The site is off the grid except for electricity powering the light and the amenities in the cabins. The naturally sourced spring water from the treatment plant under the parking is cleaner than the water in the local river running over the mountain.

Two Adirondack style wooden chairs situated on a hillside next to one of the cabins of The Bolder Lodges during dusk or dawn.

Silhouette of one of the The Bolder Lodges cabin during a hazy warmly illuminating sunrise with a bridge spanning the fjord in the distant background and the mountains reflected across the water.

Silhouette of one of the The Bolder Lodges cabin during a hazy warmly illuminating sunrise with a bridge spanning the fjord in the distant background and the mountains reflected across the water.

There are also two 22-square-meter SkyLodges with two double bedrooms. Designed in a cube over cube floor plan, architect John Birger Grytdal has created accommodations as close to a tree house experience as one could imagine in Lysefjord.

View of the of the two smaller 22 square meters SkyLodges overhanging the mountainside, captured during a dramatically darkened cloudy sky with the interior of the cabin warmly illuminated.

Side by side photos of The Bolder Lodges' bathroom and interior furnishings, including a small bathroom sink and leather armchair with tilting adjustable floor lamp in black.

It may be a cabin, but you won’t be roughing it. Soft cotton towels and luxury toiletries from Barbor appoint the fully equipped bathroom, complete with warm shower and flush-toilet.

What: The Bolder Lodges
Where: Ryfylkevegen 251, 4110 Forsand, Norway
How much: From $371/night for two occupants; a newly opened Grand Lodge offering two double bedrooms and two bathrooms is available with prices made available upon inquiry.
Highlights: The glacial carved landscape draws thousands of hikers and outdoor adventurers, with numerous trails to explore and 4,444 steps of ascending the world’s longest wooden staircase situated in the nearby village of Flørli. The Pulpit Rock (Preikestolen) in Ryfylke is a popular vantage point made even more famous by Mission: Impossible – Fallout; the view requires a moderately demanding 4–kilometer hike during the warmer months, but a guide is recommended during the winter.
Design draw: Each of the four cabins are dramatically furnished with Scandinavian designs from Vipp and Eikund, the dark interior palette resulting in a stark contrast to the glacial-bright views.
Book it: The Bolder Lodges

Photos courtesy of The Bolder Lodges

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Gregory Han is a Senior Editor at Design Milk. A Los Angeles native with a profound love and curiosity for design, hiking, tide pools, and road trips, a selection of his adventures and musings can be found at gregoryhan.com.

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