As the hotel manager of ICEHOTEL, Kerstin Nilsson is responsible for both cold and warm accommodations, two restaurants, four bars and the gift shop, with a total of 100 employees during the peak season. “I have the best job in the world. We meet new guests everyday, who are seeing us and ICEHOTEL for the first time. We’re striving to reach that special feeling, the magic, in our meeting with every guest”, says Kerstin.
ICEHOTEL recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. Tell a little about the difference between now & then.
”In the beginning we focused on summertime, with rafting as our main product. as the winter season grew, we soon discovered that the farther away we were from Sweden, the more people were attracted to everything Jukkasjärvi, Lapland, that is, cold and snow. Over the years, ICEHOTEL has developed through its interaction with its guests, and they are a great part of making us what we are today”, says Kerstin.
Sleeping in a room of ice and snow. What does it entail and how does it feel?
”For most people it is a wonderful adventure. The stay begins with a check-in tour, becoming acquainted with everything they need and information about how to dress and sleep in a sleeping bag. The overnight stay itself is described by many as a surreal and comfortable experience. The snow insulates, so it is very, very quiet inside ICEHOTEL. In this white serenity, one slumbers off into a pleasant winter sleep, cozily tucked into a warm sleeping bag.”
What should one absolutely not miss when visiting ICEHOTEL and Jukkasjärvi?
“Lay on your back in a blanket of snow, spread out your arms and make a snow angel, gaze up at the deep, clear sky studded with a million glittering stars, and, if you’re lucky, a sparkling show of northern lights”, says Kerstin.