We stayed at Kakslautten in a glass igloo for one night in early December 2013.
We took the train from Helsinki to Rovaniemi (overnight) and then a bus from Rovaniemi to Saariselka. The bus leaves from right outside the train station and drops you right outside the hotel.
We were told the scenery on the train is not particularly exciting hence the night train. It was still very exciting to wake up in the morning to the beautiful twilight morning and 360 degrees of snow covered landscapes!
Getting to the hotel, the reception takes a while because the people managing reception are also managing the bar/restaurant. Once there, we were given a map and explained how to get to our igloos. This walk was pretty arduous in the snow and dark, and there weren't any signs to help. When we finally did get there, we were very happy with the igloo. It was incredible. Beautiful, well heated, and worth the effort.
The beds are controllable which is fun and you get to decide exactly where you want to face to see the lights.
There is a bathroom but no shower in the igloo. You can use the shared shower which is about 200m or more away but really, how can one contemplate walking that far for a shower when the temperature in -20 and you are knee deep in snow?
We then went to get dinner at the restaurant. The place was very chaotic, we were misleadingly told that there was only a set menu and no a la carte but this is not true. We finally got a seat, and were served by 2 different waitresses as they didn't know who was serving us. They were both fairly pleasant though. The place also had 3 vegetarian options for me, which was very well appreciated considering the remoteness of the location.
Food was only average (for me and my non-vegetarian partner) and it took them more than half an hour to get us our bill which was annoying.
Next day, there was free breakfast though, which again was average but not anything to complain about either.
Back to the igloos, we did see some beautiful northern lights on our way back from dinner, and got some beautiful pictures (outside the igloo). Unfortunately our neighbours had left their lights on, which causes a surprising amount of light pollution and was really annoying as we were trying to watch the aurora from our room! We stayed up till 1am and then slept under the beautiful night, slightly annoyed by our neighbours but mostly content.
We did spend two more nights in another hotel in Saariselka which were also great but obviously this place is quite special.
Overall, I think you do have to bear in mind that this is the arctic and a luxurious experience is not what this land offers so you have to take criticism of this place with a grain of salt.
I think the glass igloos are a spectacular concept and a very fascinating experience for a night and I would recommend it to others. The hotel unfortunately is not very well run - simple things like signs to the igloos, advising people to turn their lights off when the igloo in not in use, a better run restaurant, a separate check in would make a difference. Not having showers in the igloo is also somewhat annoying.
I would recommend this to everyone as a one night stay for a magical night followed by stay in a normal and cheaper hotel in Saariselka for a few more days to further experience Lapland.
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- Also Known As:
- Kakslauttanen Hotel And Igloo Village
- Kakslauttanen Hotel Igloo Village
- Kakslauttanen Hotel Saariselka
- Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort Finland/Saariselka