Scandinavian lifestyle garden at RHS Hampton

‘The Viking Friluftsliv Garden’, designed by Will Williams, featuring in the Show Garden category at the 2021 RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival, (6th to 11th July 2021) is set to inspire show-goers with a sense of Scandinavian lifestyle.

The garden’s sponsors Viking (who are also headline sponsors of the show for the fifth year) have turned to designer Will once again after collaboration in the 2019 Gold Medal winning ‘Lagom Garden’. In keeping with the cruise line’s Nordic roots, ‘The Viking Friluftsliv Garden‘ incorporates the clean, elegant design principles that Viking is known for.

Friluftsliv, pronounced free-loofts-liv, translates to ‘open-air living’ and is an amalgamation of the Norwegian words for free, air and life. The expression is often used to describe the sense of wellbeing and the spiritual and physical benefits of spending time outdoors.

It features an outdoor kitchen, exterior fire place and plunge pool with a design incorporating a range of plants of different sizes and textures and a pine border – a first for the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival.

Wendy Atkin-Smith, Managing Director of Viking UK, said: “Viking shares the RHS’ passion for innovation and creativity so we are very pleased to be supporting the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival again for the fifth year, especially as everyone is looking forward in eager anticipation to outdoor events this summer.  The festival offers a fantastic day out full of inspiration for gardening enthusiasts in the spectacular setting of Hampton Court Palace.  The theme for this year’s show – ‘Gardening for Everyone’ – is in keeping with our inclusive approach at Viking.”

Will (pictured above) was awarded RHS Young Designer of the Year in 2018 and became the youngest designer ever to create a garden within the Show Garden category at RHS Hampton Court in 2019. Since graduating from the London College of Garden Design, he has built up a successful garden design practice winning contracts for commercial and residential projects across the UK and overseas. He points out that the Viking brand is synonymous with excellence, comfort and understated elegance and that his design for the garden reflects that ethos as well as embodying the Scandinavian concept of ‘Friluftsliv’.

Since our successful collaboration in 2019, I travelled with Viking on one of their ocean cruises and I was able to experience first-hand the simplicity and functionality of Scandinavian design,” says Will.  “The design of the outdoor furniture and kitchen in the Viking garden reflects the minimalist, elegant style of their ships as well as their use of natural materials.  I have created a garden where nature meets contemporary design, a space where people can relax and recharge, socialise and make new friends.  My goal is for visitors to be inspired to create their own open-air living garden and to spend more time outdoors,” he continued.

The garden will use a neutral palette with pops of colour throughout. Trees will provide the backbone and simple geometry will run throughout the garden. The design will showcase what can be achieved in a small space.

We wish Will and the team well for the forthcoming show. For more information and to purchase tickets for RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival, please visit:

Images strictly ©Will Williams