Appointed purveyor to the Swedish royal family since 1952, Hästens makes luxury beds using time-honoured craftsmanship and natural materials
If there is one thing the pandemic has taught us, nothing is more precious than our health and well-being. That includes a good night’s sleep — something we spend a third of our lives doing. To do this, it is time we started investing in better mattresses to improve the quality of deep sleep — something I have been obsessed with since I got a smartwatch.
According to Fortune Business Insights, the global mattress market is a US$49 billion ($67 billion) industry that continues to grow exponentially. By 2029, the market is projected to hit US$73 billion. The question is — in today’s crowded mattress market with so many brands and technologies — what do you choose that won’t leave you having buyer’s regret? I have test-driven several well-known market leaders, but none made me want to part with my money that badly until I tried Hästens, a luxury bedmaker from Sweden with a 170-year legacy.
Founded by Pehr Adolf Janson in the 1800s, Hästens started as a saddle-making company. In 1852, Janson was decreed by the king of Sweden as a Master Saddler. Alongside saddles and harnesses, his other tasks included crafting the finest horsetail hair mattresses and leather goods.
When automobiles started taking over horse-drawn carriages, the family decided to ditch saddle-making to focus on mattresses. They spent the next millennia working with international sleep experts to create the perfect product that provides the best sleep experience possible.
The fifth-generation family-owned business now makes luxury beds in much the same way as it did a century ago — by hand and by the same family of artisans who only work with eco-certified natural materials, taking up to 350 hours to make just one bed. With this kind of dedication to craftsmanship, it is no wonder Hästens has been the appointed purveyor to the Swedish royal family since 1952.
The secret ingredient is horse hair, spread across many layers within the mattress, along with the finest grade of wool and cotton (the hair is a byproduct and not harvested from live horses). The hair is steamed and permed to give it curly buoyancy. No matter how long you lie on it, the hair will spring back up and not compress. Horse hair is also hypoallergenic, anti-fungal, anti-dust mite, and moisture-wicking.
Supposedly, the weight of a Hästens bed can go up to half a tonne thanks to dense slow-growing Swedish pinewood and durable steel springs individually pocketed in a flax material (to reduce creaking). The layers of the mattress are hand-stitched and hog-tied together without the use of glue or chemical coatings.
What makes Hästens unique — besides its trademark blue-and-white checked print — is that the bed frame forms part of the complete sleep system. At the base of the bed frame, you will find more springs to help with support and weight distribution. When it comes to wood craftsmanship, the brand sets a very high bar with its joinery, with some models using a dovetail method that does not require any nails or screws.
When you lie on a Hästens bed, you immediately feel the plushness of the mattress topper, which cradles you like a cocoon. I felt supported, not sunken and could quickly turn from side to side and get off the bed. I love that the topper is thicker around the edges to keep me cradled in the middle. The springs along the sides of the mattress are also more robust and stiffer to prevent wear and tear. When I tried the 2000T model, an overall bestseller conceived as the bed of the future; my neck felt very supported even when I lay on my side without a pillow.
Although the brand offers a variety of models to suit your preference — differentiated by the number of springs and cushioning layers — every bed is still made-to-order and fully customisable with up to 16 fabric and upholstery choices. Your purchase also comes with a 25-year warranty, including yearly mattress cleaning, flipping and massaging.
With a price range between $30,000 to $800,000, buying a Hästens is a significant investment. But since Sweden consistently ranks in the top 10 world’s happiest countries, this might suggest a favourable return on investment!
Even Canadian rapper Drake loves Hästens, calling it "the bed that lets you float". His home was featured in the Architectural Digest, where he had in his bedroom a Hästens Grand Vividus. Created by world-renowned interior designer Ferris Rafauli, the Grand Vividus marries the designer’s masculine modern style with Hästens heritage to give us a new level of comfort, craftsmanship and luxury. The mattress uses more luxurious horse tail hair, wool, cotton and flax, and slow-growing Swedish pine than has ever gone into a Hästens bed before, giving it an impressive mass of 530 kg. It sits atop a solid base upholstered with leather and accented with suede, polished wood and golden brass detailing.
As the most opulent model ever conceived by Hästens, the Grand Vividus sings to the tune of $800,000. Launched in 2020, the bed made its debut in Singapore early this month and has already seen a few reservations.
The price of a perfect night’s sleep might be steep for some, but not unattainable. If you think about the cost to pay for a car in Singapore (which needs to be scrapped after 10 years), a good quality bed which can last up to 25 years, seems like a much better buy in the long run.
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To truly appreciate the beauty and quality of a Hästens bed, I encourage you to visit its showroom at B1-52 Marina Bay Sands and try the mattress models out for yourself. The store manager will even suggest a lunchtime nap to experience the bed’s benefits fully. Call 6688 7161 to make an appointment.
Launched to commemorate Hästens 170th anniversary, the drēmər bed sports a statement headboard with exquisite velvet panels and side wings