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Archive for the ‘Architecture’ Category

Sunday turned out to be a perfect autumn day in Helsinki.  It was cool, but the sun was shining and the sky was blue.

I began my day in the lovely park beside the Vanha Kirkko, old church.

The rooftop at Stockmann. They say if you can’t get it at Stockmann you don’t need it.

The park in Esplanadi never disappoints.

Havis Amanda smiling as usual.

I took the ferry to Suomenlinna, the old military island in the harbour. These days it is a lovely green space where people love to walk and have lunch at one of the many pretty cafes and restaurants.

The old bunkers are a reminder of the island’s military past.

Back at the harbour the two headed eagle stands tall.

…and the flame on top of the Russian church shines in the sun.

Time for lunch at El Fant.

Tuomiokirkko is a must see on any visit to Helsinki.

The hanging baskets are still doing well.

The new library is a great place to spend some time.

There is an outdoor terrace which won’t be in use much longer…until next spring.

The harbour in the late afternoon.

See you in November Helsinki, maybe there will be snow.

 

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The fabulous Oodi library in Helsinki has won the Public Library of the Year Award.

Oodi was chosen from 16 newly built libraries around the world.

I am not surprised, it is a stunning building and the facilities are excellent.

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I love discovering a new area (for me) in Helsinki. On my last trip to Helsinki I joined some friends who have just moved to the city to explore the area, Eira,  where their apartment is located.

We began our walk at St John’s church.

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Join us for a wander past some stunning architecture.

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We stopped for a coffee at this great market called Moka.

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We pressed on…

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We ended our walk where we began.

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The day was overcast and cool, but Helsinki still looked great. I will be back in Helsinki soon. I am hoping for snow.

 

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Kamppi Chapel is a place to appreciate peace and quiet in the centre of Helsinki. Everyone is welcome to enjoy a moment of contemplation.

Kamppi Chapel

Kamppi Chapel

The chapel was designed by architects Mikko Summanen, Niko Sirola and Kimmo Lintula. It is 11.5 metres tall and it is made of 3 different types of wood. The external walls are spruce and coated in a type of wax. The internal walls are made from alder that was milled into shape. The fittings and internal door of the chapel are made of ash.

Kamppi Chapel

On the day I visited there was a family with young children who jumped about and the parents tried valiantly and in vain to keep them quiet…such is life.

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The Katajanokka area of Helsinki was a headland of the Helsinki peninsular until a small canal was dug across the base in the 19th century, making it an island.
The area is dominated by the Uspenski Cathedral.


If you walk past the Cathedral you will find many fine examples of early 20th century Art Nouveau architecture.
I particularly like the roof lines and the decoration. Here are just a few examples.

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Don’t miss this area if you visit Helsinki. It is within easy walking distance of the main shopping district.

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Parliament House in the Toolo district of Helsinki is an impressive building.

Parliament House Helsinki

It is built in a combination of Neoclassical style and early 20th century  modernism. The exterior is constructed in red Kalvola granite. The facade has 14 columns with Corinthian capitals.

In 1923 there was a competition to choose the location for Parliament House. Arkadiamaki, a hill beside what is now Mannerheimintie, was chosen.

An architectural competition the following year chose the firm of Borg-Siren-Aberg to design the building. Sigfrid Siren Siren (1889 1961) was given the task. Parliament House was constructed between 1926 – 1931 and was inaugurated on March 7 1931.

Guided tours are arranged on Saturdays at 11.00 & 12.30. Sundays 12.00 & 13.30. In July and August also at 14.00 on weekdays.

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The winter weather was perfect for my recent visit to Helsinki. The sky was blue, there was no wind and it was not too cold.

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When I return it will be almost summer. I will see a completely different Helsinki.

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