Ice Hotel voted 'best Swedish experience'
Published: 05 Dec 2013 15:26 GMT+01:00
Updated: 05 Dec 2013 15:26 GMT+01:00
The unique Ice Hotel in northern Sweden beat off competition from the new Abba museum to scoop the best travel experience in the country award.
- Sweden's Ice Hotel told to get fire alarms (14 Nov 13)
At the annual Trip Global Awards, which is voted by tour operators around the world, the Ice Hotel in Norrbotten came out on top.
"This is the most prestigious award you can win in this industry in Sweden so naturally we are extremely happy and proud to win it," Dan Björk, Director of Sales and Marketing at the Ice Hotel, told The Local.
The hotel has long been a popular draw with tourists who trek far up north to sample some ice cold hospitality. Now in its 24th season the hotel is rebuilt every year out of enormous chunks of ice from the Torne River in Jukkasjärvi, Kiruna.
This year the hotel faced strong competition from the new Abba museum in Stockholm as well as old favourite the Vasa museum just down the road in the capital's Djurgården island. Some 30 tour operators from around the globe voted, including the USA as well as China, with the prize handed out by Sweden's minister for enterprise Annie Lööf.
"Every year the competition gets stronger but this year it was particularly intense with the Abba museum opening. It means a lot to us to win this prize as the award is voted by our customers so that makes it especially satisfying," Björk said.
The jury consisted of travel agents from all over the world together with Swedish travellers. This year former winners of the award were eligible to participate said Björk.
He added; "This is the second time we've won this award and there was a big party in the hotel afterwards. It's valuable recognition for us."
The Ice Hotel - which is made entirely out frozen water - recently made headlines after they were ordered to install fire alarms which a spokesperson said was a "surprise."
Björk confirmed to The Local that the alarms have been installed ahead of the season at the hotel which is located 200 km above the Arctic Circle in a small village in Jukkasjärvi.
"We have complied with all the laws and people can come and enjoy 7,000 square meters of some of the most stunning artwork they are ever likely to see," he said.
Sweden's Ice Hotel has been opening its icy doors since 1990 and is one of the most visited attractions in the country.