• The Lowdown on Sweden’s Ice Hotel

    The arctic circle is a latitudinal line that defines the top 1/8th of the earth as the Arctic. As you can expect, it’s damn cold up there. Beautiful scenery abounds, as there is far more nature than inhabitants. But, like I said, it’s damn cold. Most people visit in summer, when temperatures are more bearable. So what do you do if you happen to own a hotel in the arctic? You build your hotel from ice, of course.


    Ice Hotel Main Hall

    Ice Hotel Main Hall


    The proprietors of the Ice Hotel have turned their little arctic town into a world-renowned destination. Nature provides the materials – snow and ice – and a brilliant marketing strategy pulls in the people.


    We hit it up a few days ago on a day trip (Martin grew up just an hour south of the arctic circle). Since we are poor travelers, we reluctantly paid the US $40/person entrance fee. Martin’s parents had told us it was well worth it. There was a half hour tour included that was, well, it was just OK. The “worth it” part came after our tour guide set us free: we were allowed access to all the rooms. We had a five hour window to explore, shoot videos, take photos, test the beds and just generally enjoy ourselves.


    Icebar in the Ice Hotel

    Icebar in the Ice Hotel


    Research showed us that it would have cost US $800/night for the three of us to stay in a Snow Room. Unlike the Art Suites, which have been designed and constructed by artists, the Snow Room is just a block of snow with a bed in the middle. Um – ouch. $800 is a two weeks budget in India. Needless to say, we didn’t stay and I’ve gotta say that I’m happy we didn’t. It’s cold – that much is obvious – but it smells bad, too. Maybe we were late in the season. It is spring, after all. But seriously. If we were going to pay $800 for a room, we wouldn’t want it to smell like an armpit. Just sayin’.


    Smells aside – the concept is really cool. I’m really happy we went there but equally happy we didn’t stay. So, take that as you will.


    Check out our video of the hotel here (smell not included) and our photo gallery below.


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    This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 13th, 2010 at 12:30 am and is filed under Sweden. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
  • Couldn't disagree with you there - just not my cup of tea. Or glass of ice, as it may be.

    Never noticed them smell, though - even worse! Ugh.
  • Sarah
    Chase and I visited the one in Quebec this February. It was defiantly cool to see and I loved having and glass of ice cider in a glass made of ice but I wouldn’t want to spend the night either.
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