The story about Statholdergaarden
Statholdergaarden was built for the Master of the Mint, Peter Gruner, in 1640. The house was located in the new Kvadraturen section of the city, which was established by Christian IV following the great fire of 1623. The role of Master of the Mint was created from Norway`s three minting offices, and the Master was housed in Christiania in our building. Unfortunately, he did not have much time to enjoy life at Rådhusgaten 11. He died two years after moving in. His son then took over the house and the office.
In 1680, Govern Ulrik Fredrik Gyldenløve rented the house and moved in with his court. There were great festivities in the house, and we have continued these fine traditions in our restaurants. In Danish, Gyldenløve is an honorary title for the recognized, but illegitimate, son of a king. In recognition of his position, Ulrik Fredrik was employed as Governor-General of Norway. He lived in the house until the end of the 1600s. When he left, his son took over the house. He was named Løwendahl and he owned Denmark`s great naval ship, the Løwendahl`s Galley. The Galley was commanded by the Norwegian admiral Tordenskjold, who was at the head of the attack on Sweden and the pride of their navy, the Hvita Ørnen. The ship was sunk off the coast of Kalmar in 1712, making Tordenskjold a national hero in Denmark and Norway. Tordenskjold was a friend of Løwendalh, and he visited Statholdergaarden many times. He was also extremely decadent and demanded that he should be allowed to sleep on the ground floor so that he did not have to climb up the stairs. He had climbed enough ladders on the Galley! The master of the house had to covert two of his smaller rooms for use as Tordenskjold`s bedroom and bathroom. Today we use these rooms as our own small dining rooms.
In 1776, the Calmeyer family took over the house. It was they who created our beautiful plasterwork. The largest and grandest is the Cleopatra Room. This is a corner room, and the ceiling is decorated with Northern Europe`s most impressive plasterwork ceiling. This depicts Cleopatra`s dramatic death as she allows a poisonous snake to bite her breast, whilst her handmaidens look on as shocked witnesses. Old Egyptian figures worked in the style of the time (1760), late baroque to early rococo, surround the ceiling.
On the 26th December 1986, there was a fire in the Cleopatra Room which destroyed parts of the stucco. It was carefully restored and 27 layers of paint were removed. The ceiling was whitewashed once more and now reveals its beautifully clean and precise stuccowork.
Over the years, Statholdergaarden has housed many large, rich families.
In 1914, the skater Axel Paulsen opened the Café Anglais on the ground floor where our restaurant is today. There has been a restaurant at Statholdergaarden almost ever since. The name was changed to Excellent and then to Statholdergaarden in the fifties.
The Stiansen family opened their restaurant on the 1st September 1994 and ran it as a family concern.
In 1998, Statholdergaarden won a Michelin Guide Star, which we are very proud about. Every day, we work to maintain and improve the reputation that we have achieved to ensure the complete satisfaction of our guests and staff.
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