According to the satellite observations, Hankasalmi is one of the darkest areas in Southern part of Finland, so on bright nights it is worth gazing into the sky: during the winter season, the Northern Lights are seen in Hankasalmi every fourth night on average.

The name Revontuli – which translates to Northern Lights – has its roots in Hankasalmi being part of international northern lights research since 1975. One of the Meteorological Institution’s research stations for detecting northern lights activity is located in Hankasalmi. Besides, there is the Northern Lights research center, Hankasalmi Observatory, which is operated by amateur astronomers. They have got great results on their studies – as the first ones in the world, they are now about to start a big research about the possible sounds of the northern lights. Are the sounds real or not? So far nobody knows for sure… As a guest of Revontuli the Northern Lights Resort, you have one-of-a-kind possibility to get introduced to the operation of the Aurora Borealis research center, Hankasalmi Observatory.

You will find the Aurora Borealis Forecast for Hankasalmi here.


The year was 1993, when Markku Kinnunen saw an auction advertisement – a road motel in Hankasalmi was for sale. Markku’s wife and his three daughters were not too excited about Hanka Motel, but Markku had a good feeling inside. This is it, he thought. Despite of his family’s resistance, Markku bought the motel. Many people didn’t believe in the project – Hanka Motel had an unfortunate history with five former owners, who all had ended up filing for bankruptcy. But Markku believed. He had big visions for the future.

At the time, the Northern Lights research was living its golden age in Hankasalmi. Markku and his family decided to rename the motel after the “Northern Lights mania” – Revontuli. Today, at the time of internalization and the new research of the Northern Lights sounds, the name is more current than ever.

After the first shock, the family has always been Markku’s biggest support through all the entrepreneur years. All of Markku’s three daughters have taken part in Revontuli Resort’s journey. After their studies, two of the daughters chose another career. But Tiia came back to Hankasalmi and stayed.

Tiia had clear plans for her future – after getting her master’s degree, she would get employed to some big, international company – but the life didn’t go as planned. During her studies, Tiia had spent all the summers in Hankasalmi helping his father. In an entrepreneur family, it was obvious for her. Through her intensive involvement, Tiia’s interest in Revontuli and its development deepened. Entrepreneur genes, desire to develop and a courage to open new doors, made Tiia to stay in Hankasalmi.

Markku, Tiia, and their two employees, Aila and Jukka, who has been aboard from the beginning until today, started a fearless concept development – as Markku calls it, “the philosophy of grandeur”. During the first seven years, they enlarged the restaurant, built a whole village of cabins and started the Sauna World project with Smoke Sauna and Virmas Villa. Those were followed by accommodation building Draivi, a full-length golf course, bowling alley and American Diner restaurant.

Today, Tiia has taken the main responsibility of Revontuli Resort. -Tiia has updated the resort to the modern world and opened the doors for international market, Markku says. -Thanks to Tiia, we have more and more people coming from all around the World. I have had all the pleasure and trust to let Tiia take the resort over.

Tiia lives in Hankasalmi with her husband and three children. She is thankful for her parents making this all possible. -My father has been a great role model as an entrepreneur and encouraged to bravely take new steps. And when I make long shifts in the resort, the help of my mother is priceless. She takes our kids to the school and their hobbies, and makes sure they will never get hungry. Without my parents, Revontuli Resort wouldn’t be anything like it is today.

-The years have taught me a lot, but there is still a lot to learn, Tiia says. She ambitiously wants to become even better leader, manager, and customer servant. On the other hand, she wants to learn to stress less and take it easier. -The lessons will continue throughout the whole life, she laughs.


Markku and Tiia both agree, that the key to their success is an extraordinary, talented team behind them. -I am so proud of having such great people working with us, says Tiia.

-Our staff is continuously thanked for their warm and heartfelt service, Markku tells. -If there is a day we don’t remember that ourselves, our customers will remind us for sure.

As an evidence of this, Revontuli the Northern Lights Resort has been awarded as “The house of the best service” by the municipality of Hankasalmi.

Revontuli Team warmly welcomes you to enjoy our caring service and memorable experiences!

Revontuli Video Presentation

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