I recently stayed in a hotel with shared bathrooms down the hall and I thought that was an extreme hotel. Turns out I haven’t seen anything. Here are a selection of genuinely extreme hotels for your thrills and enjoyment.
Don't Look Down
Precariously balancing on the edge of a cliff all night may be the stuff of nightmares, but at Skylodge Adventure Suites it’s more like sweet dreams. After a 1,200 ft climb the pods, which are made of aerospace grade aluminium and weather resistant polycarbonate, provide an evening’s luxury before you figure out how to get down again. The pods have four beds, a dinning area and a private bathroom in each, not to mention the 300 degree view.
Where: Valle Sagrado, Cuzco, Peru
Ice To See You
Something’s gone very wrong with the aircon over at Sweden’s Icehotel. Each suite is fashioned from ice from the river Torne, hand carved by artists each year. Maintained at a steady 5 degrees celsius, the room is possibly a little on the chilly side, but fear not as you sleep in a thermal sleeping bag on a bed covered with reindeer hides.
Where: Marknadsvägen 63, 981 91 Jukkasjärvi, Sweden
Yanggakdo International Hotel, North Korea
From icy luxury to dicy luxury, we’re in North Korea. The Yanggakdo International Hotel is the secretive state’s largest hotel and aims to provide something vaguely commensurate with Western style luxury. As well as 1,000 rooms there’s a 47th floor revolving restaurant and the the basement apparently boasts a bowling alley, sauna and swimming pool, as well as a casino and a ‘massage club’. Situated on an island in the Taedong River opposite the Pyonyang Rubber Factory it may not be beautiful but it is fascinating. Just don’t be too curious, the 5th floor is famously off-limits and it was while exploring the floor that American Otto Warmbier was arrested, imprisoned and later died.
Where: Pyongyang, North Korea
Worst Hostel In The World
Don’t get too used to the luxury of North Korea, we’re off to Amsterdam’s Hans Brinker where no one cares. Literally; it describes itself as the worst hostel in the world. The staff are deliberately rude and the amenities are extremely basic, in fact on the face of it there’s little to recommend Hans Brinker. But thankfully all that’s only skin deep and beneath the act the hostel is actually rather good, with a party atmosphere and a great location.
Where: Kerkstraat 136-138, Amsterdam
House Of Cards
While it may be a conventional luxury hotel inside, the Marina Bay Sands is certainly not to behold. The design, modelled on a house of cards by architect Moshe Safdie is instantly recognisable, cost a whopping $8bn and is defined by the three acre sky garden precariously balanced along the top, all approved by the hotel designers’ feng shui consultants. It also features the world’s longest infinity pool.
Where: 10 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore
Sleep under the stars in the African desert at Little Kulala in Namibia. Each room comes with a rooftop star bed. The extreme view, uninterupted by light pollution is breathtaking. As are the daytime views across the rolling dunes of the Namibian desert and within the private Kulala Wilderness Reserve.
Where: Little Kulala, Kulala Wilderness Reserve, Nambibia
We're Going Underground
Originally built for Australian opal miners, the Desert Cave Hotel in Coober Pedy provides underground living at overground levels of luxury. The hotel also has underground shops, a cafe, bar and gaming room. So channel your inner troglodyte and head into the outback.
Where: Coober Pedy, Australia
Why shouldn’t you wear Ukrainian underpants? Chernobyl fallout… Never gets old, thank you the 1980s. But not exactly true, you can now stay in the heart of Chornobyl town itself, in the former building of “ChernobylInterInform”. The hotel is set across two floors and the style is simple and Soviet so hardly radiating welcoming vibes, but hopefully not radiating anything else either..
Where: Bohdana Chmelnitskogo Street, 1a, Chernobyl, Kiev, Ukraine
Somehow I expect that this places is going to be a barrel of laughs. The Wine Hotel is a full immersive hotel perfect for winos and wine lovers. As well as traditional accommodation in the 18th century farm house, you can opt to stay in one of the quirky ‘barrel rooms’, taking the ‘immersive’ experience to another level! Part of one of the Porto is Quinta da Pacheca’s most renowned wine estates, enjoy world-class wine tasting and vineyard tours as standard.
Where: Cambres-5110-424, Lamego, Portugal