Today a palace but originally a castle, Tidö is one of Sweden’s most beautiful and best preserved palaces from the Age of Greatness when Sweden was one of the largest empires in Europe.
The original castle was most likely built by the Gren family at the end of the 15th Century but the speare side of the family died out already in 1520. Ivar Gren’s daughter sold the estate to Queen Margareta (from the ancient noble family Leijonhufvud). Her husband, Gustav I (Vasa) traded it for Ekolsund in Uppland. Thereby, Göran Tott became its owner. It was inherited by his sister who married Johan Bååt. Their grandchild Anna Bååt, who married the Great Axel Oxenstierna (Lord High Chancellor of Sweden) in 1608, inherited it in 1610. The Oxenstierna family kept it in the family for the coming 200 years. Oxenstierna commissioned the palace that we see today in 1625 and it was completed by 1641. The architects, Simon de la Vallée and Nicodemus Tessin the older, were the very best at this time. It was built in a strict Dutch Renaissance style.
When it eventually was sold in 1840 it passed through the hands of no less than six families in only 49 years before it was acquired by Carl-David von Schinkel in 1890, who also owned the iron works at Axmar, Vifors and Viksjö as well as the entailed estate Vallstanäs and a number of houses in central Stockholm. Indeed, by all means, a very prominent man.
It is still the private home of the von Schinkel family but since 1971 it is open for the public to visit. It is a great joy and indeed very generous of the family to let the public see and experience this fantastic Swedish gem!