That’s the best option if you’re traveling to Helsinki with someone and are looking for something nice and typically Finnish. This chain has a peculiarity: everything is self-service and you won’t meet the staff, even though there’s a phone at the entrance that you can use in case of emergency. To enter the room, you must have a personal code that works for the entrance door, the elevator and your room. You receive it at 8:00 am and it is valid from 16:00 (check-in time) until 12:00 on check-out day.
I stayed at the Omena Hotel in the city center, at Yrjönkatu. Helsinki is a rather small city, so you easily reach the major attractions from here.
PROS: If you want things to be smooth, without long waits at reception desks, then this is one of the positive aspects. Another thing that is amazing is that being so close to the center, you can wake up late and still manage to catch the train to the airport. Restaurants, cafés, pubs, and the shopping mall surround the building so that you don’t have to walk for miles and miles to have Finnish korvapuusti and kahvi.
CONS: If you’re looking for a place where you can meet people, then it might be hard to do so unless you go to a karaoke night. Another small detail is the absence of a luggage deposit, but if you plan your itinerary carefully, then you don’t even need it. In case it is absolutely necessary to store your backpack, then you can leave it at the railway station. Click here for more information.
FACILITIES: Rooms are well equipped. Free wi-fi works properly, you have clean sheets and towels and a flat-screen tv. If you’re planning to have breakfast or a quick lunch in your room, then you can use the fridge to store your stuff, a microwave to heat up your meal from Alepa (a few steps away, on the lowest floor in FORUM shopping center) and a kettle to boil water for coffee or tea. I stayed here in Autumn so coffee and tea were essential for my nervous system and they come in mono-portion bags along with creamer and sugar.
BREAKFAST (refers only to the Omena at Yrjönkatu, for breakfast options for other hotels of the same chain, please check the official website): for 5,60€ you get to eat so much food to start your day in Helsinki. Breakfast is served at the Café Picnic Forum Kukontori at shopping center Forum across the street from the hotel (1-2 minutes walk). The breakfast includes a breakfast roll with ham or cheese, yogurt, juice and coffee or tea.