Courage, Freedom, Love! in Finland

Helsinki’s iconic Olympic Stadium gets an elegant renovation

The newly renovated Olympic Stadium in Helsinki is delightfully dashing and fantastically functionalist. Beautiful to behold from both the inside and out, the stadium comprises sturdy concrete, curving lines, lovingly manicured lawns and innovative materials. Most of the spaces in the arena have been designed to be multi-functional, making them ideal for sports, events and meetings.

The Olympic Stadium reopened in August 2020 after an uncompromising renovation. The new facilities are spacious and bright, and the quality of workmanship is unparalleled. The result is a landmark that attracts people of all ages and opens up another new perspective on the Finnish capital.

The renovated stadium has effectively doubled in size, as additional space was excavated underground and alongside the original structure. The new Olympic Stadium continues to be Finland’s biggest event arena, a place where people can exercise, compete, entertain and meet friends from around the world.

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Photo: Wellu Hämäläinen

Ruka-Kuusamo invests one million euros in mountain biking

Up with a lift, down by bike. Wilderness calls in the morning, sauna in the evening. The conquest of forest hills begins as soon as you step outside. Ruka-Kuusamo offers the conditions, gear and versatile opportunities for mountain biking in stunning landscapes. Trails and routes for pros and beginners, both challenging and easy-going.

Ruka will be the most versatile mountain biking destination in Finland. The City of Kuusamo invests one million euros in the largest and most versatile mountain biking destination in Finland with the help of the EAFRD (European agricultural fund for rural development). The first Ruka Bike Park trails will open during autumn 2020, and more is under way for the season 2021.

There are already good opportunities for cycling in the Ruka-Kuusamo area, but soon, mountain bikers will enjoy a unique mountain biking infra on a Finnish scale. There are about a dozen new mountain biking and downhill trails and technical training tracks, the first of which were completed during the summer of 2020.

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Photo: Jaakko Posti

Sustainable Travel Finland accredits the first Finnish travel service providers

Visit Finland, the country’s national travel promotion organization, has issued Sustainable Travel Finland (STF) labels to around 30 Finnish travel service companies. This new accreditation program signifies that these companies satisfy Visit Finland’s sustainable travel criteria, which cover economic, ecological, social and cultural sustainability.

The Sustainable Travel Finland (STF) program and label are designed to promote responsible tourism in Finland and allow international travel trade to easily identify sustainable tourism providers. The objectives of sustainable travel support Finland’s key priorities, such as combating climate change and promoting regional economies. Finland’s pursuit of sustainable tourism is based on systematic cooperation between a wide range of tourism operators.

Companies now issued the Sustainable Travel Finland label include various type of accommodation, restaurants, attractions, guided services, tours and activities, travel agencies, transportation company and harbor.

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Photo: Mikko Huotari

New Arctic Hilltop Boutique Hotel Iso-Syöte opens in September

The new Hotel Iso-Syöte is standing grandly on a hilltop in one of the snowiest areas of Finland next to a peaceful national park. Beautiful design rooms, suites and authentic log cabins allow you to choose the type of room you want. Hotel Iso-Syöte is re-opened from 1.9.2020 after the grand fire that happened just couple of days before Christmas 2018.

In the new relaxing spa, all the senses are calmed down and the high-quality panoramic Restaurant Hilltop offers nourishment both for the soul and the body.

In the summer, diverse selection of hiking and biking tracks lead to a remote land of rugged beauty and silence you’ve never heard before.

Hotel Iso-Syöte also offers joyful experiences of a true winter wonderland, such as skiing, snowshoeing, downhill skiing as well as snowmobile, reindeer and husky safaris.

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Photo: Hilltop Hotel Iso-Syöte

Virtual 2nd 6G Wireless Summit 2020 was a success

As the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic and the world began to go into lockdown, the organisers of 2nd 6G Wireless Summit 2020 decided to transform the leading global 6G event to a virtual one – in less than five days. Sharing of 6G visions, research results and challenges could be realised virtually, the organising team in the Finnish 6G Flagship programme concluded.

Attending a virtual event, the more than 400 registered participants could stay safe in their homes or offices while having online access to a total of 161 presentations: 7 keynotes, 37 invited presentations including 20 recorded videos and 10 slide presentations with audio, 75 technical papers including 29 recorded videos and 45 slide presentations with audio, and 42 posters. In addition, the presented papers would gain a wide global audience even before their publication in IEEE Xplore.

The virtual event was launched in the morning of 17 March 2020, as originally planned for the physical event. “It was made possible by a seven-member team including students, technical staff and myself as technical programme committee chair,” said Nandana Rajatheva.

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Courage, Freedom, Love! The Moomins 75 exhibition

This new exhibition opened at the National Museum of Finland in August is a magical journey into the values and philosophy of the Moomins.

The white, hippo-like Moomins are Finnish literature characters created by the much‐loved Swedish‐speaking Finn, writer and artist Tove Jansson in the 1940’s. After the initial success of the comic strips and books, Moomins grew into a world-wide phenomenon through puppet animations, theatre shows and Japanese-style cartoons.

It has already been 75 years since Tove Jansson created the Moomins, but the values espoused by the stories – friendship, love, respect for nature, love of adventure, equality, tolerance, freedom and courage – are still topical and meaningful today.

The Courage, Freedom, Love! exhibition gives visitors space to experience different emotions and ponder the meaning of the Moomin values to oneself and in society. The exhibition is at the same time nostalgic, comforting and delightful. Intended for all ages, as is the case with Tove Jansson’s books, the exhibition can be experienced and interpreted in many ways. It will be open until 28th February 2021.

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Picture: The Finnish Heritage Agency/The National Museum of Finland/Moomin Characters Oy Ltd.

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