The 20 Most Extraordinary Hotel Rooms in the World


[Editor’s note: In celebration of the holidays, we’re counting down the top 12 Flavorwire features of 2012. This post, at #5, was originally published February 29.] As much as we love virtual globetrotting, we live for real world travel adventures. If you’re like us and spend weeks obsessively planning every last detail of your trip to ensure that your not-often-enough vacation is maximized to the hilt, consider this our gift to you. We’ve scoured every inch of the great world wide web to create a guide to designed sleeping experiences that are anything but ordinary.

The English writer G.K. Chesterton, notably George Bernard Shaw’s frenemy, said “there are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds.” From the surrealist creation of our favorite discreet Belgian fashion designer to pillows made of chocolate and ice to a toon shaded room by a German comic book artist that will make you feel like you stepped into the world of Jessica Rabbit, click through to see what strange and wonderful places await the next time you’re trying to maximize your unconscious dreamstate. We want to try them all, but let us know in the comments which one you’re dying to stay in!

Room 306 at the Arte Luise Kunsthotel – Berlin, Germany

A cel-shaded room ala an old Sega Dreamcast game designed by Berlin-based comic artist KEHL. Image credit: Arte Luise Kunsthotel

Panic Room at the Au Vieux Panier Hotel – Marseille, France

This schizophrenic room half-covered in graffiti was created by the artist Tilt. Image credit: My Modern Met

Room 121 at Hotel Fox – Copenhagen, Denmark

Indoor camping by Australian design collective Rinzen. The Sleep Season room was “inspired by the desire to hibernate. It creates a cozy nook filled with animals sleeping through the seasons of the year.” Image credit: We Love You So

The Karen Blixen Suite at Giraffe Manor – Nairobi, Kenya

Endangered Rothschild giraffes come with the room. They’re encouraged to stick their heads through the open windows for a piece of mango or a tickle. Image credit: MSN Travel

The Mine Suite at the Sala Silvermine Hotel – Vdstmanland County, Sweden

Get away from it all (even fresh air) in the world’s deepest underground hotel room. At the bottom of an old Swedish silver mine, the suite is 500 feet below the earth and is accessed only by a mine lift shaft. Image credit: Deccan Chronicle

The Gilded Lounge Suite at La Maison des Champs Elysees by Maison Martin Margiela – Paris, France

Maison Martin Margiela’s reinterpretation of the hotel suite as a surrealist funhouse. Image credit: The Designer Pad

The only room at Grand Hotel De Kromme Raake – Eenrum, The Netherlands

The smallest hotel in the world! Image credit: Dagje Weg

Castle Room at the Propeller Island City Lodge – Berlin, Germany

A castle bed built into your own private mini-golf course by the German artist Lars Stroschen. Image credit: Hotel Design

Room 137 at the Madonna Inn – San Luis Obispo, California

Three words: Cave Man Room. Image credit: Neat Stuff

The Nautilus Suite at the Poseidon Undersea Resort – Poseidon Mystery Island, Fiji

For elite adventure travelers only at $30,000 a night, this suite is the “largest undersea luxury dwelling ever built” that comes complete with a private coral garden, push-button controls to feed the fish outside your window and a Triton submarine to get around. Image credit: Luxatic

Glass Igloo at the Kakslauttanen Igloo Village – Lapland, Finland

Only open between December and April each year, the glass igloo lets you sleep beneath the magical light of the aurora borealis at a comfortable room temperature. Image credit: Hotel Kakslauttanen

Blue Line Room at the Gladstone Hotel – Toronto, Canada

Designed by Barr Gilmore & Michel Arcand, the room is painted Chroma-Key blue “allowing visitors to make their own digital videos in the room and edit them later using whatever backgrounds they desire.” Image credit: MOCOLOCO

Ice Suite at the Hôtel de Glace – Québec, Canada

Open from December to April each year, arctic sleeping bags are provided to stay warm inside the room made entirely of snow and ice. Image credit: Luc Rousseau

Survival Pod at The Capsule Hotel – The Hague, The Netherlands

An oil-rig survival pod inspired by Roger Moore’s sexy get-away vessel in The Spy Who Loved Me. They’re mobile and can be moored anywhere there’s water. Call to arrange your desired location. Image credit: Capsule Hotel

Chocolate Room by Karl Lagerfeld at La Reserve – Paris, France

A room made of chocolate inspired by Karl Lagerfeld’s greatest fantasy, including an edible recreation of his boy toy muse, Baptiste Giabiconi. Image credit: Foodista

The Free Spirit Spheres – Qualicum Beach, Canada

A weightless adult treehouse to inspire creative energy and reinvigorate a spiritual connection to nature. Image credit: Free Spirit Spheres

Room 409 by Hotel Fox – Copenhagen, Denmark

A Heidi-inspired room by Swiss illustrator Benjamin Güdel. Image credit: Hotel Fox

The Kiboko Star Bed in the Loisaba Wilderness – Laikipa, Kenya

Glamping at it’s finest: a partially enclosed room with homemade “Mukokoteni” — a uniquely designed bed on wheels — overlooking a Kenyan watering hole. Image credit: Loisaba

The James Bond Suite at Hotel Seven – Paris, France

The 007 Suite complete with a Turkish steam shower, electronic safe and the entire collection of Bond films. Image credit: We Are Private

Casa Triangular at the Hix Island House – Vieques, Puerto Rico

An architectural masterpiece in a butterfly preserve overlooking a bioluminescent bay. Yes, it’s heaven on Earth. Image credit: Hix Island House