Lietsu – It feels like home!

The enchanting story of Lietsu

Day was dawning deep in the Karelian woods, when word started to spread. From a tree branch to another it went, flowing in the brooks, even paused for a moment on a bear’s paw. It sounded like a poem, recited in cosy cottages, in the white northern nights. That word reached me, on a summer’s evening, being whispered by the wind on Lake Ladoga.

They called it Lietsu, the laughter that sounds like flowing water, a young mind dreaming of faraway adventures. And when the sun was setting, I returned home where I listened to my mother’s tales, singing me to sleep. Yet I felt restless, longing for a place to call my own, looking for somewhere to rest my soul.

They talked about a town by the river, its market place and people. There, there was Lietsu to be! In a lively town by the whirling waters. I settled there, and found my place. I opened my home to visitors, prepared tasty food while the sauna was heating.

I share my joy and my home with weary wonderers and lay out a delicious spread. Leave your worries at the door – I doubt they’ll still be there the next morning!

You’re always welcome here! The old and the young, to rest or to work. To enjoy peace and quiet or good company. Whichever way you like it, you’ll always feel at home. Here you can be yourself.

You’ll always feel at home. Here you can be yourself.

Lietsu Hotel – When dreams become reality

Imagine two international experts with a passion for travel and Karelian culture. This, combined with a dream of new and meaningful way of livin, was the start of a hotel full of character and charm.

Maria, with roots in the south-east of Finland, had gradually worked her way further north via Kuusankoski and Lappeenranta to Joensuu. Originally with a master’s degree in Paper Technology, this analytical and outgoing woman is now the Manager of Lietsu Hotel. She worked in international R&D for many years but gradually the idea of running a hotel felt more and more appealing. As she explains:

– My values and priorities evolved over the years and I started to look for work that matches them better.

The idea of the hotel developed gradually. As a first step, Maria started to rent a spare room to tourists in her home.

– International contacts have been a natural part of my life. I wanted to bring this aspect to our home.

Maria felt it was important to offer her guests a good perspective of Finland and the local North Karelian lifestyle. She found that tourists often lacked genuine contact with the surrounding culture.

The idea of combining cosy and homely surroundings with high quality services started to take shape.

When two top floors of the old Post House in the centre of Joensuu became available, it was time to find a suitable business partner.

– It had to be someone that I could trust and who shares my values. Helena was an obvious choice really. So, I jokingly asked her whether she’d like to start a hotel with me.

The idea was about to become reality. As Helena recalls:

– It was a perfect combination – a great business partner, a brilliant idea and the right timing.

Both women were keen travellers with internationally focused jobs. Helena had even chosen her field of study with international possibilities in mind.

– Having grown up on a farm, travelling to faraway places was like a dream. My biology teacher suggested me to study natural sciences and told me that the field offered plenty of opportunities for going abroad.

With a master’s degree in Biology and a doctoral thesis on the way, international projects occupied Helena full-time. Still, North Karelia remained Helena’s favourite place in the world. She explains her motivation for setting up Lietsu Hotel:

– The more you travel, the more you value your home region. During recent years, I have actively worked to promote the vitality of the region and Karelian culture.

Becoming an entrepreneur was an easy choice for energetic and active Helena. She laughs happily:

– At Lietsu, I can combine my values and desire to promote North Karelian culture and hospitality. It’s a perfect match!

Hospitality Locality Originality Responsibility

Our values are incorporated into everything we do