WeeGee & Moms

Last Saturday we visited the WeeGee exhibition centre in Espoo to see the civil war in Espoo exhibition at the Espoo City Museum, KAMU. The exhibition was very interesting. We also took a look at the Futuro house, which I had wanted to see for some time but it was rather disappointing and I wasn’t even able to get a picture of the house even though I tried. This time we didn’t visit the exhibitions of Emma (Espoo museum of modern art). On the way to the exhibition centre we jumped off the metro at Koivusaari to check out the only metro station in the world located under the sea and that houses Finland’s longest escalator 76,2 meters.

Civil war exhibition
Civil war exhibition
By J-P Kärnä [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, from Wikimedia Commons
Inside the Futuro house

Back in Helsinki, we decided to stop by a rooftop terrace at Restaurant Loiste for a refreshing drink. Unbelievably this was our first time for terrace drinks this summer, somehow there just hasn’t been the opportunity until now. Then we took the train to Kauniainen where we had an early dinner at Moms. This is now our closest bar/restaurant where we had lunch once but never before tried the a la carte menu. I had Ceasar salad with crayfish and hubby had a turkey sandwich with grilled turkey, focaccia, chili mayonnaise, mozzarella and rocket pesto. The food was really tasty and made with high-quality ingredients. We will definitely go back here for dinner.

View from Loiste rooftop terrace

HAM, Salve & Clarion Sky Room

This Saturday we headed into Helsinki to check out the Modern Life exhibit at Helsinki Art Museum (HAM) as the exhibit was closing on Sunday. The Modern Life! – Finnish Modernism and the International Dimension exhibit showcased highlights of architecture, design, visual art and photography that contributed to the construction of a modern and international Finland between 1917 and 1968.

After an interesting tour of the museum we had planned on heading to Bar Runar at hotel F6 for drinks but after walking to the hotel we realized the bar would not open until 4 p.m. which I could have seen on their webpage had I bothered to check. I did snap a few pictures of the courtyard, however. We will definitely head back to Runar for cocktails some other time during opening hours.

We were heading to Salve, an old sailor’s hangout that has been operating since 1897 but that quite recently moved to new premises, for an early dinner. So we decided to walk there and stop at a bar on the way. However, as it was July and Finland is practically closed and apparently no one needs or wants a drink before 4 pm we could not find an open bar on the way. This meant we simply went to Salve and had some food. I chose the fish hash with smoked salmon, prawns, tuna fish, onion, potato, dill and egg yolk and hubby opted for Salve’s special with a breaded pork schnitzel, fried egg, sausage, choron sauce and fried potatoes. The food was tasty and the portions were huge, I barely ate half of mine.

As I still wanted a cocktail we decided to walk to the Clarion hotel just across the dock basin from where we had dinner. This hotel that opened in October 2016 has a rooftop bar called the Sky Room on the 16th floor. We stepped into the hotel and I immediately liked the lobby with huge windows opening up to the sea. Then we headed to the elevator that took us up to the 16th floor that also hosts a rooftop pool & terrace. We peaked into the pool area and I absolutely want to come spend a night at the hotel and enjoy the facilities. The Sky Room bar had a nice vibe, excellent views and tasty but pricy drinks. As the bar was quite full I could not really take any pictures of the views.

The Clarion
Lobby. Picture from booking.com
A Rhubarpickle and a Napue & tonic
Sky Room at night. Picture from http://www.nordicchoicehotels.fi
View from elevator

Cultural Saturday

I wanted to do something fun and different on Saturday. As we both have the museum card, which provides free entrance to 250 museums I decided to plan the day’s activities around museums. The plan was to hop in the car and drive to some neighboring towns to check out a few museums and then have a bite to eat before heading home.

Our first stop was the Birthplace of Aleksis Kivi. Aleksis Kivi (Stenvall), Finland’s national writer was born in the village of Palojoki in Nurmijärvi on 10 October 1834. The house where Aleksis Kivi lived was built in 1824 by his father Erik Stenvall. The landscapes and people of Nurmijärvi had a profound impact on Kivi’s writing. The museum is furnished as a historic 19th century home and some of the objects currently displayed in the museum are originally from the Stenvall house. Right across the road from the museum is the Taaborinvuori Museum Area so we also popped up there. The museum area houses small rural dwellings of a farm worker, a crofter a cobbler and a blacksmith and depict everyday life of Nurmijärvi in the late 19th and early 20th century.

From Nurmijärvi, we headed to Järvenpää and the artist community that sprung around Lake Tuusula in the late 19th and early 20th century. First we drove along the lake and marveled at the beautiful old houses and then we headed to Ahola. This was the home of the author Juhani Aho and his wife, painter Venny Soldan-Brofeldt from 1897 to 1911.

Out final stop was Ainola, the home of the composer Jean Sibelius and his family from 1904 until the death of Jean in 1957 and Aino in 1969. The timber-built villa was designed by the renowned Finnish architect Lars Sonck. Jean Sibelius and his wife Aino are buried in the garden. Ainola is preserved as it was when Aino Sibelius died in 1969. Ainola comprises four hectares of forest and gardens.

Sauna at Ainola, designed by Aino Sibelius

We planned to have a late lunch in Järvenpää or Tuusula but as it started raining quite heavily as we left Ainola we changed our plan and decided to head back home and go check out restaurant Sandro at Ainoa. We were quite surprised to find that their brunch buffet was still served when we arrived (I could have checked that on their website but didn’t think to do that) and as it was still going on for another half an hour we opted to try it out. It was very nice. Next time we might want to go after 4 pm to get to test out their a’la carte menu.