We were visiting a week after it first opened to the public, and so there was still work going on which meant that we could take a nosy peek at the hotel. Each of the hotel rooms walls were intricately carved and was a work of art, the room was filled by a huge block of ice carved into a bed. There wasn't much else in the way of furniture, but with the inside temperatures about -6 degrees, it is not a hotel in which you come to spend most of the time in your room!
In the restaurant, all the furniture - as in the whole village - was made out of huge blocks of ice that had been beautifully carved to the required item. Thick wooden boards were used as place mats to prevent the hot food dishes from melting the ice, and the seat were covered with faux fur blankets.
The food choice was limited, not surprisingly, as the kitchen appeared to be in a tent. Dishes were mostly hearty winter fare such as soup and posh takes on casseroles; and the cheese course was fondue. Pudding was caramel and pear sponge with a piping hot chocolate sauce. There was no longing for ice cream or sorbet, that's for sure!
Sipping a glass of champagne, the last mouthful which, usually warm, was far colder than when it had just been poured! Self shilling champagne - I like it!
But it was an amazing experience!
Come the end of March, it will melt away and be all but a distant memory come summer...