Finavia, Martela, UPM, Fortum, Karelia-Upofloor, and Clear Channel will introduce a lounge concept, called Suvanto, at Helsinki Airport.
The Suvanto concept has been created as a joint World Design Capital Helsinki 2012 project by Finavia and partner companies. It will be a visible part of the Design Capital Year offering at Helsinki Airport all the way to 2013. A total of three Suvanto lounges will be built at the airport.
Suvanto is an oasis comprising work and rest locations, where people can work and relax. Suvanto also provides recharging stations for different electronic devices.
“Our goal has been to create a new kind of passenger service, which is available for everyone and meets the challenges of the changing passenger culture. Finavia’s goal is to further strengthen the position of Helsinki Airport as the leading transit airport in North Europe. Related to this, we continuously carry out development to improve the passenger experience at the airport,” says Marko Tikkanen , director at Finavia.
Suvanto furniture has been designed by Martela’s Main Designer Pekka Toivola in cooperation with Interior Decoration Architect Iiro Viljasen. The furniture is based on Martela’s Largo chair around which the functions of the service concept have been created. ”We are confident that also through the airport and Suvanto, people will get a good idea of the design year,” says Martela’s Design Director Petteri Kolinen. “User-friendliness was the foundation of the Suvanto design,” he says.
A plywood arc, which is made from UPM’s formable UPM Grada plywood and “protects” the person using the chair, is the most striking feature of the furniture. “Implementing form-pressed pieces of this size by traditional means would be very expensive. However, the shaping features of the UPM Grada plywood enabled this at a feasible cost,” says Kaido Kukk, Development Director UPM Plywood.
In practice, every air passenger today carries one or more electronic devices. However, recharging them when flying and visiting world´s airports is not always easy. In fact, one key service of Suvanto is to enable device recharging while working or relaxing. “It is natural for us to cater to the daily power needs of air passengers. It is important that passengers can also recharge their devices at the airport, regardless of whether it is a camera taken on holiday or a work computer used for an important presentation,” says Aki Koskinen, Communication and Marketing Director at Fortum.
Suvanto locations have been comfortably raised onto a flexible floor contrary to the hard floor of the airport, which caters to heavy use. This is a welcome change to tired feet. ”The flexible Karelia Spring floors facilitate recovery and relaxation, enabling refreshing moments while travelling. The modular Spring floors are designed for sports and dance, and in Suvanto, air passengers will now also get to enjoy their good features and award-winning design,” says Kyösti Puurunen R&D and Marketing Director at Karelia-Upofloor.
Not only a passenger service concept, Suvanto has also been a unique cooperative project for the contributing companies. ”Among advertisers, there is an increasing demand for solutions which provide added value and experiences in their environment. It’s great that design across sector boundaries has created such a marketing concept in the airport context,” says Ville Saxén at Clear Channel, who is responsible for advertising at Helsinki Airport.
Finavia’s goal is to continue the Suvanto concept as a permanent element of Helsinki Airport’s passenger services after the Design Capital Year. Expansion of the concept to cover other key airports in Finland is also possible.