Architecture

Winter wonderland: Sweden's 28th Icehotel opens its doors

Winter wonderland: Sweden's 28...
Queen of the north, by Emilie Steele and Sebastian Dell’Uva, is one of the incredible rooms available in the 28th Icehotel
Queen of the north, by Emilie Steele and Sebastian Dell’Uva, is one of the incredible rooms available in the 28th Icehotel
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Daily travelers, by Alem Teklu and Anne Karin Krogevoll, is inspired by the boat journey thousands of refugees have made across the Mediterranean Sea
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Daily travelers, by Alem Teklu and Anne Karin Krogevoll, is inspired by the boat journey thousands of refugees have made across the Mediterranean Sea
Follow the white rabbit, by AnnaSofia Mååg and Niklas Byman, seems to be influenced by Alice in Wonderland
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Follow the white rabbit, by AnnaSofia Mååg and Niklas Byman, seems to be influenced by Alice in Wonderland
Ground rules, by Carl Wellander and Ulrika Tallving, depicts a strange subterranean area featuring giant snails
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Ground rules, by Carl Wellander and Ulrika Tallving, depicts a strange subterranean area featuring giant snails
Hang in there, by Marjolein Vonk and Maurizio Perron, lends the impression taht the bed is being suspended 
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Hang in there, by Marjolein Vonk and Maurizio Perron, lends the impression taht the bed is being suspended 
King Kong, by Lkhagvadori Dorjsuren, lets visitors sleep beneath the great ape
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King Kong, by Lkhagvadori Dorjsuren, lets visitors sleep beneath the great ape
Last Fabergé Egg, by Tomasz Czajkowski and Eryk Marks, draws inspiration from the famous jewelled egg 
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Last Fabergé Egg, by Tomasz Czajkowski and Eryk Marks, draws inspiration from the famous jewelled egg 
Livoq, by Fabien Champeval and Friederike Schroth, appears to take its name from a lake in Kosovo
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Livoq, by Fabien Champeval and Friederike Schroth, appears to take its name from a lake in Kosovo
Monstera, by Nina Kauppi and Johan Kauppi, depicts a wintery garden scene
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Monstera, by Nina Kauppi and Johan Kauppi, depicts a wintery garden scene
Queen of the north, by Emilie Steele and Sebastian Dell’Uva, is one of the incredible rooms available in the 28th Icehotel
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Queen of the north, by Emilie Steele and Sebastian Dell’Uva, is one of the incredible rooms available in the 28th Icehotel
Radiance, by Natsuki Saito and Shingo Saito, features a crystalline structure 
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Radiance, by Natsuki Saito and Shingo Saito, features a crystalline structure 
Space room, by Adrian Bois and Pablo Lopez, features large astronauts 
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Space room, by Adrian Bois and Pablo Lopez, features large astronauts 
Wandering cloud, by Lisa Lindqvist, lets visitors feel like they're sleeping in a cloud
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Wandering cloud, by Lisa Lindqvist, lets visitors feel like they're sleeping in a cloud
White desert, by Timsam Harding and Fabián Jacquet Casado, translates a desert landscape into ice
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White desert, by Timsam Harding and Fabián Jacquet Casado, translates a desert landscape into ice
A rich seam, by Howard Miller and Mugh Miller, resembles a mining seam
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A rich seam, by Howard Miller and Mugh Miller, resembles a mining seam
Cumulus, by Annakatrin Kraus and Hans Aescht, resembles a cluster of clouds
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Cumulus, by Annakatrin Kraus and Hans Aescht, resembles a cluster of clouds

The town of Jukkasjärvi in northern Sweden is home to an annual hotel made from snow and ice. Now in its 28th edition, the Icehotel features 15 rooms boasting impressive frozen sculptures. Highlights include a space-themed room and another dominated by a strange ice queen.

Constructing the Icehotel involved harvesting thousands of ice blocks from a nearby frozen river. A 30,000 cubic meter (1,059,440 cubic ft) mixture of snow and ice was used to create the hotel. It includes warm rooms, sub-zero ice rooms, an ice bar, as well as a ceremony hall suitable for weddings and the like.

That said, it's the 15 rooms with the ice carvings that are naturally the main draw. These are kept at a temperature of -5° C (23 degrees Fahrenheit) and guests sleep atop reindeer skins in sleeping bags. The sculptures were created by 36 artists hailing from 17 different countries, and range from abstract scenes to lifelike animals.

The artists are very skilled and the rooms are worth checking out in full, in the gallery.

King Kong, by Lkhagvadori Dorjsuren, lets visitors sleep beneath the great ape
King Kong, by Lkhagvadori Dorjsuren, lets visitors sleep beneath the great ape

Guests who opt to brave the cold are woken with a hot drink, plus a sauna, hot shower and roaring fire are available too. Activities include a northern lights tour on snowmobile, a half-day tour with dog sled, ice sculpting, and yoga.

The Icehotel opened its doors December 15 and is running until April 15, after which time it will begin to melt away. Pricing starts at 2,250 SEK (around US$267) for a single night in a warm hotel room, but the ice sculpture suites cost considerably more. The solar-powered Icehotel 365 is also installed on the same site and is open year-round.

Source: Icehotel

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