Renovation of Finlandia Hall is progressing. The most significant of the upcoming
modernisations is the opening of the northern part of the building to the public, which
will bring new service concepts for tourists and locals. During the renovations, Little
Finlandia has attracted media attention at home and abroad, and well over 120,000
customers have visited over a period of ten months. Now the popular event venue is
seeking an extension.
Finlandia Hall will open to the public in early 2025 when its spectacular, renovated facilities will open for concerts and events. The renovations will mean an improvement to the building’s energy efficiency and the accessibility of the facilities. The building will
also have a larger kitchen, which will enable even better restaurant services. Once the work is complete, the northern part of Finlandia Hall will open to the public. A luxury Finlandia Experience concept will be created in the northern part of the building,
comprising a wine café, design shop, an immersive exhibition, and unique accommodation. The facilities previously used by the Helsinki city orchestra will be entirely repurposed to house an experimental exhibition showcasing Finland, Alvar Aalto’s works, and the history of Finlandia Hall. Ateljé Sotamaa is responsible for the design of the exhibition, which will open in summer 2025. As part of the Finlandia Experience concept, two apartments in the northern section of Finlandia Hall which were previously used to house employees, and later as office facilities, will be opened as tourist accommodation. Other new services include Finlandia Lounge, a high-end bar and restaurant that can be leased for private functions by event organisers on weekdays and will serve as a public bistro on weekends.
The terrace hall, which was last used as conference facilities, will be given new life as a wine café and a design shop. Its expansive terrace boasts fantastic views over Töölönlahti. The new wine café will open in 2025 and offer a different setting and menu than the popular Finlandia Cafe&Wine café in Little Finlandia.
The new living room for locals and unique event venue Little Finlandia is
seeking an extension
The hope is that the locals’ living room and new event venue Little Finland can continue to operate alongside the familiar Finlandia Hall. Last year was a great success for Little Finlandia. The new Finlandia Cafe&Wine wine café saw three times more customers than it had hoped for, and the original 12-month turnover target was exceeded in just ten months. Little Finlandia has already hosted 400 parties, conferences, international congresses, galas, concerts, and public events. Finlandia Hall has sought an extension from the City of Helsinki for popular Little Finlandia. There is demand for the event venue, and it is only increased by Finland’s chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation (OSCE) in Europe in 2025. OSCE’s 50th anniversary celebrations will be held in Helsinki.
“Helsinki lacks versatile and adaptable event venues. Last year was a fantastic success, which indicates how the event industry has recovered since the pandemic. Demand for Little Finlandia has exceeded all expectations. Bookings for this year are excellent, and we have a truly interesting range of current events in store. The success of the wine café shows that we need also need experience-based services for consumers and tourists. The renovated Finlandia Hall will also meet this demand,” says Johanna Tolonen, CEO of Finlandia Hall.
Sustainability and a distinct food philosophy are at the core of Little Finlandia
Behind its successful year is consistent work on the many details of the event venue. With the opening of Little Finlandia, restaurant operations were taken over by Finlandia Hall itself, with successful results. Little Finlandia’s food philosophy and gastronomy draw on Finland’s rich culinary traditions while boldly creating new dishes. The menu contains dishes made with peak seasonal ingredients locally sourced from Finnish producers. The food products vary by season and are often served in a surprising way. The cornerstone of sustainability in the kitchen is reducing food waste, which has achieved significant results due to an overhaul of conference catering. Plated dishes are not only delicious, but they are attractive and reduce food waste by 65 per cent. Customers feedback has been excellent. The event centre is more than just beautiful wooden architecture. It conceals within it a public art gallery with free admission. Finlandia Galleria contains changing, curated exhibitions from Finnish artists or about Finnish history. For example, portraits of Hollywood movie stars will be exhibited in May. Additionally, the walls of the event centre
are adorned with top Finnish works from HAM’s collection, by artists such as Elina Brotherus and Tamara Piilola.
– Finlandia Hall is undergoing renovations. The new and improved Finlandia Hall will
open to the public in early 2025.
– The northern part of the building will open to the public with modernised service
– The main building of Finlandia Hall, which was designed by Alvar Aalto, was
completed in 1971 and its congress wing followed in 1975. The building was
extended with the Veranda space in 2011.
– No renovation of this scale has previously been carried out.
– The renovation client and building owner is the City of Helsinki, whose Urban
Environment Division is responsible for implementation and development.
– Teemu Tuomi and Arkkitehdit NRT Oy are the principal designer for the
renovations, and Skanska is the contractor.