Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Weird & Unusual Hotels – Photography Contest

One of the most popular and read posts on Weirdomatic is the post about the eleven amazing hotels. A few days ago, I stumbled upon a great book for travellers that reminded me of it: “Bed in a Tree“. Chosen from a great variety of DK Travel Guides, it features all kind of weird, unusual and wacky hotels to visit and enjoy. So… I thought of a contest.. If you have some beautiful pictures of weird and amazing places you have visited or things you have seen, this book could be yours.
Bed in a Tree Book



PICTURES OF WONDERFUL PLACES YOU HAVE VISITED - it could be a picture of a wacky hotel, a strange building, a funny statue, a beautiful beach, a savage corner of the mysterious world around us.
  • PRIZE:

The best travel photograph will get as a prize a copy of “Bed in a Tree”.

Send your pictures to alexandra@weirdomatic.com along with a short, inspiring phrase to describe them. The photographs must be at least 1000 pixels wide. There is a limit of 3 pictures / participant.  Deadline: December 31, 2009.The book will be sent to the winner on January 4th.

1. Pictures must be your and only yours, taken by you and only you. Try not to cheat. Pictures will be checked for autenticity and copyright.
2. Contest is OPEN to everyone over 18, resident of any country in this world, with a good eye and a camera.

By submitting your pictures to the contest, you agree to have them published on Weirdomatic and each picture will be credited to its copyright holder. Copyright remains yours and everyone will know who is the author of the pictures.


A selection of unusual hotels
Below is a handpicked selection of weird, wonderful and unforgettable places to spend a night, taken from Bed in a Tree. From a shell-like house in Mexico to tree-hanging spheres in Canada and jail cells in Switzerland, there’s something for all tastes and all budgets.
Jailhouse Lowengraben
Until 1998 this impenetrable grey building had been the house for more than 50 prisoners, but today, visitors from all around the world come to Lucerne in Switzerland for a highly unusual experience, a voluntary stay in the prison - the old cells have been refurbished and transformed in hotel rooms. The previous incarnation of Lowengraben is visible to its guests: an example would be the receptionist dressed in a striped convict’s uniform and, another one, the display cases filled with prison paraphernalia and stories of former occupants inscribed on each cell’s wall. This comes along with new installed comforts – parquet floors, en suite bathrooms and a bar – to make your experience a distinctly different prison stay.
Les Roulottes
Nestled deep in the Beaujolais, in the middle of nature, people can find a most unusual type of accommodation. A retired gypsy wagon serves as a hotel room in a luscious meadow, surrounded by brimming apple trees. The wagons found here have been carefully restored in detail; everything, from the wood-burning stove and velvet furnishings to the yellowing photos of the original inhabitants on the walls, has been restored.
If your childhood dream was to run away and join the circus then, for a few days, you can live out that fantasy in this mesmerizing surroundings of Les Roulottes. Read more about Les Roulottes
Dog Park Bark Inn
Dog Park Bark Inn
In Cottonwood, a small town in Idaho, a giant dog stands at a crossroads. Standing at 10m high, “Sweet Willie” is the largest beagle in the world and the exterior of the Dog Bark Park Inn. Willie is unlike anything you’ll have ever seen before: inside his belly there is a double bed, small kitchenette and dining area with a view out of his eyes, whilst the bathroom is housed in his rear. The unusual furnishings – such as bedside mutt mat, carved doggie bed head and “Dog-opoly” – mean that those without a sense of fun may want to skip this hotel.
The Capsule Hotel
Capsule Hotel
At around 13ft in diameter, the two reclaimed orange pods that comprise The Capsule Hotel couldn’t exactly be called spacious, but that’s not the point of this unconventional accommodation. It’s all about “refunctioning” – converting something thought of as rubbish into something useful. In line with this, the interior has barely been changed; you’ll find original instructions on the walls and a fisherman’s net passing itself off as a hammock bed. If you’re after comfort, this isn’t the hotel for you, but bobbing up and down on The Hague, these former oil rig escape capsules offer a unusual getaway from the commotion of city life. Read more about The Capsule Hotel…
The Dunmore Pineapple
Near to the Scottish village of Airth, stands a fantastic architectural prank. Between two wings of a spectacular summerhouse, an enormous 50ft pineapple rises from the ground. Built in the 18th-century, when pineapples were a rare delicacy, the house served as something of a mock status symbol. Nowadays, the Pineapple is eccentric and playful and flaunts a certain pompous elegance; it is a masterpiece of design and a thoroughly unusual hotel. Read more about The Pineapple
Propeller Island City Lodge
On an inconspicuous side street in Berlin is the city’s most eccentric hotel. A “habitable work of art”, Propeller Island City Lodge is 27 of the most unusual rooms ever to have been slept in. Each space is unique; from the Symbol room, to the Crypt, to the Castle room. Springy floors, furniture suspended from ceilings, a flying bed – you can be sure that your neighbour’s room will be so different to yours that you’ll have an excuse to come back to Propeller again and again to test every single one. Read more about Propeller Island City Lodge…
Free Spirit Spheres

The Free Spirit Spheres hotel is no more than two huge globes suspended in mid-air between the trees in rugged Vancouver Island, Canada. It’s hard to imagine that lurking inside each is a cosy living area, like an enclosed nest or cocoon. It’s wonderfully relaxing to lie in bed and watch the dark night sky through the window in the ceiling, as the globe sways slightly with the wind. Life in the treetops is an unusual release from the hustle and bustle of life on the ground below.
Chalkey Treehouse
High up in the branches of an old Leadwood tree perches your bed for the night; an open, roofless treehouse. Dominated by an enormous four-poster bed, the view from this elevation of the surrounding bush and all its creatures is priceless. Left alone in the wilderness, you’ll have the unusual opportunity to spy on the animals from above, before turning in for a night’s sleep beneath the stars. A stay in this secure bush bedroom is a memory that will last forever.
Casa Caracol
On Isla Mujeres, a small Caribbean Island, the most unusual tourist attraction awaits you - two giant seashell houses. They are so white and shiny they nearly hurt your eyes when looking at them; the giant shells – one tall and upright, one short and squat – their organic shapes were inspired by Mother Nature’s original designs. And inside, from the real seashell “taps” to the giant clam shell washbasins and shell mirrors, this homage to nature provides a luxurious, strange experience. Read more about Casa Caracol…
Just north of the Arctic Circle, on the banks of the River Torne, stands a hotel made entirely of ice – the walls, the floors, the light fittings, the furniture, even the beds! Built with ice from the river, from a new group of artist’s designs every year since 1990, each incarnation of the hotel is unusual and different. But the Icehotel is transient, only lasting until the spring when it begins to melt, returning what was borrowed back to the Torne.
For more on these and other unusual hotels, plus ideas for interesting and unusual activities to do nearby, you can visit DK Travel and check out their wonderful book Bed in a Tree. And do not forget about the contest!!

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