We are Paula and Raymond, a young Finnish-Dutch couple and the founders of Arctos Lapland. We love travelling and are excited to meet new people, discover interesting places, but above all, wake up with the feeling that new adventures are ahead. During the pandemic, when borders closed and we had to store our backpacks for a while, we decided to move to Lapland for Paula’s work, not knowing that this place would steal our hearts! It’s magical here in Lapland and adventures are waiting right on the other side of the doorstep.
Paula is originally from Helsinki but her love for the Arctic has been pulling her to Lapland since her early twenties. Paula is a veterinarian and has the privilege to take care of the animals in Rovaniemi. Whether it be the fluffy pets, sledding huskies or Santa’s reindeer Rudolf, they are all in good hands with her. Besides her work as a vet, she is the creative soul of our company. She loves to take her camera with her on all adventures.
Raymond was born in the Netherlands but his love for outdoors, adventures and above all, his Finnish girlfriend brought him to Finland. He used to work for various non-profit organisations before deciding to exchange his computer for fire sticks and a knife, making nature his new office. In 2015 he and Paula met during their Erasmus study exchange in Budapest, not knowing that exactly 7 years later they would find themselves starting their own company in Rovaniemi. This season he works as a guide in Lapland and will be taking care of you during the Arctos Lapland Spa.
Although we kept coming to Lapland for years, it was only in February 2021 that we started dreaming of permanently settling here. Paula worked as a vet in Rovaniemi and Raymond did distance work on his Laptop. Every single day that we were off we went into nature, making skiing trips, learning to do winter camping and hunting the Northern Lights. During one of our trips we visited a young couple in the very north of Finnish Lapland. They just started their own husky sledding farm. We stayed a night at their place, spending the whole evening with -20 in a warm hot-tub. The magical Northern Lights performed an amazing show right above our heads. We were speechless, but both thought the same “Imagine this being your backyard”...
We started scrolling through cool cottages for rent near Rovaniemi, but then a little paradise happened to be for sale. A peaceful lake house in Rovaniemi, only 15 minutes from the centre and a 10 minutes drive to our dearest neighbour “Santa Claus”. After we camped a few nights around the lake, we knew what we had to do. So far the best choice we ever made!
During the first winter in our new house, our lovely friends and family came over to visit us and experience our new lifestyle. Always excited to see our little paradise and witness the magic of Lapland. It very soon became tradition to end their visit with a full-on relaxing evening. We spent the evening in the traditional wood-heated sauna besides the frozen lake. After the sauna we refreshed ourselves with an ice-bath and made sausages around the fire, just how the Finns have enjoyed it here for centuries. Our guests loved it and we loved offering it. We realised that this was exactly the type of authentic experience that we also searched for during our own travels. To make the experience even more special we added a hot tub, the place where the seed for our dream had been planted. In September 2022 Arctos Lapland was born.