Edge of Innovation

From cliff house to ice hotel: Extreme rooms with OMG views

 

Some time ago, you might remember that we highlighted plans for an extraordinary cliff house. Designed by Modscape, the vertigo-inducing home was designed to cling to the side of a sheer Australian rock face giving its inhabitants an astounding sea-view.

It’s not the only place that offers such an OMG view. Or that clings precariously to a cliff. Skylodge Adventure Suites in Peru offers intrepid travellers the chance to sleep in a transparent hanging bedroom that’s located 1,300 feet up the side of a mountain in Cusco.

The clear polycarbonate pods (pictured above) aren’t easy to reach — you’ll need have the guts to climb up a sheer cliff face (using a ladder) or hike a trail through ziplines. But the spectacular view across the Sacred Valley of the Incas is undoubtedly worth it.

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These deluxe houseboats planned for Dubai offer residents an below-decks bedroom with a panoramic underwater view.
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This glass house concept by architects Carlo Santambrogio and Ennio Arosio obviously raises some privacy concerns. Photo credit: www.santambrogiomilano.it.

The Skylodge suites are part of a growing trend for giving adventurers unique hotel experiences using the latest technology and construction techniques. Check out the deluxe houseboats planned for Dubai. These 5-star luxury villas (dubbed ‘Floating Seahorses’) will feature a bedroom that gives its residents a panoramic underwater view, giving a new meaning to the phrase ‘sleep with the fishes’.

Sleep in a glass igloo and watch the Northern Lights

See-through dwellings are a popular idea. Italian architects Carlo Santambrogio and Ennio Arosio have a eye catching concept for an all-glass house — glass floors, glass stairs, glass stairs — giving anyone who lives in it 360-degree views of their surroundings.

Up in the Finnish Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort, you can sleep in a glass igloo looking up at the Aurora Borealis, lulled to sleep by the swirling electromagnetic ribbons of light above. Closer to home, Attrap’Rêves near Marseilles, France, will rent you a clear, plastic bubble tent so you can sleep safely beneath the stars. Telescopes and star charts included.

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Watch the Northern Lights (weather permitting) from the comfort of your own glass igloo. Photo credit: www.kakslauttanen.fi.
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Sleep under the stars and get closer to nature in one of Attrap’Rêves unique snowglobe-style bubble tents.

There are other extreme places to stay. Treehotel in Sweden offers visitors a range of modern tree houses, including a ‘bird’s nest’, a dwelling shaped like a ‘UFO’ and an isolated two-person ‘mirror cube’ that reflects its surroundings, becoming almost invisible. The view across the vast pine forest that carpets the landscape will take your breath away.

From treetop to mountain top, the Whitepod eco-hotel consists of 15 geodesic domes located on the slopes of the Dents-du-Midi mountain range — the beginning of the Swiss Alps. While in the far-flung Galapagos Islands, the Pikaia Lodge is perched on an extinct volcano with astonishingly beautiful views in every direction.

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Spot the mirror cube. This camouflaged two-person tree house gives you the opportunity to live up in the treetops. Photo credit: www.treehotel.se.

Perhaps things don’t get more extreme than a room built entirely from ice and snow — like Canada’s Hotel de Glace and Sweden’s famous Jukkasjärvi Icehotel. Located 200km north of the Arctic Circle, the Icehotel features some stunning rooms, some individually designed by artists, and each one cooled to a constant -5°C.

Imagine waking up to this…

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One of the amazing Art Suites created for the 2015 incarnation of Sweden’s famous Jukkasjärvi Icehotel. Photo credit: www.icehotel.co.uk.

In a world where we often settle for ‘average’, these rooms with extraordinary views show us that innovation, technology and some creative thinking can enhance experiences that we might take for granted. If anything, they should encourage us to demand more from the services and products that we pay for and to seek out those things that dare to go beyond the everyday; things that give us an extra jolt of joy. — Dean Evans (@evansdp)

 

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