Kotkaniemi was the home of Finland’s third president, Pehr Evind Svinhufvud (1861-1944), and his wife Ellen Svinhufvud (1869-1953). The museum showcases the personal history of President and Mrs Svinhufvud, and also the history of Finland. The rooms of the couple’s Kotkaniemi home have been restored to their 1920s and 1930s appearance. In its current condition, the house has been open to the public since 2000, when the artefacts of the Svinhufvud Museum were transferred for display at Kotkaniemi.
The wooden main building of Kotkaniemi was designed by architect Lars Sonck. Its construction was completed in 1898. Kotkaniemi was the home of P.E. Svinhufvud from 1908, when he became the district judge of Lappeenranta. In May 1918, Svinhufvud was elected as the first head of state of independent Finland. He was the president of Finland in 1931–37.