One of the most ambitious reconstructions of our time

Gunnebo’s orangery is being reconstructed in its original location. The project work is based on the interpretation and study of the architect Wilhelm Carlberg’s original drawings and watercolours from that time, historical research and information derived from archaeological digs.

After being acquired by the city of Mölndal in 1949 Gunnebo’s original appearance has been gradually reconstructed and the aim is to restore Gunnebo to how it would have looked around the year 1800. The orangery is an important part of the whole 18th century experience at Gunnebo, both as an architectural highlight and as the corner stone of the culture surrounding exotic plants back then. The finished building will look like and be used as the old orangery was 200 years ago.


An important part of the work in reconstructing Gunnebo’s orangery is preserving knowledge of cultural heritage conservation crafts and educating a new generation of craftspeople. Cultural heritage management organisations have become aware of a shortage of skilled workers in traditional building crafts on a national as well as an international level. The teaching at Gunnebo’s orangery is run in association with Region Västra Götaland, the University of Gothenburg, craft colleges, consultants, entrepreneurs and authorities, and the reconstruction provides work experience in the crafts used in re-building and supports young craftspeople specialising in, amongst other things, timber framing,  joinery, stucco, masonry and tiled stove making.


The reconstruction of the orangery started in December 2013. The timber framework was erected the following year and a roof truss party was held in September. The grotto in the northern corner pavilion was constructed during 2015. During the time of the Hall family this room was an exclusive chamber for gatherings. Tiled floors were laid in the three orangery rooms in 2016 and in 2017 three tiled stoves were made. When the building framework had settled completely the exterior horizontal panels were fixed, and eventually also the interior vertical panels. The window glass, mouth-blown in four different shades of green and partially leaded, was manufactured in 2017. The work to fit the panes commenced in 2018 and is still going on. The inauguration of the building is planned for 2022 when the rest of the extensive remaining decor has been made.

You can contribute by buying an enamel pine cone pin badge in the shop at Gunnebo, where all the proceeds go to the project. The pine cone was a common symbol of neoclassicism.


You can see a film about the timbermen’s work on the orangery on YouTube. Click here to get directly to the film (opens in a new window).


You’re welcome to visit the building site with a guide. See the calendar for current tour times. Groups can book their own guide via tel. +46 (0)31-334 16 00.