Cold Comforts: 10 Hotels Made of Ice and Snow
Love winter weather so much that you want to stay in a hotel room made of ice and snow? You've got plenty of options. Expect temps that hover somewhere between 24°F and 40°F, beds made of slabs of ice topped with insulated mattresses, animals skins, and arctic sleeping bags—and the promise that it's probably a lot colder outside. Check out these winter wonderlands.
1. SORRISNIVA IGLOO HOTEL // ALTA, NORWAY
At the winter adventure resort Sorrisniva, you can roam on snowmobiles, boats, and dogsleds, go ice fishing, and even meet reindeer. You can also stay in the complex's Igloo Hotel. Rebuilt every winter, the hotel offers 26 rooms and four suites decorated with ice sculptures, as well as an ice chapel, an ice bar, and a restaurant not made of ice where you can warm up.
Sorrisniva's Igloo Hotel is open until April 2.
2. HÔTEL DE GLACE // QUEBEC CITY, CANADA
Hôtel de Glace in Quebec City, Quebec, has been opening their doors for the winter season since 2001. Almost everything in each of the 44 rooms and themed suites—decorated with feature works by ice sculptors—is made of ice and snow, except for the insulated bedding and the lighting. A few suites also include fireplaces and even private spas, and all guests are invited to try out the nighttime outdoor sauna and spa.
Hôtel de Glace will be open until March 26.
3. HOTEL OF ICE // BALEA LAC, ROMANIA
Located near a glacial lake high in the Carpathian Mountains, Romania's first ice hotel includes 13 rooms made of lake ice mortared with snow, each equipped with a soft mattress and a warm sleeping bag. There are also four igloos, an ice chapel, an ice restaurant, and an ice bar on the premises.
Hotel of Ice is open until June 16.
4. KIRKENES SNOWHOTEL // KIRKENES, NORWAY
Kirkenes Snowhotel has 24 rooms, each decorated with a different theme from Norwegian culture or nature and set at a steady 24.8°F. Overnight stays include transportation to and from Kirkenes, dinner, breakfast, and if you're lucky, a glimpse of the Northern Lights.
Kirkenes Snowhotel is open until April 20.
5. ARCTIC SNOWHOTEL & GLASS IGLOOS // SINETTÄ, FINLAND
Arctic SnowHotel in Sinettä, Finland offers up the choice of staying in a snow hotel decorated with ice sculptures or sleeping in a glass igloo, where you can watch the sky for the appearance of the Aurora Borealis. The hotel even advertises an optional alarm service that will wake you up when the lights appear.
Arctic SnowHotel is open until March 30.
6. ESKIMSKA VAS IGLOO HOTEL // POKLJUKA, SLOVENIA
At Eskimska Vas (Igloo Village) in Pokljuka, Slovenia, visitors take on skiing, sledding, biathlons, igloo-building lessons, and snowshoe hikes. After you work up an appetite, you can dine on traditional Slovenian sausage amongst 44 other guests at the Ice restaurant and hydrate at the Ice bar. And if you'd like to stay the night (and relax in temps that range from 32°F to 39.2°F), you can book accommodations in the Igloo Hotel, which houses two large igloos that accommodate eight people and two smaller igloos for two. The beds are made of snow blocks covered with insulation and sheepskins, and the resort also supplies winter sleeping bags.
7. SNOWVILLAGE // YLLÄSJÄRVI, FINLAND
SnowVillage, a resort in Ylläsjärvi, Finland, offers both standard rooms and suites (with temps between 23°F and 28°F) made of ice as well as nearby bathrooms and emergency beds that are heated. Guests, who all receive a diploma to document their stay, can also venture out on excursions that include snowmobiles, snowshoes, and dogsleds. Right now, artists can register to compete for the chance to decorate one of the rooms at SnowVillage next year.
8. IGLU-DORF // SWITZERLAND
Iglu-Dorf runs igloo villages in seven different locations: Igloo-Village Davos-Klosters, Engelberg, Gstaad, Stockhorn, Zermatt, Zugspitze, and Andorra. It takes over 3000 man-hours to construct each village of igloos, which are all connected via a series of corridors. Each destination offers up different igloo options from individual two-person units to six-person units and multi-room suites. There are even a few warm igloos made of snow with an insulated interior and some that feature private bathrooms. Want to get a little more creative with your accommodations? Guests at the Engelberg and Zermatt can opt to build their own igloos with a guide.
The last Igloo Village in Switzerland will close April 22.
9. LUMILINNA // KEMI, FINLAND
Every year, the LumiLinna (SnowCastle) is rebuilt in Kemi, Finland, a seaside town near the eastern border of Sweden. The structure is home to a hotel, restaurant, and chapel—all constructed from snow and ice made of sea water. The eco-friendly SnowHotel also features works of art carved into the snow walls of each room. Guests can warm up in the heated 24-hour cafe and bathrooms. Visitors to Kemi should also make sure to visit Santa Claus' seaside office.
The SnowCastle is open until April 1.
10. ICEHOTEL // JUKKASJÄRVI, SWEDEN
ICEHOTEL in Jukkasjärvi, Sweden (about 124 miles above the Arctic Circle) became the world's first hotel made of ice in 1989. Originally an art gallery, the structure was transformed into a hotel after a few patrons asked to stay overnight. Since then, the ice hotel has been rebuilt every year. Eventually, warm conventional rooms were added for year-round accommodations.
The complex also includes the new section, Icehotel 365, which is solar-powered and open year-round. Icehotel 365 includes 20 rooms, an ice art gallery, and ice bar. Jukkasjärvi experiences 100 days of round-the-clock sun in the summer, allowing for enough power to keep the ice standing until cold weather returns.