29 AUGUST 2007

Queen Sonja and King Harald of Norway had every reason to look proud as they posed outside their lovingly restored summer residence which has taken six years and cost over £15 million to complete. Located on Oslo's Bygdoy peninsula, the mansion - which dates back to 1733 and was the late King Olav's favourite residence - is just one of several properties the couple have been renovating.

Images of the interior of the picturesque white villa offer a revealing insight into the royals' interior design taste. While there are some impressive chandeliers, oil paintings and antique furniture on display, overall it is surprisingly restrained by regal standards. The main impression is of simple Nordic style with wooden floors and comfy textiles. And there's not a hint of marble in sight in the shower room, for example, which has been kept purely functional.

Proving they're in tune with the times the couple have opted for several modern art works in the dining room - probably a reflection of the Queen's interest in art and design.

The largest and most expensive restoration project, though, has been the Royal Palace in Oslo - which attracted controversy in Norway after the remodelling bill was reported to have reached over £42.5 million. Money has also been spent updating the official residence of Crown Prince Haakon and his family at Skaugum in Asker, west of Oslo.

Photo: ©
Queen Sonja, who recently celebrated her 70th birthday, and her husband have shared a glimpse inside their summer residence after restoration work on it completed last FridayPhoto: © RexClick on photos for gallery
Photo: ©
While the interior design as a whole reflects a simple Scandinavian style, the mansion's light and airy main salon is filled with impressive oil paintings, chandeliers and antique furniturePhoto: © Rex
Photo: ©
A prettily decorated guest room features a crisp blue and white colour scheme, painted wooden floors and comfy, but not overly luxurious, furnishingsPhoto: © Rex
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