Monday, February 11, 2013

Sweden House


.... Or "Sveden House" if you prefer. I've seen it spelled both ways.

 The postcard I found above is one of the few bits of ephemera I could come across anywhere online. I remember the place having the fireplace and unusual decor that made me feel like I was in a castle or something. Was it really this over the top? 

I think of this place every so often and wish I could go there and eat and eat and eat until I become physically ill, like I did my junior year of highschool. Our class won some kind of sweepsakes put on by the company that made our class rings and the prize was having our whole class bussed out to Sveden House in Grand Rapids. I am pretty sure it was the one on 28th St. 
I went to school out in a little town in the cornfields so this was kind of a big deal, getting to come to the metropolis of Grand Rapids and feast at this place. 

Sveden House restaurants were in Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin
Besides the one on 28th St. I believe there was another on Plainfield. It's been so long since the last time I went, I really can't remember the quality of the food but I'm guessing I wasn't old enough to be too picky.

I went looking to see if there were any of these restraunts still left anywhere. I would seriously get some people together and road-trip out of state if need be to dine at Sveden House once more.  Alas, the most info I could find was for one in Livonia on a few different restaurant listing/review sites. The one and only review is dated 2005. I am guessing that it can't have stayed open much longer after that year. Google street view shows a depressing-looking plaza with abandoned buildings.

The only other info I could find about it was that the owner of the chain, Keith Maxwell passed away in 2011 at age 88.

After finding most traces of Sveden House erased from existence, I was happy to score this on ebay...

With the "w" spelling." That Valkyrie is kinda hot.
So goodbye forever, Sweden (Sveden) House. I'll kinda miss you. The Schnitzelbank as well, now that I think of it.

17 comments:

  1. We used to go to the one that was on Plainfield after church on Sundays. It was so magical to me as a child. My grandma would smuggle home the meatballs in her purse.

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  2. When I was a kid in the 70's, I used to go to the Sveden House on Plainfield Ave NE with my family. I remember it being the only buffet -style place in town (that I knew of). The food was good, and I remember the Swedish meatballs and other meats being smothered in creamy tomato sauce, and being delicious.

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  3. My family used to go to the one on Telegraph (US24) in Redford Township MI when I was a kid. It closed in the early 90's and is now a Salvation Army store.

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  4. My parents liked it and I'm sure I would today, too, but when we were 4-8 years old my sister and I weren't thrilled with it. We'd get excited about going "out to eat" until we heard we were going to the Sweden House. We wanted burgers and fries, not "the same food we get at home." :-)

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  5. My family and I often went to the one on Plainfield in GR. I remember the tasty meatballs. And for some reason the candied carrots and tuna salad stand out in my mind. Today the building is a thrift store.

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  6. Where exactly is the thrift store where it use to be?

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  7. I grew up in Muskegon and we would eat at the one on 28th street, this was 1974-1979. I loved the meatballs and bread pudding! Everything there was good.

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  8. Thanks for the memories. My father was Floyd Robinson who was equal partners with Keith Maxwell in all of the Sveden Houses in the 60's and 70's. They owned restaurants in Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin. In the late 80's and 90's Maxwell left the business and Robinson and his two sons (David and Randy)took over and opened many more Sveden Houses. The last store was closed in 2006. The good news is that Robinson's grand children have come up with a retro design featuring the great things from the past, but done smaller and trendier. They are now looking for capitol. How great would it be to have baked chicken, svedeish meatballs, bread pudding, pineapple fritters, and glorified rice? It could be coming soon.

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    1. Hi. As a teenager in the mid 80's, my first job was at the Sweden House in Dearborn heights behind the Wendy's restaurant. My evening manager was David Robinson. He was really cool and once took me for a ride in his black Ford turbo Thunderbird, boy was it fast. Used to joke with Randy on days when he'd come in and do some work.(hope he got better). Their father Floyd was very nice and looked so wealthy in his suits. All these years later I've often wondered about you guys and the other guys and ladies I worked with. Boy would it be cool if there was a list to look everyone up on Facebook. Anyway, I just wanted to thank you guys for being a happy moment in my life.

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  9. We used to go to the one in Kalmazoo, I have a friend traveling there today I told him to find it :/ I didn't know it was closed R.I.P. Sveden house

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  10. We used to go to the one in Kalmazoo, I have a friend traveling there today I told him to find it :/ I didn't know it was closed R.I.P. Sveden house

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  11. My family and I used to go to the Sweden House on Lee Road in Orlando occasionally when I was a young man. I remember being very excited whenever we'd go there because it wasn't McDonald's, Burger King, or Burger Chef & Jeff. It was a real treat! I remember all of the awesome chicken, beef, and seafood. I sure miss the place. Don Ripley Jr, Sanford, Fl.

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  12. We used to go to the Sweden House in the 1970's. It was located on Rt. 7 in Boardman, OH, about a mile south of the Southern Park Mall. The building is still there and is now a magistrates office.

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  13. There was one in the Bay City Mall when it opened in 1991. It closed sometime around 2002 or 2003 if I remember correctly.

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  14. Good memories. We used to go to the one in Maple Heights on Northfield Road. A fond memory was some of the diners trying to get one of 4 booths near the hot food and dessert lines.

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  15. The one in Allen Park was awesome

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