Villa Sval: The Future of Architecture



State-of-the-art self-build comprises 9,000 metres of Kebony

Kebony Character-Villa Sval-(c)Per Erik Jaeger (37)

Henning Kongshavn Frønsdal, Architect at LINK Arkitektur, one of Scandinavia’s most prestigious architectural firms, has recently completed his own self-build project located on the outskirts of Bergen, Norway. Kebony, a beautiful wood recommended by leading architects, is renowned for its versatility and has been used throughout Villa Sval in a number of different applications including; cladding, decking, window frames and exterior doors. Offering exceptional views of the surrounding landscape, Frønsdal’s inspiring yet simplistic design has gone on to receive widespread television coverage across Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

Historically, strict fire regulations have limited the construction of wooden buildings in densely populated areas. As a result, materials such as concrete and steel have become increasingly common within the industry. However, significant advancements in construction techniques have opened the door for an extensive use of wood in both construction and façades. The Architect, Henning Kongshavn Frønsdal, holds a firm belief that wood is central to the future of architecture; thus when designing his own home, he ensured the natural material was an integral component of the build, comprising 200 tonnes of wood in total. Carefully designed without any waste, all wood offcuts have been skilfully incorporated into either the interior or exterior of the villa.

Upon choosing the exterior timber for Villa Sval, it was important that the wood had the ability to withstand the unpredictable nature of the Norwegian climate. Kebony is proven to keep up well even in extreme climates and subsequently a fitting choice for this property. Despite being a natural material, the wood requires no maintenance beyond normal cleaning, meaning that you do not need to regularly paint or impregnate it. Over time, the wood cladding has adopted a silver-grey patina due to sun and rain, enabling the villa to blend seamlessly into the surrounding natural landscape. The striking appearance of Villa Sval was achieved through the installation of 9,000 metres of Kebony wood, used predominantly for the cladding of Frønsdal’s family home.

Developed in Norway, the patented Kebony technology uses an environmentally friendly process which permanently enhances the properties of sustainable softwood with a bio-based liquid derived from agricultural crop waste. With the addition of heat, Kebony wood permanently takes on the attributes of tropical hardwood including high durability, hardness and dimensional stability. Kebony Character was chosen for Villa Sval, underlining the classical Scandinavian style with natural knots and – as the name suggests – character.

Henning Kongshavn Frønsdal, Architect and Owner of Villa Sval, commented: “As a rule, I always choose a material that is best suited to its purpose, the next best thing is never an option. Consequently, I installed 9,000 metres of Kebony and I couldn’t be happier with the final outcome. The reaction to Villa Sval has been immensely positive and I am thrilled that it has helped to inspire and motivate others who are keen to take on their own self-build project.”

Mette Valen, Sales Manager Norway at Kebony added: “The team at Kebony is honoured to have been involved in the completion of Villa Sval. Frønsdal’s innovative design showcases Kebony’s advantages as a construction material and we are immensely proud that he has continued to work with our wood for more than ten years. Villa Sval is a truly exceptional project which successfully demonstrates the potential for wood in the construction industry.”


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