Location: Saariselkä, Lapland, Finland
In one line, what makes you a PUREist?
Genuine desire to create unique experiences combining nature and culture in my beloved Lapland.
Tell us your story – how did you get where you are today?
I was born and breed in Lapland and always felt that travel industry is my destiny! Already at the age of 16, I started to work as a local guide here in Lapland. I had a dream to explore the world and now I have lived in six countries. Have been very privileged to have worked with destinations like Africa, Hawaii and Greenland, but for couple of years ago slowly but surely grew a desire to work with Lapland and I joined Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort, just 30 minutes away from my hometown! Now I feel that I can use my global experience to develop high-end experience travel segment in Lapland.
Can you share with us your single most life-enriching experience?
For me the nature is very important. I love to go hiking alone in the wilderness, and standing on top of a fell (our round-shaped mountains in Lapland) where you can´t see any trace of human touch and breathing the PURE air is a truly life-enriching experience – feeling the closeness to the nature and complete freedom.
What does the term ‘experiential travel’ mean to you?
For me it means an experience that strong that it makes you forget your everyday life, fills you with joy or excitement and puts a big smile on your face every time you recall that experience.
“I love to go hiking alone in the wilderness… feeling the closeness to the nature and complete freedom.”
Describe your ideal client: how do they approach travel?
Travel with open mind and heart. Curious and respectful for the local culture, people and nature. Willing to share their culture, experiences and joy with locals and fellow travellers.
What made you decide to join PURE Life Experiences and how has doing so benefitted your business?
The coming edition will be the 3rd. I strongly believe that this is a perfect platform for our business. Just two months after our first PURE, we got our first customers originating from new contacts from PURE. To be part of PURE is exciting, motivating and a lot of fun. You get connected with like-minded people from all over the world.
What role do you think PURE has to play in the high-end experiential travel industry?
PURE is truly unique by offering an inspiring platform for global business encounters in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere. I am sure that there is a huge number of contacts which without PURE would have never taken place.
What other brands and companies in high-end experiential travel do you admire the most?
While working in Africa, I got to learn Wilderness Safaris and in my opinion they do a fantastic work with the local communities. Have heard about Hotel Sol y Luna in Peru and how they help the local children with school – would love to see how it works.
If there were one thing you could change about the travel industry, what would it be?
I would love to see our industry to take more responsibility for the impact in the destinations. Help the local people to develop the sustainability and educating the customers to do the same. There are already many PUREist companies doing this, but there is still so much to do.
Finally, who is your experiential hero?
After the inspirational speech I had a privilege to enjoy during the opening day at the PURE 2013, it has to be Lewis Pugh. It was such a beautiful, emotional, funny and encouraging experience. It still gives me thrills, he is such a hero!
“For me (experiential travel) means an experience that strong that it makes you forget your everyday life, fills you with joy or excitement and puts a big smile on your face.”