From a metropolis to national parks

The new entrepreneurs of Hotel Pielinen

The lives of Andrei Gusev and Irina Guseva were transformed about one year ago, as they moved from St. Petersburg to Lieksa to take over the ownership of Hotel Pielinen. Their story goes back to a summer three years ago, when they were vacationing in the national parks of Finland. After arriving in North Karelia, they ended up staying at the Hotel Pielinen.

– We wanted to take a break in the wild, because the noise of a big city can be exhausting. We were very fond of the hotel and its surrounding area. When the current owner told us that the hotel was up for sale, we thought that this was a great opportunity to transform our lives and do something new, says Gusev, who used to work for one of the largest banks in Russia.

Having lived in the largest cities in Russia for most of their lives, namely Moscow and St. Petersburg, Andrei Gusev and Irina Guseva have been getting used to a new country and the quiet of the countryside for the past year.

– We have started to learn Finnish, but it’s a pretty tough language, Laughs Gusev. The couple fell in love with the nature travel opportunities surrounding the hotel and hostel that make up Hotel Pielinen, and for good reason. The business is situated right next to lake Pielinen, in between the Koli and Patvinsuo national parks. There are other wonderful nature sites within 70 kilometres of the hotel as well, such as the Ruunaa rapids and the Kolvananuuro gorge.

– This is a good place from where to visit all these other places, says Guseva. There is plenty to do at the hotel as well, such as swimming, going to the sauna or gym, or playing ping-pong and billiards.

– We want to make the hotel even better for our guests by coming up with interesting activities. So far, we have also renovated half of the rooms, mentions Gusev.

Piia Juntunen

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