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“Experience of a lifetime!”
Review of Hotel de Glace

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Hotel de Glace
Ranked #37 of 101 Hotels in Quebec City
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
145 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
“Experience of a lifetime!”
Reviewed 25 February 2013

Three girlfriends and I went on a short two day, one night trip to Quebec City so we could stay at the Ice Hotel. What an amazing experience! Anyone who has a Bucket List needs to put this on theirs, it is such a wonderful place that's full of magic and delight.

You don't have to worry about being cold because there is no wind chill in the hotel, the hotel website has tips for how to dress and stay warm while there as well. There are hot-tubs by Arctic Spa (they make great products) and are encouraged to be used before going to bed to get your circulation going well. You're given heavy duty sleeping bags designed for sub zero temperatures, mattress and pillow while sleeping on an actual block of ice.

There was a slide, great bar (with live DJ), sculptures and interactive things to do.

Absolutely a memorable experience that I will always hold close to my heart.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Christina_Moorshead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (124)
Date | Rating
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English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
106 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 February 2013

The first item you must address is price. This is not cheap. I bought on Groupon for 50% off and it was still a small fortune. A month later, my girlfriend and I upgraded to a signature room which was another couple hundred. Dividing the cost helped us ignore how much we actually spent.

In all honesty, you can probably get everything you need from the Ice Hotel in a day visit. You can see all the rooms, the amazing carvings and have a drink at the bar.

The overnight stay is to be a part of the exclusive club. It isn't so much about bragging rights as something to cross off the bucket list. I'd similarly pay a premium to sleep at a zoo, museum or old castle. If you get that, you will understand the Ice Hotel.

Regarding infrastructure, the Ice Hotel takes over an abandoned zoo. I had no expectations and feared it was built in a parking lot with porta-potties and pop up tents. I was pleasantly surprised to see a proper entrance, check in, gift shop, cafeteria, showers, and bathrooms. It is still a public, industrial space and you shouldn't expect a hotel experience in any capacity. However, the staff is excellent and they do what they can to make it accommodating.

As an overnighter, you get to use the hot tubs / sauna and some other small things like free snowshoes to explore the rest of the park / abandoned zoo grounds.

Room Tip: The signature rooms are gorgeous but expensive. A basic room will give you 80% of the experience. Ho...
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank AdventureArt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Long Valley, New Jersey
Level Contributor
238 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 February 2013

I had been planning this hotel stay for years. Finally I was able to do it and took my family with me - one of these life time experiences. We got the Discovery Package which meant a deal to leave our luggage, shower, dine and have breakfast at the nearby Sheraton. A shuttle was available 24 hours to take us from one to another location - just 2 minutes away. This was peace of mind as we knew we had an alternative place to go in case we were not comfortable sleeping at the Ice hotel. Two check ins were required - one at the Sheraton and one at Ice Hotel's 'celsius' pavillion. The celsius pavillion is a warm place that one can enjoy bathrooms, showers, wifi, comfortable seats and meals. The Ice Hotel architecture is really amazing - we learned it took 2 years of learning with a Swedish team until they got a grip on how to build this. A mold (later removed) is used to build the main structure. The room's interior walls are carved by local college students and differ from each other. This year, the hotel had 44 rooms which were built in 3 stages. We stayed at Room 5 - it was one of the only ones able to accommodate 2 queen size 'beds'. The rooms have no doors, but a curtain instead. Blue curtains meant simple, spartan rooms. Burgundy curtains meant carved rooms. Some have elaborate ice furnitures and animal fur covering them. The chapel and the bar are beautiful. We got to drink apple cider in ice glasses - really hard to do it but surprisingly good. The bar has blasting music, lots of dancing customers. The hotel has created an ice slide that is now open even to adults. If was a fun! The hotel atmosphere is of a big party. We never got to feel really cold during the day as we were always moving around. Gloves and hat are a must. The experience of sleeping at the Ice hotel is quite complex. We got directions via E-mail after I requested them so I knew what to take, what to wear, what to expect beforehand. Previous Trip Advisor reviews were very helpful as well. We were a little apprehensive at first, but after going through the experience everyone had a smile at breakfast and stories to tell back home. We arrived at about 3:30PM for our overnight stay and got to pick on all rooms. It was good timing as we got to enjoy the behind the scenes tour at 5:30PM when we learned about the hotel history and the 6:45PM sabatical on how to sleep there without freezing. The tours are given either in French or English - check the time prior to joining one. The staff at the ice hotel is very helpful providing information on what to do and when. They recommended the bath tub or sauna prior to the overnight stay. I was the only one from my party doing this - it was quite an experience wrapping myself in a robe and walking back and forth to the celsius pavillion in freezing temperature. We did not think this was critical to warm up our bodies properly for the night, but I thought it was an interesting ritual. We were provided sleeping bags that were good enough for much colder temperatures. The instructions on how to spend the night were clear although we had a little trouble with closing the sleeping bag. The proper use of the sleeping bag and the inner sleeve is critical for a decent night. They recommend little clothing at night. They light up several candles in the room for extra light. We were warm at night for the most part. Although I had long sleeves and pants, I wish I had an extra layer as I felt my body temperature going down a bit during the night which made me panic. None us us slept more than a few hours. We woke up right at 8AM with the noise of people getting up. We were asked to leave the room at 8:15 so they get it ready for the 10AM tours. We decided to have breakfast at the Ice hotel to make it simple. We thought breakfast was simple and good. We thought that the dining experience the night before at the Sheraton was great - delicious 4 course meal, more than what we were expecting. One can tour the hotel without having to stay. However, I particularly think that staying overnight is a must if you can afford.

Room Tip: You do not get to chose a rom at this hotel unless you are the bride and groom. All room are quiet...
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MCNICE9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stratford, Canada
Level Contributor
46 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 February 2013 via mobile

first off ladies . I'm always cold and I was warm here, even through the night.
dress In layers .. They will tell you once you have booked what the best clothing choices are and so on ...
we brought those "hot seats" from Canadian tire that ice fisherman use and that kept us off the Ice seats and very dry and warm.. I would recommend anyone that's going do the same. Also bring a flask .. The drinks are very expensive for a small portion ...
this place was AMAZING !!!
My bf and I are both in our 30's and the majority of the staff and guests were also in the age range of 25-35...
the club was great.. The night we stayed the Nordic group ( their sponsors) were there and so the club stayed open till 3 am. Normally it closes at 12:00.
the hot tubs were clean and nice never packed and they stay open all night.
Snowshoes are available for free .. We did the trail .. It takes about 20 mins ..
The hotel is built on the grounds of an old zoo so the trail for snowshoeing had some interesting old buildings along the way ..
our room was a suite with a fire place
No heat comes from them but it's beautiful.
We stayed at the four points hotel the night before and would recommend it.
There is a free shuttle between the ice hotel and the four points ... We took advantage of this for supper the night if the ice hotel ...
I'm so glad we went this trip is something to do once in a life time
I'd highly recommend it!

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Marie-knows-best
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
60 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 February 2013

My wife and 10yr old daughter recently stayed one night at the Hotel du Glace. We had paid $1,200 for the so-called Adventure Package. At this price we were expecting really excellent service and while the room itself was very spartan (and of course cold!), so also were the associated facilities. The hot tubs and sauna were a joke, the breakfast consisted of microwaved croissants, limp bread, and a couple of cereal choices. and the breakfast area looked like a low level cafetaria. The breakfast as well as the dinner before was paid for by "coupons" that had been issued to us as part of the package. As the dinner was "couponed", we were allowed to select form a very limited menu at the Sheraton Hotel nearby. Given the price that we had paid we fully anticipated being able to select from the full menu; again shocklingly poor service and quality for what we paid. Our advice is: if you want to stay at the Hotel du Glace then book one night directly with them, do not get seduced into packages of any sort and be prepared to pay a princely sum for being able to say that you slept there. By the way, we were not cold in the least during the night and the hotel is very unique; not worth the stay but certainly worth a visit.

Room Tip: Choose a room very far from the bar area
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank gbb54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Level Contributor
74 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2013

Like others who've left reviews before, the architecture of the ice hotel is truly amazing. It's sad to think that every April they collapse it and rebuild it each December. The wedding planning and ceremony was very professionally done, right from our initial contact. Elisabeth was our wedding planner and she was nothing short of extraordinary! She made our day excellent. The photographers were also excellent and very entertaining.

As for our stay, we stayed in the premium suite with our own private hot tub and sauna. This is the way to stay as we didn't have to run down the hall to get to the general hot tub and sauna area. However, being that it was the premium suite, we had people, even when it was just hotel guests, walking into our room to 'take a look' despite the curtain being closed. That was the one downfall as we felt for $800+ a night we'd have more privacy, but even after telling hotel staff about the issue, after different times of people coming in, it didn't change - we woke up at 7:30 AM to people coming into our room, which I was not impressed about at all.

The stay was a great experience, and if you follow the instructions given from the staff you'll be fine. The only thing that got a little cold was my face, and even that wasn't bad. Like other reviewers, the breakfast was rather pathetic, given what you've paid. All-in-all I'd tell people to stay there, enjoy the moment as it's a story you'll tell over and over... and people may think you're crazy!!!

Room Tip: All depends on price, but suites are closer to the main lodge and the hot tubs and saunas.
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JPP566
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 February 2013

An amazing adventure to stay here - yes, you can see it during the day and take pictures, but its not the same as staying the night and seeing it light up and crunching down the snow halls to bed. The construction and artistry of the ice hotel itself is beautiful and an architectural wonder. It is, truly, unlike anything else you could experience. Waking up to snow walls with snowflake sculptures and snow coming in thru the ceiling was cold, but magical. We stayed on a family vacation with our 11 year old - and its a night we'll always remember as super special - staying up late and dancing in the ice bar, sipping drinks out of ice glasses, attempting ice carving, and lots of sliding down the ice slide. We splurged on one of the theme suites and it was worth it. Its a unique and singular experience. The sleeping bags were restrictive, but they did keep you comfortable. As noted by others, our noses were the only things that got cold. We were not forwarned about the "no cotton" rule for sleeping, so that meant some last minute suitcase diving to find polyester clothing - wish we'd had that stressed beforehand and we'd have been better prepared.. That's the ice hotel itself - amazing. However, the paviillion where you change, go to the bathroom, shower and eat breakfast is amazingly bad and woefully inadequate - magic certainly ends there. Believe they have added rooms to the ice hotel over the last few years so larger crowds (it was full the night we stayed) - three showers and bathroom stalls each for men and women for almost 100 people is just not sufficient. And, there is absolutely NO privacy - or even a place to keep your things dry why you shower (seems a a bench or hook outside the shower and a privacy curtain shouldn't be too much to ask - and they certainly stress how important it is to stay dry - hard when your suitcases and clothes are on the wet bathroom floor). We did not use the shower because really didn't want to walk around naked with an 11 year old in the changing area with 50 other women. We changed in the public bathroom handicap stall. Understand this is a temporary hotel, but when you have been "outside" all night, would be nice to have adequate shower and bathroom facilities and a modicum of privacy for dressing (a curtained stall with a bench would be sufficient). I have paid far less to camp at Girl Scout camps with much better shower facilities. And, as noted elsehwere, locker situation is like being in a crowded bus depot at night and in the morning with everyone crammed in a very tight area juggling clothes and suitcases. There is adequate space in the dining area to expand some changing facilities/locker areas and would make the entire experience MUCH more pleaseant. Oh, yes, and be warned, there is no onsite food for dinner and the breakfast was absolutely awful - hard croissants, stone cold pancakes, canned institutional fruit - not the warm toasty breakfast you'd like after a night in the cold. No, you are not here for the food, but a basic hot breafast shouldn't be that hard to get right. Again, just as with the changing area, seems food could be improved for little cost and, along with some modest reconfiguring in the locker/dressing area, would generate a big payoff in customer satisfaction for little investment.. Then maybe the magic of the Ice Hotel wouldn't end once you come inside to change.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank daeusc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel de Glace

Property: Hotel de Glace
Address: 9530, rue de la Faune, Quebec City, Quebec G1G 5H9, Canada
Region: Canada > Quebec > Quebec City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#18 Family Hotel in Quebec City
#41 Romantic Hotel in Quebec City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel de Glace 3.5*
Number of rooms: 36
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located at only 10 minutes from Québec City, the Hotel de Glace is open from January until March. Enter a magical world where snow and ice are transformed into fabulous decors. Come to live a magical night in one of the 36 rooms and suites. Enjoy a cocktail and relax in the exterior hot tubs and sauna. The Hôtel de Glace is a must see attraction to be discovered in family, in couple or between friends this winter! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
De Glace Hotel
Ice Hotel Quebec
Ice Canada Hotel
Ice Hotel Canada
Ice Hotel Montreal
Hotel De Glace Quebec/Quebec City

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