Daily Mail: Forget the penthouse suite, one unusual hotel is sending its most important guests 500ft below ground to sleep.
The Sala Silvermine Hotel, in Vdstmanland County, Sweden, has created a room so far beneath the earth's surface that it can only be accessed through a mine lift shaft - which sends guests 509ft into the ground in a matter of seconds. The bizarre bedroom, which costs £380 ($594) a night, comes complete with a luxurious double bed, silver furnishings and champagne platter.
But anyone who lives by their phone would be best off staying in one of the hotel's 14 ground-level rooms as there is certainly no mobile signal down there. In fact, the only way visitors can communicate with the outside world is through the dedicated personal intercom connected to reception on the surface.
And guests are warned to bring warm clothing as temperatures have been known to drop to a chilly two degrees celsius (35.6 ºF) at the bottom of the cavernous mine. But don't worry, the room itself is actually located in a warm air pocket, with relatively balmy temperatures of 18 degrees (64.4 ºF).
Despite its shortcomings, the mine suite is so popular with those looking for an alternative stay that it is fully booked Friday-Sunday all year round.
The hotel's director of marketing, Sofie Andersson, said: 'We haven't heard of any other venues with such a unique location, especially none so far under ground. People may think that a hotel suite in a mine will be cold and dark, but the mine suite is located in one of our warm halls where the temperature is 18 degrees (64.4 ºF).'
'We have also used chandelier-like lamps and candle holders to illuminate the room in a way that lights up the silvery surfaces to get the right glow. Silver can feel very cold or warm depending on the lighting, so that was really important. It is easily the most extraordinary place to stay in the world in our opinion. And the environment is real and not artificial like many hotels.'
The silver mine in the town of Sala was originally dug by miners who carried the silver ore out by hand. They each painstakingly slaved away, chipping at the mine's face at a rate of just one metre a month.
It took nearly 10 years just to carve out the bedroom, thanks to the slow mining method employed at the time, called fire-setting. It involves burning wood, which is used to heat up and crack the silver, allowing it to be chipped away more easily.
But the end result has visitors raving about the unusual accommodation. One guest from Denmark said: 'The night was brilliant - but be aware of warm clothing in order to visit the toilet as the caves are two degrees at night. I can only recommend this experience to everybody who is looking for the unusual.'
Another, from Ireland, excitedly proclaimed: 'It definitely has the wow factor.'
For at least 400 years the mine was Sweden's largest and most important silver producer, and today the area has also been developed into a venue for events and adventures.
Ms Andersson added: 'Since the mine shut down the underground hotel experience has become the new silver and is what makes people from far away visit Sala once again. We connect the past with life today and have created a room that will be interesting and feel right in the future too.'