Daily Distraction: 10 Crazy Hotels We Wish We Could Visit…
Posted by Katie Ostoich on July 18, 2012 at 4:04 PM
…but probably will never be able to afford. I don’t know if it’s the awful summer heat we’ve had or what, but I can’t stop thinking about a vacation. It’s been years since I’ve been on a huge travel adventure and the wanderlust is definitely catching up with me. So when I found this collection of amazing hotels, I just had to hsare, so we can all take a mini-vacation from our office chairs! These hotels definitely would make a vacation unforgettable because they’re just so cool. Who wouldn’t want to sleep in an igloo? Or underwater? Or in a cave!?! So join me on a virtual trip!
The Hotel de Sal: A hotel made of salt
Yes, a hotel made of salt! The salt flats in Salar de Uyuni, near Colchani, Bolivia, are a tourist attraction that brings thousands of visitors to this South American country. But by far the most unusual place you could stay is the Hotel de Sal — a hotel made entirely out of salt harvested from the salt flats. A double room costs about $132 per night and comes complete with salt beds. (Hopefully the mattresses and blankets are made from something softer!)
Chateau de Canisy: A 1,000-year-old B&B
I have a confession: I am obsessed with the French Revolution and Marie Antoinette. It's my favorite time in history! So I am obsessed with this hotel! Located in Normandy, France, the Chateau de Canisy is a castle that's over a thousand years old. Its storied history includes all the pieces of my favorite time in history: invasions and assassinations, beheadings and weddings, cunning escapes and heroism. Now fully renovated, it serves as a bed-and-breakfast hotel where guests can choose from a wide assortment of rooms representing different eras from the house's history. Rent a room starting at $469 per night (with a two-night minimum), or gather 40 of your closest friends and rent the entire estate. This is your chance to experience what life as a French aristocrat might have been like!
Poseidon Undersea Resorts
Calling all Ariel fans! Though still in the planning and construction phase, the Poseidon Undersea Resorts promise the ultimate in luxury — under the ocean. Undersea rooms and restaurants will be accessible via an elevator that takes guests 40 feet into the waters of a crystal-clear lagoon in Fiji. Guests can reserve a week at the resort, which will include two nights in undersea rooms and four at a beach house on land. The terrestrial portions of the resort include a 9-hole golf course, half a dozen restaurants and bars, a sports center, a retail boutique, and a dive shop. All this undersea luxury won't come cheap, of course. A seven-day, six-night stay at the resort will set you back $30,000 per couple.
Waldseilgarten adventure resort
Ready for some true adventure camping? The Waldseilgarten (translated) adventure resort in the German city of Pfronten, Bavaria, offers brave guests the opportunity to sleep on a platform suspended from a tree limb in the middle of the forest. I think my husband would kill me if I made him go here! Those who are even more daring can choose to sleep on a portaledge hanging from a cliff face hundreds of feet above the ground. Not quite so adventurous? The resort also features sturdier platforms suspended between trees, with easy access to the ground at any time. Sleeping in the trees will cost you $334 per night for a suspended portaledge or $167 for a tree platform. The cliff-face ledges are almost $1,200 per night, while the Eskimo weekend, including igloo building instruction, will set you back $281 for adults and $194 for children under 14.
Watch the aurora borealis from the Igloo Village at Kakslauttanen
This is truly amazing. Located 155 miles above the Arctic Circle in Finland, the Hotel Kakslauttanen Igloo Village features domed rooms with ceilings made from special thermal glass that doesn't frost over, even in extreme cold. This lets guests watch the beauty of the northern lights from the comfort of a warm room and a luxury bed. If you're looking for more traditional accommodations, the village offers snow igloos as well, though you'll have to give up the sky view. The igloo village is only open from December through April, so plan your trip to this winter wonderland accordingly!
Sleep among the stars at the Commercial Space Station
If you've got some time to plan your next getaway and you want to get really far away (and you have a ton of money), book yourself a room that's literally out of this world. Russian firm Orbital Technologies has plans to build, launch, and operate the Commercial Space Station, which will (among other purposes) allow space tourists to spend a few nights in a luxury hotel in space. Such accommodations don't come cheap, of course. It'll cost you $410,000 just to get there, with the hotel itself adding another $165,000 to the bill. But the view simply can't be beat!
Unique luxury at the Treehouse hotel
If you love the idea of sleeping among the trees but crave a few more luxurious amenities than the Waldseilgarten resort offers, check out Sweden's Treehotel. This fascinating hotel consists of five unique treerooms (with 19 more planned), each with its own theme and look. Choose from the UFO (above), the Bird's Nest, the Mirrorcube, the Blue Cone, and the Cabin. The rooms accommodate from two to four people each, and all are equipped with environmentally friendly details like combustion toilets and water-efficient sinks. Rooms start at about $593 per night at this fascinating hotel.
The world's deepest underground hotel
If treetop or mountainside living isn't quite your thing, the Swedes also have the opposite available: a two-person suite located in an old silver mine 509 feet underground. A night in the Mine Suite at Sala Silvermine will cost you $580 and includes a tour of the mine, a basket of refreshments, and breakfast in the morning. Just be aware that if you have to heed nature's call in the middle of the night, the closest bathroom is several hundred feet above you!
Ladera's open-walled luxury invites the outside in
Ready to relax in utter luxury and serenity? The Ladera resort in St. Lucia, West Indies, is so private that it has literally removed the fourth wall from the suites — each is open to the ocean breeze and the sound of the surf and the birds. The Hilltop Dream Suites are located 1,100 feet above the Caribbean Sea, for unparalleled views. All this beauty does cost a pretty penny, though. Rates begin at $380 per night for the smallest suite in the summer months and go up to $1,330 per night for the two-bedroom villa during the busy season. Each does include a continental breakfast, afternoon tea, and full use of the resort facilities, including warm volcanic mineral water bath, fitness center, beach shuttles, snorkeling equipment, and high-speed wifi access. Each room also comes with a necessaire kit that includes binoculars, eye masks, slippers, and a star chart for finding your place in the night sky.
Luxury tents with tigers as invited guests
One of my "bucket list" items is to go on a safari, but I'm not into roughing it if you know what I mean. So the Oberoi Vanyavilas luxury jungle resort might just be the vacation spot for me. Situated right on the edge of the Ranthambore Tiger Reserve in western India, the resort features accommodation in luxurious tents with richly embroidered canopies, elegant furniture, and private decks. Lest you hear "tent" and assume "primitive," each tent is equipped with an LCD satellite television with DVD player, wired and wireless broadband internet access, and a personal bar. Spend the day in the reserve, hoping to catch a glimpse of the tigers, then relax in the evening at the resort's spa and fitness center. Rates vary from $860 to $957 per night for this exotic getaway.
Which would you pick if you could go to any of these for free?