Cool hotels can be found all over the world, but have you checked out these amazing alternatives in West Sweden? You can stay in a tree house up among the treetops, check in at a floating sea hotel and sleep in stunning glass cabins under the starry skies.
1. The world’s most remote design hotel
– Pater Noster, Hamneskär
For over a century the Pater Noster lighthouse guided seafarers travelling the stormy North Sea safely in to the Bohuslän coast. And under the light of the lantern, the lighthouse keeper and his family lived on this isolated island.
In 2020 the decision was taken to breathe new life into the place, but this time as a hotel and conference venue. Interior décor details include specially designed wall paper and vintage furniture, combined with modern art. Pater Noster has already received several prestigious international awards, including first prize in the American Gold Key Awards, and being listed among the ten most spectacular hotels of the decade, published by The Telegraph newspaper.
2. The glass cabins that have taken the world by storm
– Glass cabins, several locations in West Sweden
In 2017 five international guests got to stay in a glass cabin each, on the island of Henriksholm in Dalsland. They lived there on their own for three days, going walking, paddling, making fires and sleeping under a roof of stars. During their stay researchers studied the effect Swedish nature had on their stress levels, which, needless to say, decreased. The project was called "The 72 Hour Cabin".
Now anyone can stay in these beautiful glass cabins, and even more have been built around West Sweden. All of them are surrounded by fantastic natural scenery, among forests and lakes. Now you can come and experience the calming effect of Swedish nature too!
Never in their wildest dreams did Anne-Charlotte and Bo Ottosson imagine that so many people would want to stay the night in a tree. Their idea to create a hotel up among their oak trees’ green tops resulted in two tree houses being built – Andrum and Seventh Heaven.
Inspired by turn of the century villas, the hotel offers guests peace and quiet with a touch of adrenaline. You are after all 6.5 metres up in the air! In the morning your breakfast basket will be winched up to you, filled with organic goodies and hearth baked bread. The Tree House Hotel is a stone’s throw from Lake Hornborga with its dancing cranes.
Why not try a close to nature activity that’s both fun and exciting - hiring your own house boat. Treat yourself to a few lovely summer days as the captain of your own cottage on the Dalsland Canal, and experience a different kind of freedom afloat, in fantastic natural settings where you can go fishing and explore lovely hiking trails.
You’ll travel in style on Lake Lelång, go ashore when you feel like it, have a barbecue or fika on the cottage’s large deck and just enjoy the surroundings. A holiday with complete freedom in other words.
When you stay at Strandflickorna in Lysekil the sea is your nearest neighbour. Their most exclusive room – the Bathing Pavilion – contains a lovely large sauna with a glass wall overlooking the sea, and its own hot tub on the deck outside. In winter you can go down the steps to the sea for a refreshing ice cold dip.
Dipping their toes in the water right opposite the Nordic Watercolour Museum in Skärhamn are five lovely guest studios. The studios are primarily used for art creation, research and study but can be hired by anyone seeking peaceful accommodation in a beautiful setting. The studios sleep up to two people.
Sweden’s first floating hotel, Salt & Sill on the island of Tjörn, can boast an almost dreamlike proximity to the sea. You eat and breathe in the sea all day, swim right outside your room and chill out on the floating sauna raft. Welcome aboard!
Listen to the relaxing sound of the wind in the trees, and the lovely birdsong, snuggled in a tent on a hill with a fantastic sea view, or under the leafy canopy of beech trees.
Anfasteröd Gårdsvik, a unique holiday resort, is located on a wooded slope nestled in Bohuslän’s inner archipelago. Stay here in luxury safari tents with bathroom, kitchen, heating, comfortable beds and even a sleeping loft.
Because the Inforest mini cabins don’t need to be connected to services like electricity, water or waste they can be placed more or less anywhere. Which is why you’ll find one in the middle of the forest outside Hjo, completely off grid.
The cabins get their electricity from solar panels on the roof, heating and hot water from an LPG powered combined air source heat pump and boiler, and waste from the toilet is composted in biodegradable bags.
Magical accommodation with lots of exciting and fun features can be found at Norrqvarn, by the Göta Canal, where you can stay in cosy troll tree stumps and giant mushrooms. Guaranteed to be an unforgettable experience for all ages. There are also two fully equipped glamping tents for a lovely close to nature experience.
Before you even step foot in Lådfabriken, the exterior makes clear that this accommodation differs from the crowd. The building used to be a fish box factory where wooden boats and fish boxes were made. Today, each room is creatively decorated with impactful bursts of colour and form as well as carefully chosen design objects.
Outside Falköping you’ll find Wrågården, where you can stay in cabins shaped like moose and bison. These unique cabins are located in Wrågården’s moose and fallow deer park. An adventurous experience for any age.
Lots of fun and interesting details in the cabins make your stay unlike any other. Outside each cabin there’s a lovely barbecue area overlooking the park.
13. Former industrial buildings converted into a design hotel
– Upperud 9:9, Åsensbruk
If you could travel back in time a hundred years and ask workers in the grain stores in Upperud if they thought that people from all over the place would travel there to stay in the silos one day, they’d probably think you were mad.
The fact remains that nowadays the old grain store Upperud 9:9 has been converted into a unique hotel, with modern designer rooms nestled into the old store room structures. French balconies and high ceilings give the rooms a light and airy feel. Maybe you’ll even find the odd grain still stuck in the gaps between the floorboards.
Lagunen Camping offers glamping par excellence. A close to nature stay with extra comfort and a lovely touch of glamour. Sleep well here in a cosy cottage in Wooden Camp or if you’d prefer, a luxury glamping tent in Canvas Camp.
The world of bees is what drives Tavlebord Honey Farm. Here you can be a beekeeper for the day, buy home produced honey and stay in the farm’s B&B – in your own beehive! Creep into the cosy honey cells, switch on the speakers and listen to the sleepy buzz of the worker bees.
The Hermitage in Dalsland is definitely a get away from it all stay. On top of a hill overlooking a forest and lake, this lovely accommodation has no electricity, so you can enjoy a digital detox with fantastic natural surroundings on the doorstep. The cabin is equipped with a wood burning stove and cosy sheepskins.
If you book accommodation at Daftö’s Pirate Hotel you’ll be part of the adventure. Each hotel room tells a tale about a particular pirate. Maybe you can connect the details in the room to the story of the pirate's time at sea? You can also rent cottages in the Pirate Village.
Enjoy exciting fun and games when you hang out with the Daftö pirates! In the resort’s own theme park you’ll find rides and entertainment for the whole family, including pirate theatre and roller coasters
When you sleep in suspended tree tents you don’t get woken up by uncomfortable pine cones under your groundsheet. These snug tree tents can be found in the beautiful Vättlefjäll Nature Reserve just outside Gothenburg. You’ll get a unique opportunity to experience nature at close quarters, and cosying up around the campfire before you go to bed comes free.
Do you dream about staying in a cosy cottage by a lake, with nature on your doorstep? In Dalsland you can stay in historic lock keeper’s cottages in beautiful, peaceful natural surroundings. Several of the cottages also have motor or rowing boats included in the price.
Spend the night in a houseboat shaped like an igloo. Float along on the water, enjoy the panoramic views from your bedside and take a morning dip from your own jetty. The Igloo Boat can be booked at Sju Sjöar (Seven Lakes) in Mark County and Hotel Strana on the island of Orust.