A New Villa Stenstrand

The complex of leisure buildings in the Kirkkonummi archipelago offers views to the south, to the passage of ships sailing to the west.

Read the article in Finnish here.

Villa Stenstrand is a modern-day upgrade to a family holiday home in the Finnish archipelago. Starting with a shorefront sauna in 1969, the site has grown with the addition of a small guest house in 2008 and a storage shed in 2013. Thanks to the plentiful vegetation and rocky slope, it took years of careful consideration to pinpoint the ideal location for a building on the site. In the end, the slope had the most to offer the owner who has a passion for sailing: a view to the south, looking out at the westward bound sail boats. The location also allowed for a sheltered terrace behind the house, providing a place to “chill” in windy weather and admire the scenery through the all-glass north wall.

The sauna building was originally brown but was redone in black to better blend in with the archipelago. A surface treatment mimicking wood’s natural grey patina was considered for the new building, but black was deemed the best choice to give the entire group of buildings a unified, village-like feel.

The gentle slatted roof has room for a blanket of grass, and the eaves to the south are long to soften the direct sunlight. In contrast with the otherwise black building, the eaves have a wood-coloured bottom surface, and their shape gives the illusion of extending the inner ceiling outside.

The traditional frame was built on site on a foundation of blocks and wooden columns. Birch plywood surfaces dominate the interior. The natural cracks in the solid wood pillars add character to the south façade, and the windowpanes are purposefully designed to block as little natural light as possible. A beam of the same material runs across the top and connects to the roof support beams. These beams were left visible to give the space structure.

The layout is split into two: a lounge area with a fireplace and plywood kitchen built on site, and a bedroom with space for utilities. In between these two areas is a space where the walls are clad with exterior wall panels. The floor coverings are ceramic tile, and the glass walls on each side can be opened to extend the space into the outdoors.

Design work began in 2018, and the building permit was obtained in 2019. The building was inspected and taken into service in 2020, with a final inspection in 2021. No prefabrication was used. Instead, traditional carpenters constructed the entire building on site.


Kimmo Friman, architect, Helsinki Technical University (now Aalto University) 1987. Architectural design from Birdhouses to Cultural buildings over 45 years. Also Exhibition design, Graphic arts (books, posters etc.), Individual Art works in Exhibitions.

Project in brief

Villa Stenstrand

  • Location | Kirkkonummi
  • Valmistumisvuosi | 2020
  • Floor area | 108 m2
  • Total area | 108 m2
  • Volume | 368 m3
  • Architectural Design | Kimmo Friman, architect SAFA
  • Structural design | Kari Åberg, DI
  • LVIA-suunnittelu | LVI-suunnittelu M. Eerola, Mikael Eerola
  • Electrical design | Heti-Sähkö Oy, Esa Holmstedt
  • Muut suunnittelijat ja asiantuntijat | Sauna building: Byggmästaren O. Lindholm 22.4.1969, Guest house: Maritta Nylén-Linko 2008, Storage shed: Pen&Hammer/Ghislane Martoq 2013
  • Pääurakoitsija | Teri-talot Oy, Karl Gummerrus
  • Muut materiaalit | Kitchen cabinets, plywood, supplier carpenter Tero Karjalainen, Psl Puu Piste
  • Photographs | Rauno Träskelin, Katariina Träskelin
  • Text | Kimmo Friman