Ever wanted to experience life in a Flintstones cave? Or in Tarzan’s tree house? Well, there’s room for all your fantasies, literally. Hotels.com, an online accommodation portal, has compiled a list of the world’s quirkiest hotels to tickle your funny bone, or simply make a childhood fantasy come true:
In-house fun: (top) An igloo at Icehotel; (bottom) a bird’s-eye view of Aria Towers, Amazon.
Protea Hotel Fire & Ice, Cape Town, South Africa: If you want to hang around the reception, you can do so in retro hanging chairs. Go for the Alice in Wonderland-themed Mad Hatter’s tea party or spend time by yourself in movie-themed loos. And you can smoke on coffin-shaped seats in their smoking lounge, appropriately called the Coughin Bar.
Stay here if: You like surprises at every corner.
Rates: Rand 940-1,120 (around Rs5,600-6,700) per night on double occupancy.
Aydinli Cave House, Göreme, Turkey: A cluster of six caves located amid the amazing rock formations popularly known as the Fairy Chimneys in the Göreme National Park, in Cappadocia, the hotel has the traditional features of local rock-cut dwellings with hamam basins and modern trappings such as Wi-Fi.
Stay here if: You want to play caveman but can’t think of giving up your netbook.
Rates: €55-110 (around Rs3,800-7,500) for a night for two people, including breakfast and taxes.
Icehotel, Jukkasjärvi, Sweden: Every November, a team of architects and designers lands in Jukkasjarvi, a village 200km north of the Arctic Circle, to build igloos from the ice of the Torne river. They design and build around 60 funky igloos, the Icehotel’s “cold” guest rooms, all of which are furnished with ice. The hotel conducts hunting and fishing tours and ice-sculpture classes.
Stay here if: You sweat in the north Indian winters— temperatures in the hotel hover between -8 and -5 degrees Celsius.
Rates: Winter rooms are custom-built and hence rates are available only on request.
New York-New York Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, US: Sure, it recreates a bit of the East Coast in California. With a faux skyline, harbour and replica of the Statue of Liberty, the hotel is modelled on the Big Apple. But that doesn’t even begin to describe quirky here. Its showpiece is the Manhattan Express, a roller coaster that zips you around the hotel at breakneck speed—up to 108km an hour—and even allows you to get married on the go.
Stay here if: You want a taste of NY life in the really fast lane.
Rates: $142-242 (around Rs7,000-11,850) a night, for two to four people.
Ariaú Towers Hotel, the Amazon, Brazil: The seven towers of this hotel are built 30-72ft above the ground, in the heart of the Amazon rainforest. The tallest room, aptly called Tarzan’s House, is built on a living mahogany tree. Accessible only by boat or helicopter from the nearby town of Manaus, the hotel provides for activities such as canoe rides, jungle walks, piranha fishing etc.
Stay here if: You want to experience the Amazon but aren’t sure about getting your feet really wet.
Rates: $487 onwards for a night on double occupancy.
Crowne Plaza Indianapolis, Downtown Union Station, Indianapolis: The hotel is housed within America’s first Union Station, with 26 authentic Pullman coaches doubling up as sleeping rooms dedicated to personalities such as Charlie Chaplin and Winston Churchill etc. As if sleeping in The Tramp wasn’t quirky enough, they’ve got white fibreglass ghost travellers dressed in period clothing to “haunt” the premises.
Stay here if: You don’t mind swearing off trains forever—or you just like dead people.
Rates: $189-229 per night.