In a project that’s being described as part Truman Show, part Tom Hanks’ film The Terminal, a Chinese personality will be living at the Helsinki Airport for one month in publicity stunt aimed at promoting the hub as the fastest connection between Asia and Europe.
For 30 days, Ryan Zhu will eat, sleep and play under the roof of Finland’s biggest airport, in a promotional campaign named #LifeinHel.
Zhu, 33, is a fitness model, Chinese actor and TV personality.
Developed by the co-inventor of the reality show franchise Survivor, the reality-slash-game show #LifeinHel will be livestreamed on social media channels.
Throughout his month-long residency, the actor will be tasked with daily challenges designed to teach him about Finnish culture.
Zhu will be given an open return ticket back home and can go back home at any time.
But if he completes the 30-day challenge, he will be able to step outside the airport and visit Lapland as a reward – a page taken directly out of The Terminal screenplay.
The project hopes to build on its title as the best connected airport in Northern Europe, according to the findings of the Airports Council. In the last decade, global connectivity at Helsinki Airport has nearly doubled. The hub also offers the greatest number of direct flight connections to Asia in northern Europe and more direct flight destinations to Japan than any other European airport.
Lapland has also benefited from influential travel brands like Lonely Planet and National Geographic, which last year both included the country on their best in travel lists for 2017.
National Geographic Traveller UK placed Helsinki third on its top 10 “Cool List 2017”, while the US edition of the magazine included Finland in its list of 21 “Must-see” places for 2017. Lonely Planet also gave Finland the third spot in its annual Best Destinations list 2017.
The publicity seems to be paying off. The 2017 edition of the European Travel Commission’s travel and trends report released this summer showed that Finland is the fourth fastest growing destination in Europe. The report also points out that Finland has become especially popular among Chinese travelers, with a sizeable number of arrivals from China this year.
This year marks the country’s 100 years of independence. Life In Hel begins Oct 10. – AFP Relaxnews