A complete transformation gave new life

The Chydenia House also known as Helsinki’s old “Girl Elephant” has an extensive make-over where everything from the interior to the soundscapes. The renovation was needed, but the premises needed a total acoustic improvement but not without respecting the original style. The right help was given by Rockfon.

Chydenia returned to its original use

The historical building was built in 1923 and since 1960s the building has housed the Helsinki School of Economics. The impressive old red-brick building needed to be modernised for the new occupants: The Helsinki Adult College. Unfortunately, the building could only offer offices and library spaces, so the interior demanded a major renovation to serve the modern teaching methods and be ready for students to concentrate, learn and perform. Only the façade and the roof of the building remained otherwise, the rest had a touch of the big remake brush.

Think acoustics and aesthetics in a different way

Chydenia is a protected destination that means the acoustics had to be designed into the aesthetics aspect of the premises. It had to respect the design vision. According to Piritta Hannula, the head designer of this project, the acoustics had to be done through the interior design and not added afterwards. Originally, the spaces had large smooth stone surfaces and there weren’t even curtains to prevent sound echoes.

Rockfon Mono Acoustic blends into the surroundings

In the impressive and open lobby with staircases they opted for Rockfon Mono Acoustics to soften the acoustics. But the acoustic panels couldn’t be used in this project as they don’t suit the style of the era. The only choice was to inject Rockfon Mono Acoustic. The wide ceiling surfaces were covered with Rockfon Mono Acoustics and the layout of the roof was finished with solid stone wool strips made accordingly to the lights.

Rockfon Mono Acoustic is a popular and practical solution for optimising the acoustics in old prestigious properties as it looks like an ordinary levelled roof surface. It lowers the ceiling by only 40 mm at its smallest, so it has no significant impact on the room height.

Old rosettes and lighting folds can be made to fit well into the sprayed ceiling. They’re installed first, protected and then the ceiling is sprayed with Rockfon Mono Acoustics.

Acoustics replacing hard echo with beautiful soundscapes

The acoustics of the lobby and hallway spaces were carried out in Chydenia without compromising on the old style, but in the classrooms, practicality took precedence over the original style.

They opted for Rockfon Blanka panel as the acoustics solution for the classrooms. They installed a white smooth surface with excellent sound absorption create beautiful soundscapes and giving the right amount of daylight as it gives outstanding light reflection and light diffusion.

Chydenia House

Tehtaankatu 3-5
67100 Kokkola

Acoustics of old value objects are particularly challenging if you want to preserve the original look of the building or valuable surfaces that cannot be covered. Old spaces may also have a lot of height and large window surfaces.

Piritta Hannula



Location:Helsinki, Finland
Architect:Innovarch Ltd.
Photographer:Martin Sommerschield, Kuvatoimisto Kuvio Oy
Tiles:Rockfon Blanka®, Rockfon Mono® Acoustic
Dimensions:1200 x 600

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