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You might not be able to pronounce it, but you probably would enjoy a holiday at the Kakslauttanen Hotel and Igloo Village in far northern Finland. If you go in winter, you can sleep in an igloo made from snow (yeah, you might think they're all made from snow, but just wait a second). The snow igloos have a constant temperature of between 21 and 27 degrees F, so combined with the thick sleeping back they give you, you should survive the night.
But if you're more into comforts, you can try their special glass igloos. Kakslauttanen says these glass igloos are "based on our wild idea and vision" and they're made from a "very special" thermo glass. And the glass roof means you can lie in bed and (nature permitting) watch the Northern Lights--no waiting for the hotel to call you out of bed.
The rest of the year, the log cabins are your best bet. They accommodate between 2 and 6 people and each comes equipped with a sauna and a traditional Finnish rocking chair! Kakslatuttanen is especially popular for weddings (you can get married in an ice chapel) but they also run a special week each season when only singles can come and stay. Something for everyone.
· Kakslauttanen Hotel and Igloo Village reviews [TripAdvisor]
· Please Disturb Me at Lapland's Rantasipi Pohjanhovi [HotelChatter]
Quebec's Ice Hotel hosted a Boots'n'All reviewer recently who smugly explained that she'd survived the cold better than most of the other guests. While we're sometimes not sure why people pay good money (up to $500) to sleep on a bed made of ice in the middle of winter, the idea is certainly novel enough to attract a decent amount of curious holidaymakers. How's this sound for a way to spend a night:
I opted for the dry sauna, wore my long johns under the fleece robe we'd been issued. I also took my outer clothes to warm them by the stove. I ran pell mell back to the room and stuffed the hot clothes down into the sleeping bag where they could warm my feet. I tied the neck muff of the sleeping bag around my neck, pulling up the hood with the built-in pillow, tied it so only my face was exposed to the night air. I was in a warm cocoon. Between me and the ice there was a piece of plywood and a thin foam mattress.
Yet somehow this place gets full fast. A nightclub and plenty of hot tubs are provided for enough strenuous activity to warm you up before you sleep, but snoozing on ice just doesn't seem like the most sensible thing to do. Didn't we strive to build all this great technology so we could be comfortable? But if you feel the need for a good chill-out, perhaps the Ice Hotel Quebec Canada is the right destination. It's open from January to early April so book fast.
If you can't stand the sweltering heat, maybe this video of the Ice Kube bar at the Kube Hotel will cool you down. It involves a creepy ice Teddy Bear statue and lots of shots of Grey Goose which always makes us smile...just before we throw up.
No worries about avalanches, the 37-year-old owner, Aurelian Nica, is a trained mountain rescuer. And he's psyched, "a dream come true," he says. Last year's attempt melted before anyone ever knew about it. Higher altitude and a great Siberian-cold front leave little room for premature melting for the 2006 season.
The hotel can be reached only from a highway linking the cities of Brasov and Sibiu to the Balea Lake resort, where tourists can board a cable car leading to a cabin and the ice hotel.
The cost ranged around 20,000 lei or USD$6,600, which seems awfully cheap to us. Hey, anyone want to build an igloo and charge people to sleep there?
· Ice hotel opens in Romania's Transylvanian mountains [Bucharest Daily News]
· Igloo-Tels Are SO Winter 2006 [HotelChatter]
Igloos are popping up all over the world. Less than a month after Germany announced their plans for Iglu-Dorf, we hear Romania is the next hot, er... cold spot.
High in the Fagaras Mountain Balea Lac resort, the newest igloo-tel will open on February 1, 2006. Balea Lac resort will remain open for four months, or until it melts, then like all ice hotels, wait for its rebirth the following winter.
Here's the good news: Unlike it's Canadian cousin, this ice hotel has yet to be booked up this season. With eight double rooms and a bar, space is limited, so if you want to experience frost bite-nights in `06, you can still get an igloo in Romania.
You can expect to pay about 19 euros for a single.
The hotel has a capacity of 1,440 people per season and owners say eight people have already booked rooms.
We suspect more people would book in if there was a website, or any information in English, such as a phone number or address--all of which we have yet to find. Even the Romanian tourist authority doesn't have the hotel listed. All we found was an article in the Bucharest Daily News.
Does it exist? Will it exist? Send us any info you come across.
In the midst of a pleasant North Eastern late December thaw one must pay homage to the Ice Hotels. That's right some people will pay over $1,000 to spend three nights in an upscale freezer. Expedia is featuring the Quebec Ice Hotel on its winter getaway page. So what is the deal with these high-class igloos?