Arctic Bath is a Floating Spa Built for Contemporary Vikings

Think a massage on the beach sounds relaxing, try one in the water.

A floating spa being called Arctic Bath will be erected in the small Swedish village of Harads, a stone’s throw from the Arctic Circle, and the design is straight from the pages of Game of Thrones.

The project, run by Arctic Bath AB, is a free-floating luxury hotel and spa in the middle of the Lule River. That’s correct; this all-year structure won’t be built on land, but water, and ebb or fix with the season.

Architecture renderings by Bertil Harström and Johan Kauppi, whose previous projects include sound-absorbing storage units, show a circular, intimate spa with long crossing logs on the outside to symbolize the logging heritage of this forested region of Sweden. In the center of the spa, the floor is cut away in a ring giving room for the central cold bath, which is open and roofless. Exquisite saunas, treatment rooms, relaxations spaces, and even a bar take up the rooms surrounding the cold bath. Each room is adorned with only the minimal essentials, i.e. modern lounge chairs, a wood-burning furnace, and square windows looking out to the surrounding river.

Arctic Luxury Bath
Image by Johan Kauppi and Architects are Bertil Harström & Johan Kauppi

The aesthetic of the building is au natural, as the log-pile exterior blends the spa into nature, and the lake and cold bath brings nature into the spa. This concept and natural design was inspired by another Harads-based Scandinavian architecture installation called Treehotel. The rooms of this modern forest hideaway are built into the pine canopy only miles from what will become Arctic Bath.

Guest rooms at Arctic Bath are separated from the main circular hub, and include only six rooms, with a 12-person capacity. This headcount keeps the Arctic Bath from becoming overcrowded. Sounds like heaven.

A long walkway over the river allows guests entry to the floating Viking oasis, and once the structure opens in 2018, every season will bring a new experience for visitors. In the winter, architects expect the river water to freeze over in a white expansive sheet of ice; with the warm wooden tones of Arctic Bath beckoning guests inside the steaming spa. Then in the spring and summer, the river will rush with a light current crashing against the exterior.

It’s a fully immersive dip into the relaxations of nature, in a structure only the Swedes could devise. And like Treehotel, which has become an iconic landmark not only in Sweden but in international travel architecture, Arctic Bath is already being buzzed about as the next big adventure destination. (Iceland’s geothermal Blue Lagoon is so 2016.)

Arctic Bath will begin taking reservations in June of next year.

Images by Johan Kauppi and Architects are Bertil Harström & Johan Kauppi.

Living

A Simple Swedish Cabin Gets a New Addition and a Japanese Twist

The two styles have more in common than you think and Archipelago Sommarhus is proof.
Living

Urban Loft Meets New England Farm in Ben’s Barn in Maine

Throw in some mid-century modern touches and Ben’s Barn is a beautifully eclectic home that’s sure to stand the test of time.
Auto

All the Presidents’ (Coolest) Cars: A Look at How the POTUS Rolls

The presidential state car serves as a reflection of technological progress, the style of the time, and the stark realities of safety and security concerns.
Living

The Jamaican Villa Where Ian Fleming Created James Bond is for Rent and It Is Amazing

You can vacation at the birthplace of secret agent 007, complete with butlers to make your martinis.
Food & Drink

Heading to Hawaii? Make Your Reservations at Manta Restaurant to Eat Big Island Beef

How can cattle raised in Hawaii stand-up to beef carefully coddled for years in Japan, Australia, and the mainland U.S.? Pretty damn easily, that's how.
Living

Detroit’s Shinola Hotel Has Us Feeling Right At Home

With stylish guest suites and a social “living room,” the Shinola Hotel honors the Motor City’s past while looking to a bright future.
Travel

‘App in the Air’ Could Help Travelers Survive the Next Government Shutdown

It's like an airport survival kit in your pocket. It will be handy long after the government shutdown ends (again).
Travel

The Best Travel and Adventure Documentaries on Netflix Right Now

If you're reading this, you're staring at a screen. Wouldn't you rather be exploring a different part of the world than the Internet?
Outdoors

4 of the Most Dangerous Hikes in the World

You'll need a healthy dose of fear and a desire to push your self to the edge — just not over it.
Travel

The Palms Casino’s Newest High-Roller Suites Have a Bowling Alley and Whiskey Room

The Hardwood Suite is a basketball-centric masterpiece, while the Kingpin suite is a bowling bro's paradise.
Travel

Celebrate Your Single-ness This Valentine’s Day with a Cheap Vacation

Contiki is looking to make solo celebrations even better with deeply discounted travel packages for Singles Awareness Day.
Travel

Win a Private Island Getaway for You and 7 of Your Closest Friends

Bring the entire squad on an ultra-luxe Belizean getaway worthy of a one-percenter.
Travel

10 Reasons to Visit Norway in 2019

The picturesque ruggedness of Norway is just part of the appeal of what may arguably be one of the most beautiful countries on the planet.
Auto

PlugVan Converts Most Vans Into Full-Fledged Campers in 5 Minutes

Your van can be backcountry-ready for the weekend and back to work Monday morning.