A survey conducted by TripAdvisor has just revealed that the most expensive city in the world to order room service is Helsinki, where a simple club sandwich will set you back a whopping $38.
In a time when hotels around the world are shaking up or even eliminating room service, we find it difficult to believe that anyone is still willing to hand over that much money for a simple sandwich. Even in pricey Helsinki, there’s no need to go hungry or hand over a fortune. Just get out of your room and save some cash by filling up at one of these places.
Before you reach for the room service button, check to see if your hotel offers a complimentary breakfast. Unlike the sparse, so-called “continental,” offerings you’ll find in the United States, hotel breakfasts in Helsinki tend to be huge and varied. Our favorite is that of the Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel where tables are piled high with breads, pastries, meat, fish, fruit, hot entrées, and more. (And we’re guessing that no one will say anything if you wrap up a sandwich for lunch later in the day.)
Generous lunch buffets (lounas buffett) are offered by many restaurants throughout the city. At Café Lasipalatsi, close to the main railway station and the Kiasma contemporary art museum, you can take the salad bar alone for €8.50 ($11.70), or add soup and two main dishes for €10.00 ($13.80). At Veganissimo in the up-and-coming Kallio district, the lunch buffet is entirely vegan and costs only €7.10 ($9.80). In the city center, Baker’s restaurant’s lunch buffet includes meat, fish, or a vegetarian option, as well as a salad bar, freshly baked bread, and tea or coffee for €10 ($13.80). As a bonus, from 5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, a glass of sparkling wine costs just one euro ($1.40).
For dinner, Ravintola Konstan Möljä offers a dinner that includes such Finnish specialties as roast reindeer, marinated herring, and sour cabbage, for €18 ($24.80).