Whether you’re staying close to home or exploring a new hemisphere, the hospitality industry has some extraordinary hotels scattered around the world. With innovative designs, unique concepts, and out-of-this-world locations, these unbelievable hotels turn dreams into reality. From underwater suites and historic mansions to decommissioned airplanes and glass treehouses, the following list of the most unique hotels in the world truly has something for everyone.
Icehotel, Jukkasjärvi, Sweden
Ice bars are an increasingly popular attraction in several major cities and even on cruise ships. If the concept intrigues you, why not take it a step further by staying at the Icehotel?
The first of its kind, this Swedish hotel features the below-freezing Icebar and guest rooms with sculptures and furnishings hand-carved out of ice. Though it also offers warm rooms with the typical amenities, if you reserve a cold room, you’ll get thermal sleeping bags on ice beds covered in reindeer hides.
The massive ice blocks are harvested from the nearby Torne River, which freezes solid every winter, and the hotel and surrounding village are prime locations to catch a glimpse of the northern lights.
The Muraka, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, Maldives
If you prefer warm destinations but are still in the market for a unique luxury experience, consider a trip to The Muraka. Part of the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island spa resort, The Muraka is the world’s first underwater hotel suite and includes a master bedroom submerged 16 feet deep in the Indian Ocean. The curved acrylic dome and floor-to-ceiling windows allow you to enjoy a private aquarium experience throughout your stay.
The suite’s top floor has two more bedrooms, a private infinity pool, and a 24-hour butler. Starting at $10,000 per night, this unique suite promises a next-level luxury experience that you’ll never forget.
Dog Bark Park Inn, Cottonwood, Idaho, United States
It doesn’t get much more unique than this cozy guesthouse in Idaho, nestled inside the world’s largest beagle sculpture. The incredible roadside attraction was crafted by the owners, Frances Conklin and Dennis Sullivan, who are committed to providing warm hospitality and a relaxing stay. The London Times named this unique dog-shaped inn in its “Top 20 Most Fun and Exciting Places to Stay,” and we couldn’t agree more.
The guesthouse can sleep up to four people with one queen-size bed and two extra futons, and the space is packed with decorative furnishings and unique artwork. There is a gift shop right across the street, and nearby attractions include hiking, boating, and fishing.
V8 Hotel, Böblingen, Germany
Car lovers rejoice at this automobile-themed hotel in Böblingen, Germany. Böblingen is a popular destination for tourists and German automobile enthusiasts, as it offers easy access to Motorworld Region Stuttgart and the Mercedes-Benz and Porsche museums.
What makes this four-star stay unique is the original design of the various car-themed guest rooms, which include small and large suites as well as serviced apartments. No two rooms are alike, and each one features furnishings and artwork made from real car parts. The hotel even offers the V12 Mercedes Suite, which spans two floors and includes a private sauna and a roof terrace.
Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort, Saariselkä, Finland
There is no better place to immerse yourself in some of the world’s most incredible natural phenomena than the world-renowned Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort. Offering both cozy chalets and thermal glass igloos, the resort provides warm and comfortable accommodations where you can admire the northern lights, the midnight sun, and a sky filled with millions of stars. It also features the world’s largest smoke sauna, which includes its own restaurant.
Staying here, you can embark on plenty of arctic adventures, such as husky and reindeer safaris, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, and snowboarding. With scenery best described as “pure magic” and iconic natural wonders that will take your breath away, this arctic retreat is truly one of a kind.
Montaña Magica, Huilo Huilo Reserve, Chile
Immerse yourself in the fairy-tale experience with a stay in this dreamy mountain-shaped hotel in the Andes. Draped in luscious greenery and natural vegetation, Montaña Magica, or Magic Mountain, offers a unique opportunity to reconnect with nature from the comfort of a four-star resort.
Backed by stunning natural scenery and a rushing waterfall, the property features an indoor pool, a spa, an on-site restaurant, and a game room. There are nine guest rooms in the lodge, each of which boasts a gorgeous wooden interior with a luxurious cabin design.
Hüttenpalast, Berlin, Germany
This small hotel in Berlin combines the comfort of a standard stay with the fun of an indoor camping site. Tucked away on a quiet street in the trendy district of Kreuzkölln, the hotel offers unique retro-style accommodations in the form of vintage caravans and cozy cabins.
Each guest accommodation has its own unique design and is set in one of two large camping halls with shared bathrooms. Hüttenpalast also offers standard hotel rooms with private bathrooms, and all guests have access to an on-site bar and a charming backyard garden.
Jumbo Stay, Stockholm, Sweden
For a unique and affordable experience in Stockholm, get ready to board Jumbo Stay, a full-service hotel inside of a decommissioned Boeing 747 jumbo jet. Guest rooms vary in size and layout to accommodate up to four adults, some with private bathrooms.
For an unforgettable experience, consider booking the luxury suite in the cockpit of the plane. Reservations include free breakfast and airport shuttle service, and there is a large shared balcony on one of the plane’s wings.
Giraffe Manor, Nairobi, Kenya
One for the bucket list, Giraffe Manor is a luxurious boutique hotel surrounded by 140 acres of indigenous forest. The 12-acre property is home to a herd of friendly giraffes that regularly poke their heads through the hotel windows, looking for treats. The hotel also features a cafe and an on-site spa with a hot tub, a sauna, a steam room, and a gym.
When you’re not mingling with the world’s tallest mammals, spend some time in the property’s gorgeous gardens, where you can relax and soak in the magic of East Africa. Giraffe Manor also organizes safaris that you can book along with your stay.
Treehotel, Harads, Sweden
Elevated among the trees of Harads’ pine forest, Treehotel offers an inspiring adventure unlike any other accommodation on the market. Its guest rooms take the form of separate treehouses, each with its own unique theme, including a seemingly invisible mirrored cube and a custom-designed UFO in the trees. The options are endless, and each one offers an unforgettable experience in nature.
This might not be a great choice of accommodation for acrophobes, but outdoor adventurers are in for the time of their lives.
Sun Cruise Resort & Yacht, Gangneung, South Korea
Experience all the fun of a cruise ship without the seasickness at Sun Cruise Resort. The luxurious on-land cruise ship features a saltwater swimming pool overlooking the ocean and even plays wave sounds to give you the full cruise experience.
You’ll never be short on things to do, as the resort offers a piano lounge, a karaoke bar, a nightclub, two restaurants, and other fun attractions. One of its unique features is the top-floor revolving bar, which provides spectacular sea views.
Hotel Costa Verde, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
Another great choice for airplane enthusiasts, this vintage 1965 Boeing 727 has been lovingly refurbished and transported to the jungle of Manuel Antonio. Elevated on a 50-foot platform, the former jet offers breathtaking views of the surrounding jungle and the ocean.
The hotel comprises a single exclusive residence with two bedrooms, en suite bathrooms, a dining area, a private kitchenette, and a terrace. The unique interior features hand-carved teak furnishings and rustic wood-planked walls.
Hotel Palacio de Sal, Colchani, Bolivia
At first glance, it might be hard to believe that this four-star hotel is built entirely out of salt. The historic accommodation is set on the stunning shores of Salar de Uyuni, the world’s largest salt flat.
The guest rooms are large and luxurious, with private bathrooms, ocean views, and unique furniture also made from salt. The hotel also includes a top-rated restaurant serving regional dishes.
No Man’s Fort, Portsmouth, United Kingdom
History buffs are sure to love this unique hotel with an interesting backstory. Originally constructed between 1867 and 1880, the fort housed troops through the world wars and was even used as a film set for an episode of Doctor Who.
In 2009, a hospitality company purchased the fort and turned it into a luxury hotel with a restaurant, a sauna, a cocktail bar, and many interesting events and activities. Accessible by ferry, the hotel features lavish decorations and historic art pieces in its guest rooms.
Anantara Golden Triangle Jungle Bubbles, Chiang Rai, Thailand
The strange-sounding name of this unique hotel in Chiang Rai perfectly describes the next-level experience it provides. The guest rooms are transparent bubbles nestled in the luscious jungle. You can observe the starry night skies, breathtaking greenery, and even families of elephants right from your room.
The bubbles are spacious and luxurious, each including a bedroom with a king-size bed, a living room, and a private bathroom. The accommodation also comes with in-room dining services and spa-like bathroom amenities.
Village Flottant de Pressac, France
Relax on the lake in this tranquil French village featuring floating huts and warm hospitality. The unique concept provides the perfect opportunity to experience the peace and serenity of the lake. You can choose between a floating hut or lodge and a tent that hovers above the water on stilts. The property also features a traditional French restaurant, a shared barbecue area, and a bar.
Amsterdam the Crane by YAYS, Amsterdam, Netherlands
This urban masterpiece features a single three-story luxury rental within a real 1957 harbor crane. With two bedrooms, a living area, and a full kitchen, the spacious accommodation is perfect for the entire family.
The modern interior was designed by the world-renowned Edward van Vliet, and the views from the floor-to-ceiling windows are sure to take your breath away. There are also plenty of popular shops, restaurants, and museums within walking distance of the property.
Fantasyland Hotel, Edmonton, Canada
The name says it all with this unique hotel in Edmonton. Step into a dreamlike wonderland with Fantasyland’s massive selection of one-of-a-kind themed rooms. Whether you dream of relaxing like royalty or taking a trip to space, this exquisite hotel truly has it all. Perfect for kids and the young at heart, the hotel is connected to West Edmonton Mall, which features an amusement park and a mini-golf course.
Ottoman Cave Suites, Göreme, Turkey
With an incredible array of rock-carved suites and stone guest rooms, this cave hotel offers a unique experience and gorgeous views of Uçhisar Castle. It provides plenty of luxurious amenities, shared and private, and you’ll have access to an on-site bar, a rooftop terrace, and a lounge. The convenient location makes it easy to travel to popular tourist attractions in Göreme, including Ürgüp Museum and Göreme National Park.
Red Caboose Motel, Ronks, Pennsylvania, United States
With historic railroad cabooses as guest rooms, this Pennsylvania gem welcomes guests from all over. The cheerful on-site restaurant serves a delectable selection of comfort foods, and the motel even hosts special events and live music. You can visit the motel’s petting zoo, play games at the arcade, and get a taste of Amish life with a buggy ride.
Perfect for adults and children alike, this affordable rental property lets you choose from 38 cabooses, some of which ran on the historic Pennsylvania Railroad.
Santos Express, Mossel Bay, South Africa
Spend the night in a train carriage just 30 meters away from the Indian Ocean with this iconic tourist destination on Santos Beach. Known to locals as “The Train,” this oceanfront accommodation is unlike any other. The carriage rooms have beautiful furniture and classic decorations, and you’ll have access to shared bathrooms and an on-site restaurant.
You also have the option to stay in a vintage wooden coach. For a budget-friendly stay, you can book beds in a shared dormitory.
Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur, India
Live like royalty with a stay in this marble palace floating on Lake Pichola. Formerly occupied by Mewar’s royal family, this five-star hotel was converted in 1963 to offer a luxurious experience steeped in history. Guest rooms boast unmatched elegance with hand-carved furnishings and silk sheets.
The unique island location makes for incredible views throughout the palace. On-site amenities include a top-rated restaurant, a fitness center, shops, pools, and even exclusive butler service.
Treehouse Lodge, Amazon Rainforest, Peru
Nestled within a canopy of trees in the Amazon Rainforest, Treehouse Lodge allows you to immerse yourself in nature without sacrificing modern comforts. Each of the 12 individual treehouses provides fresh linens and a private full bathroom, and the on-site cuisine has impressed even the harshest critics. You’ll wake up to the sight and sound of the monkeys and birds in the surrounding trees, experiencing the magic of the Amazon Rainforest like never before.
Memories Aicha Luxury Camp, Wadi Rum, Jordan
Also known as “the Mars Colony,” Memories Aicha offers an out-of-this-world experience in the Red Valley of Jordan. The luxury campsite comprises a series of futuristic domes with transparent ceilings for stargazing. Each dome is comfy, modern, and air-conditioned, with beautiful Eastern furnishings and private bathrooms with running water.
During the day, the desert’s reddish hue will make you feel like you’re camping out on Mars – and at night, thousands of stars light up the sky.
Skylodge Adventure Suites, Cusco, Peru
Perfect for the thrill-seeking adventurer, Skylodge’s guest rooms are transparent capsules suspended from the top of a 1,200-foot mountain in Sacred Valley. Made from aerospace aluminum and ultra-durable polycarbonate, each capsule contains four beds and a private full bathroom.
You’ll have to hike to the top of the mountain to reach your luxurious suite, where you’ll find the breathtaking views more than worth it.
The Villa Casa Casuarina, Miami Beach, Florida, United States
Set within the former Versace Mansion, this historic masterpiece hosts guests from around the world and is easily one of the most elegant accommodations in Miami. Historic art pieces are scattered throughout the mansion’s halls and rooms, and all 10 suites boast king-size beds and expansive marble bathrooms.
The romantic pool and surrounding gardens will make you feel like you’re living on a movie set, and the on-site restaurant serves delectable dishes daily.
Pioneertown Motel, Joshua Tree, California, United States
Embodying the spirit of the American West is a one-of-a-kind motel in the High Desert of California. The motel is uniquely located next to an Old West movie set. Guest rooms provide all the comfort of the classic log cabin, while the surrounding area is abuzz with exciting activities and opportunities for adventure.
There is truly no better place to enjoy the unrivaled natural beauty of the High Desert, with its abundant wildlife, jagged rock formations, and breathtaking sunset views.
Juvet Landscape Hotel, Valldal, Norway
If you’re looking to escape the city or just get away from the stresses of everyday life, there is no better place than Juvet. This remote getaway in a Norwegian village experiments with simple eco-friendly architecture constructed of pine and glass. The transparent walls help you connect with the surrounding nature and enjoy unparalleled views of the famous Norwegian landscape.
The private huts are simple yet incredibly comfortable and modern. You’ll also have access to a glass-walled sauna and an outdoor hot tub overlooking the river and the forest.
Hotel Marqués de Riscal, Elciego, Spain
Designed by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry, this five-star hotel is a work of art in its own right. The avant-garde masterpiece boasts an eye-catching facade and an elegant interior that experiments with tilted walls and zigzag windows.
Set on the oldest vineyard in the region, Hotel Marqués de Riscal offers daily wine tours and an incredible on-site restaurant that serves delectable dishes with unbeatable wine pairings. The property also features a luxurious spa, a rooftop library lounge, and a wine bar.
Hotel Ještěd, Liberec, Czechia
Another architectural masterpiece, Hotel Ještěd is perched on the tallest peak of Ještěd–Kozákov Ridge and characterized by its tall spire. Constructed in the ’60s, the hotel and accompanying restaurant offers a high-end stay near the city of Liberec. The area is popular for hiking and cycling amidst the mountain’s breathtaking scenery.
Hotel Puntagrande, Tenerife, Spain
Small yet extraordinary, Hotel Puntagrande is known around the world for its incredible location on a bed of lava rocks. Surrounded by the turquoise waters of the Atlantic Ocean, this Spanish gem is designed to make you feel like you’re sleeping at the edge of the world.
Puntagrande was recognized by The Guinness Book of Records as the world’s smallest hotel in 1984, but its tiny size doesn’t stop it from providing a once-in-a-lifetime experience. All five rooms offer breathtaking ocean and mountain views that you can also enjoy from the property’s panoramic terrace. The rooms are also elegant and modern, with some featuring exposed stone accents and private balconies. There is even a unique on-site naval museum.
Dromen aan Zee, Harlingen, Netherlands
Dromen aan Zee offers a choice between three unique overnight experiences in Harlingen. The first is the Harbourcrane Harlingen, a crane elevated high above the Wadden Sea that makes the perfect romantic retreat for a couple. Most notably, it features a control cabin where you can rotate the crane 360 degrees and enjoy the views from the rooftop terrace.
The second option is a private lifeboat, which provides luxurious sleeping quarters and a captain who will take you for a private two-hour trip on the water. Finally, you can opt to stay in a historic lighthouse that serves as a stunning Harlingen landmark.
Sharma Springs, Bali, Indonesia
This bamboo mansion in Bali is an architectural gem nestled along the Ayung River. Sharma Springs is part of the world-famous Green Village, an incredible community of sustainable living and housing, and the villa is built by hand, almost entirely of bamboo. The luxurious five-bedroom interior and stunning views promote pure relaxation, and you’ll even have access to a private pool and garden.
Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan, Hayakawa, Japan
Classified as the world’s oldest hotel by Guinness World Records, Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan is a hot spring inn that has been in operation since 705 A.D. The property features four open-air springs and two indoor hot springs with low-alkaline properties that are said to reduce muscle pain and gastrointestinal issues.
The springs and surrounding scenery are absolutely breathtaking, and you’ll even get a glimpse of Mount Fuji on the way to the inn. With luxurious accommodations, unmatched hospitality, and over 1,300 years of history, this historic inn deserves a spot on everyone’s bucket list.
Amangiri, Canyon Point, Utah, United States
For a unique stay in a secluded setting, it’s tough to beat this majestic resort tucked away in the Four Corners region of the United States. Built to be one with the 900 acres of surrounding desert wilderness, this five-star hotel features elegant suites and tented pavilions where you can enjoy the magical environment in comfort.
With a spot on the Forbes Verified Luxury list, Amangiri promises an enchanting stay surrounded by the inspiring scenery of the dramatic desert landscape.
Henn na Hotel, Tokyo, Japan
The world’s first hotel staffed by robots, this futuristic hotel in Tokyo will make you feel like a character in a sci-fi film. When you enter, humanlike robots will check you into your room and take your luggage. The hotel uses a facial recognition system instead of room keys, and the guest rooms include luxurious features and even more high-tech details.
Free Spirit Spheres, Qualicum Beach, Canada
If you’re looking for a unique accommodation in Qualicum Beach, consider spending a few nights in one of these incredible spherical treehouses. Elevated among the trees of the gorgeous Vancouver Island, the spheres offer modern comforts such as Wi-Fi and built-in speakers, each with a circular skylight for stargazing. Nearby conventional bathrooms, a sauna, and a kitchen are available for guest use.
Ashford Castle, County Mayo, Ireland
This five-star hotel is set inside of an 800-year-old castle behind towering stone gates. The former home of the Guinness family, this historic property is surrounded by a 350-acre estate that includes breathtaking gardens and a glistening lake. The elegant guest rooms are filled with high-end furnishings and luxurious details, and the property boasts six restaurants, three bars, and an award-winning spa.
The Shell House, Isla Mujeres, Mexico
This novel vacation rental boasts a striking white exterior and a unique seashell-shaped design. The beachy interior features elegant white furnishings and seashell-themed artwork sure to put you in the vacation spirit. Up to four guests can stay in the gorgeous two-bedroom home, which provides luxurious king-size beds, a private outdoor pool, and maid service.
The stellar location on the south end of Isla Mujeres offers unbeatable Caribbean views, and the sandy shores of the island are just a few steps away from the house. With tropical trees and a salty sea breeze, this dreamy property can be your own private paradise.
Wigwam Motel, San Bernardino, California, United States
Last but certainly not least, this San Bernardino getaway has individual teepee-shaped accommodations in place of standard motel rooms – each with a full selection of modern amenities. The motel is in a desirable neighborhood surrounded by lush palm trees and lovely mountains. Nearby attractions include San Manuel Stadium, the first McDonald’s location, and plenty of hiking opportunities.
Whether you have a specific experience in mind or you’re just looking for something different, each of these extraordinary accommodations offers a one-of-a-kind stay with a special twist. After all, why settle for a standard hotel room when you could be dining with endangered species or immersing yourself in a piece of history?
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