Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hotel de Glace - Ice Hotel

Over MLK weekend some friends and I headed up to Quebec City in Canada to stay at Hotel de Glace. We only stayed one night, but what a night it was.  We couldn't stay in our rooms until after 9pm because they have tours during the day and needed to clean our rooms for us.  We went on a tour of the hotel when we got there and learned some fun things about the hotel.  They can't start the hotel until it is -5 degrees and they build the hotel in sections that open up during different parts of January.  

They said they have workers working 24 hours a day to get this done and it cost almost 4 million dollars this year to build. It also uses enough water to fill 25 Olympic swimming pools or make 100,000 snowmen.  This picture is into the entrance of the rooms.  

There are 15 suites in the hotel and these rooms are themed and I believe there is 36 rooms altogether once they are all built.  We had to upgrade our room when we booked it because they didn't have any of the other rooms available and I am glad we did.  We were able to get a themed room.  They have a contest for architecture students for the theme rooms and 3 rooms win.  Our room and my friends room were two of the winners.  That was awesome made us feel special.

This was our room the  I Love Lamp room not sure what it means, but I loved our room! So pretty. I felt like it was surrounded by flower petals. 

 My friends room who also one the cube room. They put two candles in your room before you go to bed to get ride of some of the humidity in the room and that raises the temperature a little. I believe the rooms are from 25-28 degrees F.

 This were what the normal rooms look like and they have anywhere between one bed to three.  They are still nice, but the themed rooms are fun. 

 I liked this one I think it really went well with the whole idea of an ice hotel.  We are just using an idea that the eskimos have been doing for awhile now. 

Panoramic of the room.  Some of the rooms had fireplaces but they weren't gas burning ones, but wood because they didn't want them to melt the room.  They were pointless, but look cool!

 This was the third room that won and this probably was my favorite one.  You can't really tell in the pictures how cool it was, but this room was caved in and sort of freaked me out because it looked like it could cave in at any time!

Entrance to the caved in room. 

 The dinosaur room. 

 This was also in the dinosaur room on the wall and I don't think I could have been in this room.  This thing freaked me out!

 Winter fairy room.

 The hallways were cool and had designs on them that were fun to look at.

 Aren't we cute!

 600 pound ice chandelier after hearing that I tried to not stand under it.  It is surrounded by columns and they said the four columns surrounding it are the only structural columns that aren't for looks. 

 This is the ice slide way cool even though I think they need an adult one and a kid one so they can make one super fast. 

 Everyone that stays at the hotel has to take a survival course on how not to freeze to death (that isn't the real name but that is what it is).  The class or whatever you want to call it took a good thirty minutes. Before they have you go into your freezing rooms (I was thinking I was insane at this point and going to freeze to death) they have a spa area that is under the stars and surrounded by ice.  It was -14 that night... anyway you have the choice of the hot tub or the sauna to warm you up because they said if you go into the rooms/sleeping bag cold you are going to stay cold.  You need to be warm when you get into the sleeping bag so you can stay warm throughout the night.  

We first went into the hot tub. Bad idea... with it being -14 and all the water in the hot tub was 97 degrees, but your head is still out in the elements and 97 degrees isn't warm enough.  My hair got went and was all icy and my friend had an icicle on her hair where it had gotten wet.  That is how cold it was.  These are the sleeping bags that they give you to sleep in and they are mummy style and I seriously felt like a mummy in an ice tomb. 

 One of the activities that they have that you can do is make your own ice sculpture.  I know I am so creative I made a star. 
 This is the bar area and they said that they have a fridge to keep the drinks warm because they can't leave them out because they freeze.

 The ice chapel.  They said that around 20-25 couples a year get married here.  

 Nicole and I went snowshoeing the morning after the ice hotel.  It was really fun and the snow was gorgeous.  When we got back our other friends who hadn't gone told us that it was -6 degrees but felt like -26.  I can't believe we didn't freeze to death out there!!!!

If you don't believe me here is proof. 

LOVED THE ICE HOTEL!! I would recommend you try it out.  It was a great experience even though many people thought I was nuts to do it in the first place! 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Quebec City

 Once we got into Quebec City late of course because of snow we headed to our next pad and rested for a minute before heading out again. 

 Now you see them...

Now you don't!!

 The place where we were staying left us a note and said the Big Air Snowboarding Competition was going on.  So we walked a little bit and ran into this and watched for awhile.  I seriously think these people are crazy, but that is just me. 

 When the announcers would talk it would be in French and English.  I love french it is such a beautiful language!

 There is so many gorgeous churches that I saw I wish I could have taken pictures of all of them.

 Everything was in French on our trip the signs and menus and it didn't bother me at all.  I love this language!
 This is what the snow looked like when we woke up again to head to Hotel de Glace.  Isn't this town so picturesque.

 Doesn't everything look cooler in French!

 I love castles and I felt like I was in a dream with this place.  Next I want to stay here for a night when the weather is a little nicer though :)

 Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac

 GORGEOUS! The water was almost frozen and I loved to watch the ice move along the river. 

I also loved this town.  It reminded me a lot of Park City. I want to go back and explore a little more.  I was surprised about how much I enjoyed Canada all around and I can't wait to go back the people (especially the waiters/waitresses something I am not use to) are so nice! 

 Words of wisdom

 Snow of course and freezing temperatures. Off to the ice hotel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!