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“Awesom Experience”
Review of SnowHotel in Kemi

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SnowHotel in Kemi
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Kemi
Reviewed April 26, 2013

Was in Kemin in 2010 as an Erasmus Exchange Student. I was lucky to be there during the snow castle season. I went to the annual opening and it was amazing. Returned there a few days later to visit the all Castle and it was incredible and unique. Never seen anything like that and never will see it again, as it is unique and changes every year. The only problem for me was being too cold which was a problem to take pictures ahah. If you are in Kemi from January to April please make sure you visit the Snow Castle.

Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
2  Thank msoares88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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17 - 23 of 51 reviews

Reviewed April 14, 2013

One of the famous attractions in Kemi during winter is the Snow Castle, which is rebuilt every winter with a different architecture.

Inside the hotel

Inside the castle, there is a snow hotel, a snow restaurant, and a snow chapel. Right through the castle there are fantastic ice sculptures and carvings on the snow walls.

Every year there is a different theme and this year’s theme was fantasy. So, inside the castle, there are ice sculptures of various themes related to fantasy. It’s open for visitors every year from the end of January until the beginning of April. The Snow Castle has two mascots, Arttu and Terttu, who look like snowballs and have interesting stories for entertaining the kids.

Prices

Entry to the Snow castle was 10 Euro each and prices for Snow Hotel ranges from 115€/night for a double room to €275/night for a honeymoon suite.

Decor

The Snow Restaurant is unique and the tables are made completely out of ice, seats are covered with special reindeer fur and all the decorations are ice sculptures. They serve hot and cold beverages as well as snacks, dinner and lunch. The meal in the Snow Restaurant was also very nice, the food was surprisingly good, and remained warm long enough for you to eat it.

The Snow Chapel is a popular attraction for weddings. Over the years dozens of couples from around the world have had their wedding in the Snow Chapel. A visit to the Snow Castle is a fantastic experience and one I would highly recommend to anyone travelling through Finnish Lapland in the winter.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
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6  Thank Ruwi87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 13, 2012

We visted for a single night over New Year's. It was a unique experience that we will talk about for years to come. I recommend the dinner option and staying for a single night in the ice hotel and combine your visit with a night in town and going on the Sampo Ice Breaker. Excellent trip for a short break in Finland.

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Rather_Nomadic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2012

I had a wonderful experience in the Snow Castle Hotel. At 9pm, some ladies would give you instructions on how to use the fleece bed and the... I was pleasantly surprised as I thought that we would be sleeping on ice,, but it was a nice soft bed. The toilets are outside the hotel. It was -30deg that night and luckily I didnt have to get out of bed to go to the toilets. It was a wonderful experience. There is a castle wall and you can see just about alot of the harbour and also some parts of the city. We were lucky to see some aurora borealis that night. Really once in a lifetime experience. The carvings of Sport was so appropriate, 2012 being an Olympics year. Bring minimal as there is no place to put anything in the room. You can get a locker in the warm part of the building.

Room Tip: There is a honeymoon suite.. beautiful ice carving on the wall.
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled solo
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3  Thank Savedwater S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 13, 2012

Snow Castle should not be considered as a hotel but rather an attraction which also includes accomodation. And though personally I spent a terrible night and had a very bad sleep, I am still very happy to have experienced this place because it's once in a life time kind of experience and I would recommend this place.
Once you arrive, you are first accomodated in the reception/lobby area which is in fact a cottage. There is a public locker room where you place your luggages but as the same place serves for breakfast in the morning, I would recommend you to prepare a small bag for your urgent needs for the following morning, otherwise, it's all messy. Dressing area is there as well but don't expect anything confortable: this a small cabin separated by a curtain and inside, there is little space to move around as it also serves as a small warehouse for the hotel (I don't understand why a better place is not prepared, that would be so easy for the management). The snow castle is adjacent to the cottage. Every year there is different theme and this year's is sports. So, inside the castle, there are ice scuptures of various sport themes. Ice bar and ice restaurant are both inside the castle as well as the chapel, but in case you spend the night at the castle, I recommend you to have dinner elsewhere as you will anyway have the experience in the room. As the toilets are outside the snow castle and the cottage, I recommend to take precautions before going to sleep because it's literally impossible to go to the toilets once you are inside the sleeping bags. So, make sure you go to your room as late as possible and as ready as possible.
The rooms are much more confortable than expected: there is a mattress on which furs are placed and there are 2 layers of sleeping bags. So, cold is not an issue at all, on the contrary, you even sweat inside. However, it's all very claustrophobic. We were staying in room no:1, 6 of us. Unfortunately, we 3 women, we could not make it and at 2:30 am in the morning, as we felt really very unconfortable, we left the room and slept on the cottage (which was very awful as weel as we had to sleep on the benches) but our husbands slept till the morning and they were very happy. The breakfast was delightful with freshly baked bread smell was all around and it was very cosy. Of course, there is no chance for a shower but the hotel arranges shuttle buses to a nearby hotel for such needs. Overall, despite all the odds, I don't regret having stayed there and in the contrary, I enjoyed this weird experience a lot.

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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5  Thank TubaKoseogluOkcu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 29, 2011

The Snow Castle in Kemi is open during the day as a touristic attraction, and there are some rooms in the castle that can be booked as a hotel. The hotel is small and can lodge few people. We were 8 or 9 guests at the night I spent there. It gave me the sensation of a very exclusive experience.
Before going to sleep, the hotel's staff explain to all the guests how to sleep well in the snow rooms. The hotel provide us a covering and a sleeping bag. The covering is like a bag too, and we put it inside the sleeping bag. Then we take off our heavy clothes and enter in the covering bag, wearing just underwear, woollen hat and socks. The temperature inside the room is -5 C, but I couldn't feel cold inside the sleeping bag.
Less comfortable than the swedish Ice Hotel in Jukkasjärvi that provides us cabins to change and keep our things, the Kemi Snow Castle has no exclusive changing rooms, but as we were so few people, it was ok to wait or going to the restroom (just a few steps outside the reception) to change clothes. Each guest has a locker to put his/her belongings.
In the morning, we have to walk a short distance from the snow castle to the reception and then I felt a freezing cold. But it was gone in 5 seconds, as I reached the reception. The breakfast is served there, and after that, there is a van that take the guests to nearby hotels to take a shower with sauna. It is odd to catch a car to take a shower, but it was fast, as Kemi is a very small town. After the sauna, I went out for a walk in the city and came back to the Snow Castle on foot, by myself.
When I arrived at the snow castle it was crowded! So different from the night before, when I took all the photos I wished wherever and whenever I wanted. They change the theme of the decoration every year. In winter 2010-2011 it was "comics' characters".

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled solo
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2  Thank Nizinha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 4, 2011

We stayed in the snow castle in kemi- great experience and the castle and ice sculptures are amazing!
Slept surprisingly well in -5degrees thanks to an arctic sleeping bag and lots of layers! The early morning trip to the toilet was not fun though- my boots had frozen to the floor in the night!

Word of warning- there is VERY little else to do in Kemi unless you want to spend lots of money doing the ice breaker sampo trip...

  • Stayed: March 2011
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1  Thank Katksr83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about SnowHotel in Kemi

Address: Mansikkanokankatu 17, Kemi 94100, Finland
Location: Finland > Lapland > Kemi
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Kemi
Price Range: $404 - $412 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The SnowCastle of Kemi by the Gulf of Bothnia in Finland is the source of great pride as well as a true showcase of architectonic snow-work of the local constructors. Every winter - since 1996 -the SnowCastle offers wonderful experiences for both children and adults alike. Great light-effects will add to the charm of the snow- and ice-sculpting as well as to the structures about the SnowCastle. The SnowCastle is open from the end of January until the first days of April, daily at 10-18. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Snow Castle Of Kemi Hotel Kemi
Snow Castle Kemi

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