Espoo to rent out Oittaa camping site for development into high-quality sustainable destination

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Espoo to rent out Oittaa camping site for development into high-quality sustainable destination

The Oittaa camping site is located in the immediate vicinity of the popular Oittaa recreational area. The recreational area offers various activities throughout the year. Photo: Janne Ketola / Summit Media Oy

The City of Espoo proposes that the Oittaa camping site be rented out to Jotuca Oy for 25 years. The goal of the company is to develop the camping site into one of the most attractive destinations in the Metropolitan Area. Espoo believes that the project will support the long-term development of the Oittaa recreational area in the immediate vicinity of the camping site.

Espoo’s goal is to remain the most sustainable city in Europe, which is why it aims to invest in travel modes that promote low-carbon operations.

Jotuca aims to turn Oittaa into a notable glamping (‘glamorous camping’) site and an appealing destination for sustainable tourism that will also attract visitors from outside Finland. ‘Glamping’ involves tents with all modern commodities that are set up in nature and connected to premium services in the surrounding area.

The Oittaa camping site is at the address Oittaantie 1. The area to be rented out is sized about eight hectares. The area includes a reception building, two maintenance buildings and 29 log cabins. It also has a log sauna and a waste collection point. Some of the City-owned buildings are in poor condition. The leaseholder has the right to demolish buildings that are decrepit or unsuitable for the business.

Focus on low-carbon or zero-carbon options

The Jotuca company is planning to build 20 glamping accommodation units to be used around the year, the first of which should be commissioned as soon as possible. The construction project will consist of two phases. As for the existing cabins, those in good condition will be taken into use, and the structures of the cabins in poorer condition will be used in the construction of the glamping tents, if their condition allows.

As for the caravan parking spaces, some spaces will be repurposed, and a wooden terrace will be built on top of them. In the summer, the terrace will have round tents with double beds and electrical connections inside.

The company seeks to reuse and recycle as much of the existing materials as possible. It will carry out solutions that are as low-emission as possible, or even carbon-neutral, which also suits the City’s goals.

In the next five years, Jotuca plans to build a maintenance and hotel building and facilities for parties, recreation and a restaurant to complement the other operations. The goal is to create a nature-centric tourism centre that the Metropolitan Area is currently lacking.

The company has previous experience of a similar project: the development of the Salmi outdoor area in Vihti. The company is also in charge of running the commercial operations, customer service and outdoor guidance of Haltia Nature Centre in Nuuksio, Espoo.

Oittaa has 100,000 visitors every year

The Oittaa recreational area, by Lake Bodom, attracts 100,000 visitors each year and offers activities around the year. From early winter to late spring, visitors have access to varying skiing tracks. In the summer, they can swim, cycle, roller ski and play disc golf. Families with children are especially keen on the Angry Birds playground. The area also includes café and restaurant services and rentable venues.

Both Oittaa and the nearby Nuuksio National Park have great potential for nature-centric tourism.

The Oittaa camping site has not been in active use since 2019.

Espoo sought a new operator for the camping site through a registration and negotiation process in autumn 2021. The City received eight applications in total, among which Jotuca came closest to the criteria set.

Espoo City Board’s Business and Competitiveness Subcommittee will discuss the matter of renting the camping site in its meeting on Monday 28 March.


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