Some choose the Dominican or Cuba. White sand on warm beaches, brilliant, blue water, fruity cocktails and all-you-can-eat buffet.
I am not one of those people. Instead, I opted for the experience of a lifetime - a night in the seasonal, snow-fort-on-steriods, the Hotel de Glace. Okay, truthfully, I didn't seek out this destination on my own. I am lucky to have friends in high places, or friends that at least know people in high places. My best friend won the trip and asked if I would join her for the weekend. I do believe a little that my love of all activities winter and ability to parler francais was also a bonus.
Located north of Quebec City, we arrived last night just in time for our 'briefing', which provided us with direction on how to go to bed. There is a lack of real similarity to a 'normal' hotel here. Camping would be a better description of the experience. Provided with a North Face Tundra sleeping bag and "potato sack", which seemed to me like a cacoon, we were shown how to zip and tighten ourselves into the bag for the night. At this point, we were seriously hoping the only nature that would call that evening would be the creature in the woods outside the hotel.
Despite this, when we'd enjoyed our "spa" and downed the straight vodka "cocktail" from an ice cup in the ice bar, we headed to our suite. Perhaps, it's our Northern Ontario roots, but neither of us could deny how much it felt like we were sleeping in a snowfort from our childhood. It was like living every child's winter dream! Bundled up in our long undies, wicking first layer and a toque, we passed out in our 'vortex' themed room.
Except for my nose and cheeks, I was amazingly warm all night. Sleeping on my side seemed to keep the chill off my face, and I awoke this morning thoroughly rested. So, now we're off to tackle a full day of activities. Dogsledding, cross-country skiing, snowshowing and skating! I'll post pictures tonight.
4 days ago