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#HelsinkiSecret Residence – A great year behind and a thrilling one ahead

At Helsinki Marketing Ltd we want to share our love for Helsinki with the rest of the world. Helsinki is already in our hearts as an amazing and vivid city in which to live, and we want other people to get that feeling too. The field we are active in is extremely wide, and we function at multiple levels within the city’s marketing operations. At Helsinki Marketing we work tirelessly throughout the year, helping to organise congresses, arranging media and familiarisation trips for travel agents, and producing events such as Lux Helsinki and Helsinki Day. We want people to know that Helsinki really is a great city in which to work, study and invest.

In recent years blogs have become an extremely popular way for people to read about lifestyle and travel, so it is no surprise that blogs have also become an important media outlet for global travel marketing. Blog cooperation has changed from traditional media visits to trips where bloggers get to know the city at their own pace. This was the inspiration behind the #HelsinkiSecret Residence.

(video)©Lauri Hassi

The #HelsinkiSecret Residence was launched at the beginning of January 2016 for bloggers to enable them to “live like a local” and for us to generate a flow of interesting, personalised social media content to use in our marketing. Since then, almost on a weekly basis, the project has brought talented and quality bloggers, instagrammers, freelance journalists and other new media professionals from all over the world to experience Helsinki in their own way.

We offer guests a residency of 3 to 6 days at a Marimekko-designed apartment at Aallonkoti in the heart of Helsinki. We also provide a food bag with local goods, public transport passes and Pelago bicycles to use during their stay. In addition, we provide all our guests with a Helsinki Survival Kit that contains suggestions for great experiences, restaurants, museums and a lot more to make sure that they can get the most out of their visit. Of course, our guests do not have to use their survival kits; they are free to plan their own week without the pressure of having to run from one place to another.

The #HelsinkiSecret Residence project has been a great success so far, having reached 75 million people already during the first nine months of 2016. Most residents have been extremely active and have generated amazing content about Helsinki. We are delighted with the feedback we have received so far and even more excited about what is yet to come next year.

I could go on and on in glowing terms about the #HelsinkiSecret Residence, but I think it’s fitting that we should let our guests speak for themselves:

Staying in Helsinki during Midsummer showed us again how fruitful and mind opening traveling can be, especially in the Finnish capital. The city of Helsinki feels safe, free and in balance with nature. On the lookout for a place not far from Western Europe with tolerable warm summer temperatures? Our new place to be to recharge our batteries: Helsinki.

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Karl Krause & Daan Colijn were our guests in July and also took part in Pride 2016 and the Euro Games. You can read more about Karl & Daan’s stay at the #HelsinkiSecret Residence here.

As a chef, I can tell you that Helsinki has absolutely grown by leaps and bounds in a foodie way. What used to be a culinary desert in terms of foodie oriented, has now become a culinary oasis for Finland with a blossoming food scene. New Nordic cuisine is a hot food trend in the culinary world, and I’m glad to say that Helsinki now offers visitors some tasteful opportunity to experience it, too.

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You can read more about Franco Lania’s #HelsinkiSecret Residency and his culinary experiences here.

And while you can’t really ignore the more well-known tourist attractions in Finland, I did my best to see what else this metropolis had to offer beyond saunas and reindeer soup – because trust me, there is SO much more to Helsinki that what you might imagine. I spent my days wandering around the different neighborhoods, following my nose wherever it led me (thank you stretch leggings!) and peeping inside every cute cafe and colorful shop I could find (thank you FinnAir extra baggage allowance).

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Liz Carlson from New Zealand visited the #HelsinkiSecret Residence last March. Read 10 things that surprised Liz in Helsinki here.

I hope you guys enjoy your time at NBE, fall in love with Helsinki and come back for the #HelsinkiSecret Residence! You can apply here. See you in January!

Psst… to get into the Helsinki mood ahead of time, check out MyHelsinki.