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A City’s Living Room

By Linda Tancs

Many libraries are cherished meeting places, but in Helsinki, Finland, they’ve taken it to a new level. Billed as a living room for residents, Oodi is a relatively new library in the heart of the city. A third of its space is reserved for books. So what, you may wonder, is the rest used for? Well, there’s a cinema. And a recording studio. And a photography and video studio. Work spaces. Meeting rooms. A children’s playground. If you’d like to just sit down with a good book and a ubiquitous cup of Finnish coffee (they do, after all, consume the most coffee in the world per capita), then you can head to Book Heaven on the top floor. Both guided and self-guided tours are available.


To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

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