Igloos have always fascinated me as a child. Nowadays, what I have on my list are ice hotels complete with rooms, bars, and the works. You need to experience staying in them before they melt! We came up with a list of the best ice hotels that we know of:
The ICEHOTEL (Sweden)
This is the original Ice Hotel in Lapland, Sweden. It has evolved from a 60 square meter igloo into the biggest ice hotel made of snow and ice with an area of 5,500 square meters. The art-chitecture of the Ice Hotel has inspired a lot of people and have been the reason why ice hotels have been popping in different countries.
They also have the Ice Bar in partnership with Absolut. Aside from their Ice Bar in Jukkasjarvi, they have launched ICEBAR in Oslo, Tokyo, Copenhagen, London, and Stockholm.
This year they are offering a guided tour by bus for guests so you will have the opportunity to see the northern lights. Burn some $400 to $500 to experience the ICEHOTEL.
Schneedorf Igloo Village (Austria)
Experiencing the igloo Village in Austria in the middle of a ski resort is a guaranteed unique experience perfect for the curious, the adventurous, and the romantic.
You can opt for the classic igloo experience sharing the room with 3 friends or loved ones. Include in the -40 degree experience some tea, cheese fondue, buffet breakfast, and fresh sleeping bags every day. If you are going with your special someone, you can book a Candlelight Night and enjoy all the amenities in a double sleeping bag.
Other activities include skiing, outdoor snow adventure, and just relaxing in the sauna. You will have to prepare around $250 to $400 for this icy accommodation.
Hotel de Glace (Canada)
Every winter since 2001, people in North America can have a unique experience staying in the ice hotel called Hotel de Glace in Canada. This ice and snow structure takes around 5 weeks to build with the equation completed by adding 500 tons and 15,000 tons of ice and snow, respectively. The ceilings can be as high as 18 feet while all the furniture you will see are carved from big blocks of ice.
This coming January 7 through March 27, 2011, Hotel de Glace will be letting in, once again, guests to enjoy the magical experience. Take out at least $550 from your pocket for a worthwhile stay in Hotel de Glace.
Aurora Ice Museum (Alaska)
This amazing ice hotel in Fairbanks, Alaska has some issues with the fire marshall, thus they cannot promote their rooms. You can still ask for their rooms and they can guarantee a very unique experience with an indoor igloo, ice tree, ice bar, ice pulpit, ice sculptures, and ice chandeliers. You can also relax in their outdoor hot springs.
Other activities include learning about renewable energy, ice museum tours, dog kennel tour, dog sled rides, skiing, ice skating, snow machine tours, snow coach tours, and flight seeing.
The first Aurora Ice Hotel in Fairbank s was built in 2004 and later renamed as the Aurora Ice Museum
Kakslauttanen Hotel and Igloo Village (Finland)
You can choose from a warm or cold night accommodation and choose from a number of log cabins or glass and snow igloos in this magnificent igloo village located just 250 kilometers from the Arctic Circle. Dining also offers unique options of a log house restaurant, tent restaurant, and snow restaurant.
They boast of the biggest snow restaurant and smoke sauna, so we personally recommend trying them out. You can also engage in husky safaris, reindeer safaris, ice fishing, and ski trekking. Also watch the Northern Lights from the comfort of your own bed. For those who are looking for an excellent wedding venue, you can say I do’s in their Ice Chapel.
Iglu-Dorf Engleberg (Switzerland)
The first igloo was built back in 1996 but friends and colleagues of Adrian Gunter showed an avalanche of curiosity and interest on what it will be like staying overnight in an igloo. Today, there are several villages of this world in white across Andorra, Davos-Klosters, Engelberg, Gstaad, St. Moritz, Zermatt, and Zugspitze.
Every season these igloo villages are rebuilt out of more than 3,000 tons of snow in the Alps and Pyrenees. Artists are invited from different corners of the globe to do the sculptures using ice picks, shovel, and motor saw.
You can visit the igloo village from Christmas through April, of course depending on prevailing weather conditions.
Snow Hotel (Finland)
The Snow Hotel is part of the SnowCastle of Kemi. You can get rooms for big groups, couples, or solo travellers. There is also a honeymoon suite to make everything special for the newlyweds. Guests will be resting comfortable in -5 degree temperature tucked in sleeping bags on a nice comfy, cold bed.
The package includes breakfast at the CastleLounge and an access to a nearby sauna. This season, the castle will be open from January 29 through the first week of April.
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