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Rooms under £100: Helsinki

Scandi style and playful decor inspired by epic tales make the Finnish capital a compelling destination for an autumnal break.

Published 11 Oct 2015, 09:00 BST, Updated 5 Jul 2021, 11:36 BST

01 Klaus K
Design Hotels' only Finnish property, Klaus K feels more like a wonderland than a hotel. The rooms are inspired by the Kalevala, a 19th-century Finnish epic poem, which means palettes of gold, sky blue and burnt reds, reflecting the poem's themes of passion, desire, mysticism and envy; while five 'special rooms' have been curated by top Finnish designers. Rooms from £71. 

02 GLO Hotel Art
Fittingly located near the design district, the weirdly wonderful GLO is a medieval castle-themed Jugendstil (art nouveau) building that's been transformed into a contemporary hotel. Rooms are snug with 'floating' beds and wood panelling, while the lobby and library preserve the original gothic feel, and the breakfast room is in a brick-walled, arched-roof cellar. Rooms from £77. 

03 Scandic Paasi
Scandic by name, not so Scandi by nature — the floors here may be parquet, but the rest of the decor is a riot of clashing colours, prints and textures… and heart-shaped cushions. It's a 15-minute walk to the city centre, but the enormous breakfast buffet will set you up perfectly for the journey, or you could just borrow a bicycle from reception instead. Rooms from £59. 

04 Essexhome
Ignore the somewhat misleading name — this is a lovely clutch of eight apartments in a Jugendstil building on Katajanokka, a tiny island separated from the rest of the city centre by a canal. The flats are spacious, cosy and Scandi-style, with Marimekko-ish prints and parquet floors, and each one has its own well-appointed kitchen, bathroom and wi-fi. Flats from £39. 

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Published in the November 2015 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)

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