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Pater Noster: Sweden’s Coastal Gem Brings Unrivaled Luxury and Privacy

Accessible only by helicopter or RIB boat, this exclusive boutique hotel is renowned for its unique setting beside a 150-year-old lighthouse and offers a blend of luxury and communal experiences. Share

Situated amidst the rugged beauty of Sweden’s west coast, the Pater Noster hotel is renowned for luxury and seclusion on the small isle of Hamneskär. This exclusive 5-star retreat, once a guiding light for sailors navigating the perilous waters off Sweden, has been transformed into an A-lister hotspot, drawing celebrities and discerning travellers to its remote location. Accessible only by helicopter or a thrilling ride in a RIB boat across the frigid Nordic seas, Pater Noster offers an escape from the mundane and into the arms of a unique communal luxury.

Opened during the tumult of the pandemic, Pater Noster capitalized on a burgeoning desire among Sweden’s elite for an escape that promised both isolation and intimacy. The hotel, named “A home on the horizon,” sits next to a historic 150-year-old lighthouse on an island that is little more than a rugged outcrop in the mouth of Sweden’s serpent head.

Its allure has only grown, reaching across the Atlantic to entice American celebrities with the promise of unparalleled tranquillity and privacy. This shift in its guest demographic was notably influenced by the hotel’s inclusion in the 2021 Oscar goodie bags, offering winners like Glenn Close, Anthony Hopkins, and Gary Oldman a free three-night stay.

The hotel’s design, a labour of love by a former fisherman, elegantly combines retro decor with the raw, natural beauty of its surroundings. With just nine rooms, each priced at approximately $2,000 per night, Pater Noster is an exclusive lodging with a communal experience where guests are encouraged to mingle, share meals, and even brave the ice-cold waters together.

One of the hotel’s signature experiences, the “lobster safari,” transforms the traditional survivalist endeavour into a culinary adventure in search of the “black gold” of the sea. For guests preferring to stay on land, foraging for seaweed with marine biologist and chef Johan Bernesteen offers an immersive experience of the local marine life. This educational venture culminates in a cooking session where guests learn to prepare and savour the harvested seaweed, described as having flavours reminiscent of white truffle and Piedmonte.

The communal dinners at Pater Noster are an integral part of the guest experience, designed to foster connections among travellers. Set against the backdrop of the former lighthouse’s wine cellar, these gatherings begin with a selection of fine wines, ranging from French champagnes to Oregon Chardonnays, accompanied by freshly shucked oysters. The meal then transitions to a communal table where guests can enjoy a meticulously prepared five-course dinner, featuring the finest local seafood and sweet desserts, all while business talk is gently discouraged in favour of more personal exchanges.

Pater Noster was brought to life by four local entrepreneurs, each with a deep connection to the sea. Their collective vision was to create a home away from home that honoured the island’s maritime history while providing a luxurious escape. The hotel’s rooms, each with its unique design, and the shared spaces adorned with vintage and antique furnishings reflect this vision. The hotel’s unique approach to luxury is perhaps best exemplified by its communal bathroom concept, shared among guests in the main house, adding an only-in-Sweden twist to luxury.

Pater Noster: Sweden’s Coastal Gem Brings Unrivaled Luxury and Privacy

Beyond its exquisite accommodations and engaging activities, Pater Noster offers a powerful experience that contrasts traditional vacationing. From the harrowing journey to Hamneskär, reminiscent of the ancient mariners’ trials, to the tranquil moments spent in the sauna or around the communal table, a stay at Pater Noster is more than a retreat—it’s an immersion into a lifestyle where the luxury of simplicity and the richness of community blends seamlessly.

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