Hotel de Glace Returns to Quebec to Showcase Feats of Design, Engineering with Ice

It’s safe to say that ice is back with a brand new invention.

The 2016 winter is upon us and with it comes the fifteenth year of the Hotel de Glace in Quebec. For those of us who need a translation, Hotel de Glace means Ice Hotel and this cold hotspot attracts visitors from all over who flock to see the new design the hotel has to offer every year. To create this hotel made entirely of ice, requires the work of experts in the fields of construction, architecture, design and engineering.

Jacques Desbois is the CEO of Hotel de Glace and he explained that every new hotel starts with ideas stemmed in design and art and then the creation of an architectural layout of the whole structure is created.  

“Once the first draft is on the table (art theme, design and layout) then we go through the technical and structural feasibility analysis with our engineer,” he said.

He goes on to say that they need to take into account the behavior of ice and snow and also how it reacts to different weather conditions.  In the last two years one of the changes they were able to make, was to minimize some of the ice pillars in the hotel to allow them to play more with the design.

Hotel de Glace will be open this year from January 4 to March 28.  There are several packages available for anyone that wants the unique opportunity to sleep in a room made of ice and snow. The theme for 2016 as posted on their website is “rivers” and the hotels artistic director Pierre L’heureux says that they will be playing with many aspects of that theme. The architectural plan for the 2016 hotel can be seen here.

For those who want a farther getaway, there is also an ice hotel in Sweden but the fact that Canada has one of the very few of these in the world means we only need to hop in our own backyard to see this technological marvel which will melt in the spring.