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“Beware the snow hotel”
Review of Kirkenes Snowhotel

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Kirkenes Snowhotel
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
45 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Beware the snow hotel”
Reviewed 27 March 2013

Generally the snow hotel was an unusual experience, which is why most of us chose to go there, but you should know that while it's warmer inside the hotel than out (-6 and out -20 to -30 C) your nose will be cold, they give you a balaclava and if you have one of the face masks covering the you will be warm, also the sleeping bag is a bit of a thing to get into. There is an inner sheet that you step into and then wriggle down into the sleeping but it's a bit tight and difficult to move in so while I slept it was not the most comfortable as not being able move much gave me leg cramps and don't drink too much as you definitely do not want to go to the toilet at night!
In the information given, it states you will be given Norwegian delicacies for diner, this turned out to be baked farmed salmon and cod with a baked potato then icecream to follow. As it was so expensive I was expecting something a bit special for diner.
Over all the night was good and hotel was beautifully carved inside. The staff were very friendly and helpful.
There is an optional tour for the Northern lights that we did not know of before and was full on the evening we stayed. On the tour you will certainly see the lights form a better vantage point than from the hotel so it's worth doing, ask for details. That we couldn't go on that tour was a disappointment.
Good luck

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Geoff-5151
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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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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English first
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1,307 reviews
101 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 436 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 March 2013

Visited in March 2013. Fantastic experience staying over in themed snow room. Warm welcome from staff. Good dinning experience eating local food ( Salmon , reindeer veg, cooked on open fire in wooden restuarant. Alcohol expensive as in all of Norway (about £11 for a single shot) . Spent evening sledging and watching Northern lights which were superb and wonderful.

Slept in snow hotel warm and snug in sleeping bag although room is -5. Morning sauna , shower and continental style breakfast. Then looking at Husky's and Reindeer in grounds.

An excellent romantic treat.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank tezpil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
uk
Level Contributor
115 reviews
60 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 March 2013

The hotel is really a big igloo built of snow each year. It is divided into 'bedrooms' which are carved out rooms off one of two corridors with a curtain for privacy (not that you need privacy in a one piece sleeping bag and ballaclava in a constant temperature of -4 degrees! Toilets are in a separate building so if you have bladder problems this experience may not be for you.

We had a tour of the rooms and a meal by an open fire in a nearby wood constructed restaurant which was good fun. We were pleased to get back to our hotel and snuggle up in a proper bed and did not envy those hardy souls who chose to sleep in the snow hotel.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank VANDICARLTON
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fleet
Level Contributor
25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 March 2013

We stayed at this hotel for one night in March 2013. It isn't an ordinary hotel, of course - made entirely of snow (except for the blocks of sculpted ice) and an internal temperature maintained at -4C (however the external temperature was -25C, so it was a relief to get inside).

There's a separate heated restaurant where we could warm up and be served delicious food cooked over a wood fire. And also a heated shower, and sauna block. Bedrooms, though, were in the snow building. We were provided with warm clothes and a sleeping bag, which I found to be not quite warm enough although my wife kept warm in hers. The big downside for a bloke in his late 60s who needs to get up in the middle of the night is that the toilet block was 50 metres away - that's a walk of 50 metres through -25C open air! But I managed - nowhere near as bad as I feared.

Spectacular views of the northern lights, friendly young staff and excellent food made up for the slight discomfort. A experience not to be missed (or repeated!).

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Prune-Etna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 March 2013

We stayed one night. It was brilliant. On arrival we were given a talk on what to expect and then told to take our time and look around in all the bedrooms and see the amazing ice carvings on the walls. They were incredible and we took photographs of many of them. We were allocated our room for the night and met in the dining room. An octagonal looking hut about 50 yards from the hotel with a central open fire used for cooking. We sat on tables of eight and met other travellers and exchanged stories and experiences. The meal was excellent with red and white wine thrown in. My wife is a vegetarian and she was well catered for. Over the course of the meal, we were given instructions as to how to stay warm in bed with the sleeping bags and sleeves we were given. We had booked an excursion and after dinner we were taken to see the Northern Lights which luckily played ball as they were spectacular. We also paid a short visit to the Russian Border. Breakfast was included. All the staff were brilliant, very helpful and extremely friendly. Buses took us back into Kirkenes where we had the morning to look around before heading onto our boat and back to Tromso.

Room Tip: Don't drink to much the night before as it is a lengthy process getting up to go to the loo whic...
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Steve O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth
Level Contributor
81 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 March 2013 via mobile

We have just stayed at the snow hotel a couple night ago. It was run by the same people we did ice fishing with and king crabbing. We had so much fun on these two excursions with our tour guide michael we were very excited to head to the snow hotel. We got given our room number and then got to have a look at all the other rooms at our leisure and take photos. We went into a woodern hut for dinner. Met some new people and had great food. We then wandered around and saw the northern lights in the distance. They taught us how to stay warm so had a comfy night sleep. After breakfast we patted the reindeer and played with the huskys before heading back. Everything was so well organised and such lovely staff.i highly recomend you doing all of your activities with the snow hotel staff. Best service we have had on our 2 month scandinavia trip.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Shelley R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bovey Tracey, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
170 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 221 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 March 2013

We visited here ( didn't stay)

A lot of time and skill must go into the snow hotel, but it didn't inspire me or even make me go 'wow'. I think the first reason is that it isn't in the middle of nowhere but very close to Kirkenes ( half hour walk from centre up hill). It didn't feel like a romantic location, and for a building so special , and the price, the location needs to match!
The carvings are very cutesy - I would have liked to see some more elegant snow/ice art. I didn't really find it as beautiful as I thought I would.
The smoke alarms stuck on the snow made us giggle.
We watched the dog sledding.. I would recommend people look elsewhere - Sollia up the road would be a better choice. The dog sledding is round a frozen lake, but next to a busy road and coach park. Again, for the prices you pay I think you would expect more of a wilderness experience!
Interesting to see ( there is an entry charge), as there is the reindeer and huskies there too. But I was SO glad I hadn't paid the HUGE prices to stay here as I would have been disappointed!

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank gaildevonshirelass
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Kirkenes Snowhotel

Property: Kirkenes Snowhotel
Address: Sandnesdalen 14, Kirkenes 9915, Norway
Region: Norway > Northern Norway > Finnmark > Sor-Varanger Municipality > Kirkenes
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Spa Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Kirkenes
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:1 star — Kirkenes Snowhotel 1*
Number of rooms: 34
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Snow is a gift from the sky. Cold, still, pure and beautiful. Welcome to Kirkenes Snowhotel. To a world where you sleep in snow, walk on snow and may drive a scooter or a dogsled on snow. We even serve snow in the restaurant! Our romantic Snowhotel opens December 20th., and is open until April 20th. Kirkenes Snowhotel lies secluded in the wilderness 8 km outside Kirkenes. Here 180 huskies await you. Reindeer are grazing behind our unique chalets. Under the fjord ice, the giant King crabs dwell. When the northern lights are dancing, they illuminate the surroundings with their green and yellow colors. If you come - we change you. ... more   less 
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