A lush sea of blossoms all year round, a park with a stock of trees over 150 years old, the Baroque glamour of the castle and church, with a Mediterranean flair – that is Mainau, the Flower Island in Lake Constance.
Count Lennart Bernadotte († 2004), the great grandson of Grand Duke Frederick I and Lord of Mainau, redesigned the overgrown park into a paradise of flowers and plants, and made the island accessible to the public. Countess Sonja Bernadotte († 2008), the Managing Director of Mainau GmbH for decades, continued to run the business according to the ideas of her husband. In 1974, Countess Sonja and Count Lennart incorporated the whole island into Mainau GmbH, whose main shareholder is the charitable Lennart-Bernadotte-Stiftung (Lennart Bernadotte Foundation).
Today, Countess Bettina Bernadotte and Count Björn Bernadotte are at the head of the company. The fourth generation of Bernadotte's after Count Lennart strives to continue the philosophy developed and well-grounded since 1932, and maintain and continually recreate an oasis of natural beauty, harmony and relaxation for visitors from all over the world. Mainau guests can spend a few hours enjoying the favourable climate and beautiful uniqueness of the Flower Island in Lake Constance. It’s the perfect place to unwind and take a relaxing break from daily stress and our highly technical world.
Enjoying nature is her hobby: Countess Bettina Bernadotte, born in 1974, has been the Managing Director of Mainau GmbH since 1 January 2007, and would like the visitors to the Flower Island in Lake Constance to find relaxation through intensive contact with nature. The qualified tourism business economist is involved with many voluntary activities. Since 2008, she has been the President of the board of trustees for the conferences of the Nobel Prize winners in Lindau, an honorary position, in which she succeeds her parents. As the patroness of the “Europa-Miniköche” (EU Mini-Chefs), she has been dedicated to healthy and conscious nutrition for children for many years. In 2013, she initiated the project “Europa-Minigärtner” (EU Mini-Gardeners). Furthermore, she is the chairman of the Mentor-Stiftung Deutschland (Mentor Foundation Germany), member of the board of trustees of Plan International, and member of the supervisory board of the World Heritage Foundation for the Monastic Island of Reichenau.
Countess Bettina Bernadotte is married to Philipp Haug and has three children. Philipp Haug was born in 1972 in Lindau, and grew up on his parent's vineyard. The qualified agricultural engineer is responsible for the experimental vineyard on the island of Mainau, amongst other things, and supports Mainau GmbH in all matters of ecological further development. Philipp Haug works as a volunteer on the board of directors of the Europäisches KulturForum Mainau e.V. association, and at Europa-Minigärtner.
Forest and nature are his space for regeneration: Count Björn Bernadotte, born in 1975, has been Managing Director of Mainau GmbH since 2011. Before that, he completed a degree in social education in Rorschach (Switzerland), alongside a commercial education. He uses the knowledge that he gained from this in his work as Managing Director of Mainau GmbH, and in the course of his work for the charitable Lennart Bernadotte Foundation. Count Björn Bernadotte got engaged to Sandra Angerer, an Austrian who grew up in Switzerland, on his 33rd birthday. On 7 May 2009, the couple married on the island of Mainau, where they live together today.
Countess Sandra Bernadotte, born in 1977, has worked at “Gärtnern für Alle” (Gardening for All) on the island of Mainau since 2006. In the field of Pro Integration, this charitable organisation prepares young people with learning difficulties for starting working life, and offers practical nature education in the area of Green School. Countess Bernadotte opened the “Café Vergissmeinnicht” with the participants of the vocational preparation training scheme Pro Integration. The social education worker also does a lot of voluntary work. Amongst other things she is a member of the foundation board for the Swiss organisation for children and young people “Pro Juventute”, patroness of the Hospice Association of Constance, and member of the board of directors of the Princess Kira of Prussia Foundation.
Designing gardens is her passion: Countess Catherina Ruffing Bernadotte of Wisborg, born in 1977, completed a degree in landscape architecture at the Weihenstephan University of Applied Sciences. She has been self-employed since May 2006, and provides analyses, planning and implementation when designing gardens. Furthermore she is the publisher of the interactive online specialist dictionary hortipedia.com. Countess Catherina Ruffing Bernadotte of Wisborg has been married to Romuald Ruffing since July 2007.
Film and photography fascinate him: Count Christian Bernadotte of Wisborg, born in 1979, studied philosophy and sociology at the University of Constance. In 2001, he published the poetry collection “Alles was bleibt ist Staub und Licht” (All that Remains is Dust and Light) and in 2010 the poetry collection “Von Lichtern und Schatten” (Of Light and Shadow). Count Christian Bernadotte is the co-shareholder of neue artfilm GmbH. It is the successor company to the erstwhile Artfilm of his father, Count Lennart Bernadotte and produces documentary films, especially in the areas of music, history and society. Count Christian Bernadotte works as a volunteer at Europäisches KulturForum Mainau e.V. and the foundation “Singen mit Kindern” (Singing with Children). Since 2010, he has been married to Countess Christine Bernadotte. The couple have a son together.
She found headdresses – especially the most unusual – exciting even as a small girl: Countess Diana Bernadotte, born in 1982, wanted to work in a creative trade, even at a young age. In 2006, the skilled milliner made her passion into a profession, and since then has successfully run her own hat studio in Castle Mainau. Every women’s hat model is a unique, handmade according to her own ideas and designs, but all the hats have one thing in common: a rhinestone as a trade mark. Countess Diana Bernadotte has two children, and has been married to chef Stefan Dedek since 2016.