Story of Isokenkäisten Klubi
Moonlight is the only street light needed at Isokenkäisten Klubi
Isokenkäisten Klubi in Särkiluoma in Kuusamo is a place where it is easy for a visitor to come and stay. Situated only two kilometres from the Russian border, Isokenkäisten Klubi and its hostesses Katja Vira and Sirpa Kämäräinen promise their guests an unforgettable holiday which is characterized by their happy hospitality and the surrounding untouched wilderness. Katja and Sirpa are sisters who want to carry on their parents’ work in the family business. What also motivates them is the surrounding northern wilderness.
We believe in this place, and we want to work here to develop this place even further. We are proud to provide personal service to each of our guests. We know our roots and are happy to tell our guests about life here in North-East Finland. Isokenkäisten Klubi provides accommodation, delicious home-cooked meals, and the best sauna steam in the county in a Seven Star Smoke Sauna. In the middle of this virgin woodland, tourists are met with luxurious natural peace which grows from the good-humoured sisters, forests filled with berries, starry skies and Northern Lights, the crunch of snow under the foot, trees crowned with snow load, hard-crusted snow in spring, midnight sun, and the blue Lake Heikinjärvi. No street lights are needed at Isokenkäisten Klubi: the shine of the moon is enough. Sisterhood is a force which helps us forward.
Our father and mother are still helping as much as they can. They help with chopping wood, picking berries, peeling potatoes, baking pastries and remembering traditional recipes.
According to the guests, the best feature of Isokenkäisten Klubi is its unique quality. You cannot find a similar place anywhere else in the world. With that we both heartily agree!
The story of Isokenkäisten Klubi dates back to 1974, when the girls’ father Aimo Kämäräinen bought Akso Farm. The land he bought had lakeshore, fields and forest. The farm has been designated for tourists since 1990, when the guests of Pesäkolo cottage by Lake Suininkijärvi wanted to do day trips somewhere near in early spring. The guests skied here 10 kilometres cross country, or they were brought here on a snowmobile for a picnic lunch. The following summer the Heilato sauna was built on the shore of Lake Heikinjärvi, and later the Helekuta hut and the smoke sauna were completed.
The first customers were usually people from high ranking positions in Finland, the so-called ’big-shoe people.’ They gave Isokenkäisten Klubi, ‘Club of the Big-Shoe People’, its name.The gentlemen had their meals in the Lappish hut, where food was brought from our home. After bathing in the smoke sauna they went to sleep in the hut or into an army tent, the girls’ mother Sirkka remembers. Soon there was a need for a drying room where the guests’ snowmobiling gear could be dried. That is when the construction of Isokenkäisten Klubi began.
Sirkka and Aimo Kämäräinen ran their tourist business alongside working on their farm. The business was transferred to a family member in 2004, and at the same time the daughters Sirpa Kämäräinen and Katja Vira became principal shareholders of Isokenkäisten Klubi. Since 2006 the sisters have worked full-time in tourism.
The business idea of our company is to provide our customers memorable and comprehensive experiences which will leave them fond memories. The distant location far away from the busy Ruka-Kuusamo holiday resort is an asset to us, as we can offer personalized and individualized service as well as the exotic tranquillity of nature. We utilize our location near Kuntivaara Hill and the Russian border.