About Villa Haugen

A unique hotel where all guests are «seen»!

“What a place, this is no doubt a gem. You must experience this in order to understand” (guest at Villa Haugen).

Grøtøy as an old trading post has a history that goes back over 400 years. The residence Villa Haugen, which became a hotel, has a history of more than 100 years. The house was built during the trading post’s heydays and was once Northern Norway’s most expensive building.

From 2018, Villa Haugen has been a hotel and restaurant.


Be the natural choice for guests who focus on tranquillity through good food in beautiful and historic surroundings.


Be a place where guests can relax, enjoy the moment and get a deja vu feeling of coming home.


Guests in focus
True to the history of the place
Be present in the moment
Quality in everything we do Environmentally conscious


Grøtøy was once home to a bustling market brimming with merchants and goods. It was established in 1690 and was the largest centre of commerce in Nordland up to 1923 when it went bankrupt. In 1908 – Villa Haugen was built as a residence for the family that owned an ran the trading post. During World War II Villa Haugen was used as an orphanage.

After the war in 1948 – Villa Haugen was sold, taken down and relocated further north. For 50 years only the foundation of Villa Haugen could be seen at Grøtøy – until 1998 when the house was rebuild based on the original architect drawings found in the National Archives of Norway. Villa Haugen has been the property of the current owners since January 2014. Since then – the property has undergone an upgrading in order to bring about its former grandeur and to turn it into a boutique hotel.

Wikipedia article


The main house
All furniture and fittings express the grandeur and exclusivity of Villa Haugen where the glamorous 1920s come to life. Most of the furniture has
either been procured through international auction houses like Sotheby’s in London or through recognized classic furniture companies like Scappini
and Selva. The intention has been to secure pieces, which recreate the glamour of the era.

On the ground floor of the main house, you will find the hotel’s dining room, its bar and two smaller living rooms. The first floor contains five
bedrooms with 10 beds – all with sea views. Two of the bedrooms have their own balcony. All bedrooms have private bathrooms.

The service building
This building contains the main kitchen and a breakfast/lunch diner. The diner is decorated in a more modern style – and can also be used as a meeting room if desired.

Meeting facilities
These are located in our boathouse. On the ground floor you will find dining and living facilities – including a bathroom with toilet and
shower. On the second floor is the meeting room. Here there is room for about 12-15 people. In the boathouse area there is also a hot tub and sauna.


Villa Haugen is committed to sustainability and social responsibility. We work continuously to reduce emissions, preserve vulnerable natural areas and support the local community through local trade and use of local produce.  The goal is to minimise our environmental footprint.

We have installed a mini treatment plant for cleaning wastewater and thus avoiding pollution to the sea. Residual waste, glass, metal, plastic, etc. are sorted and transported back to the mainland and delivered to a municipal waste facility. Bottles are pledged.

Building activities
All construction activities are carried out “manually” – i.e. we avoid using machinery that entails major environmental disturbances, even if this means that it takes longer time.  

In addition to growing our own vegetables and herbs, we source most of our produce from the local area. We try to our best to support local suppliers and producers – both within agriculture and fishing.

Owners, Unni og John Magne

For many years we had a dream of getting a place somewhere out there where we could run an accommodation and/or a small restaurant. When we bought Villa Haugen as the family’s holiday resort in 2014, we gradually began to realize that this dream could be realized.  In spring 2016 we
decided to make “the leap” and to convert Villa Haugen into an exquisite boutique hotel. We quit our jobs and travelled north. We both knew it wouldn’t be a walk in the park. After all Villa Haugen is quite a large house and it’s located on an island – which doesn’t make things easier if you are to transport goods back and forth. Much of the building materials we have used so far have actually been brought over by use of helicopter.  Other equipment is transported by own boat and carried about 100 meters from its own pier and up to the house. The positive thing is that we are better trained than most people our age and thus have no need to frequent the gym.

Currently, Unni and John Magne take care of all tasks related to running the
hotel and restaurant – i.e. they cook all the food themselves, great all new
guests, do all the cleaning, development and maintenance, etc.

Roles and responsibilities

Unni Johnsen

Managing director
Email: unni@villahaugen.com 
Tel.: +47 454 11 416

John Magne Birkeland

Chairman of the board
Email: john@villahaugen.com
Tel.: +47 913 45 602

Cooperation partners

Rib Steigen / Nordskot Brygge (Sea Sport Center)

Through Rib Steigen we have entered into an agreement where they can provide us with rib charter to and from Bodø and Grøtøy on request in connection with your arrival and departure. If during your stay you would like to see more of the area from sea – Rib Steigen can for instance take you on a tour across Vestfjorden to Lofoten.

For more information – see www.ribsteigen.no


Manshausen is the Norwegian polar explorer Børge Ousland’s place located on a nearby island closer to the mainland. Through Manshausen we can offer different activities like rock climbing, guiding, sea and sail, etc.

For more information – see www.manshausen.no

Naustholmen – Adventure Island

The Adventure Island is Randi Skaugs place – another Norwegian explorer. Through our agreement she can offer you activities like kayaking. The Adventure Island is connected to Grøtøy by a bridge.

For more information – see www.naustholmen.com

Steigen Coastal museum

There is also a coastal museum on the mainland – Nordskot that may be worth a visit. It focuses on the old fishing culture and has several old boats and equipment on display.

For more information – see Facebook (only in Norwegian)

How to get here

How to Get Here (from Bodø heading north):

How to Get Here (from Svolvær heading south):

  • Express boat – leaves from Svolvær centre and takes 2 hours to Nordskot (see –
  • By road – from Svolvær centre its approx 4,5 hours by car/bus to Nordskot (see –
  • By rib charter – from Svolvær centre to Grøtøy approx 35 minutes (see – Rib Steigen)

Distance from the mainland (Nordskot) to Grøtøy:

  • Villa Haugens own boat – approx 5 minutes

Job listings

Prices and conditions

Here is an overview of the standard prices and conditions that apply to Villa Haugen.

For longer stays and for groups larger than 6 people, special prices and conditions apply.

For more information – contact us at post@villahaugen.com.