If you’re not yet climbing the walls of your personal quarantine shelter (a.k.a. your living room or home office), consider yourself lucky. Most of us are rabidly daydreaming of the first place we’ll escape to once this pandemic craziness is over. Iceland seems like an ideal first destination, and we can hardly imagine a better vacation retreat than Panorama Glass Lodge.
With a clear understanding of “truth in advertising,” the makers of Panorama Glass Lodge have created a serene escape in one of the world’s most breathtaking destinations. In their words, the rustic retreat is a “Scandinavian glass cabin igloo in Viking style.” From the outside, the pared-down aesthetic seems hardly worth a second glance. Inside, however, the glass-enclosed bedroom serves as the lodge’s unique focal point. The floor-to-ceiling windows and large glass skylight provide panoramic views of Iceland’s otherworldly landscape — all without having to get out of bed. Guests are afforded a front-row seat to the country’s dramatic weather, stunning sunrises and sunsets, and frequent Northern Lights displays.
The 248-square-foot floor plan provides a charming and intimate “cabin in the woods” vibe. The aesthetic is heavily inspired by Nordic heritage with a modern twist, including retro-mod lighting, warm wood details, cement tiling, and hunting-inspired decorative accents. Beyond the terrarium-like bedroom, Panorama Glass Lodge is surprisingly full-featured. With a kitchenette, a dining table with two chairs, and a luxuriously appointed en-suite bathroom, most guests won’t need to leave for a week or more. A private outdoor patio with a 102-degree soaking tub is also just feet from the front door.
The lodge is located 30 minutes outside the capital Reykjavik. It’s close enough for guests to head into town for provisions or the city’s notorious late-night happy hours. But, it’s also far enough removed from the tourist crowds to feel quiet and private. The area is well-known for its outdoor adventure opportunities, including fjord hiking, world-class scenic drives, nature photography walks, and whale-watching in the summer months. Plus, one of Iceland’s tallest waterfalls is reachable just a half-hour away by car.
Like everything in Iceland, overnighting at Panorama Glass Lodge doesn’t come cheap. Nightly rates start just under USD $500, based on double occupancy. After nearly two months of quarantine, however, that seems like a perfectly reasonable price to pay for a bucket-list-worthy change of scenery.
If you manage to pull yourself away from the lodge’s glass-enclosed bedroom, be sure to rent a campervan and chart a course along Iceland’s iconic Ring Road.