1. IceHotel, Sweden
Let’s start with the ice hotel that started them all: Sweden’s famous IceHotel, which definitely earns its praise. Not only was it the first ice hotel on the globe, but many still consider it the best. There are 50 rooms in total, 30 of which are warm rooms for those who just can't hack the cold. With 30,000 tons of snow and 10,000 tons of ice, it's significantly larger than its competitors. The hotel and all its contents are rebuilt every year in December.
2. Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort, Finland
Calling all nature lovers! If you're not quite ready to sleep on an ice bed, spend the night in a cozy igloo instead. Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort goes for a resort feel, where every igloo stands along in neat row surrounded by the lush Finnish forest. It’s ideal for travelers who love looking at a winter wonderland but not actually living in one.
3. Alpha Resort Tomamu, Japan
Bet you didn’t see this coming! Full disclosure: it surprised us, too. Their biggest "wow" factor is hands-down their Ice Village. In addition to a man-made ice-rink and delicately chiseled ice sculptures, you get actual mountains in the distance. They have different packages throughout the year including their “Spring Carnival” celebration running now through mid-March. Fun fact: Guests to take home sheepskin clothing found in their suites for free.
4. Hotel de Glace, Canada
You don’t have to fly all the way to Asia for an epic ice hotel experience (although, for the record, we can’t think of a better excuse for the splurge). Hôtel de Glace in Québec features colorful lights that really get you in the mood, whether trekking outside or getting pampered at their spa. Each suite boasts a unique design, including an ice sculpture. Right now they're having their "last change promotion," a deal that nearly cuts pricing in half.
5. Kirkenes Snowhotel, Norway
Time to unleash your inner Elsa! Rumor has it that the concept for Frozen was partially inspired by actual vistas in Norway. In the Snowhotel, everything from the walls and furniture to the room decor and wall art is made solely of ice and snow. Sculptures change yearly but in general, it takes about 15 tonnes of ice to construct the hotel every winter. Come happy hour, swing by their ice bar for vodka served in glasses made of ice. Oh, and there are real life reindeer here!
6. Hotel of Ice, Romania
This mountain valley resort is one of the most romantic on our list. For one, there's an actual chapel on site for couples eager to tie the knot. Hey, weddings are stressful! Then there's the hotel's restaurant that serves up traditional Romanian and Transylvanian dishes. What better way to warm up from the cold, right? For those who do decide to leave their not-so-humble abodes, there's also plenty to do, including skiing, snowboarding, and ice-skating.
7. Aurora Ice Hotel, Alaska
If you can't take too much time away from work, consider heading to the Aurora Ice Hotel. Besides it having the same name as a Disney princess, it's located right here in the U.S.A. While the Alaska hotel doesn’t create a new design every year, they have what's called an "absorption chiller" that keeps the cold temperatures year round. Technically, this means that you could visit in the summer and still make snow angels.