History

The building situated by the Market Square has not always served as the City Hall. It was originally established as Hotel Seurahuone, built back in 1833 when Finland was under Russian rule. The powder blue façade of the City Hall connects with other Empire-style buildings to form the Lion Block, a collection of buildings that are significant in the city’s commerce, governance and history.

 

The interior of the City Hall underwent a complete overhaul during a 1970 renovation spearheaded by the modernist architect Aarno Ruusuvuori. At the end of the 1980s, Ruusuvuori also built a restaurant and a new City Council Chamber in the City Hall block. Today, the Helsinki City Hall is considered an icon of modern Finnish architecture.

1970–1980

Aarno Ruusuvuori designed the modernisations of the City Hall, which were completed in 1970 and 1988. Anitra Lucander was in charge of the colour design. Take a look at the 1970s and 1980s and find out what the modernisations included.

Read more about the 1970s and 1980s

1990–2010

The City Hall underwent a complete renovation in the 1990s, as the building services engineering had reached its end of the road. We present the implementation of the renovation and the breath of fresh air in the 2000s.

Read more about the 1990s, 2000s and 2010s

The Lion Block

The City Hall is part of the Lion Block, which is an important part of the administrative centre of Helsinki. You can get to know the block and its role in the history of the City Hall.

Read more about the Lion block