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Blog 11 unique hotels to add to your travel bucket list
ION Adventure Hotel Iceland
Date: 26 August 2020

11 unique hotels to add to your travel bucket list


Ever wanted to sleep inside an igloo? Or how about a palace? Nowadays, half the experience of travelling is where you stay.

So we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite weird, wonderful, quirky and extravagant hotels around the world, where you can enjoy a unique stay and earn CashPoints at the same time.

Reward tip: Get CashPoints on all your hotel bookings with Norwegian. That’s 5% of your total spend in CashPoints on over 400,000 hotels across the globe.

Note: Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the availability of the hotels could be affected. Remember to check current travel restrictions before booking travel.

1. Crane Hotel Faralda, Amsterdam

Crane Hotel Faralda in Amsterdam
Enjoy the views from this unique hotel in Amsterdam

Fly to Amsterdam, stay at Crane Hotel Faralda.

If you’re not afraid of heights, a room atop a 50-metre-high crane in Amsterdam could be the perfect place for your stay in the Dutch capital.

The Crane Hotel sits way above the Amsterdam Noord district. Up here you can see for miles in all directions from each of the three suites, which all have different themes.

At the very top of the crane you can enjoy the evening in an outdoor hot tub and in the morning you can order a Prosecco breakfast in bed as you admire the panoramic views.

2. 1 Hotel Central Park, New York

Façade of the 1 Hotel Central Park in New York
This unusual hotel will bring you closer to nature

At 1 Hotel Central Park you can experience the wonders of nature without stepping outside. Situated smack-bang in the middle of The Big Apple, this place brings new meaning to the term ‘green hotel’, boasting furnishings of reclaimed wood, organic mattresses and even room keys made from recycled wood.

With an ideal location in the centre of Manhattan, this natural sanctuary is the perfect base for an adventure on Broadway, shopping on 5th Avenue or just sitting at the window and admiring the treetop views of Central Park.

3. La Griffe Roma – MGallery By Sofitel, Roma

Piazza Venezia, Rome
This hotel makes for the perfect base for exploring the sights of Rome

Fly to Roma, stay at La Griffe Roma – MGallery By Sofitel.

With 10 floors of pure luxury and stunning views, and offering a plethora of services from Finnish saunas to hairdressers, La Griffe Roma is the ideal place to stay for a romantic weekend in Rome.

This elegant, five-star hotel is located in the centre of Rome, and comes complete with a roof garden overlooking the Eternal City. Simply magical.

4. Shangri-La Hotel At The Shard, London

Shangri-La Hotel at The Shard pool
An evening swim at The Shangri-La pool gives you an incredible view of London

Fly to London, stay at the Shangri-La Hotel At The Shard.

Shangri-La is London’s tallest, and perhaps most famous, luxury hotel, and one of the first in the UK to offer traditional Asian hospitality.

One of the most notable features of this hotel is the view. All rooms have floor to ceiling windows, so you can enjoy the spectacular vistas of the British capital.

You can also eat breakfast by the infinity ‘skypool’, Europe’s highest pool, which towers 52 floors over London’s vibrant streets.

5. Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel, Alta

Room at the Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel, Alta
Snuggle up at this breathtaking igloo hotel in Norway

Fly to Alta, stay at the Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel.

In the city of Alta you’ll find Norway’s largest and the world’s northernmost ice hotel.

One or two nights in this unusual hotel are perfect for those looking for a unique winter experience. Here you’re surrounded by ice, but sleep on warm, clean leather in sleeping bags made for extreme temperatures.

For obvious reasons, the hotel isn’t available to enjoy all year round, with the season opening in December.

Tip: For another winter adventure, check out Snowhotel Kirkenes which also has igloo rooms, as well as cool cabins where you might catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights from your own living room! Find out more in our post on the most incredible hotels in Norway.

6. Jumbo Stay, Stockholm

Restaurant at the Jumbo Stay hotel in Stockholm
Jumbo Stay brings a whole new meaning to sleeping at the airport

Fly to Stockholm, stay at Jumbo Stay.

You might have already slept on a plane, but not like this!

Parked at a closed runway at Arlanda Airport in Stockholm, you’ll find Jumbo Stay, a 747-212B plane which has been completely transformed into a fully-functioning hotel.

Once flown for Pan Am and Singapore Airlines, the jumbo jet now has 33 rooms, some of which can accommodate up to four people. Almost every part of the old plane is habitable, from the cockpit to the engines.

7. Hotel Katajanokka, Helsinki

The corridors of the Hotel Katajanokka, Helsinki
From prison to hotel, the clientele of this unique place has changed somewhat over the years

Fly to Helsinki, stay at Hotel Katajanokka.

If you’re looking to try something totally different next time you’re in Finland, then this unique hotel in Helsinki is for you.

Built in 1837 and closed in 2002, this four-star hotel was once the Helsinki county prison. After undergoing extensive restoration, it reopened in 2007 as a lifestyle hotel, complete with a stylish design and a hint of Nordic luxury.

Here inside the red brick walls of this historic building, you have your pick of suites, a gourmet restaurant in the basement, and anything else you could wish for. You can even venture along on a tour to check out one of the few preserved prison spaces such as an isolation cell and a cramped group cell with its cold rock floor and low ceiling.

8. ION Luxury Adventure Hotel, Nesjavellir, Iceland

ION Adventure Hotel Iceland, pool
Take a dip in the heated pool of this incredible hotel in Iceland

Fly to Reykjavik, stay at the ION Luxury Adventure Hotel.

Once an abandoned inn, this boutique hotel is located approximately 45 km outside of Reykjavik, in the midst of a spectacular lowland landscape and Thingvellir National Park, one of Iceland’s many breathtaking sights.

The ION Luxury Adventure Hotel can be found on the multi-coloured slopes of volcano Mt. Hengill, and boasts a dramatic view of Lake Thingvallavatn. There’s even a ‘Northern Lights Lounge’ so you can take in the magnificent views of the aurora borealis from the comfort of this sleek hotel – if you’re lucky enough.

9. The Library Hotel, New York

The poetry garden at The Library Hotel in New York
Enjoy some reading on the poetry terrace of The Library Hotel in Manhattan

Calling all bookworms! This one is definitely for you.

It’s not uncommon to find a library in a hotel, but The Library Hotel in Midtown Manhattan takes it one step further. Each floor honours one of the ten categories in the Dewey Decimal System, and each of the 60 rooms has a theme matching the category of the floor on which it is located.

To top off your stay, you can also use the poetry garden, the writing hall, or simply, the library.

10. Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace, Budapest

Façade of the Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace i Budapest
For the ultimate luxury stay, try The Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace in Budapest Photo: Dennis Jarvis / CC BY-SA 2.0.

Fly to Budapest, stay at the Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Palace.

Live like royalty at this impressive, five-star palace overlooking the river Danube.

You can choose one of the 160 guest rooms or one of the 19 spacious suites in this ornate hotel characterised by its two million mosaic tiles and dramatic stairways.

And for a spot of relaxation, head to the spa, which has seven treatment rooms, or enjoy a VIP trip to one of Budapest’s iconic thermal baths.

If you like to live like royalty, check out these stunning castle hotels.

11. Maison Souquet, Paris

Room at the Maison Souquet in Paris
Dark mystery charaterises the Maison Souquet in Paris. Photo: Eric Antonie / CC BY-SA 4.0.

Fly to Paris, stay at Maison Souquet.

Just a few steps from the Moulin Rouge, you’ll find the luxurious Maison Souquet where all rooms are unique, and the interior is dark and mysterious.

The décor was styled by renowned French interior designer Jacques Garcia, and it’s anything but ordinary. This romantic hotel encompasses the characterful district of SoPi (South Pigalle) near the Montmartre area of Paris, where cabaret shows meet hip new bars and restaurants.

Here, the butlers make sure everything is to your complete satisfaction.


How to tip around the world: Greece