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“Excellent honeymoon”
Review of Icehotel

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Icehotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Jukkasjarvi
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 8, 2009

We stayed at the Ice Hotel during our honeymoon and it was a wonderful and unique experience. We stayed in a Art Suite which was excellent and did not even seem cold at all - we soon got used to the temperatures and slept very well. We used a double sleeping bag and just wore some thermal underwear and socks as there was no need for hats, gloves and extra clothing. We also stayed in a warm chalet which was large and comfortable, and we also enjoyed a few drinks in the Ice Bar which was fun. We went on several trips (snow-mobiling, snow-shoeing, dog-sledging, visits to the nomadic Sami people, a Northern Lights safari etc etc) and thoroughly enjoyed them. The food was excellent although expensive, but this is probably true throughout Sweden. The hotel provides plenty of warm clothing.

I would definitely recommend the IceHotel and I wish that we could have spent more time there.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Groom727
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,129 - 1,135 of 1,479 reviews

Reviewed January 6, 2009

We stayed here for our annual new years trip away. Chose the Ice hotel as we always wanted to see the Northern Lights and it seemed like a perfect place to stay. We booked this trip with Discover the World as they have direct flights to Kiruna from Heathrow with SAS. It is a bit disjointed in one way. We stayed 2 nights in a warm room, one night in a hotel in Kiruna and one night in the cold room. We were on a high and this didnt bother us, but some people didnt like it as you had to check out of one room and wait around a bit for the transfer to other hotel or wait for check in time for the next room. There are plenty of activities to keep you entertained though- we went husky sleighing and snow mobiling.. which we enjoyed. Food and drink is a bit pricey but thats to be expected (hence the once in a lifetime title!!) and paying a very high price for probably one of the most uncomfortable nights sleep (in the cold room) of your life does seem mad... but it is all about the experience!! We saw the Northern Lights- although I believe that 2008 is half way through the cycle and that 2013 would be the best year to see them at their brightest. Staff were very friendly and helpful. The night in Kiruna we enjoyed as it was nice for a change of scenery and to mosey around the shops etc. The ice hotel should have mixed saunas though.. now there are only male/female ones- but you can hire a private one for £200!! Also they should open a spa for massages etc.. Just some ideas for them for hotel no 20!

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank joyceel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2009

We had been waiting 18 months to spend our honeymoon in the Icehotel and were not disappointed with the wait.
We spent a night in Stockholm before flying to Kiruna to spend a night in a warm room before spending New Years Eve in the Icehotel.
Firstly I must mention that the service from the pick up at the airport to dropping us back at the airport two days later was impeccable. All the staff we dealt with or met were incredibly friendly,helpful and knowledgable about the Hotel and the area.

The warm rooms were basic but comfortable with big glass ceiling inserts that allow uninterupted views of the sky at night. My one criticism being that the beds in our lodge seemed quite small.
The Icehotel itself was very impressive from the minute you enter the cathedral like main hallway, to the individually designed art suites some of which are like something out of a fairy story. We had an art room which had a double 'bed' ice tables and chairs and an ice sculpture. The basic ice rooms have beds in them but are of a good size. They even have a couple of family rooms that would sleep four or five people which was a really nice feature.
Spending the night was a strange and unique experience and worth doing once for those reasons. It is eerily quiet and although they recommend that you only wear thermals, socks and a hat inside the sleeping bag that they provide you do not really feel cold even thought he interior temperature of the room was -5c. The only minor discomfort is when you roll over and the part of you that was laying against the reindeer skin suddenly feels the chill. This soon goes away. It took me a while to get to sleep (probably due to numerous vodka cocktails with guarana which is a natural fruit stimulant) but once asleep it was a comfortable night and you wake up feeling quite refreshed and with no hangover!

We went on 2 excursions organised by the Hotel, A night skidoo trip with the potential to see the Northern Lights (not this time unfortunately) and a day trip on a sled being towed by huskies. For a petrolhead I would have thought the skidoo trip would be the highlight of the visit and whilst it was good the trip on the sleds with these beautiful dogs is absolutely fantastic and should not be missed. It is obvious that these dogs thoroughly enjoy what they do. For working dogs they are very tame and will allow you to pet them. The guide we had was very good and obviously felt a great deal of affection for the dogs.

There are 2 things that stand out as being below par which are
1 For breakfast there is a good spread of food but the bacon on both days was very underdone and should be called slimey rather than streaky bacon.
2 The food provided at the Homestead Restaurant which is part of the Hotel is no better than a school dinner. Edible but only just.

However the minor criticisms did not in any way spoil what was a brilliant and unique honeymoon. I don't know if we were lucky or if there is something about the place that brings out the best in people because everyone is so friendly there. The whole experience gave us memories that we will never forget.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank DannyFishcharge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 27, 2008

We stayed 1 night in the snow room and 2 nights in northern light chalet in early december. IN fact, we were the first lot of guests to stay on the opening day on Dec 10th. It was quite an experience - unforgettable.

When we arrived the temperature was -28c in Jukkasjarvi. Though the temperature in Kiruna was -16c (didnt understand why so much of temp difference within 15 kms). Our checkin was smooth at the reception of snow rooms. We placed our luggage in the large lockers. There were change rooms and sauna in this place. We were also given the warm suits (overalls) with gloves, boots and balakawa / cap. Even with these on, we needed to wear our woolens. The concept of multiple layers was to be applied for survival in such conditions. Hot lingonberry drink and crackers were complimentary and available in both the snow rooms reception area and the main reception area. After making ourselves comfortable we took a round of the icehotel with our guide. The ice hotel was under construction. We had the chance to meet some of the artists at work. It was a fantastic experience.
At night we took double sleeper bag (me and wife). The bed had reindeer skin on top of the soft bed. The room temperature was between -5 and -10c. One tip: Dont take double sleeping bag as it creates large pockets of freezing area. Go for individual bags - that way you can wrap yourself compeletely. Thats what happened to us - after struggling for two hours we ran in -10c (with hardly anything on) to change our sleeping bags. One more tip - the hotel staff will advise you to wear light woolens - dont do that. Wear atleast two layers of everything especially the socks. At 7.30am the staff comes to wake you up (we were half frozen by that time) with hot lingonberry drink. What we did was to quickly drink and make a dash to the warm areas. I guess everyone was waiting to be woken up!! it was once in a lifetime experience.

We took a bath and changed in the change areas. Had a great breakfast in the hotel restaurant across the road. The staff were not polite. In fact they were a bit pushy and not bothered about replacing what was finished. This was the only not-so-good experience at the icehotel.

We checked out from the snow rooms - that is remove your luggage from the lockers and keep it in the storage rooms. Now our wait for the warm rooms started. We were so tired after not-being able to sleep properly in the snow rooms that every minute
of wait was like an hour. In the meantime we went to the Jukkasjarvi church which is 1 km on the right side of the road. The church is a must see. There was a store on the way called Coop Nara. Its well stocked. Finally we got the rooms at 2pm. Our northern lights chalet were amazing. We were given room no. 16 which were facing the River (frozen, of course) and the construction site. So ask for rooms facing the river. The room had two bed rooms - one single and one double, living room, kitchennte. The bed rooms had large roof windows which were blocked with heavy ice.

What we did? We went for snowmobile and dog sled tours to chase Northern Lights. But our luck - it was full moon and the northern lights cant be seen in bright moon. Here are few tips: If you are coming for northern lights, then you need clear sky, no moon and the help of Sun to throw some showers in the solar system that might be captured in the earths atmosphere. We were completely out of luck! Use Kiruna Guidtour for your tours. They are half the price of Icehotel tours and very good. Hotel pickup and drop, camp fires, food, good guides, good equipment, etc. Next time I will pre-book night tours with Kiruna guidtour. They can pick you from the airport also. If you are going out on snowmobile when the temperature is -30c, the wind hitting you will decrease the temperature by further -10. We experienced -40c while driving. Wear as much you can to cover your feet and hands. Rest of the time we spent in the room heating our food (we are vegetarians), buying stuff from the hotel shop (its prices are equal or lower than the market - fill up your bags with whatever you like), hotel lounge areas and in the Absolut icebar.

The hotel staff is quite helpful. Both check in and check out were smooth. Overall we felt the experience was worth the effort and money.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank LazyoneBird
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 22, 2008

Our trip was booked with Oliver at Robert Broad Travel who were fantastic. They took care of everything for us, and kept us very informed.

The Hotel itself is incredible. Having now been back 4 days I want to go again. It really is quite unexplainable. One of those things you just cant make people understand until they have seen it themselves. It was very cold, but we wore a set of thermals, then a fleece set, and then either the snow suit or salopettes and ski jacket and were toasty. I would recommend a balaclava or face mask for the trips, and my skiing goggles came in really handy.

We stayed in the Peel room, Art suite 306 which was just amazing. Very cold at night, we wore thermals, hat and socks. As long as you dont move around too much in the night then the cold air doesnt get in. You can choose a double or single sleeping bag which is good. We had an art suite and so had a little changin room where we could keep our things, and get changed. The warm changing room is fantastic, beautiful and very clean. The Snow rooms have a locker to keep their things in, a communal changing area with private booths also. The heated sauna and the ice sauna were both fantastic, and very welcome after a trip.

The warm cabins were fantastic. We stayed in the Aurora cabins with a velux window to see the stars. Very cosy, hair dryers are provided ( Wish I knew that before) and all the usual bits and pieces.

The food is very expensive. WIth the £ exchange rate at the moment (21/12/08) we paid £100 for dinner, which was 2 x main courses, 2 x deserts and 1 x glass of wine. Typically a cup of tea or hot chocolate is about £3, and lunches start from around £7-8. The Old Homestead is a bit cheaper because it is an all you can eat style buffet, but the food is not as good, and that cost us about £110 for 2 x 3 courses and 2 x beers.

We went to the Co-op to get snacks and things, and used the hot drinks facilities in the cabin and it worked out so much cheaper. The gift shop again is great but very expensive.

We did the 4 hour Reindeer trip, 1 and a half hour Husky ride and the 4 hour Skidoo trip, all of which were fab. Food and drinks are provided on all trips, didnt get to see the Aurora Borealis which was gutting but still an amazing trip. I will say it was a little disappointing to see so much of the hotel not finished. (There was only one corridor of Art Suites and one of Snow rooms finished) But it was fascinating to see them being made.

However, once in a lifetime trip, would definitely go again if we could afford to.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank lindsey_bridgeman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 21, 2008

Having just returned I feel that I have to add to the growing list of plaudits for this wonderful hotel. The experience is purely magical, With helpful staff and a truly unique setting this place has to be seen and experienced to be believed. You must book some excursions as there isn't much to do at the hotel during the day. We booked through Kiruna Guidetur (Google search and easy to find) having read about them on Tripadvisor. Saved 50% of the cost of booking through the Ice Hotel and had 2 fantastic trips. Go and enjoy the open spaces of the Arctic Circle!!

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jh2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 19, 2008

We visited the Icehotel in mid December for my girlfriends 40th birthday...and man what a way to celebrate.
First we flew to Stockholm with Ryanair...cheap as chips but beware of luggage restrictions the 15kg limit is just that and if you over they WILL charge you for the privilege...we just stuffed our hand luggage with stuff too so it didn't affect us. The transfer from Skavsta to Stockholm takes about 90 mins and costs about 25gbp return per person.
In Stockholm we stayed with the Rica Hotel not far from Stockholm Central station. We booked a King bed well in advance through Expedia, only to be told on arrival they don't guarantee Expedia bookings...result being we ended up in a twin room. Not the best of starts! However i must admit they're breakfast was of a great standard and the location very useful for shoppers. The hotel also didn't mind us leaving our luggage while we meandered through the delightful streets of Stockholms old and new towns until it was time to catch our train.
And onto the next bit..
The train from Stockholm to Kiruna was easy to book (over the net or phone) and all you need to collect your tickets froma machine in the station is the reference number provided.
We took a 3 person carraige on the night train. Although only two of us travelling they will let you book the full carraige for a surcharge. The train journey itself is about 16 hours but as its a night train you sleep most of the journey and I will say that the standard of the bunks and blankets was great...very clean.
Only thing to beware is that all anouncements on the train are in Swedish, though everyone we met was extremely friendly and only to happy to translate.
On arrival we caught a taxi from Kiruna to Jukkasjarvi where the Icehotel is based. This cost us 450kr which is about 40gbp for an 18km ride. There are buses that run this route but I'm not sure of the times.
Ok now onto the main event.
The Icehotel staff are extremely friendlly and will do everything in their power to ensure you enjoy your stay there. We stayed in an Art Suite (Ice room) the first night and a Kammos (warm room). Do not be afraid of the cold while staying in the ice room. The sleeping bags they provide are more than warm enough and if you're unsure wear a set of thermals...its easier to remove them than put them on later! Temperature is maintained at a constant -5 degrees Centigrade within the hotel (due to its construction). Idea is to get in your sleeping bag as quickly as possible!!
Luckily for us we arrived on the night of the opening of the Icebar for that year...unbelievable. All staff were in dress to celebrate the theme of the bar for the year - 1920's..think Charleston etc.
The rooms are truly mesmorising.
We slept very comfortably and were awoken in the morning (about 7.30am) with the obligatory lingonberry juice - very nice.
Food was great - we had breakfast and lunch in the icehotel restaurant - breakfast is included with the room but lunch is about 15gbp per person but is a buffet style with as much as you like...and the food is varied and plentiful.
In the evening we went on the "Northern Lights" snowmobile tour. We booked this through Kiruna Guidetours. They are cheaper than the Icehotel but don't let that put you off - their service and staff are excellent. We didn't see the lights because of the cloud cover (even they can't guarantee that) but it was still worth the money for the experience.
You've probably read all the reviews so I'll just end with..yes it seem expensive but don't let that spoil your holiday...it is an experience of a lifetime and treat it as such...you really will enjoy it better that way..would I go back...Absolutely!!!

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MIsterMuff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Icehotel

Address: Marknadsvagen 63, Jukkasjarvi 981 91, Sweden
Location: Sweden > Norrbotten County > Jukkasjarvi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Jukkasjarvi
Price Range: $171 - $216 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Icehotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 60
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Also Known As:
Icehotel Hotel Jukkasjarvi
Icehotel Sweden/Jukkasjarvi
Ice Hotel Sweden

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