Sites in the immediate vicinity of the residence include Central Park, Rockefeller Center and Grand Central Terminal. The Permanent Mission of Finland is just a short walk away, which is a great advantage in the New York City traffic. The central location of the residence makes it possible to organize various types of events. In addition to traditional dinners and receptions, the residence serves as a venue to e.g. working breakfasts and luncheons.The official residence of the Permanent Representative has been located on Park Avenue in Midtown Manhattan since 1990. The residence is owned by the Finnish State and situated in the heart of Manhattan’s business district in a skyscraper built in 1984. The building has 40 floors, with the first eleven floors serving as office space. The residential floors sit higher up away from the noise of the traffic. The building won a national award for its architect, James Stewart Polshek (US), from the American Institute of Architects.
The floor area of the residence covers slightly over 5100 sq ft. and the windows offer a view to all directions. In connection with a renovation in 1991, two existing apartments were combined into one residence in order to better suit official functions.
The residence contains plenty of modern Finnish design and graphics, including works by Erna Aaltonen, Birgitta Ara, Jorma Hautala, Markku Kolehmainen, Heikki Kukkonen, Harri Leppänen, Francesca Mascitti-Lindh, Marjo Markkula, Kirsi Neuvonen, Ilmari Rautio, Kaj Stenvall and Hilkka Toivola.
The apartment’s lead glass lamps have been designed and manufactured in the style of Eliel Saarinen, as have the lead glass doors and the 20-person dining table and chairs. The desk of Finland’s first Permanent Representative to the United Nations, G.A. Gripenberg, is displayed in the library of the residence.
Writer: Irmeli Viinanen