Hello everyone! Our research week is almost over and the whole team is working hard to start around many different projects. Even though we have been visiting many different companies and establishments there is one place in Salo that we couldn’t miss, and we bring it here for you today: the mall!
Kauppakeskus Plaza is located in the city center and is filled with establishments of all kinds. We have talked to as many owners as we could to get an idea of how the market works here, and we want to share the most important shops we discovered with you. If you have information about more and want them to appear on our blog, we will be glad to receive your comments!
- Pentik: it is a shop that sells furniture and varied decoration for both indoors and outdoors. It opened 25 years ago and its athmosphere is quiet and calm. Their star products are those made with Finnish ceramics, which are produced by the brand Pentik itself. As a complement for their decoration and textiles (such as sheets for beds or cushions), they sell some delicatessen like jellies, coffees, candies, honeys, teas and other delicacies. If you want to wash your home’s look, this is the place to go to.
- Cantina Antonio: this is a fantastic Mexican restaurant on the second floor of the mall. It is part of the same business as the cafe in front of it, the italian restaurant on the first floor and several other establishments. It opened in 1992 and provides exotic Mexican tastes combined with a very nice styling of the place itself. If you can go with your friends or as a nice family evening, you won’t be disappointed with its charming staff and its delicious food.
- Instrumentarium: it is a glasses shop that sells frames and the glasses itselves. Open since 2007, it is part of a chain with more than 100 establishments all over Finland. There are two of them here in Salo, and they offer a wide variety of different brand such as Tommy Hilfiger, Gucci or Ray-Ban. Its usual customers are adults who are looking for the best possible pair of glasses, as their aim is to create the perfect glasses for each one of us.
- BikBok: this young woman clothes shop is on the second floor of the mall and its staff is nice and warm. The chain started in 1983, and opened in Salo two years ago. It is formed by 33 shops in Finland and many in other countries like Sweden, Austria, Germany, Denmark and Norway. Their prices are rather average than high, and they count with a special “environmental collection” made with low environmental costs, which adds a lot of value to its products. They are designed in Norway, and when looking for nice accessories or casual clothes it is a great shop to go to.
- Kauppakeskus: bookstore and toy shop. It’s a great opportunity to buy a special book for your beloved ones or to get a fun present for your youngest relatives. For this reason the busiest season is Christmas, but it is open throughout the whole year and they will be willing to help you find the best present at any moment.
- Cubus: this is a Finnish fashion store which we visited in order to learn more about the likes and trends in here. We found out that here in Salo people go more for a comfy clothing style, while in the big citites like Helsinki fashion is more important and their shops are very similar to the ones we have in Spain. However, in here they offer a wide range of items which can fit people of all tastes and fashion likes.
- Sinooperi: this arts & crafts establishment could leave you speechless. It is full of different items that could be used both for a prom party and a child’s first birthday, and its stuff responded in such a kind and joyful way to our desire to know more. They shared with us the whole process of getting providers and setting up the store last October, becoming the 11th of its kind in Finland. Its philosophy, “good prices, nothing better” couldn’t be nicer to hear for anyone whose intention is to buy something there. It’s a must!
- Luon Taistuntija: it opened in 1992 and has since then provided customers with products that are natural, good to the environment and healthy. These can be used for medicines, to prepare herb infusions and for a thousand more reasons that they’ll be glad to share with you. The range of products goes from vitamins, minerals, trace elements, fatty acids, etc. to homeopathy and cosmetics, always keeping an eye on the wellness of the customer, as their ideal is “Always do the best. help the customer, don’t just sell”. If you felt that wan’t enough, they also offer aromatherapy massages, energy care therapies (where you could recharge your energy) and homepathic therapy!
- Suomalainen: if you are a book lover, this is the right place for you. It has been in Salo since the 80’s, and even though they changed location in 2006 its spirit is intact: they want to sell books happily, and so they show when you ask them for advice. They have also drawing material available, so this little shop can feel like a blessing for art lovers in several of its forms. They also told us about some nice traditions such as having a book written for a specific day and gifting it to anyone buyins something on that day. Go visit them and live a thousand different stories!
This seems like a lot of information doesn’t it? Well, we didn’t stop there! Around the mall there are several places that we found quite interesting as well, and this post wouldn’t be complete without them. Have a walk through the city center of Salo and these are some of the things you will find.
- Yliopiston Apteekki: it is a pharmacy with natural beauty products. We were surprised to discover the huge percentage of people who buy these natural cosmetics, and they can even be found at the supermarket because of how trendy they have become. They take much care of its packaging and its quality, which makes their products valuable and trustworthy. According to them, one of the best Finnish brands right now is “Ego”, which has its own shop in Helsinki.
- Café Maku: as coffee is one of the most consumed prices in Finland, you wouldn’t be surprised to discover this amazing coffee shop right at the center of Salo. Since 2012 they have set up a wonderful shop for a reason that couldn’t be more fair: they love coffee! What makes it so good? Its table service and its establishment with a kids area, a reading zone and free wifi. Their philosophy? “Calm, sit down and enjoy.” Want more? They also offer different kinds of food, like sandwiches. They are all lactose and gluten free products. The best thing? They offer live music (jazz and blues) while having a relaxing cup of coffee. If you ever can’t find us, look for us in here.
- Salon kaupunginkirjasto: this is a beautiful local library which is placed right in front of the mall. It has been there for around 105 years, and it provides a huge range of genres, styles and sizes of books. You can also get DVDs and movies from it if you felt like it, as their service is completely free. Apart from the charm of the cafeteria they are about to open, it has a cute children zone where there is storytelling for kids every saturday, and once a month there are readers who tell a story for adults who just want to sit down, relax and knit for a while. Don’t miss the chance of sitting with a nice book on your lap and losing yourself between its letters.
- Rikala: throughout the week this nice establishment serves as a restaurant, but on saturday nights it becomes one of the most appreciated discos to party without a break. Some of its different rooms could be rented for events or private parties, and if you just feel like having some fun you can go there and enjoy its different music styles while having a more than affordable drink. And for when a couple of them have gone in already, there is also a fun karaoke inside!
Now you might be surprised to discover there are many more interesting things in Salo than you thought at first, but don’t worry, you’ll have a lot of time to internalize all this information. Feel free to ask about any of this places and we encourage you to visit them and leave us your comments on your thought.
Let’s keep it up! See you in our next post!