Cariitti – light makes the space

Cariitti is an over 20-year old family company that was born out of a merger at the end of the 1990s. All this time, Cariitti has specialized in sauna and spa lightning. In 2018, they also included sauna interior with their own TAIVE sauna collection. The company employs 17 people. Thirty-five percent of their products are exported, and 55 percent is sold in Finland. The current CEO Peter Ruokonen tells about the beginning of the company.

”Cariitti is a name invented by my father Kari. It is based in ancient Greek mythology, where Charites were the goddesses of beauty, attraction and fertility. Their mission was to bring joy, brilliance and abundance for people. This is one of the basic ideas of our business. It means that the sauna and bathroom premises should be as attractive as possible. One of our mottos is: Light for seeing, light to be seen. It also tells that we value beauty.”

The sauna interior, its design and style should always be consired as one, and not as separate elements. It is never only about the lightning, wall panels or benches. The materials require special durability and seamless integration of the various components. In addition to visibility and safety, the light emphasizes the space and shapes.

“The human eye naturally seeks light. The light makes the space richer and more pleasant when the lighting is well designed.”

Stylewise, the sauna can be illuminated in many different ways and it can be customized according to the customer’s wishes. Culturally, there are some differences when compared to the wishes of Finnish customers. In the east, they want more crystals and dazzle, in the west it is more composed. For example, Germans value more colourful lightning solutions. Finns can be much more moderate with their wishes.

It is really important to consider the big picture in the design process. Generally, you should consider who the sauna is for and what kind of lightning they want. The lights should be dimmable, i.e. the adjustment of brightness can be a crucial factor if there are people of different ages that go to the same sauna. A 60-year-old may need twice as much light as a 20-year-old who can see better. The lightning control should be used as much as possible as there are many options.

It is a good idea to design the lighting carefully and plan it all the way to the end: for example, sometimes people do not install lights in glass-walled saunas, because they think there is enough light from the bathroom side. The light comes through the glass wall without emphasizing the fine board and panel solutions, and compromises the senses of security – not to mention that the maintenance of the sauna becomes more difficult. If there are no lights in the sauna, the bathroom lights may be too bright.

In Peter’s opinion, a quality sauna experience is about managing the entirety.

“It’s a sum of its parts! Cleanliness, hygiene, comfort, style, design: they give a good first impression. One of the biggest factors that influences your sauna comfort is the ventilation. If everything else is perfect but the ventilation is poor, it makes the sauna an uncomfortable and unpleasant experience. ”

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Satu Freyberg

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