Roam+Board :: Hotel de Glace

Hotel de Glace quebec[trip style = adventure]

{Editor's Note: I'm currently in Eastern Canada for Carnaval de Quebec---the world's largest winter celebration---and part of the arctic experience is staying one night in the Hotel de Glace. See more photos on TS's Instagram!}

What Bucket list buffs, this stay's for you. Statuesque and stunning, the 44-room Hotel de Glace is an impressive structure on its own; add to this the fact that the entire thing---all 32,000 sf of it---is built and hand sculpted from ice and snow, and this frozen facade is by far the coolest stay around {pun intended}.

Open only during Quebec's most frosty season, it takes six weeks and 50 people working around the clock to manhandle this masterpiece. Once complete, the 1.2-metre walls and 5.4-metre arches are checked multiple times a day for stability {this assurance came in handy when I went to sleep in my candlelit room, and for some odd reason wondered if the walls would cave in.}

To say sipping a cocktail from an ice glass while mingling in an ice bar {capable of handling 400 people} is a novelty doesn't do the experience justice---it's otherworldly and, in many ways, represents the true reason we travel: to find inspiration and wonder.

Wonderstruck is the only word I can use to the describe my overnight stay in the arctic abode. Apparently it's not enough to build a giant igloo, e-v-e-r-y surface is styled {!}, and in a strange moment of travel bliss, all I wanted to do is hug my ice cocktail table and take my ice glass {carved from a 500-ton block} home as a souvenir. A picture will have to do.

Elsewhere on the snow-covered grounds there's a chapel---complete with deer fur-lined ice benches---designed in fairy tale proportions {I'm pretty sure Snow White would get hitched here}, a snowy spa to warm your core temperature before bed and an entire room devoted to an ice luge. Only in Canada.

Want more details? Check out the nitty-gritty below.

Where Fifteen minutes outside Quebec City, Canada by car.

When Hotel de Glace coincides with the region's winter wonderland and is usually open early January to mid March, weather permitting. This year's dates are January 5th - March 24th.

Who/Why Hotels made of wood or concrete are way too blasé for your tastes. Plus, against the white and clear backdrop, your faux-fur hat and Canada Goose jacket pop in photo shoots.

Cost Rates start at $199 per person, per night and include a welcome cocktail {served in an ice glass!}, a specialized minus 30 degree Celsius-rated sleeping bag, Wifi and breakfast.

FAQs 1. Did you sleep? No, but I tried really hard to. After two hours trying to warm my feet---the rest of me was warm---through vigorous movement and strange contortions, I retreated to the 24-hour inside space and found a corner to cuddle up. Note: I have very bad circulation; every other guest seemed to sleep well. 2. What do you sleep on? Your bed's base is a block of ice, followed by a wooden frame, and a foam mattress wrapped in a blanket. 3. Where do you go to the bathroom? There is a basic 24-hour indoor facility where you check in. In it, there's also lockers, a changing room, bathrooms, showers and hot bevvies. 4. What's the temperature? The temperature in the Hotel de Glace is a constant minus 5 degrees Celsius (23 degrees Fahrenheit). 5. How should you dress? Dress warmer than you can even imagine, and then some. Think thermals, down and hand/toe warmers. And bring a scarf. Basically, cover every single inch of your body. A balaclava is not out of the question. 6. When should I visit the arctic spa? Visit the hot tubs and sauna before bed---it'll warm your body temperature prior to jumping into your sleeping bag. 7. Would you go back? YES. YOLO. Next time, I'll attach toe and hand warmers to my extremities or litter my sleep sac with thermal hot packs!

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[photos taken by @tripstyler while staying as a guest of the hotel]