We have heard a lot about this place Icehotel and as we are staying our last two nights in a rustic cabin on the Thorne river within 7km of the hotel , and which is also the source of all the ice they use to build the hotel, we go and check it out.
On our way we sample the Saturday brunch and morning tea offerings at SPiS and after an hour or so we roll outside.
The Icehotel has been going for 27years and is the original ice hotel, the brand that is now in a few places around the world. It started as a small igloo on the river Thorne but gained very quick popularity and has grown to a huge project. Every year ice carving artists apply to be chosen to create one of the 21 art ice rooms, they have free creative input on their theme but, politics and religion themes are out.
One can stay in one of the ice rooms but they have ” warm rooms ” too, as it takes a hardy individual to sleep in the -5C ambience, reindeer skins not withstanding.
The blocks of ice are harvested from the Thorne river 2mx1m1m , 1.8 ton in weight. They get stored in a special cooler so when it is time to open again in mid December they have the ice ready. Keeping it solid uses solar energy and having the midnight sun in summer they generate more power then they need. They also make about 8,000 ice glasses to have a drink at the bar. Of course you get to keep yours which turns into a small bag of water after leaving:)