Almost 3 weeks of hard working, tons and tons of ice and snow moved, a bit of cold breeze, some warming up and a lot, a lot of fun. After months of thinking, designing and hoping to be selected, we finally had the chance to fly up to the Arctic to make it real.
Sad because all our friends left for their houses and even if the Icehotel is starting to be filled up by tourists, we feel a bit lonely. At the restaurant no more line, in the night, the bar is so silent…..
Happy because finally we have all the tools for us!!!! and is amazing….
So, no excuses anymore. Now we have to do some serious work. We have now our snow platform where we will build the bed, and the trees are alsmost completely shaped….it looks like we have not much to do, but we have a loooot . The final touchs are always the most important and most dangerous, and we have to be so focused on what we are doing.
Vonk: and now you listen!!!!
The conclusion of such an important project it can be sometimes a bit electric and is so easy to jump as springs and start a fight. Luckly, me and my collegue we had just a small “fight”, to be true not a real fight…..we prefere to call it “misunderstanding”, but we solve it and we even found a better solution for our doubt.
Last night in Jukkasjarvi. We cannot imagine a best way to celebrate it, than crossing the river and having a beautiful Japanese dinner cooked by our wonderfull collegues, in Arne’s house, in Poikkjarvi. We even saw a little Aurora tonight, sooo perfect!
Now we are deeply proud of our luxury suite, and we can’t wait to make our presentation to our friends, collegues, guides and showed up people.
First the presentation of Natsky, Shingo and Rise ( the best neighboor ) and , as always, they are so nice. Then is our turn. We wait all the people inside our suite, we are sitted on our swings , and when they enter we have to say they are all impressed. They never saw ice swings in the Icehotel, and this was actually our mission: try to tell what is our vision and idea of luxury. Nothing about owning, of being able to buy the best things. But we think is all about being able to do whatever we want. Like building a treehouse, spend time in it ( maybe sleep in it) and even spend time on a swing.
This is our luxury: going back and feeling like a king just for those simple and basic emotions.
Finally our luxury suite has all the ice blocks that we need inside. We placed almost 16 tons of thorne river’s ice and after “supergluing”them, we started to shape them. So, the trees are starting to look like trees and not anymore like big ice blocks. We try to reach the seeling with some of the branches adding fiew small pieces of ice on top…..and then is weekend!!!
The weekend started with a party hosted on the other side of the river by an old friend who had a lot to do with Icehotel in the past, and whom I personally met in Sydney in 2007…..yes, this world is definetely a very small ball! The day after, between one chisel and a chaisaw, we had the chance to try some of the Icehotel activity for turists….and we choose the dogsledge. Great!!! So silent, smooth, and nice to ride a sledge on the frozen river…actually we really hope is frozen!!
And saturday, the great kick in party, with all the artists, the builders and all the Icehotel’s staff. Off course, this has been always an hard job, but we are so diehard and we wont miss it.
Finally, the 4th day, we placed our forst big block of ice.
Tchnical data: dimensions/ cm 75 x 100 x 230, weight / 1800 kg, color/blueish
It has been rahter tricky how to arise it and push it into the suite, but we got it. To complete the day we sniced the back wall, so is done.
The mornig after, we start rather early because the plan is complicated: put another big block on top of the vertical one! So we will have almost 2 tons on our heads for the next 2 weeks!! We build a “pallets tower” as support, and with the help of Mats, the big block is up, glued, slashed and we can go to lunch happy.
Aftyer lunch we arise another big block, but we have to be precise and make it very straight….during the levelling, all the Icehotel probably eard the death sound of an hard and heavy cube falling on a fluffy snow base. No problem, my partner Marjolein is saved, noone blessed, let’s take a new one. Luckly we have a big reserve of ice, so we have the permission to make few mistakes.
End of the day arrives soon, and we can really call it a day: 2 trees up, we know how to lift up the others, time for a chat with friends
Something up there is happening. After a long working day, we celebrate the beginning of this building time with a nice barbecue on the river. Artists, kids, dogs and warm atmosphere in a chilly wind. At the end, when we are all ready to go and rest, we lift up our eyes and we see a tiny little start of a northern light. We go on the frozen river to catch the darkness, but the moon tonight is playing against us. In few minutes the show starts. Many colors, very fast shaking and sliding….a very good first aurora for this season!!
After the aurora hunting night, which means coming back with frozen fingers, we all meet at the warm bar, which is becoming the meeting point for this year. Few beers, a lot of chat, and many laugh.
Sunday morning is always lazy: slow starting, no tractors running around, and minus 15 degrees on working place. We decide that the roof has to be finished by tonight, so then we can start to concentrate on the important stuff.
After a looong trip, and half of it with my collegue for the next 3 weeks, I finally arrived in the north of Sweden. I could have been in Australia in 20 hours, but in this moment iof the year, I feel so lucky and priviliged to be here.
My collegue, Marjolein a dutch stylist who I met first time up here in 2007, my very first time in this wonderland. Years by years we get more and more in touch, and this is the first time we will work together…..will it be the end of a friendship? Cross fingers !!!!
First wake up in the northern breeze, and first breakfast meeting. Refreshing memories of old friend’s faces, and feeling like one year was fast as one night; this is Jukkasjarvi, this is Icehotel.