Practical information about the Kirkenes Snowhotel.
How is the Snowhotel built?
First the Kirkenes Snowhotel engineers produce a lot of snow with water, cold air and snow-machines. Then they inflate a large balloon and cover this with snow. When this balloon is totally compacted with 2 metres of snow, they then deflate the balloon and remove it, leaving a circular room. For the corridors, they construct wooden frames and also cover them in snow before removing them.
When is the Snowhotel open?
Kirkenes Showhotel opens each year around 20 December and closes on the 20 April.
How cold is it inside the Snowhotel?
The temperature inside is a constant minus 4 degrees Celsius.
What do you sleep on inside the Snowhotel?
There are 20 bedrooms with normal mattresses. On top of the mattress is an extra thermal insulation layer. You are also provided a sleeping bag made for extreme expeditions, rated for minus 30 degrees celsius. Most guests however, find that it can get too hot inside the sleeping bag.
In the marketing pictures, it looks like the beds are made of ice! However, they have cleverly placed ice-blocks around the beds to create the illusion of an ice-bed! Sleeping directly on ice would be a bit drastic and not very comfortable.
How is the lighting in the rooms?
Every room is decorated differently which is why there is also different lighting used to create a different atmosphere. The lights are LED which gives off very little heat. For security reasons the lights are not switched off. We advise using eye covers to sleep if a small amount of light bothers you.
Do you have bathrooms and showers?
There have nice bathrooms, showers and a sauna in the building next to the Snowhotel. So you have to leave your sleeping bag for a few minutes. Brrr....
Who usually books a night at the Snowhotel?
It is usually couples. Average age is around 45, however their oldest guest has been 92 years old! Each year, the Kirkenes Snowhotel sees marriage proposals being made and of course, in such a beautiful place, weddings for many happy couples take place.
Is the Snowhotel safe?
Yes. The Snowhotel is constructed to the calculations and standards made by a Finnish professor of snow building. The Snowhotel is still standing a month after they close for the season, even with the warmer weather!
Who should not sleep at the Snowhotel?
People with claustrophobia have had trouble sleeping in the Snowhotel. There is also a minimum age of 7 years to stay in the snowhotel. There is a warm lobby available in case people may feel uncomfortable during their night’s stay.