About Polaris arena

Why do we need Polaris Arena?

Rapid advancements over the past decade in Estonia have dramatically changed how we entertain ourselves. Nightclubs are seeing fewer patrons, physical album sales are declining as we increasingly consume directly—through the internet, smart devices, or live performances. Concerts, theater, and other live performance forms are surging in popularity. A significant portion of entertainment revenue is now concentrated in live performances, and the emotions derived from such events keep fans coming back for more tickets.

Estonia has a unique dynamic. Given its small size, one can traverse its entire territory within a few hours by car, primarily on well-maintained roads. This has fostered a culture where Estonians are more than willing to venture out of their hometowns to attend theater shows, concerts, or other events. This phenomenon is especially noticeable during the summer when tens of thousands of people visit various places in villages and small towns. This trend has seen a sharp uptick in recent years.

According to Piletilevi’s data, during the summer of 2021, from May to August, there were 3,329 events in Estonia with a total of 333,000 tickets sold! This doesn’t account for various fairs and expositions, whose tickets are often also purchased in advance. In the same period in 2022, ticket sales reached 481,000, and in the summer of 2023, a whopping 540,000 tickets were sold. This rapid growth is nothing short of fantastic. The 2020 pandemic did not halt this trend; in fact, it boosted the popularity and magnitude of outdoor events.

Building on this momentum, our idea, while initially seeming counterintuitive, is simple at its core: create a multifunctional entertainment park nestled far from urban noise in stunning nature. This park will host a gamut of events, from various festivals and concerts featuring both international and local artists, classical music events, summer theaters, folk events, dance and song festivals, summer fairs, camps, expositions, private parties, and more. Over a planned 5 summer months, we aim for 50+ events with over 100,000 visitors, all set against a backdrop of romantic, idyllic summer landscapes, complemented by sunsets and starry skies that city life simply cannot replicate.

We are designing a multifunctional semi-open summer venue for diverse events—a true architectural masterpiece in wood, crafted by renowned and award-winning architects. Nestled in nature, it is both aesthetically beautiful and functional for hosting various events. The first such facility is planned for Estonia. In the long run, we envision at least two such arenas in Estonia, for example in South and North Estonia (or even one in West Estonia and another in East Estonia). In the future, we see potential for this concept beyond Estonia’s borders.

We have the knowledge, experience, and vision

As the project leaders, we have been active in the music and entertainment industry for 30 years. We possess an extensive knowledge base about what an aesthetically high-standard, optimally functional, and practical entertainment and concert arena should look like.

We employ numerous innovative solutions and develop new business models, which serve as benchmarks for the entire industry. We aim to reduce the risks of organizers’ projects and their dependence on the current economic situation while creating significant competitive advantages. Through this, we motivate various organizers, artists, theatres, and others to choose Polaris Arena as their primary venue for summer events. We place great emphasis on environmental conservation, green solutions, and innovation.

We aim to create a park-like complex that includes an arena, festival grounds, parking areas, camping zones, accommodation and restaurant buildings, major family entertainment attractions, and all the necessary infrastructure. All in all, this will become a significant attraction for audiences and a standalone tourist destination.

Masterful architecture

The project’s foundation is to find a standard solution that functions well on various natural landscapes without being ignorant of its surrounding environment. This unique, monumental entertainment venue is suitable for festivals and various summer events, from theatre to fairs and concerts. Such a tourist and visitor attraction has excellent potential to activate rural areas.

Polaris Arena is a modular system where rapid-shape modules arranged around the ground floor ensure the best view of the stage from all seats. This creates a star-shaped layout, from which a four-pointed and larger star shape can be constructed. Each module, covered with wooden cladding, is a structurally independent block.

The architectural solution of the building seeks to engage as much as possible with the surrounding natural landscape, acting as an extension of the outdoor space. The open-air effect is guaranteed through open facades and a roofless ground floor, which can be covered in case of weather conditions or the need for privacy. The sensation of being in nature is enhanced by covering the ground with grass. This connection between indoor and outdoor space also ensures the possibility of expanding the area outside the arena.

The arena has a considerable capacity – about 5,000 people- allowing it to accommodate international-sized artists and events. Different zones can be “switched off” to adapt the arena for events of various scales without creating a feeling of emptiness.

The first tier of the stand is raised 80cm so that even a child sitting in the front row can see over the head of the person in front. Underneath this tier, chairs used on the ground floor can be stored. Behind the stands, there are toilets, changing rooms, a cafe, and a VIP area.

The size of the stage ensures all necessary parameters – a floor height of 1.6m, depth of 12m, width of 18m, and stage tower height of 12m at the front and 8m at the back. The cone-shaped design of the stage ensures good visibility from the stands. A load-in dock is provided at the stage level directly from the outdoor space to roll equipment for shows or performances onto the stage. The rest of the backstage is located behind the scenes. The dressing rooms and the office are on the 2nd and 3rd floors respectively. The top of the triangular structure of the stage module houses a ground-level storage area from which equipment can be moved directly behind the stage.

Designer: Salto AB OÜ
Architects: Maarja Kask, Ralf Lõoke

Technical specifications

The arena is open for 4-5 months, from (May) June to September (inclusive), but could also find use during the winter months for events like popular sports, an ice rink, Christmas village, etc.

The numbers provided may differ somewhat from the original in the final project.