Accommodations in Helsinki
December 11, 2012 10:29 AM   Subscribe

Where to stay in Helsinki?

The only asmefi thread I could find about hotels in Helsinki dates back to 2007, so I figure I could use an update.

I'll be in Helsinki for a few days at the end of January. I'm looking for good accomodations (clean, friendly, with a good range of services). Work is covering the cost, but the price would ideally range between 80 to 150 euros. I won't be there long so would like a location that is centrally located, all while offering an easy access to and from the airport (Helsinki Vantaa).

Recommendations as to where to dine and what to see while there are also welcomed.
posted by Milau to Travel & Transportation around Helsinki, Finland (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I stayed in the Hotel Rivoli Jardin when I went. It has a very central, convenient location with shops and restaurants nearby. It does a decent breakfast aimed more at Russian tourists, of whom there were a few in the hotel.

It was clean, unspectacular and functional. And quite brown. No wifi in the rooms but could get some in reception.

I would recommend the Ateljee for an end of evening drink. Pricey, but great view. See also this recent AskMe for dining options.
posted by MuffinMan at 10:45 AM on December 11, 2012

The Omena hotels are pretty good. They're self-service which means that there are no staff there to greet you, but you enter both the hotel and your room with a personally-chose access code. My partner and I stayed in the EErikinkaatu/Eriksgaaten one and it was basic, but inexpensive, and centrally located. The other two in Helsinki are both pretty central too, within about four blocks of each other. On preview, though, I'm remembering that there was no WiFi at the hotel, although there was a nice bar down the street that had free wifi.

If I remember correctly, the best way to get to the airport from downtown Helsinki is by a bus from the central station. It tends a bit on the milk-run side and takes about 35 minutes, but gets you to both terminals without you having to change buses. The page I linked says a taxi will cost about 40-50 euro and take half an hour anyway.

To see, my favourite part was Suomenlinna, a fortress island and UNESCO World Heritage Site just off the coast of Helsinki, which is accessible by ferry from the Market Square/Kauppatori, which was my other favourite part of Helsinki, other than my beloved Marimekko stores.
posted by urbanlenny at 10:53 AM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]

When I lived in Helsinki, my friends who visited stayed at the Omena hotelli chain - they are self service hotels for about 70 euros. They were nothing fancy, but clean and safe and centrally located. All three locations should be within walking distance of the rautatientori (railway square), where you can get the 615 bus to the airport.
posted by Neely O'Hara at 10:55 AM on December 11, 2012

Central Helsinki has a number of good hotels in your price range - so one option would be to choose whichever one has a good offer for the time you are going to be there. But (other than a sauna) they are unlikely to have much that is unique. This is why I would recommend you try the Torni Hotel run by Sokos. The place has the above mentioned Ateljee bar at the top - (where I seemed to keep meeting people who appeared to be spies) - it also has an interesting general history - and even its own set of "knights".
posted by rongorongo at 11:38 AM on December 11, 2012

I stayed at Hotel Fabian in September and loved it. It's a boutique hotel, very comfortable, centrally located, and the concierges are excellent.

Dining: book ahead! I got some great recommendations for Finnish food in this thread - I especially wanted to try Juuri - but I didn't make reservations in time. The restaurants book up much faster than I'm used to in NYC, and Helsinki's such a small city that there aren't a ton of options. We managed to get a last minute seat at the bar for Spis, which was EXCELLENT. I think they have two seatings/night and I highly recommend the "surprise" tasting menu.

You can get wonderful, inexpensive lunches at the market mentioned above. Not sure if the outdoor part would be open in January but I had a couple great casual meals in the indoor market.

Suomenlinna was very cool, both the island itself and the ferry ride. Helsinki's trolley system is very easy to navigate, so if you have a free afternoon you might just try riding it for a couple hours as an inexpensive tour around the various neighborhoods. Not sure how much time you'll have for touristy things, but we thought the 24-hour Helsinki Card was a great deal.

Have fun!
posted by socks are for puppets at 1:08 PM on December 11, 2012

Cumulus Hakaniemi. Cumulus are a Finnish chain, when my parents come to visit me in Finland it's the place they've decided they like the most. It looks very pleasant inside, having the gentle polish of a chain hotel but with some Finnish touches.

Right in the middle of your price range, I'd expect, it's right opposite the penultimate stop for the 615/620 buses from the airport. Opposite the Hakaniemi indoor market (one of three that people have alluded to above). The hotel is convenient for the metro, many tram lines and all the buses that run along Hämeentie into and out of the city centre.

Another choice I would recommend that is less convenient but very nice inside is Sokos Aleksanteri (Sokos are a part of S-group, a large co-operative chain here). However, that's further away and a bit of a hike from the centre if you are arriving by bus from the airport.

And while you are here, you should organise a meetup!

Incidentally, for food, is useful. It's the website every other country wishes it had.
posted by Talkie Toaster at 1:26 PM on December 11, 2012

We stayed in an Omena hotel too. It's walking distance from the centre, train station and ferries (not sure about the airport as we arrived on a boat). I considered booking the hostel on Suomenlinna but I wasn't sure whether a hostel would be right for a couple - however, definitely take the ferry over there, it's a lovely ride.

We didn't get to eat much as my OH got food poisoning, so the only place we got something to eat was the hot-dog place in the station, and supermarkets (things on a Saturday tend to close around 4pm, which is worth knowing). I really really want to go back, though!
posted by mippy at 8:36 AM on December 12, 2012

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