The Swedish town of Sätra Brunn is selling for US$7 million (AU$10 million), so time to look around for some loose change.
It’s not usually possible to buy an entire village, but Sätra Brunn is an exception as it’s an artificially constructed spa town, built in the 18th century as a health resort.
The town has since become a real village, complete with a church, a school and a hotel, and has a bottling operation to market its own local spring water.
But its 15 local residents are struggling because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and now they’re looking for an adventurous (and rich) soul to take the village off their hands.
Sätra Brunn is located in Vastmanland County, just 90 minutes north of Stockholm.
After it was used as a spa town for 320 years, it was bought by its current owners in the early 1990s.
Jonas Martinsson, who is handling the sale for Christie’s International Real Estate, says the group of 15 local residents were “happy amateurs with some education and experience, but not a lot. They wanted to buy it and preserve it so it wasn’t cut up”.
The group have lovingly maintained the 62-acre village of more than 70 buildings for nearly 30 years.
They’ve also built up a program of regular events and celebrations, including an annual Midsummer party which attracts around 6000 visitors.
Now, however, “they’re getting up in age a bit and they feel like it’s time for someone else to take the lead,” Mr Martinsson told CNN.
Aside from the hotel, the deconsecrated church and the preschool educating 40 local children, there is a conference centre, a restaurant, and a spa with a pool, gym and sauna.
“It’s a very complex structure that developed throughout the years,” Mr Martinsson said. It’s been centuries in the making and “no one can build this type of village in a couple of years.”
Aside from the 62 acres of village proper, the offering includes an additional 84 acres of forested landscape, ripe for development.
The current owners “put in a lot of hours here, but what they did is they preserved the possibility for someone to take it to the next level,” Mr Martinsson says.
The coronavirus pandemic has made this a uniquely difficult time for property markets everywhere, so Christie’s International Real Estate has extended the window for bids from its original deadline of May 31, 2020, to a more realistic August 16.
There have already been a couple of bids and a huge amount of interest.
The village currently functions as a summer getaway for Scandi travellers and locals. Considering winter temperatures can reach minus 10 Celsius or lower, insulation would need to be added to some buildings in order to make it year-round accommodation.
There would be opportunities to get subsidies from Swedish preservation groups to assist in the refurbishment of the historic buildings, Mr Martinssen said, and the forested acres beyond allow the option to add some modern development too.
Originally published as Entire Swedish village for sale for $10M