Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka
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Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka Helsinki Reviews
Hotel Katajanokka Jul 12, 2012
I remember when this hotel still was a prison. At that time it seemed to be a quite depressing place, and you couldn’t see anything behind the red brick-walls that surround the building and the jail yard.
In 2002 the prison closed its doors. It was restored and converted to a hotel, which opened its doors in 2007. Today when I walked by, I got curious and decided to go and take a look at the old prison.
They have used the building’s history in a funny way. For example, the restaurant is called Jailbird. All the conference rooms had different names that referred to Finnish criminal jargon words. The staff were all dressed in t-shirts striped in black and white. The t-shirts were for sale, too, just like handcuffs earrings and books about the prison. I saw a statue of the former Finnish war-time President, Risto Ryti, in the hallway. He was once a prisoner here.
I didn’t look at any room, but the hotel was clean and the staff were smiling and friendly. I saw in the brochure that the walls are very thick, so you won’t hear anything from neighboring rooms.
The oldest hotel building in Finland.
Four star hotel
106 rooms (3 with a sauna)
The hotel has a good location; 100 meters from where Viking Line ships come into the harbor and right outside the hotel is a tram stop. With the tram number 4 you get into the city center in 10 minutes.
History and facts:
The prison building is protected by the National Board of Antiquities and Historical Monuments.
The oldest part of the building is 170 years old this year (2012). In 1888 a new county prison was built on Katajanokka. All the prisons built in the late 19th century were based on a similar plan. These mostly red-brick buildings had a Gothic architecture that was meant to look sinister from the outside and depressing in the inside.
The Helsinki County Prison was damaged when Helsinki was bombed in the Continuation War, 1942. There was also a hit with a bomb explosion in February 1944, in which a guard got killed.
Alongside regular prisoners Katajanokka has accommodated also political leaders. After World War II many of the political and military leaders of Finland were sentenced to imprisonment. The most famous prisoners of Katajanokka included the former president of the republic, Risto Ryti, and seven ministers, who were convicted of war crimes.
An interesting tunnel construction, exposed in 1946, shows that the wall between the men’s common space on the 3rd floor and women’s cell no.13 had been broken through. The work had taken a couple of weeks. This simple tunnel was not meant to lead to freedom, but to the adjacent ward, where there were women!
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Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka Overview
The Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka is situated in the heart of the city of Helsinki, and is moments away from the city center and marketplaces. This convenient location places the property a short distance from many of the area’s renowned attractions. The Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka is only 10.6 miles from Helsinki-Vantaa Airport.
One hundred six comfortable rooms and suites are available in the Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka. Each room is equipped with modern facilities in order to ensure each guest is more comfortable during their stay. Specially designed rooms are available for disabled guests.
Guests looking to enjoy a delicious meal in an intimate atmosphere can head to the Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka’s on-site restaurant, which serves international cuisine and refreshing drinks. Business travelers wishing to hold a meeting in the city can make use of the hotel’s conference facilities, which can accommodate up to 130 guests, and can continue their work in the well-appointed business center. After a busy day of working or exploring, guests can work out in the fitness center or head to the spa for a soothing massage.
Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka Amenities