The little Castle at Laksevåg.
We are very happy to present this beautiful classical summer house to our visitors. In the 1700s, Bergen was a large, busy and rich city. The city’s upper classes adopted trends from the continent and established elaborate, aristocratic homes in the countryside. By 1800 one would find around 70 of these summer houses in the countryside surrounding Bergen, and Damsgård was the most stunning.
Damsgård Country Mansion, as it appears today, was built in the 1770s for General War Commissioner and General Customs Manager Joachim Christian Geelmuyden (1730-1795). Geelmuyden was knighted in 1783, and took the name Gyldenkrant. The house he built at Damsgård is still considered to be a masterpiece of Rococco architecture in wood in Norway, and it is perhaps Europe’s most authentic wooden building from that period.
In 1796 the property was sold to the royal supplier Herman Didrich Janson (1757 - 1822). The Janson family remained at Damsgård until 1983, and for many years the estate was as well known as Jansongården. The Norwegian state and Bergen Kommune entered the picture in 1983 and purchased Damsgård Hovedgård in order to preserve it as a piece of cultural heritage. From 1983 until 1993 the best resources were used to restore, protect and conserve the whole area. Today the building and its surrounds presents itself as a unique example of a Bergen summer house from the 1700s or 1800s.
There is a lot to see and do at Damsgård. You can join a tour which takes you through both the building’s exterior and its rooms in order to discover the property’s history. Or you can concentrate on the garden exhibitions, featuring both the Lord’s and the Lady’s gardens. The gardens are recreated as they may have been in the 1780s and the form, content and operation of the two are well worth attention.
Enjoy the little cafe in the the servants' quarters. It serves pancakes, the farm's cake of the day (often chocolate cake), ice cream, tea, coffee and good old-fashioned currant juice from the garden’s fruits. Some days, the cafe also offers ‘munker’, delicious small apple cakes. In the cafe you will find postcards, brochures and a small selection of books and souvenirs for sale.