At Treehotel in the north of Sweden, the rooms rise up like trees in an enchanted forest: a UFO, a mirrorcube, a giant bird's nest. It's some of your wildest childhood fantasies—brought to life by Swedish architects. So how did it all begin?
The hotel is the work of its two founders, Britta and Kent, who were inspired by the 2008 film The Tree Lover—a story of three city dwellers who build a treehouse together. When they Treehotel first opened in 2010—and when Gizmodo wrote about the especially sci-fi looking Mirrorcube (above)—it was just partially complete, with a handful of "treerooms," each hung 12 to 20 feet above the ground. But the hotel has since added another treeroom called Dragonfly, for a total of six plus a treehouse sauna. And its owners say they have plans to expand their forest hotel.
Each treeroom is unique, designed by different Scandinavian architects including Tham & Videgård, Rintala Eggertsson, and SandellSandberg. There's the Cabin:
And the Dragonfly:
Some, like the Blue Cone—which is actually painted red—stand in stark contrast to their forest surroundings.
Others, like the Bird's Nest, are harder to find. The elevated rooms look out over miles of forest and the nearby Lule River.
Inside, the treerooms are little pockets of civilization and comfort. A one-night stay for two people goes for 4000 Swedish Kronor or about $667 U.S. dollars at the current exchange rate. A small price to pay for a stay inside a UFO:
Or a sweat in the Sauna:
Perhaps the most interesting detail about the tree rooms is their toilets. You don't see any sewage pipes connected to these elevated treehouses, right? That's because they have combustion toilets that heat up to over 1000 degrees F to burn your waste away. We might choose to stay in a treehouse in the forest to feel closer to nature, but it ironically requires some pretty high-tech appliances. Here, for example, is the UFO:
While Treehotel pretty much epitomizes treehouse hotels, there are plenty others in the Amazon, in Costa Rica, on a spices plantation in India. Ever stayed at one or have your eye on one? Tell us about it in the comments!