A frozen palace all year round

Sweden's ICEHOTEL group announces plans to build a sustainable frozen hotel, preserved in summer by solar energy.

The original ICEHOTEL went up in 1989 in Sweden. Every year for the past 26 years, the hotel has been constructed in winter out of natural ice and snow, and then left to thaw in the spring. But soon a hotel will be available to guests all year round as the ICEHOTEL recently announced its plans to launch a permanent sub-zero ice experience in addition to its seasonal installation.

The permanent hotel will be built on the same site, 200 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle in Jukkasjärvi, where the midnight sun glows for 100 days and nights without setting in the summer. Taking advantage of this constant source of energy, the new structure will be kept cool using solar power innovation during the warmer months.

“It really couldn’t be any simpler – we use the physics of Isaac Newton – the same that we normally use to make energy efficient housing that keeps the cold out, only in this project we use it in reverse,” says architect and sustainable construction design expert Hans Eek.

Although an architect has not yet been chosen to design the icy enclave, sketches depicting a sleek igloo-like building have been released. The hotel will include about 20 hotel suites, a bar and an art gallery and its design will change every year, in keeping with the tradition of the seasonal structures.