Nois Sergsnart Suite Jukkasjärvi


In 2008, Leo Park designed a hotel suite in snow and ice for Icehotel in Jukkasjärvi, wich is located at the shore of Torne River in the north of Sweden. The room is constructed by Leo Park in collaboration with Finn Öhlund.

The intention with the project is to express philosophical and psychological ideas, through the language of architecture and design. The hotel suite is a model of the consciusness, based on the notion that the consciusness is dualistic; It consists of two worlds, two principles. One world is definable, organized and solid. The other is irrational, fluent and chaotic. The tension between these two worlds produces the fundamental condition for all existence.

The suite is made out of snow, with sculptural elements in ice. It is divided by a thick wall that creates two sections. Both sections has its own entrance, so that makes two entrances for the suite. The wall that divides the suite has a vault-shaped opening, where the bed resides.

The two sections of the suite are designed in two contrasting disciplines. This duality is analogous to the contrast between the two principles of the consciusness. The design in the right section is planned and constructed in a conventional way, using measures and a construction drawing. Its apperance is characterized by controlled lines, sharp angels and smooth surfaces. The design of the left section is improvised. This section is a cave-like room with surprising shapes and melted elements, wich bring out the accidental qualities of the building material (snow and ice).

In the middle of each section, a grand pillar made of ice is placed. These two pillars are also designed according to the duality described. In the right, organized section, the pillar is shaped as a hexagon. The hexagon refers to the snow crystal, wich is always based on the hexagon and here illustrates the organized, regular aspect of the building material. The two pillars extends from the floor up to the ceiling, and through it. Thereby the pillars catch the sunlight from above, and brings it down to the suite to enlighten it. The sun symbolizes an almighty source of power that enlightens the consciuosness and its content. When the sun is out, light comes from a coloured led-lamp placed in the bottom of each pillar. In the left improvised section, the lightning is warm, and in the right, the light has a cold bluish tone. These two lamps slowly alternate in intensity with each other. This activity renders the constant alternation that is going on between the two principles of the consciusness.

A visitor in the suite can only be in one section at a time. But the bed, wich is located in the vault- shaped opening of the wall that divides the suite, is the only place where the two worlds meet. As a symbol for the main dramas in life: birth, sex, dreaming and death, the bed is the gate to the other side. It is a borderland, a meeting place for the two worlds. This refers to the location of the Icehotel, the village Jukkasjärvi, as Jukkasjärvi is a sami word that means meeting place.

As mentioned, the sun plays the role of the great force that enlightens the consciousness, but it is also its destroyer, since it is this force that will melt down the suite in the springtime. When the suite collapses in the heat of the sun, the conflict between the two worlds will disband. When transformed into homogenic water, the two contrasting sides will finally blend in the Torne River.

Entrance right section

Entrance left section

The suite under construction

Torne River