Man builds a tiny village in an ‘artic hideaway’ where guests can see wildlife and sleep under the Northern Lights

Will you stay in a towerhouse on a remote island in the Arctic to see the Northern Lights?

Håvard Lund of Gildeskål, Nordland, Norway, said he came up with building a collaborative, rentable facility for artists years ago.

Although it was never intended, his towerhouse, which he called The Njalla, reached Airbnb.

Outside view of the towerhouse.
Airbnb

Håvard ‘s Airbnb in Norway, a miniature village of tiny homes, can accomodate groups and immerse the guests in the outdoors.

He said that his early experiences as a composer and musician taught him the value of multidisciplinary meetings.

The Tower House - is a shares spaces for all guest staying at the facility.
Airbnb

He also said that he could speed up his work and make it more interesting by hanging out with engineers, architects, and, well, all kinds of people, and the purpose of his little village was to provide a convenient location for meetings of that nature, according to Insider.

“I’m from northern Norway and have a very romantic relationship with nature here,” he said.

Inside the towerhouse has an overlooking view of the ocean.
Airbnb

Håvard ‘s familiarity with the environment made choosing the spot easy.

However, it took him six years before he was able to acquire his first estate, as it is a prerequisite to be related to the seller before you can buy one.

Beautiful vew of the ocean outside the kitchen house.
Airbnb

The first two building teams he spoke with believed the obstacles to what he had in mind would be too significant.

Luckily, the third one accepted his project, and he and his crew began the construction in 2014 and started renting out the space in 2016.

“We had lots of talks about what constitutes good architecture in nature,” said Håvard.

The tiny village at the Arctic Hideaway
Airbnb

At that point, it was the architects that proposed a new layout, and the idea of a tiny-village with the amenities of a regular home divided into multiple smaller homes was developed.

“Hooray, let’s make it,” said Håvard, stating that he liked the idea.

The town is remarkable because it motivates visitors to explore the outdoors.

Outside the lounge with a great view of the towerhouse.
Airbnb

Being outside causes a change in breathing and allows one to witness natural phenomena that would otherwise be hidden from view indoors.

Visitors can observe various wildlife, including birds, sea otters, and the Northern Lights.

The arctic hideaway has an amazing view of the ocean and nearby islands.
Airbnb

Though he opted for eternally durable materials for the towerhouse and the rest of the tiny homes, he knows that periodic upkeep would be required there due to the climate, and water has a remarkable destructive power.

Fortunately, there has not been much need for maintenance so far, he said.

Front view of the Arctic Hideaway featuring the towerhouse.
Airbnb

Meanwhile, the business has been slow for two of its six years in operation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Håvard said that having a business on an island at the North Pole will likely take twice as long as doing so on the mainland.

“So, we go very slowly in everything we do,” he stated.

Front view of the towerhouse.
Airbnb

Meanwhile, Håvard also said that his experience renting The Njalla on Airbnb is not always good.

He created a profile on Airbnb during the pandemic to tell the world about the remote Arctic Hideaway and allow interested parties to book a stay there.

Having guests’ book through Airbnb has been a relief, according to Håvard. However, he worries about their high expectations.

The Arctic Hideaway's beautiful morning view.
Airbnb

Guests should be prepared for a challenging environment if they want to travel to a remote Arctic island without stores or transportation.

So, he continuously informs guests about what to expect when staying in his towerhouse.

But people still book with The Njalla on Airbnb without reading the detailed description and like what they see in the photos, leading to bad reviews.

Arctic Hideaway's upper double room with two beds and a huge window without curtain.
Airbnb

“If guests want designs on their decaf lattes, they should stay home. This is black coffee, rock’ n’ roll,” he said.

Håvard charges roughly $150 per night, which is fair for the experience, and a minimum stay of three, allowing the guests to have a worthwhile visit.

Inside the kitchen house with long table
Airbnb

Moreover, he controls the number of bookings available on Airbnb, so he can accommodate a large group if needed.

Håvard said that Airbnb introduces him to American culture, which he needs to learn more about since he is from Northern Europe, adding that while most of his guests are Europeans, more Americans are returning to his towerhouse.

The Arctic Hideaway's sauna
Airbnb

Meanwhile, Håvard does not live on the island full-time, so he employed someone to help run the property.

“I’m here between May and September, and everyone who works as a caretaker or host at the village needs to develop their role here. I’m also building my skills as a host, leader, and person,” he said.

“Since opening, the meetings here have been incredible — with artists of all kinds being able to collaborate in this space.”

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