Summertime means beach time in a large number of destinations around the world, and though it may come as a surprise to some, eastern Finland is no exception. Located on the sandy shores of Lake Pielinen, easy access to the beach backyard at Break Sokos Hotel Bomba provides the perfect excuse to slow down a bit and soak up some vitamin D.
The hotel lobby has a whimsical sense of design. Next to the front desk, a large moose head, made of wood, hangs above the fireplace. Steps away, modern chairs hang from the ceiling. It’s hard to resist stopping to sit and swing for a bit.
The hotel offers 113 rooms. A majority are considered standard rooms, and located in the main hotel. However, 50 economy rooms are scattered in traditional Karelian Village houses, easily accessible by walking five to 10 minutes along a shady, tree lined path. The village, complete with a lakefront church, is designed to feel like an authentic Karelian Village, but the space is put to good modern use, housing businesses such as tour operators, a restaurant and even playgrounds.
Regardless of where you stay at Break Sokos Hotel Bomba, the Karelian village is a nice place to wander, especially on summer nights where the sun shines bright until nearly midnight.
Rooms in the main hotel are more modern than those in the village. Colorful curtains and bed throws are used to add a fun pop of color. My Standard Twin room had two twin beds (made European-style with a duvet but no top sheet) that could easily be pushed together. Perfect for traveling families, there was also a set of bunk beds built into the wall. When not needed they folded up easily, flush against the wall, freeing up valuable space. The room also had a nice size desk, a small refrigerator, and a sitting area with two chairs and a small table.
The bathroom had one huge sink, but offered limited vanity space, especially for a traveling family. Water from the compact, European-style shower empties into a central drain in the floor, so considered yourself warned, anything left on the floor can and probably will get wet. (There’s no bathtub.) However, the bathroom also boasts a drying cabinet. Similar to a clothes dryer, it heats up, drying items without tumbling them. It’s also idea for warming clothes on Finland’s cold, winter days.
Soap that does double duty as shampoo is provided in a dispenser near the vanity, and inside the shower. Bring your own lotion and hair conditioner if needed. All rooms are non-smoking.
Breakfast, included with every stay, is served at Trattoria Pielinen restaurant, just off the lobby. Along with hot items like oatmeal, eggs, bacon, and sausage, the buffet includes breads, pastries, yogurt and cold cuts. Trattoria Pielinen, specializing in Italian food, serves dinner daily, and both lunch and dinner on Saturday and Sunday. Bomba Restaurant, located in the Karelian Village, is open for dinner from late June until late August.
With Lake Pielinen steps outside the backdoor, going to the beach couldn’t be much easier. Along with swimming, small paddle boats are available to rent, and there’s a small lakefront miniature golf course. Winter activities include cross country skiing, reindeer sleigh rides, and snowmobiling.
Wi-Fi and parking is complimentary. Designated rooms are pet-friendly.
Review and photos by Dana Rebmann. Her stay was hosted by Visit Karelia, but as always her thoughts and opinions are her own.