Here’s a collection of images captured at the Ice Hotel in Jukkasjärvi in Sweden. Each visit to the Ice Hotel leaves me in utter awe. This is where the intersection between technology, engineering, workmanship, and world-class artistry converges in a uniquely beautiful way.
The Ice Hotel is in Jukkasjärvi – an ancient village just outside of Kiruna in Norrbotten County, Sweden with roughly 548 inhabitants (2010 census).
The name is of Northern Sami origin, where Jukkasjärvi/Čohkkirasjávri means “lake of gathering”, as the area by the lake by which the village was established in the 17th century was a Sami marketplace.
In my youth, I spent several winters working and painting at a ski resort in Riksgränsen, northwest of both Jukkasjärvi and Kiruna. Those years were extremely formative and some of my dearest friendships were forged during that period of my life.
I’ve always experienced people from northernmost Sweden to be wonderfully straightforward and unjudgmental. No matter where you come from or what you look like, as long as you’re just true to yourself, honest, and shoot from the hip, they accept and eventually embrace you as a friend for life.
About a decade ago, I stayed a night at the Ice Hotel with my daughter Elle and we still talk about that adventure to this day. When we woke up in the giant sleeping bag, Elle’s looked at me with her huge blue eyes and said, “Daddy! We survived! We did it!”. I can highly recommend a visit to the Ice Hotel in Jukkasjärvi.