Guide / Helsinki
”The small, local entrepreneurs really make the city”
On the best saunas and purposeful old buildings
15 Jan 2021

As the founder and curator of award-winning concept store and gallery Lokal in the heart of Helsinki, Hagelstam breathes Finnish art and design. Since the opening in 2012, she’s curated close to 60 exhibitions at the gallery and various other locations in Finland and abroad. She enjoys nothing more than to provide a platform for a creative community to flourish, all the while promoting sustainable, ethical, and ecological values within the field.

And, she’s the ultimate social animal.

My favorite thing that makes me proud of Helsinki:
The fact that it has a feeling of a small town where you can reach places easily but at the same time has a big cultural scene and variety.

My favorite weekend routine:
Slow breakfast, walking in the close-by nature, a few exhibitions in town, and a coffee with a friend.

My favorite cultural spot:
Oh, so many, but maybe one could be WG, the Emma Museum, where I love how the contemporary art sits well in the industrial sixties building. It also has a very nice bistro, Luminere.

My favorite place for dining out:
It could be Espa for the interior, food, and site, or Sikke’s for a cozy relaxed feeling.

My favorite place for a creative or business meeting:
Walking is a favourite way to have a meeting, but if seated maybe Wintergarden at St. George.


My favorite breakfast place:
Café Engel. An old classic, which has been there for most of my adult life and never changes. The owners’ presence gives a special welcoming feeling.

My favorite city escape:
Maybe one of the saunas, Kulttuurisauna or Kaurilan.

My favorite local entrepreneur or creative I want to promote:
This is a tricky one, as I wish to promote so many of the small, local ones. They really make the city. In The Design District there are many, as well as in former hospital Lapinlahti

My favorite hotel for a staycation: 
I’ve actually never experienced one, but if I would try now, I guess I would go with Hanasaari.

My favorite route for a run or walk: 
My walks mainly go around the area where I live, Laajasalo. But if in town, then it’s around the shoreline from Kaivopuisto to Katajanokka.

My favorite place for fashion:
Samuji is definitely my favourite. 

My favorite space for great design:
That’s tricky. Unless you don’t count Lokal, of course, then it could be the Oodi library.

My favorite example of tech innovation in Helsinki: 
As I’m not a very tech person, I can’t think of any.

My favorite local media (newspaper/magazine/website/social media account):
I just stumbled on something on Instagram that looks very good and promising, BUM Editions.

My favorite thing at home: 
The big kitchen and round table. Under normal circumstances, this is where we all gather, in smaller or bigger groups, but always an enjoyment.

Oodi library
BUM Edition 1