While driving towards the center of the Norwegian town, Porsgrunn, you can see a glimpse of this magnificent building just beyond the trees. The villa has a manorial that is witness to another time, and it sparks your curiousity as to what is inside of this great building. Mona Stenseth Erlandsen and her husband Marius Erlandsen are the new owners of this villa, and they are currently in the process of renovating Villa Frednes.
Villa Frednes was designed by architect Haldor Larsen Bøvre for the wealthy
ship-owner Jørgen Christian Knudsen. The building was listed in 1905 in the style
of neo-renaissance and is richly decorated with Corinthian columns. Both the exterior
and the interior reflect the personality of the villas first owner. The exterior was built
in massive stone and brick, with the décor of ships and rough weather, and the
interior with drawings on the ceiling of the God of the sea: Poseidon. The villa served
various functions for several years as a navy school, banquet room, restaurant, and
culture centre, etc. Villa Frednes has now entered a renovating phase.
Mona and Marius are skilled people with a good sense of the history of the villa.
Both flooring and colour have been selected in the spirit of how they would like to
bring forth the new Villa Frednes.
Photo: Mona Stenseth Erlandsen
CLASSIC AND TIMELESS FLOORING
For both Mona and Marius, it was important that the flooring should reflect the
history of Villa Frednes, and the couple had initially thought of using a patterned
hardwood floor for their kitchen and living room.
“Even before we had the layout, we already thought of a patterned hardwood floor in
the kitchen. We thought of several different variations that would remind us of the
ship owner’s heyday, and what kind of flooring they used at that time; preferably a
bit magnificent. It is not exactly rare to see herringbone in European villas, so for us
this was a natural first choice. It is classic, timeless, and a witness of steady taste and
quality - that can last through generations. Flooring that is trending right now was not
an option for this house.”
Photo: Mona Stenseth Erlandsen
They decided to go for Oak Basic, which is a patterned hardwood floor in a natural
“I have ALWAYS dreamed about having a beautiful herringbone floor in a room in
my house. Having a floor with such a nice structure, is like having nice furniture - this
is what makes the difference. It is so beautiful on its own, that I almost don’t want to
bring in our couch.”
Mona and Marius wanted Norwegian production and quality. They wanted a classic
floor, but the colour choice was also important for the villa.
“Boen was our first choice when it came to quality and the desire for Norwegian
production. We wanted a more classic and long-term solution, where we could install
a large kitchen island, as well as walk on the floor without that “hollow” sound that can
occur on floating parquet. We also really liked the classic and timeless look of
“Oak Basic”, which is both warm, balmy and has more contrast than some of the more
modern floors that are on the market today. This was the right variant we felt was most
classic, timeless and still maintained a ship owner’s style. If the ship owner himself had
chosen flooring in 1920, we feel that he would have selected Boen’s Oak Basic
You can read more about Villa Frednes here: Villa Frednes