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The Ten Most Unusual Hotels

Updated on December 21, 2017
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Currently in northern Brazil, I have a passion for traveling and exploring out-of-the-way places. Join me on my travel adventures.

Bora Bora overwater bungalow
Bora Bora overwater bungalow | Source

Unusual Hotels

The next time you're ready to book a vacation, consider something a little different this year. There are hotels that have that something special, a wow factor.

Some of these are constructed of ice, a remodeled prison, and even one underwater. Take a look through and see if one is just what you've been looking for.

Entrepreneurs have seen a desire of travelers to do something out of the ordinary and have created various hotels that offer just that.

Ice Hotel
Ice Hotel | Source

1. An Ice Hotel

If you are planning a winter get-away, why not consider staying in an ice hotel. The hotel is construct with ice and as such is temporary. It is rebuilt each year, as the temperatures rise, the walls fall so to speak.

The first ice hotel was is Sweden but now ice hotels can be found in In Canada, Norway, Romania and Finland.

Imagine sleeping on an ice bed or drinking from an ice glass.

Although this may appeal to some, for me , I don't like the cold and I somehow don't think I could bring a portable heater. If this is something you want to experience, then remember to take your mittens.

Soviet Aircraft carrier hotel
Soviet Aircraft carrier hotel | Source

2. Russian Aircraft Carrier

In China you can stay on an aircraft carrier. This decommissioned Russian aircraft carrier was bought by the Chinese in 1996 and used as an amusement park.

If you have always wanted to stay on an aircraft carrier but without enlisting in the Navy, now your opportunity exists. The interior is perhaps a little too tacky and lacks true style but it is what the Chinese feel western tastes are. Still, it is an experience.

Jumbo jet
Jumbo jet

3. An Airplane Hotel

That's right, if you've got an old Boeing 747 lying around, why not convert it into a hotel. That is just the idea that Oscar Diös had when he heard there was an unused Boeing available at Stockholm's Arlanda Airport up for grabs.

Dogged determination got him the necessary permission from the airport and planning consent from the Swedish government to convert the plane into a hostel close to the airport.

So isn't it a bit cramped you might ask? It is classified as a hostel and as such the rooms aren't overly spacious but it is an novel idea. They offer a conference center as well as a bar.

American Tourister Fieldbrook II Softside Upright Luggage Set, Purple/Grey, 3-Piece (tote/21/25)
American Tourister Fieldbrook II Softside Upright Luggage Set, Purple/Grey, 3-Piece (tote/21/25)
If you're heading out to an exotic hotel, you don't want to show up with tatty luggage. I have this set, in purple and I love it. Not only is it easy to spot on the luggage carousel because of the color, it's the right size for what I take. I normally use the large one and the small one and let my husband have the other. I feel confident that even a butterfingered baggage handler isn't going to damage my bag. The wheels are also up to the job and I have never had an issue with sticking or an erratic direction change.

Business Guests

Several of the hotels offer conference areas and attract business clients who want something unique and inspiring to woo their guests and clients. Still others are ideal for team building scenarios and brainstorming sessions without the normal distractions so often found in larger hotels.

4. Cave Hotels

If you want to see what it feels like to sleep in a cave, now you can. There are many cultures that have and still do use caves as homes . Dwelling in a cave is not only cool it can be very comfortable.

In Turkey, you can stay in a 1,000 year old Byzantine monastery which was converted to a hotel and opened in 1999.

" One of the best places to stay in the middle east" according to Forbes Magazine.

This also won a 'best service' award by Travelers Choice 2012.

5.Hotels in the Trees

Did you have a tree-house when you were young? Perhaps it has always been your desire to get away from it all and stay in a tree-house. This exists in more than one location. In Africa you can find accommodation on stilts positioned in the trees. This offers the traveler majestic views across the savannas, perfect for watching the passing wildlife in its natural environment.

Another option is much further north, in Sweden, where you can stay in a futuristic luxury tree hotel. The luxury rooms and conference center offers the traveler tranquility and an unforgettable experience.

6. Underwater Hotel and Conference Center

Could you stay in a hotel that is underwater? The Poseidon in Fiji offers guests the ability to do just that. With out the need for Scuba gear.

Castle Hotel
Castle Hotel | Source

7. Castle Hotel

Have you ever dreamed of staying in a castle. Now it is possible to spend your next vacation in one. Walk through heavy oak doors and discover 500 years of tradition. A perfect place for a wedding venue or a relaxing vacation.

Be warned, places will call themselves 'Castle Hotel' and not actually be a castle. It could be the name of the owner, or near a castle or even located on Castle Street. If you want to be sure, check not only the photos but ask questions prior to booking.

Most offer packages for wedding parties. Booking a castle for a wedding or wedding reception is not just for celebrities. The large grounds and availability of rooms ensures your special occasion will run without a problem.

8. Train Hotels

For all those train enthusiasts the perfect hotel for you may be one in an old railway station or in a train carriage. The opportunity exists in West Sussex where you have your choice either to stay in the station or a Pullman carriage. There is also another in Chattanooga Tennessee.

You may want to dress for the occasion with steam-punk clothing.

Prison hotel

9. A Prison Hotel

What do you do with an old prison? Some clever entrepreneurs say convert them into a hotels. This is just what is being done. This trend is being seen in the US and in Britain with disused prisons being modernized and customized to find a new lease of life as a hotel. Many of the historic features still remain. Much more interesting than the sterile hotel chains on offer in many large cities.

10. Capsule Hotels

The idea of capsule hotels has never really caught on outside of Japan. These tiny cubicles at roughly 6.5L" x 3"W x 3.5"H are complete with Wi-fi and television. The accommodation is basic, and inexpensive. If you have ever stayed in a hotel and asked yourself ,'why am I paying all this money just to sleep?', this could be your answer.

For me, I think I would suffer from claustrophobia and feel as though I was in a coffin. Therefore, this isn't an option for me.

© 2012 Mary Wickison


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