If you’re heading to the beautiful Lapland region of Finland, then chances are you’ve heard of the amazing Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos. I was lucky enough to stay there (and see the Northern Lights from my bed) so here’s my honest review of my stay, important information to know, and how to book.
Read more about my trip to Finland.
This post contains affiliate links. This means if you purchase something from a link, I may make a small commission, at no cost to you. This helps me keep the site running and free.
Why is the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloo unique?
I know it sounds cliche – ‘so unique’ but it really is. The style of both the hotel and igloos are unlike any other accommodation I’ve seen. Staying in a glass igloo was on my bucket list, and I’m so glad we did it!
The Arctic Snow Hotel and Glass Igloo are two separate accommodations. The Snow Hotel is exactly that – an entire hotel made of snow! It opens in December and stays up until the end of February.
The Glass Igloo is not made entirely of glass. The bottom four-to-five feet are solid walls, with a glass dome on top. The glass is double-paned and heated, so don’t worry about it being cold. The glass dome is perfect for spotting the Aurora Borealis.
Where is the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloo?
Located on the shore of Lake Lehotjarvi and about 26 km (16 miles) from the center of Rovaniemi. It’s in the heart of the woods and right on the shore of the lake.
The Rooms at Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos
When I stayed here, I was in a Glass Igloo. It’s been my dream of seeing the Northern Lights in one of these and they were great. It was such a magical experience that I recommend it to anyone!
Rooms in the Glass Igloo
We spent our last night in Lapland in the glass igloo hotel and it was the perfect end to an amazing trip. The rooms are small – but enough room for two people. Not sure how I would do with a family of 4 or more.
The room is cozy and warm. I visited in January and was not even chilly!
The beds are single beds because they are motorized. That way each person can move up and down with a touch of a button! This is so you can have a comfortable and optimal Northern Lights viewing.
The 360-degree panoramic glass igloo design makes it easy to see the night sky. Switch off your lights and look up – it’s that easy!
One of the things I absolutely LOVED about the glass igloo is the aurora alarm! You can opt to turn this off if you’d like (but honestly, why would you?). The loud alarm will let you know if the Northern Lights are out while you’re sleeping. Sometimes they aren’t out until the early morning, when the sky is the darkest, so rather than waiting outside in the cold, or setting an alarm every few hours, you can sleep in the comfort of your bed and wait for that alarm. It is important to note though that the alarm only goes off when they’re visible. We had ours go off once when they first became visible, and they stayed visible throughout the night, in varying degrees of strength.
The room also comes with a fridge, coffee/tea making necessities, toiletries, and the windows in the bathroom are frosted.
Rooms in the Snow Hotel
We did not stay in the Snow Hotel, but were able to walk around the next day after check out. The rooms are really cool – each one had its own snow carvings. From snails to Frankenstein, the snow and ice carvings were amazing!
The beds were also snow and ice, and covered in reindeer pelts and blankets. The hotel is connected to an ice chapel, an ice bar, and an ice restaurant.
Meals at the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos
The hotel has a large breakfast in the reception area. Traveling during covid and at the mid/late January, there were not that many people staying at the hotel. There was plenty of room to spread out from others. Masks were required in any shared rooms as well.
Breakfast is buffet style and was a bit overwhelming to be honest. Everything from water to cappuccinos, yogurt to cakes, sausage to fish, and a wide range of bread of cheeses!
There is a restaurant that serves set 3-course meals. There are two seatings, one at 6:30 and one at 8:30. Unfortunately, during our visit, Finland’s covid restrictions included restaurants closing at 6:00 pm so we were unable to eat dinner here. A second restaurant is in the Snow Hotel and is an ice restaurant. This was closed during our visit, but reservations are required.
Throughout the day, there was hot berry juice available in the lobby. This quickly became a favorite of mine and a wonderful way to warm up from the cold.
The Sauna & Jacuzzi at Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos
When in Finland, a sauna experience is a must. The Finnish LOVE their sauna. While visiting, I learned that people often invite others over to sauna (yes, it is considered a verb) and chat similar to inviting someone over for dinner! It’s a social thing to do with friends and most homes have a sauna in them. Some will go from the sauna into a lake or the snow – just for fun! (it’s said there are health benefits to this as well but check with a doctor if you have any heart conditions). There are specific sauna times for men and women, or you can book private time – which is especially nice for couples. Experiencing a FInnish sauna is a must-do (at least once!)
The jacuzzi was also closed due to covid when we visited, but I would imagine it would be incredible to relax outdoors. Since you’re so far away from everything, the night sky is beautiful, and relaxing in a jacuzzi is an awesome way to experience it. If you’re visiting during a popular time, be sure to reserve your time early. There are only a few jacuzzis available.
Seeing the Nothern Lights at the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos
Since the hotel is located in Lapland (and near the Arctic Circle) and a decent distance from Rovaniemi, you’re in a great position for seeing the Northern Lights. The light pollution is very limited.
The other two things that you need (that, unfortunately, you don’t have any control over):
- no cloud cover
- a KP of 3 or higher. The Kp index (K for Kennziffer – ‘index’ in German and p as in planetary) measures the strength of a geomagnetic event and goes from 0-9.
The 360 panoramic igloo makes it easy to spot them compared to a hotel with a window on one side. The alarm also helps.
Don’t worry if it snows, the heated window will melt it, leaving a nice clear window for viewing.
To be completely honest – I am not sure how it works in the Snow Hotel. There are no windows or alarms in those rooms.
What I wish I knew About the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos:
The only thing is that I wish I knew how close the igloos are to each other. Often when you see photos on social media, they’re in the middle of the woods. It was frustrating having people put their lights on when the Northern Lights were out.
How long should you stay at the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos:
I wanted to stay 2 nights in case the weather was bad, but Firebird tours suggested only one as there isn’t much to do in the area. They were right. We spent a few nights in Rovaniemi before coming here, so we did a lot around the area already. Many of these excursions (including a husky safari sledding experience at Bearhill Husky ) can be booked at the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloo, so feel free to stay a few days depending on when you visit in your itinerary!
How was the staff at Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloo?
The staff was incredibly friendly at the hotel! They welcomed us, and let us store our bags before we could check in and after check-out until our cab came to pick us up. They explained the drone rules (no drones over the igloos, but the lake is ok), and made sure we had everything we need.
How to book a room at the Arctic Snow Hotel & Glass Igloos?
Our room was booked through Firebird Tours as part of our itinerary. You can book direct here.
The Glass Igloos are open from September 20 to March 31 and the Snow Hotel is open from December 20 to March 31.
If you have any questions about our stay, leave a comment and I’ll help where I can!
Save this post for later!