In contrast to Fort Spitabank in the middle of the ocean, I’m reminded of South Australia where there’s a little town called Coober Pedy that is becoming a very important tourist spot. It is a unique place in the world because it is an underground city. This township has nothing to be jealous of from a conventional city; it has hotels, churches, houses, restaurants, shops and art galleries, nevertheless with the exception that all of them are built underground. Due to the harsh weather conditions, in 1915, miners began to dig their homes, now called “dugouts”, within the slopes of the hills in order to escape the terrible heat. They ended up creating a small city for them and live underground.
In the world of luxury hospitality we can find some cases where hotels maybe had inspiration from this Australian lifestyle, adapting all types of facilities for their guest in an underground environment.
There is an old silver mine which was in use from the early twentieth century and transformed into a mining museum and a place for events with a luxury suite. This singular room is called The Mine Suite and is situated in “The Sala SilverMine”, located in the county of Västmanland – 120 kilometres from Stockholm. It is a peculiar and unique suite because it is 155 meters below the ground. The Mine Suite offers the possibility of two people to spend a night in this unique environment, enjoy a guided tour in the mine, complemented with a lovely breakfast. The Mine Suite is cold, wet and dark but the most unique and beautiful spot you can find. The members of the staff recommend you bring warm and comfortable clothes for the tour, as the ambient temperature is about 2 degrees. There are also two dining rooms where guests can experience a dinner banquet in an inimitable environment.The Sala Silvermine
Being on the open seas or underground, we find our own environment creates luxury that it’s hard to replica. The Gamirasu Cappadocia Hotel, opened in 1999 and located in Urgup, Turkey, is a perfect example. It was a Byzantine monastery over a thousand years old, which served as a refuge for Christians who were persecuted in the ancient times. Today, this luxury cave hotel has 18 spacious rooms carved into volcanic rock with a unique design. Some rooms have a balcony with a view to the rose garden. Their rooms and suites are well appointed and decorated in a traditional Turkish style, with numerous rugs, cushions and lamps of all kinds. In addition, its climate ensures a relaxing atmosphere; thanks to the volcanic stone, heat is isolated in the summer and becomes a very welcoming place in the winter.
I cannot overstate the presence of its outdoor pool and its restaurant which serves delicious traditional Cappadocia dishes, all made with organic products. Among the activities that you can do, horseback riding and excursions to the nearby towns are the most popular and adds to the experience of luxury in its most natural state.
In today’s hectic world people crave the simplicity that nature has to offer. Experiencing the remoteness of Spitbank Fort, the isolation of the Mine Suite, or the natural sanctuary of The Gamirasu Cappadocia Hotel, offers something completely unconventional and entirely unique. When we consider what luxury means, these experiences set a benchmark in exclusivity, uniqueness and uncomplicated customer-centric hospitality.
By Mr. Jones