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Reviewed February 20, 2014

We were exhausted after getting off a bad night on the Hurtigruten with rough seas and almost cancelled our stay at the Snowhotel to remain in normal hotel for an extra night. We are so pleased we didn't as the Snowhotel was one of the big highlights of our trip!!
It was first of all really nice that there was only a small group of about 24 people staying overnight so it all felt quite personal. We started with roasting sausages overhear over aka large open fire in one of their beautiful wooden huts! We then had a tour of the hotel where we got to explore all the rooms and find out which one we will be staying in! We had hot soup in the main ice bar before heading to the main restaurant for a delicious 3 course meal! Staff were all very friendly and helpful. After dinner we had a wander round and then prepared or a night in the snow.
We were given a detailed demonstration by Diego of how to get into our sleeping bags and get settled for the night. We then headed to bed and had a great night's sleep.
In the morning we had access to sauna and showers and then a lovely buffet breakfast! The main restaurant overlooked a stunning view of the fjord!

Date of stay: February 2014
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Thank cathyq
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2014

The staff at the Snowhotel couldn't have been more accommodating. The Snowhotel itself is a real work of art in ice - yes, it was like being in a winter wonderland. In the service-centre attached to the Snowhotel, we enjoyed a fabulous dinner of Arctic Char with delicious cheese starter and lovely sweet to finish, (plus a shot of Vodka to warm me up!). After dinner we donned military-issue sleeping bags and balaclavas, and surprisingly, despite the -4C temperature I actually slept for about 4 hours that night. The next morning we could sauna and enjoy wonderful hot showers, and then a delicious breakfast before getting on with the day's activities.

Date of stay: February 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled with friends
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1  Thank Lynne C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 18, 2014

Prior to the trip, Anne at the Snow Hotel was very responsive and helpful with my multiple emails. After disembarking from a Hurtigruten cruise, I joined 8 other people on a bus to the Snow Hotel. The permanent buildings are all dark wood, rustic; the dog area is lots of wooden dog houses on legs. Probably 2 feet of snow on the ground, the tree branches are all covered with about 2” of snow. Looked like a winter wonderland – pine trees w/snow coating, twiggy trees w/snowy branches, snowy hills, dropping down to an ice covered lake, surrounded by snowy hills.

The actual hotel portion is made of snow and is shaped like a tunnel with round rooms extending off the sides. At the back of the snow hotel is a permanent 3-story building in dark wood that housed the bathrooms, showers, etc on the ground floor for the snow hotel; middle floor was a lounge area & bar; top floor was a relaxing area (big chairs & sofas covered with furry reindeer skins) and the dining room with huge floor to ceiling windows overlooking the lake and hills. Snow Hotel is entered through an arched doorway and the main hallway curves to the back, with the individual rooms off both sides of the hall & ice sculptures along the hall. I think there were 20 rooms, plus a large round ice bar at the back of the main hall. Each room was about the same size and contained a carved ice bed frame, with a regular mattress inside the bed frame and fleece covered pillows. The walls of each room were snow and were carved with décor fitting a theme; some of the themes were Mickey Mouse, Marilyn Monroe, snowmen, Charlie Chaplin, swans, Snow White, Mona Lisa, some cartoon characters (not sure who), Santa, penguins, sailors, and more. Each room had a lighting system (from below) focused on the carved walls. There were a couple of family-sized rooms with 4 twin beds. The snow hotel is kept at -4 degrees inside. The bath/shower room is just outside the snow hotel in the permanent building.

Dinner was served in the Gabba restaurant - what a sensation entering this round wooden building – coming from the crisp, cold (-12), starry night – into a warm, candle-lit room with a crackling fire in the middle of the room! The room is rustic – birch wood planking walls & ceiling (vaulted, so fire smoke goes up & out), trestle tables & benches covered in red cloths and stuffed animals on a shelf along the ceiling edge. Dinner was such fun, mostly because of the ambience and the great staff – the first course was reindeer sausage that we grilled ourselves over the fire. They gave us pointy sticks to put the sausages on and we stood around the fire grilling them – brought me back to my Girl Scout days! After they were done, we wrapped them in a traditional pita-type bread, smeared on some mustard, and ate – tasty, tasty. Second course was a local Norwegian cheese plate w/grapes, various dipping sauces and crackers. Third course was Arctic char which they cooked by nailing the filets to alder boards and propping them next to the fire, so that they smoked. I asked if they had any meat, didn’t matter what, and they cooked me reindeer steaks - 3 large pieces. Fourth course was ice cream w/berry coulis. Then, an after-dinner drink - the Arctic Night – hot chocolate and a shot of Minttu, a peppermint liqueur; so good. During dinner, they told us twice that the Northern Lights were visible which was an unexpected bonus!

Around midnight, made a final bathroom stop where I also picked up my sleeping bag, wool socks & balaclava and went to my room. These alpine style sleeping bags are very warm, so you’re supposed to wear your long-underwear, wool socks and the balaclava (which you can pull up over your nose, over your eyes, etc.) I stuffed my coat into the bottom of the bag so that it would be warm-ish for any bathroom trips and got into the bag. They’re relatively narrow so there wasn’t a lot of room inside to twist & turn; I got it zipped up and sort of cinched the top around my head. I made it through the whole night, but will say that it wasn’t particularly restful or comfortable. The temperature in the room was -6 but I wasn’t cold, it was more that I felt constricted – lying there on my back with my arms at my side or crossed in front – kind of like being in an MRI. Finally, I flipped onto my side and slept soundly the rest of the night. So, that’s my tip – don’t feel you have to lie flat on your back!

In addition to the amazing landscape, the activities and the actual hotel itself, their staff were a huge part of the experience. Unfailingly, they were all friendly, helpful and interested in the guests; it was clear that they enjoyed their job and wanted us to enjoy our experience there. All of them were very matter of fact, intelligent and savvy.

I would go back again for the landscape, serenity & Gabba experience but would probably sleep in one of their permanent wooden cabins.

Date of stay: January 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled solo
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1  Thank vickiebypass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2014

Wow. We loved this place and bought into the whole concept.
The staff were very efficient and friendly and nothing was too much trouble.
We arrived early from the Hurtigruten ship and were picked up at the port on a free shuttle. If going this route check with the ships tour desk to get on the bus, we had to wait for the Snowhotel to come and get us, but it wasn't a problem.
Upon arrival we were given the tour, chose our room, then we were able to have a day there playing!! Included in your stay is use of snow shoes, kick sledges and cross country skis.
We also did a two hour Husky sledge ride over a frozen Fjord, which was amazing!
There is a separate building which houses the showers and toilets, also the restaurant and comfortable sitting area. This is right next to the Snow hotel so should you need the toilet at night you don't have far to go.
There are also staff on hand at night should you need them.
The food was excellent, starting with a Reindeer sausage in the Gabba restaurant then soup in the Snow hotel followed by three more courses in the adjacent restaurant.
Then time for bed!
It was a bit of a struggle for me to get into the sleeping bag, which they provide along with balaclava and socks. But once in I was completely warm.
I agree with others about somewhere to put your clothing when undressing and even something to stand on. I found wrapping my clothes inside my coat and leaving that on the bed worked for me.
Slept very well and was a very good experience.
They also have very nice wooden cabins if you find the Snow hotel too much.
I would love to have had an extra night here, in a cabin to then make more use of the facilities.
Breakfast was good with lots of choices then they take you to either the airport, port or town centre hotels. All in all a fantastic experience, not to everyone's liking I'm sure but one very much worth trying.

Date of stay: February 2014
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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Thank KentPalaceman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 12, 2014

This is classified as a snow hotel as opposed to an ice hotel so I guess there are differences. We were pleased we stayed overnight but would not bother again. Although my husband slept like a baby I kept overheating in the minus 4 degree rooms as I was too cocooned in the sleeping bags.
They would benefit from lockers where toiletries and outdoor clothes can be stored in regular temperatures.
Attached to the hotel are other activities such as husky sledding, ski-do trips and fishing for the giant crab. We did all of these and all were equally memorable. The equipment and clothing provided were all well maintained and the staff excellent.

Date of stay: February 2014
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Thank Barbara4068
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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