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Rounding the corner, we received our first glimpse of Iglu-Dorf, a 15-room village located in the heart of the Swiss Alps. Melted by the sun and rebuilt each year by the skilled hands of craftsmen, the village features an ice bar, a conference area (equipped with an unlimited supply of tea and hot soup), a dining area, lobby, wooden Kota, Jacuzzi, sauna, public bathroom and accommodations ranging from Standard Rooms, which sleep up to six, to a super high-end Romantic Suite for two.

Matt and I opted for the Standard. Dropping our bags in the lobby, we were taken on a tourof the grounds by Philip and his colleague, Chris. They explained the differences between the various room categories and allowed us to get familiarized with the rooms before giving us our assignments – Matt, myself and one other guest were relegated to Room One. A sextet of sleeping bags had already been arranged for us, each able to withstand subzero temperatures. We were also given light sleeping bag liners and a small pillow, the bare necessities to keep us from freezing to death.

Dinnertime and the pungent smell of fondue is wafting throughout the village. To the Swiss, this traditional dish is known as Moitié-Moitié (meaning half-half) and is made with Gruyère and Vacherin Fribourgeois. Matt and I order a 15 CHF apéritif consisting of several slices of cheese, two small sausages, two apricots, two walnuts, two pecans and two glasses of Champagne.

Taking my skewer, I push a cube of crusty bread onto the sharp metal tip and swirl it in the silky cheese mixture. The entire group, including Philip and Chris, are sitting around the table (our ice seats are overlayed with thick furs) laughing and conversing in French, German and Romansh. An older gentleman sitting across from me celebrated a birthday yesterday and has offered Matt and me some ghluwein.

We happily accept.

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