Helsinki’s Design Museum demonstrates why Scandinavian creativity is internationally admired for its sleek lines, compelling colours and functional beauty. The permanent collection of some 75,000 objects, 40,000 drawings and 100,000 images reveals the best of Finnish design, ranging from beautifully constructed everyday items to artistic innovation and experimentation.
Designmuseo, Korkeavuorenkatu 23, 00130 Helsinki, +358 (0)9 622 0540
This former speakeasy offers a sophisticated and historic setting for Helsinki’s artistic and literary community. Popular delicacies served in the opulent marble interior include vorschmack with duchess potatoes, herring à la russe, fried Baltic herrings with mashed potatoes, Moscow-style chicken and a Koskenkorva vodka cocktail.
Restaurant Kosmos, Kalevankatu 3, 00100 Helsinki, +358 (0)9 647 255
Few household items represent Finland’s design sensibility like the curvaceous coloured glass collection designed by Alvar Aalto. First crafted by the legendary designer in 1937 for Iittala, these gorgeous, wave-like vases, bowls and glasses are iconic. They’re just part of Iittala’s wide range of beautiful houseware.
Iittala, Pohjoisesplanadi 25, 00100 Helsinki, +358 (0)204 393501
DO: STOCKMANN ACADEMIC BOOKSTORE
This world-class academic bookshop includes an Alvar Aalto-designed café, where scholars can browse the rare art and design books while sipping coffee. Designed in 1966, the airy, bright interior includes a piazza lit by geometric skylights inside a stunning copper façade. Inside, the wide selection of books creates the impression of a bustling library rather than a shop.
Stockmann Academic Bookstore, Keskuskatu 1, 00101 Helsinki, +358 (0)9 12141