Are you interested in finding out more about the unique history surrounding the archipelago ships in Stockholm? Stromma’s fleet consists of boats for transportation, fast and modern boats as well as classic archipelago ships. In this part of our blog series you can read all about the history of archipelago ship M/S Waxholm III who was resurrected and return to her former glory.
M/S Waxholm III was built in 1903, going under the name of ”Skärgården” (“The Archipelago”). In 1908 she started running in the northern part of the Stockholm archipelago and the route got extended all the way to Öregrund in 1919.
A ship to preserve
In 1954 captain Birger Gustafsson took command of the ship Waxholm III, and he took pride in keeping the boat looking it’s absolute best and by the 1960’s she might have been the shiniest ship in Stockholm.
M/S Waxholm III former glory days
After being moored for three years the ship was sold to four people who had the idea of turning it in to a café. However, the ceiling height in the kitchen proved difficult. The solution was simply to cut down the middle deck and raise the ceiling. However, the café business did not pick up speed and the ship was sold on and as the years progressed the ship fell further in to disrepair.
Stromma finds a ship in disrepair
The first thoughts of saving M/S Waxholm III was born at Stromma in 1985. However, the former CEO Jan Larsén’s first impression of the ship was not exactly impressive. The ship was dirty, filled with all sorts of junk and the old steam engine had been partly removed and thrown overboard to act as an anchor. The only joy was the upper deck, which was practically untouched.
Project ”Save Waxholm III”
In 1990 it was eventually decided that the ship was to be sold off during an executive auction. Stromma won the bidding, and started an intense renovation project. This included extensive work, such as changing the entire sheet metal around the ship’s body – totalling 189 square metres of new metal.
Unfortunately the original interior had disappeared over the years, so an intense investigation proceeded to document the original features so that the ship could be restored as close to it’s original state as possible. Today M/S Waxholm III is considered ”the classic archipelago ship” by many.
Since the summer of 1994 M/S Waxholm III is back running in the Stockholm archipelago. During the summers you can join the “Thousand Island Cruise” – a full day trip that takes you to three popular, but widely different, archipelago islands. The cruise is guided throughout the day and onboard you are served morning and afternoon coffee, lunch and dinner. The ship’s restaurateurs are Jesper Taube and Maria Svensson. This cruise gets the highest rating from our guests year after year. A true memory for life!
M/S Waxholm III is a popular ship to charter for various events, such as anniversaries, weddings and parties. It sports an elegant dining room with space for around 100 people as well as a smaller dining room for 32 people and two salons. The aft deck is perfect for a welcome drink in the evening!
This is the third instalment in our blog series about Stromma’s classic archipelago ships. We have previously written about our ships M/S Östanå I and M/S Prins Carl Philip.