Frozen paradise: inside Sweden’s super cool Icehotel
Ice ice baby
It’s (almost) snowtime: if you've ever wanted to sleep on a bed of ice, now's your moment
Just because we're gearing up for the summer sun doesn't mean a trip to the cooling Northern Hemisphere is totally out of the question, right? For ski bunnies and those who believe that a proper Christmas involves turkey and shovelling your driveway, a visit to Sweden's upcoming Icehotel is probably right up your alley.
Opening on December 11 in the Swedish village of Jukkasjärvi (located 200km north of the Arctic Circle), Icehotel is, as you can imagine, a structure made completely of ice which has been taken from the river Torne. Featuring 55 rooms, a church and a bar that serves hot and sweet lingonberry juice (we're not sure what that is, but it sounds delish) Icehotel stays open until April 2016 - presumably when the ice starts to melt.
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Founded in 1989, the art exhibition and hotel is a yearly event that hosts some of the most jaw-dropping ice art you've ever seen. This winter season, the team have put together some amazing travel photo moments for 2015-16... such as a life-sized 3-metre tall elephant sculpture created by AnnaSofia Mååg, cleverly titled Elephant in the Room. There's also a theatre set inspired by imperial Russia, a stunning room featuring drapes carved out of ice and even a '70s inspired love capsule. And if you tire of exploring the immense icy cavern, you can always step outside for a spot of star gazing - you're in prime position to witness Aurora Borealis, too.
While certainly a marvel to be gazed at, it's a work that's certainly no walk in the park to construct. It takes 5000 tons of harvested ice to pull Icehotel together and the chandeliers alone are made from 1000 hand-cut crystals. Even the drinks are served in cocktail glasses made from ice - and with 26,550 of these passing through visitors' hands during the months of December through to April, that's a lot of ice shaping for the poor bar staff. But hey, at least it makes for a winning Instagram?
If you're game enough to book one of Icehotel's 19 unique suites, rates start at SEK 2,500 ($420) a night. A word of warning though: snow rooms never hit no more than -5 degrees Celsius, so be sure to pack your woollies. To book, email firstname.lastname@example.org and head to icehotel.com for more info.
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