07.02.11 – mbar is a cool little cafe in Lasiplatsi, Mannerheimintie 22-24, in the center of Helsinki. I’m always looking for a new place to crash with my computer, free Wi-Fi and a cup of joe and mbar is a great place to do just that. They have a light menu, server alcohol and the espresso coffee drinks are great.
The best part about the place is the vibe. One of the owners is a designer and it shows. Everything from the original design of the building, which dates back to 1935 and is protected by Finnish museum legislation, to the terrace, furnishings and lighting has a Finnish designer’s name attached. Section chairs by Ilmari Tapiovaara, terrace by architect office Talli’s Minna Lukander and a dj stand designed by bar founder Tapio Mäkelä. The overall look and feel is aimed at a young, hip, music loving youth but when I was there on a Saturday morning there was even a group of old retirees hanging out.
One of the coolest little additions is the comic machine, pictured above. Here’s something from their website.
mbar´s comic strip vending machine has been converted from an old cigarette machine by the Finnish Comics Association. Jenni Rope and colleague artists gather at the bar to hand draw the cigarette boxes, filled with a comic strip (2 euros each). The machine is a true marvel.
Next time I go, I’m taking Max just so he can checkout the comic machine.
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