• Photographer: Hoffers Eugen 1865—1870
    Helsinki City Museum

    Photographer: Hoffers Eugen 1865—1870 Helsingin kaupunginmuseo


The Lampa House has an exciting history both as a home for a wealthy family and the birthplace of Stockmann, as well as a brothel and a passport office.

1817 A landmark for the merchant family
Merchant Johan Lampa had the beautiful Lampa house built in the corner of Pohjoisesplanadi and Helenankatu as a home for his family. The house was kept in the family for 100 years. Johan Lampa used four rooms downstairs for his shop. In addition, the house had a hall and three other living rooms. The second and the third floor had rooms for both his family and servants, whereas the kitchens and the dining rooms were located in a wing on Helenankatu.

1835 The kingdom of animals
Helenankatu got an expantion with two stalls, two carriage shacks, a barn and waste rooms. Above them were three chambers, a hayloft and lavatories.

1859 Business premises of Nuutajärvi
The Nuutajärvi glass factory started its activities in the Lampa house.

1862 The first Stockmann

The first Stockmann branch was established on the ground floor of the Lampa house, as the premises were let to German-born merchant Georg Franz Stockmann. Stockmann continued its business until 1880, when it moved to the Kiseleff house.

1910 Vivid hotel life
Hotel Continental was established in the Lampa house and later turned into a brothel. The activities were wound up by the authorities.

1920 Sonck’s signature design
The classicist architect Lars Sonck designed the doors of the current facade towards the Market Square and the irongate on Helenankatu.

1935 Passports and jail committals
The Lampa house was bought up by the city of Helsinki. A passport office was set up in the building and in 1946 the rooms downstairs were turned into cells.

1967 Office exchanges
The Real Estate Department of Helsinki moved into Lampa house.

2008 A hotel that never opened
The building was bought up by Kari Management Company with the purpose of building it into a hotel. However, the company went bankrupt and Hotel Helena never came to be.

2012 A new blooming era for the Lampa house
When Hartwall Capital bought the Lampa house, it had been empty for four years. The company renovated it and the top floors were built into offices.

2013 The Olo years
Restaurant Olo started its business in the historical building. The restaurant, which was established in 2006, moved from Kasarmitori to Kauppatori Market Square. Prior to moving, the house was under construction for one and a half years. The worn out walls, floors and ceilings were completely renewed. However, it was also important to maintain the history of the house. During the renovation process e.g. old well-preserved boards were utilized. The beautiful arched domes and preserved frescos were also left where they are today.

Source: Helsinki City Museum