- Not to be confused with Näs Castle, a ruin on the island of Visingsö, Sweden.
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In the later half of the 19th century Nääs became world-renowned through its Crafts College and for more than 50 years it was regarded as 'Sweden's window to the world'.
The mansion Nääs Castle is to be found on the Nääs estate at Sävelången lake in Västergötland, Sweden, east of Floda, Lerums municipality, Skallsjö parish. Nääs estate is widely renowned for its Crafts education during the late 19th century and the early 20th.
The official spelling for geographical map productions is Näs (KML 1 kap. 4 §).
Nääs Castle and Crafts College
The main building on the cultural heritage site of Nääs estate, Nääs Castle, is now a museum open to the public, daily between May–September (only guided tours) as well as for pre-booked group-appointments outside of the tourist season.
The estate exists of a number of historic buildings open to the public. In addition to a restaurant, café, art & crafts shop and west Sweden’s very own heritage foundation, byggnadsvård Nääs, a range of exciting public events are organized each year (more information and Nääs Castle and Crafts College home page). Art & Crafts courses, though in a far lesser extent, are still practiced in one of the buildings.
The old stable is now home to a horse riding school and Nääs horse association. Beside several nature and walking trails, Nääs estate also provides Bed & Breakfast as well as conference accommodations. During the summer several craft courses are held at the ’Slöjdseminariet’, the crafts college official building.
Nääs Castle and Crafts College is administered and maintained by the August Abrahamsons foundation, a Swedish government administration.
Owners of Nääs Estate
According to legend, Kristian II built a castle for hunting parties at Näs. The first historical evidence on Nääs Estate however, derives from title deeds dated 3 October 1529. The first known owner, Joen Småswen, constructed a large manor on the promontory in Lake Savelången. At the end of the 16th century the estate was owned by the governor of west Sweden, Göran Eriksson Ulfsparre. It was subsequently owned by Ulfsparres family members and the noble families Lilliehöök, Natt och Dag, Cronsköld, Oxenstierna, Göthenstierna, von Utfall and Reenstierna.
1824 the estate was sold to Peter Wilhelm Berg, a wholesaler from Gothenburg. After his death the property was divided between his surviving children (only 3 out of his 10 children survived childhood). Bergs’ son Theodor and his daughter Nensy were allotted Nääs factories (Nääs fabriker). The youngest son, Gottfrid, received the rest of the estate, including the mansion. A memorial stone to the 7 dead brothers and sisters was raised in the Castle gardens at the northern side of the mansion.
In 1868 the mansion and associated land was sold to August Abrahamson, yet another wholesaler from Gothenburg. Abrahamson founded the famous Crafts College and donated the entire property to the State after his death in 1897, in order to secure continuity for the Nääs educational programme.