Aesthetic masterpieces, these accommodation establishments have raised the bar in visual appeal, where guests literally have a window on the world. Upscale Living magazine showcases the top 10 lodges, cabins, igloos, and hotels where glass is the most striking design feature.
Arctic Fox Igloos, Finland
Arctic Fox Igloos offers a luxurious accommodation experience in well-equipped glass igloos. The igloos are located on the naturally beautiful, peaceful shores of Lake Ranuanjärvi in Finland, far from disturbing city light pollutions. Each igloo offers an unobstructed view to the far-reaching open lake, and the northern skies, where the Northern Lights usually appear. The heating of the glass panels in the sleeping space and in the kitchenette prevents frosting over the glass surfaces, at the same time counteracts the snow from remaining on top of the Igloos.
In addition to a glass-walled bedroom, each Igloo is also equipped with a kitchenette, bathroom, and even a private sauna. Arctic Fox Igloos opened in 2018, and guests can stay all year around. There are 20 Igloos in total, 10 family-friendly Igloos (2 adults and 2 kids), and 10 igloos that house two guests. All Igloos include glass wall bedrooms, a kitchen, own sauna, toilet, and shower.
Arctic SnowHotel & Glass Igloos, Finland
Following the opening of The Arctic Snow Hotel in 2008, with a new one constructed every year, the first 15 glass igloos were built next to it in the village of Sinettä in Rovaniemi in 2014. The 360o glass-roofed igloos provide guests the opportunity to sleep beneath the starry skies and the Northern Lights.
Each igloo is extremely well heat insulated to ensure guests are not bothered by the cold in even the coldest of times at night – the temperature is the same as in normal hotel rooms. The roof of the igloo is made from electrically heated glass, which means the glass will not cool the space; rather it maintains evenly distributed warmth while melting all the snow and ice off the roof to give you an excellent view of the sky. In addition, the igloo has underfloor heating. The beds in the igloo are motorized, making it possible for guests to easily adjust the optimal position for sleeping or viewing the skies.
Golden Crown Levin Iglut, Finland
Experience magical nights in a glass igloo under the Arctic sky by staying in a Levin Iglut igloo. In addition to the astonishing view, the glass igloos are surprisingly spacious and feature a high standard of equipment. You can fall asleep in a luxurious warm bed admiring the Arctic starry sky without leaving the comforts of your igloo. Each spacious (53 m²) and luxuriously equipped Suite Igloo has a private terrace with an outdoor jacuzzi and illuminated Northern lights in the ceiling of the lounge area.
Suite Igloos have the best-unobstructed view of the valley and the northern sky. They accommodate a maximum of 2 adults and 2 children (under 13 years old). Extra beds for children are included in the price, as well as breakfast, Moët & Chandon champagne as a welcome drink, minibar, and portage service. An abundant breakfast buffet is served in the atmospheric restaurant Aurora Sky, which is included in the nightly rate.
Hotel IIso-Syöte & Safaris, Syöte
Rising above the amazing landscape, Hotel Iso-Syöte’s Eagle View Suite is unique, exclusive, and luxurious. With the roof and walls made of glass, the suite is located on top of the south corner of the hotel wing, ensuring a connection with nature and fantastic views over the surrounding hills, forest, and the sky.
Even when you are lying in bed or relaxing in your private jacuzzi you will be impressed by what you see. The spacious suites are divided into two floors. On the ground floor, the living room has ample seating, a cozy fireplace where you can share some special moments together, and a luxury bathroom with your own private sauna. There is a tree growing in the middle going up to the second floor with the branches holding the “nest” where the bed is placed and the jacuzzi is situated. From the Eagle’s View Suite, you overlook the unspoiled nature all around you, like an eagle, admire the scenery and almost touch the sky.
Manshausen is a unique hotel comprised of a collection of buildings on an island off the coast of Northern Norway. Set on 55 acres, there are 7 sea cabins that have dramatic floor-to-ceiling windows that extend over the water, while the main house accommodates the kitchen, dining area, and library. Manshausen offers something for everyone – from rock climbing to simply relaxing in nature.
Situated at the water’s edge overlooking the spectacular scenery of Norway’s Steigen archipelago, this striking collection of Architizer award-winning cabins was commissioned by renowned Norwegian polar explorer Børge Ousland in partnership with architect Snorre Stinessen. Inspired to design a unique exploration and adventure resort, Ousland purchased the fifty-five-acre island of Manshausen in 2010 creating a vacation destination and concept that combines the rugged adventure of the artic and the striking artistry of modern design. Constructed, and assembled on-site, the prefabricated structures were designed to limit the impact on the pristine environment and highlight the beauty of the landscape.
Skylodge Adventure Suites, Peru
Have you ever wanted to sleep in a condor’s nest? Here is the next best thing! Located in the Sacred Valley of Cuzco, Peru, the exclusive Skylodge Adventure Suites offers you the chance to sleep within a completely transparent hanging bedroom, that allows you to appreciate the impressive view of this magic and mystic valley.
To sleep at Skylodge, guests must climb 1,300 ft. of Via Ferrata or hike an intrepid trail through ziplines. One night at this place will make your dreams come true. Packages include breakfast & gourmet dinner with wine, transportation from Cuzco, and the assistance of professional bilingual guides. The Natura Vive Skylodge is composed of three exclusive capsule Suites with a total capacity for 12 people. The vertically hanging transparent capsule suites offer a 300-degree view of the majestic Sacred Valley. Handcrafted out of aerospace aluminum and weather-resistant polycarbonate, each suite comes complete with a toilet, a dining area, and four beds.
Panorama Glass Lodge, Hella
When Sabrina and Andreas Dedler moved from Europe to Reykjavik, they came up with an idea to create an absolutely unique and romantic getaway together in Iceland, where it is possible to watch the Northern lights and the midnight sun right from the comfort of your bed or our private hot tub.
They designed the first houses in Iceland where it is possible to sleep under a glass ceiling. With Panorama Glass Lodges, the most important factor for them was for their guests to have an amazing, comfortable and unforgettable experience, but still have enough privacy in the spectacular Icelandic scenery. They decided to build just a few houses on a huge piece of land instead of many houses on a tiny piece of land to avoid the feeling of staying in a resort. Panorama Glass Lodges are inspired by Scandinavian houses and the combination of wooden elements with steel and glass make the lodges unique while maintaining high-quality standards and extraordinary design.
Purepods, New Zealand
A PurePod stay is like no other experience. It is an intensely deep immersion into pure New Zealand and a beautifully romantic getaway. Imagine being all alone in a stunning natural location in a luxury glass cabin, complete with a glass roof and three walls all of glass with big wide sliding doors and decking.
Your first glimpse of the PurePod is just magical. All of the glass and the big wide sliding doors mean you get to truly immerse yourself in the beautiful natural environment surrounding the PurePod. And, for stargazers, the glass roof and the lack of light pollution ensures on clear nights there are plenty of stars to view. As each PurePod is located completely away from all other human activities, there is no need to feel concerned about your privacy, but if you are feeling a bit shy, each pod does have blinds and a shower curtain – though we do recommend leaving the blinds up so you can watch the sunrise from the comfort of the bed.
The Silo Hotel, South Africa
The 28-room ultra-luxury Silo hotel from The Royal Portfolio occupies the top six floors of the historic grain silo building in Cape Town’s Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. The hotel is known for its spectacular glass structure designed by acclaimed architect Thomas Heatherwick, which was designed to embrace the grid-like geometry of the building. High-ceilinged rooms are outfitted with striking, floor-to-ceiling “pillowed glass” windows that offer incredible views of the city.
Heatherwick’s initial vision for the grain elevator portion of the building did not contain any opening windows – a pleasing aesthetic but an impracticality for a luxury hotel. A compromise was reached where every room in the hotel would have access to fresh air by incorporating sliding doors and balconies into the center of each of the four external walls. Each bedroom is fitted with black-out blinds that unfurl automatically from the ceiling while each bathroom is fitted with sheer blinds allowing guests to enjoy the incredible views in privacy.