Helsinki Airport

Airport Amenity of the Week: Sauna-themed transfer bus

Finland is celebrating 100 years of independence this year and Helsinki airport is part of the party.

In January, the airport opened the Arctic World of Santa Claus space, where visitors can see see and experience Finland in fifteen minutes. In April, a photo exhibition highlighting Finish nature photography was opened.

Now the airport transfer buses are getting make-overs to celebrate Finnish themes.

They’ve started with a sauna-themed bus, a bus dedicated to Finnish national composer Jean Sibelius and one dedicated to Formula 1 car racing, which is evidently also dear to the Finns.

At least two more themed buses are promised.

We’re declaring this the Airport Amenity of the Week.

 

Fashion show on an airport runway? Yes.

Helsinki match made in HEL

A while back, Helsinki Airport and Finnair turned an airport runway into a skatepark.

That worked out so well, they’re doing it again:

On May 24, Finnair and Helsinki Airport (HEL) will host Runway 2 – a fashion show featuring work by top designers from around the world presented on an airport runway.

The event is a Match Made in HEL and will feature the work of yet-to-be announced fashion designers from China, Korea, Japan, the UK, Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

Sounds like great fun. Especially if the planes landing and taking off that day use the other runway…

Quiet please: sleep pods at Helsinki Airport

Helsinki sleep pods

Helsiniki sleep pods

Sleep pods have arrived (again) at Helsinki Airport in Finland.

Back in 2013, the airport ran a test program that included several free rest and relax options.

Travelers favored sleep pods over larger rest areas and that has led to the installation of 19 GoSleep pods at the airport.

Each pod consists of an ergonomic seat that can be turned into a bed. Pillows and blankets are available, carry-on luggage can be stored under the seat and there’s a pull-up cover designed to block out light and noise.

As a bonus – there’s a power plug in each sleep pod for charging phones and laptops.

Sound cozy?

The cost of checking into the sleep pod seems pretty reasonable: 9 Euro per hour – at current exchange rates, about US $10.

Match made in HEL: skateboard at Helsinki Airport

Admit it: even if you’re not a skateboarder, you’ve looked down those long airport corridors and thought about how cool it would be to cover those distances on a skateboard.

Now Finland’s Helsinki Airport is going to give a select few skateboarders that chance. And more.

helsinki_airport_match_made_in_hel_finnair_finavia

As part of a promotion highlighting the airport as a transfer point, on October 12 and 13 Finavia and Finnair are hosting the Match made in HEL skateboarding invitational – which will turn the airport over Finnish professional skateboarder Arto Saari and skateboarders from Asia and Europe.

Want to join them? Skateboarders can apply by sharing their skate videos at matchmadeinHEL.com and four will be chosen.

I’m starting lessons now….

Yoga: now at Chicago’s Midway Int’l Airport

Midway Yoga Room

September is National Yoga Month, which makes it great timing for the Chicago Department of Aviation to open the promised yoga room at Midway International Airport.

Located on Concourse C, Midway’s new yoga room has a sustainable bamboo wood floor, floor to ceiling mirrors on one wall, exercise mats and an area to store personal articles and garments. There are frosted windows on one side of the room to let in natural light and to provide a bit of privacy. There’s also a wall-mounted video monitor showing yoga exercise techniques and nature scenes, all with an audio plays soothing sounds.

Next door to Midway’s yoga room there’s a new room set aside for mothers who’d like some privacy while nursing a baby.

Midway mothers room

But, since it is National Yoga Month, let’s get back to yoga.

Here’s a list of other airports that offer yoga rooms for travelers:


Chicago O’Hare International Airport
-opened in December 2013. You’ll find it on the Mezzanine Level of Terminal 3 Rotunda, near the airport’s urban garden.

San Francisco International Airport has two yoga rooms.
SFO YOGA ROOM

SFO’s Yoga Room in Terminal 2 (which was the world’s first yoga room in an airport) is closed until November 4, 2014 to accommodate a construction project. The airport’s second yoga room, located in Terminal 3, Boarding Area E, remains open.

AT Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, there’s a yoga studio located near Gate D40 in the hallway connecting Terminals B and D.

There’s also a space set aside for yoga at Burlington International Airport in Vermont.

Burlington yoga

At all of these airport yoga studios, soothing ambiance – and mats – are provided.

Meanwhile, at Helsinki Airport in Finland, Finavia’s TravelLab initiative has been testing out a variety of yoga offerings, including a Yoga Gate, yoga lessons and the sale of yoga-related items, including mats and clothes.

The summertime project also surveyed passengers about the whether or not they’d be interested in paying for taking a yoga lesson at the airport. Would you?

Helsinki_Airport_Yoga_Kainuu_TravelLab

(All photos courtesy of the respective airports)