Live out your "Frozen" fantasy at Sweden's iconic Icehotel in Jukkasjärvi, which just opened for the season. Named Icehotel 31, a nod to the property's 31-year-history, the winter facility is the largest hotel built of ice and snow in the world. (There's also a permanent wing of the hotel that's operational year-round, appropriately called Icehotel 365.)
This year, Icehotel 31 features 12 ice art suites, while Icehotel 365 has an additional six ice art suites, each filled with thematic ice sculptures by artists from around the world. There's also a number of standard ice rooms, a ceremonial hall for private weddings, and the Icebar to round out the frozen offerings. On the permanent side of the hotel, there's a sauna for warming up, a lounge, a restaurant, and non-ice suites and chalets.
For those who aren't brave enough to spend a night in ice rooms kept between -5 and -8 degrees Celsius (17.6 and 23 degrees Fahrenheit), you can buy day tickets for an art tour. But given that the pandemic has hindered international travel, this year, there's a third option for viewing the ice sculptures.
“We know that many people are longing to travel, and we wanted to make the Icehotel experience accessible for those who may not be able to visit us right now. So, we came up with the idea to create a virtual trip with the help of AR technology,” Malin Franck, Icehotel's CEO, said in a statement.
To view the art in augmented reality, visit Icehotel's Instagram page (@icehotelsweden) via the latest version of the app, click on the smiley face icon, select an experience, and "try it."
But if you can visit Icehotel in person—Sweden currently allows leisure travelers from the E.U. and the U.K. to enter the country sans PCR test—the ice suites will be open for tours and overnight bookings through April 11, after which they'll melt.