Sweden's 33rd annual Icehotel showcases incredible frozen art
In most hotels, if the temperature dropped to -5 °C (23 °F) inside the room, there would be complaints made to the front desk, but that's the whole point of the Icehotel in northern Sweden. The annual attraction is now open and offers a chilly experience defined by amazing ice sculpted art.
Though there's also another hotel nearby named the Icehotel 365 that's open year-round and has its own ice sculptures, warm rooms, and more, the big draw is the annual Icehotel.
This 33rd iteration was created over six weeks using 500 tons (446 tonnes) of ice sourced from an adjacent river, as well as the equivalent of 10 Olympic swimming pools full of snis (a mixture of snow and ice).
Some 24 artists from 13 countries were involved in creating a dozen bedrooms filled with ice sculptures named Art Suites, while the ceremony hall, which is used for weddings, was tackled by designer Wouter Biegelaar and architect Viktor Tsarski.
The ice sculptures themselves range from the strange to the straightforward. Notable examples include Home Nature, shown above, which was made by Munkh-Erdene Tsagaan and Uugantsetseg and aims to highlight the need for people to protect the environment and live in harmony with nature. The Mush Room below, meanwhile, imagines a strange story of a visitor eating some kind of unidentified mushroom while out foraging and finding themselves shrinking to the size of an insect amid the forest.
"Yet another Icehotel is completed, and yet another unique experience is ready for our guests," said Luca Roncoroni, Creative Director at Icehotel. "This winter wedding couples will literally be embraced in the Ceremony Hall, and it'll also be possible to sleep in an ice dome, a Japanese garden, under supersized mushrooms, among flowers and much more. Maybe it will even be possible to experience an ancient legend… Every year I'm amazed of what this incredible team can achieve; talented international artists, flanked by a team of ice-professionals, can really create magic. Welcome to Icehotel 33!"
The 33rd Icehotel will stay open until April, after which time everything will begin to melt away again (though the year-round Icehotel 365 will of course remain open). For those who are hardy enough to make the trip, visitors are kept comfortable with warm drinks, thick mattresses and reindeer hides – though it would definitely be a good idea to pack some warm PJs too.