A key to
Estonia

For millennia, Tallinn has been a gateway between East and West. Sokos Hotel Estoria is like a key that opens up phenomenon called Estonia. It is a unique and cosy business class hotel that provides high-quality service, opportunity to rest, relax, and learn something interesting about Estonia at the same time.

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Stories of Estonia

The historical settlements of Tallinn

Did you know that there are more settlements within the 8 urban districts of Tallinn than in London or in Paris?

There 84 historical settlements in Tallinn, 35 in London and 75 in Paris. During the early period of its formation, Tallinn evolved as the twin cities of Toompea and the Lower Town, with both having their own legislation and governing body until 1878. The more complete of the 84 settlements today include the Old Town, the City Centre, Kadriorg, Pirita, Kalamaja, Rocca al Mare and Nõmme. Each of them has preserved the atmosphere and distinctive character of its era.

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The world’s all-time longest …

Did you know that the world’s all-time longest wrestling match, lasting 11 hours and 40 minutes, was held by Estonian Martin Klein and Finn Alfred Asikainen at the Stockholm Olympic Games in 1912?

The match between Klein and Asikainen in the under-75kg finals (which consisted of three participants) began at 10:30 in the morning and ended at 10:10 at night with Martin Klein’s victory. Neither Klein nor Asikainen were capable of continuing the match, and so the Swede Claes Johanson, the third to make it to the finals, became the Olympic champion. Martin Klein is shown in a white singlet.

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Your and our Tallinn

Did you know that the oldest capital city in the Baltic Sea region was in fact mostly inhabited and ruled by foreigners – Danes, Germans, Swedes, Russians – from the 13th to the 19th centuries, and Estonians could only begin to claim Tallinn as their own city from the 1920s?

There were most likely earlier Estonian settlements during the 11th and 12th centuries on the present day location of Tallinn – Estonian clans used the area of what is now the Tallinn as a marketplace, and they utilised the natural harbour and maintained a wooden fortress on Toompea hill. 1154 – Tallinn is first mentioned in historic records by Arab cartographer al-Idrisi (Tallinn as Qlwr, Kolyvan, Koluvan, Kalewen by Lindanäs/Lyndanise)

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A cousin of the Eiffel Tower in Hiiumaa

Did you know that Tahkuna Lighthouse is a cousin of the Eiffel Tower in Paris?

Russia commissioned Tahkuna Lighthouse based on what had been seen at the 1871 World Exposition in Paris. The cast-iron plates of the enclosure were cast in Paris in 1873/1874 and were subsequently erected on a small island named Hiiumaa, which at the time was under the control of imperial Russia. It was said that some parts of the lighthouse were manufactured by the company that also produced the Eiffel Tower.

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More than just a theatre

Did you know that the only opera and ballet house named after the country is the Estonian National Opera (Rahvusooper Estonia in Estonian)!

The building of the Estonian National Opera has always been more than just a theatre and a concert hall for the people of Estonia. On 23 April 1919, the first Estonian Parliament – the Estonian Constituent Assembly – assembled in the concert hall of the “Estonia” theatre.

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Space-faring nation

Did you know that Estonia is a space-faring nation?

Completed as a result of collaboration between the University of Tartu and Tartu Observatory, the ESTCube-1 student satellite flew into orbit on board Vega, the newest launcher of the European Space Agency (ESA) on 7 May 2013.

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A mummy in Tartu

Did you know that you do not have to go to Egypt to see a mummy? Apart from everything else, the main building of the University of Tartu also houses a mummy.

In 1819, Otto Magnus von Richter, District Magistrate of Livonia, gifted the collection assembled by his son during his travels to the University of Tartu in order to encourage scientific enterprise in the coming generations. Ancient relics also include two human mummies from Egypt and the mummies of a dog and a bird.

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Open Air Museum

Did you know that Tallinn has one of Estonia’s oldest wooden churches?

Located at the Estonian Open Air Museum, Sutlepa Chapel is one of two wooden churches to have survived in Estonia from Swedish times. Originally located in the Village of Sutlepa in Lääne County, the chapel is mentioned in archival sources as early as 1627, while the year on the outside of the door frame is 1699.

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Estonian History Museum

Did you know that the oldest object with the likeness of a dragon in Continental Europe was found in Tallinn?

The knife sheath, presumably made in London in the 13th century, is in the archaeological collection of the Estonian History Museum.

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