This private hospital, founded by doctors, before the public healthcare services were founded, was designed by architect Lars Sonck and completed in 1905. Sonck was one of the minds behind the town plan for the residential garden district of Eira. The hospital – and later the entire area – got its name from mythology: Eir is the Norse goddess of medicine.

With its steep tile roof and varied windows, the oldest part of the building at the corner of Tehtaankatu and Laivurinkatu streets looks more like a villa than a hospital. It is characterised by robustness as well, emphasised by the granite block plinth, boundary walls, motifs on the gate and turret in the courtyard. The art nouveau villa in the neighbouring plot, Villa Johanna from 1906, was designed by architect Selim A. Lindqvist.

The interior of Eira Hospital is not at all suggestive of a hospital, with its lack of long corridors, ornamental decoration on its walls and vaulted ceilings, and wooden furniture designed specifically for the building, all of which make for a cosy atmosphere.

The hospital was extended towards Huvilakatu in 1910 and again in 1931. The two buildings are joined by a connecting corridor running over the Huvilakuja alley. Still serving as a private hospital, the building is both internally and externally a true art nouveau gem.

Source: Art Nouveau in Helsinki – Architectural guide (Helsinki City Museum)

Location

Laivurinkatu 29, Helsinki
60.1577026, 24.9417413

Images

Street façade , Eira Hospital
Street façade , Eira Hospital (© Matti Similä / HKM)
Laivurinkatu street façade, Eira Hospital
Laivurinkatu street façade, Eira Hospital (© Matti Similä / HKM)
Tehtaankatu street façade, Eira Hospital
Tehtaankatu street façade, Eira Hospital (© Matti Similä / HKM)
A detail of the street façade, Eira Hospital
A detail of the street façade, Eira Hospital (© Matti Similä / HKM)
The main entrance photographed in the beginning of the 20th century, Eira Hospital
The main entrance photographed in the beginning of the 20th century, Eira Hospital (© Ivan Timiriasew / HKM)
Eira Hospital photographed in 1906, Eira Hospital
Eira Hospital photographed in 1906, Eira Hospital (© Atelier Apollo / HKM)
The main staircase photographed in 1968, Eira Hospital
The main staircase photographed in 1968, Eira Hospital (© R. Katajisto / HKM)