Singapore leads the way with biophilic design, embracing nature in the construction of its buildings — Life & Soul Magazine

A new approach to design and architecture that involves the use of natural materials, natural light and plants to create a more pleasing and effective built environment is being adopted by Singapore. Known as Biophilic Design, the concept means architects embrace nature in their design, bringing nature into the city, replacing columns, walls and neon with […]

Singapore leads the way with biophilic design, embracing nature in the construction of its buildings — Life & Soul Magazine

The best ice hotels, igloos and snow villages open in 2020- Lonely Planet- Nisha Designs

Cozy up in the coldest hotels in the world © Iglu Dorf / Massimo Cappuccio

In longitudes where long johns are all but compulsory and rugged alpine regions where the snow tumbles down sideways, creative grizzled folk brave the cold to cut and chisel and craft chunks of frozen water into sparkling ice hotels, uplit overnight igloos and snow-covered villages for mere non-mountain mortals to sleep over. 

Iglu Dorf – Gstaad, Switzerland 

Built using traditional igloo techniques, but with tunnels connecting each of the 11 rooms, it takes around 3000 hours to create the Iglu Dorf hotel in GstaadSwitzerland each winter. With breathtaking views out across the crucible of the vast Bernese Alps and its crown of fir trees, this slice of wonderful isolation can be enjoyed by up to six guests in a room overnight. 

With a sauna and swimming pool just outside as well as homemade mulled wine and a traditional hot cheese fondue, this is Switzerland in its purest mountain mode. Iglu Dorf also builds overnight igloos in Davos-Klosters, Stockhorn and Zermatt in Switzerland as well as on Zugspitze in Germany, and the Kühtai ski area in Austria.

Design Ekaterina Barsukova and Vladimir Barsukov _ Photo Asaf Kliger _ © ICEHOTEL www.icehotel.com.jpg
Ice sculpture in a hotel suite, designed by Ekaterina Barsukova and Vladimir Barsukov © Asaf Kliger / ICEHOTEL http://www.icehotel.com

Icehotel – Jukkasjärvi, Sweden

First built in 1989 in JukkasjärviSweden, this is the original Icehotel. It’s crafted annually from 2500 two-ton blocks of snice (snow and ice) plucked from the vast meandering Torne River. At the end of the season it simply melts and the water returns to the river. But whilst it’s up, its shimmering catenary arches and individually-designed rooms with snow statues and ice artwork make it a startling imaginative triumph. 

Located in northern lights territory, high up into the Arctic Circle, guests can also try husky sledding, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. For the artistic, there’s ice sculpting as well. Can’t wait for winter? The Icehotel 365 offers 20 suites, an ice bar and an art gallery all year round. Plus it’s run entirely on renewable energy.

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Snuggle up in your suite © Kaisa Siren / Arctic SnowHotel

Arctic SnowHotel – Rovaniemi, Finland

Rovaniemi‘s Arctic SnowHotel is in Lapland, where Santa Claus kicks back for 364 days each year. Standing on the toes of the Arctic Circle, this part of Finland cycles through eight seasons, but it’s the sparkling magic of winter that’s most alluring: a calming white-scape of thick, crunchy snow; the swirling purples and greens of the northern lights; the excitable yap of huskies waiting to pull their sledges.

But hidden amongst these miles and miles of white wilderness is Arctic SnowHotel, a fully-functioning 30-room igloo that’s built afresh each winter using ice from the nearby Lake Lehtojärvi. The bedrooms are built of snow and ice, as is the bar, the restaurant and the chapel. Snow saunas and outdoor hot tubs also help make the most of this winter wonderland. 

Arctic SnowHotel is open December 15–March 31.

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You could have a frosty wedding ceremony © Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel / Frank Rune Isaksen

Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel – Alta, Norway

Sculpted deep beneath the magnetic gaze of the aurora borealis, the world’s northernmost ice hotel in AltaNorway, is also one of the biggest. Some 250 tons of ice and 7000cu meters of snow are used each year to freshly carve its 20 double rooms, three family rooms and five suites.

Located on the banks of the Alta River, a short snow sled from the Cathedral of the Northern Lights, the Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel also has uplit ice sculptures, an ice bar and even its own ice chapel for couples hoping to melt hearts. The beds have reindeer leather as a natural sleeping mat and sleeping bags capable of withstanding temperatures of -22°F (-30°C), but the sauna (no, not located inside the ice hotel) opens at 7am each morning. Just in case.

Sorrisniva is open December 20–April 7.

SnowVillage – Kittilä, Finland

Created from 350 tons of crystal clear natural ice and 20,000 tons of snow, this extravagant SnowVillage in Kittilä, some 125 miles (200km) into the Arctic Circle, is crafted with the care and precision of a medieval church. Decorated with ornate ice sculptures that change year-on-year, each work is lit up in the swirling colors of the aurora borealis. 

As its name suggests, this isn’t just an ice hotel. There’s a restaurant made from glacier-clear ice, a chiseled ice bar that gleams like a diamond, and a beautiful ice chapel too. Each snow suite has been individually designed and brought to life and, yes, there are saunas nearby as well.

SnowVillage is open from December 21–April 4. 

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Keep warm in the on-site snow bar © Schneedorf Igloo / Frank Neuner

Schneedorf Igloo – Hochötz, Austria

The Ötztal in Tyrol is one of those striking Austrian gram-oramas: a sweeping valley of glittering chalets dwarfed by the brooding dark hulks of snow-covered schist and gneiss striding starward. But up here, nestled some 2670ft up the mountainside in the ski region of Hochötz, you’ll find Schneedorf Igloo. Beneath what looks like a fresh dump of plump white snow is actually a hotel with enough room for 44 people to survive a blizzard overnight.

The silence is rejuvenating at night as the temperatures drop and the constellations start to twinkle against winter’s blueberry-dark sky. Dinner is gooey cheese fondue and the on-site snow bar has enough potent liqueurs to keep guests warm until sunrise. Thankfully, the igloo toilets here are heated.

Schneedorf is open Wed–Sun from December 26–April 4.

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This is Japan’s only ice hotel © Ice Village Tomamu

Ice Village Tomamu – Hokkaidō, Japan

Japan’s only ice hotel is a shades-down dazzler. Surrounded by uplit birch trees, the exclusive genetically-domed igloo sleeps just two people a night on its stylish ice beds, with an outdoor arctic bath and a heated dressing room to keep their lucky bones warm.

Located at Tomamu in Hokkaidō, near the smooth wide runs of Tomamu ski area, the temperatures regularly tumble to -22°F (-30°C). That may sound like visitors are consciously choosing to be cryogenically frozen, but it also means that Ice Village Tomamu guests have access to an ice rink, an ice slide, an ice instrument room, an ice chapel, an ice bar, an ice sweetshop, an ice bakery and – you’ve guessed it – an atelier that only uses ice.

Ice Village Tomamu is open December 10–March 14.

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There are real fires in the rooms at North America’s only ice hotel © Hotel de Glace

Hôtel de Glace – Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier, Canada

North America’s only ice hotel is in Saint-Gabriel-de-ValcartierCanada, and will be cutting back on the poutine this winter to present a slimmed and trimmed version of its typical regal self because of COVID-19. However, that doesn’t mean the ice chandeliers and hand-chiseled snow sculptures will come crashing down – if anything, this luxurious igloo, which comes complete with an ice chapel for weddings, becomes even more exclusive.

Hosted on the outskirts of Quebec City, master craftspeople detail the igloo’s fine frozen furniture, gleaming ice entranceways and curved snow roofs each year. With hot tubs and a sauna under the stars as well as real fires in each room, no guests should go to bed cold. There are even real mattresses and an isolating bed sheet to ensure a great night’s kip. Hôtel de Glace usually opens earlier than January 2, depending on the weather.

Hôtel de Glace is open January 2–March 21.

Snowhotel Kirkenes – Kirkenes, Norway

So far up the longitude meridian that there’s only really Svalbard in the way of Kirkenes and the North Pole, this wonderful Norwegian snow hotel is open 365 days a year. In the cold, blizzard-blanketed winters this is reindeer and husky country: a quiet, isolated region endured by only the most hardy of creatures. But for overnight guests, it’s a beautiful once-in-a-lifetime spot for a winter vacation.

Inside the plump hotel itself, artists bring each bedroom to life with snowy bas reliefs of local winter animals like wolves and owls, whilst specialist ice sculptures that line the halls and ice bar area turn frozen water into glacial artworks worthy of Frieze Art Fair.

Snowhotel is open year-round.

DANIEL FAHEYLonely Planet Writer

Being of service to ONENESS- Serving the greater good- Nishante- Nisha Designs

Years back I was leading a group of non- profit organization in San Diego. We had about 9-11 board members. We had an event that we all were preparing for and towards the end we had a little setback.

We were all discussing how to approach this situation. As one of our board member said let’s cancel the event completely. And he went a little too far enough and took the opportunity to make this event all about him and his ego. Diverting attention from the core situation which in my awareness wasn’t bad at all just needed a tweak but ok, here he goes off bringing fear to the situation, personal threats, making it all about men, women in authority, bringing doubt and question to the leadership and skill, threatening to stop the organization and what it stood for if he did not get his way, feeding information to people in the room and to people in the community that had nothing to do with what we were talking about? Ya talk about evil/ chaos in action. In short once things got quiet in the room. There was only one guy and myself on the same page. Rest were still choosing what to do.

So as a leader I chose to go ahead with the event as planned with some back up and tweaking whatever it took to keep it going. Because my focus and intent about my position and this organization and this event wasn’t about me, wasn’t about fear, wasn’t about the fame or recognition, wasn’t about what will people say, wasn’t about who is in authority, ego, power or to prove to anyone or anything, it wasn’t about me winning or loosing.

My focus was on the bigger picture serving the organization which I was responsible for as a leader. The intent I had created this event in the first place was to serve and raise money for a non profit to help in need.

I wasnt afraid at all. But one bad apple causing chaotic shit in my world of order that I could not fathom with because all his choice did was serve him not the greater good by his thoughts, action and words of intent.

So I made a statement as the leader to chose to continue with the event whether anyone was with me or not. And yes I did have that right to choose according to our organization by- laws. And they say truth, justice always prevails . Regardless of the havoc my DJ showed up, event was a hugeeee success in the history of this organizations chapter and we made enough to give the help we could.

It is our responsibility to choose leaders who are about serving the greater good and not making it all about themselves. To choose who stand for truth and not lie. Who stand for justice and not fraud and manipulation. Who are responsible in there choices, words and action.

We are here to serve. This planet is about serving in our own life and to our planet as ONE.

DELINIGHT – INNOVATIVE BLACKOUT 100 %- Nisha Designs

The Dimout that is a Blackout, or should we say the Blackout that is a Dimout? No matter how we twist or turn it: this fabric is an innovation. The new blackout fabrics DELINIGHT combine all advantages of a dimout, but darken like a blackout, namely 100%. And that without any coating on the back. Therefore, the fabrics of the DELINIGHT collection are textile, soft-flowing blackouts. 


The effect is achieved through the dense satin weave and the yarn used. Front and back are identical and can therefore be used flexibly. 
Apart from its optical and functional properties, Soft Colour DELINIGHT is also environmentally friendly as it is pure and can therefore be 100% recycled. 

THE PROPERTIES AT A GLANCE:

  • 100% darkening
  •  extremely soft flowing
  •  washable at 30 °C or more (Health & Care 60°C)
  •  special colours possible
  •  Soft Colour in 280 cm fabric width
  •  100 % recyclable due to the pure homogeneous material
  •  durable and easy to clean

Weekly Spiritual Energy Guidance- October 12-16,2020- Lady Dyanna- Nisha Designs

The energy this week reminds you that you live in an increasingly global community. Your modern technology has made it possible for you to communicate instantly among yourselves, no matter where in the world you are. Whether you like it or not, you are all connected to one another. As Chief Seattle said, “Man did not weave the web of life. He is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.” You are more closely connected in “the web of life” than ever before in human history. And therefore, now – more than ever before – what even a single individual among you does affects every other human on the planet. The good of one is the good of all. The willingness to allow the differences while compassionately working toward the common good is the goal here. Fighting against the differences will only ensure more divisiveness. Accepting the differences while sincerely wanting the highest good for all is the only way you will ever ensure a truly connected world. A world where all are equal, all are accepted. A world where there truly is a sense of community.

Affirmation: I am aware that the good of one is the good of all.

Ancient sigils and symbols etched on to trees in England’s New Forest documented in a new public database- Life and Soul Magazine- Nisha Designs

Trees in the New Forest of England that have been etched with sigils and symbols from ancient times are being documented as part of a citizen science…

Ancient sigils and symbols etched on to trees in England’s New Forest documented in a new public database

PLATUS NOW ALSO WITH ANTIBACTERIAL TREATMENT- Nisha Designs

The currently proven and certified effectiveness of the treatment is directed against the following bacteria: Klebsiella pneumoniae.

(Klebsiella pneumoniae: Can cause pneumonia (hospital infections) and other infections; are known as a multi-resistant bacterial strain).

The usage properties and flame retardancy existing for Platus also apply to the article with antibacterial finish. The minimum order quantity is 300 metres per colour. All colours of the Platus 300 colour range are available.

Senegal farmer grows lush oasis in the desert using permaculture techniques — Life & Soul Magazine

Senegal native and permaculture pioneer Goran N’diaye has created a lush oasis in the middle of the desert in his homeland. At the Kaydara agro-ecological farm located in Sine Saloum in Senegal, director Goran N’diaye, has implemented a number of permaculture techniques. He first started by restoring the fertility of the soil, by creating a […]

Senegal farmer grows lush oasis in the desert using permaculture techniques — Life & Soul Magazine

13 Most Haunted Hotels in America You Can Actually Stay In- Nisha Designs

Reports of mysterious noises and ghost sightings might frighten some travelers, but intrepid ghost hunters know there’s nothing more exciting than staying in an allegedly haunted hotel. Across the United States, historic hotels have welcomed guests for decades or even centuries, but not every visitor has checked out. The 13 most haunted hotels in America offer more than a comfortable bed and room service — spotting the spirits that wander these halls should be on every thrill-seeking tourist’s bucket list. And with many of these hotels open in time for the spooky season, you could even plan a Halloween getaway to a supposedly haunted destination near you — that is, if you’re brave enough.

1. RMS Queen Mary, California 

queen mary ship long beach california

Once a Cunard ocean liner, the RMS Queen Mary is now permanently docked in Long Beach, California, offering guests a completely unique hotel experience. Visitors can imagine what life was like aboard the historic ship when they stay in the original staterooms, enjoy onboard dining, and tour the Art Deco ship, but ghost hunters will want to participate in a paranormal investigation to learn more about the RMS Queen Mary’s resident spirits. Often referred to as “the most haunted hotel in America,” the Queen Mary has several paranormal hot spots, including stateroom B340, where a passenger passed away in 1948. Since the 1960s, guests have complained about bizarre and otherworldly experiences in B340, and the room is available to those brave enough to spend a night among the spirits. The Queen Mary is currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

2. The Stanley Hotel, Colorado

stanley hotel estes park colorado

The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado, earned its place on nearly every list of the most haunted hotels in America, partially thanks to horror author Stephen King. It was the inspiration for the Overlook Hotel in his novel, “The Shining,” and while you might not find a set of terrifying twin girls here, the property reportedly hosts a few spirits of its own. Freelan Oscar Stanley opened the now-historic hotel in 1909; he and his wife, Flora, are said to roam its halls to this day, among other ghostly spirits who checked in, but never left. The hotel is currently open with COVID-19 health and safety measures in place. You can even book a stay in one of the “spirited” rooms, which allegedly have high paranormal activity.

3. The Hollywood Roosevelt, California

A view of the The Hollywood Roosevelt hotel on Hollywood Blvd

This iconic Los Angeles hotel opened in 1927, hosting countless stars throughout the Golden Age of Hollywood, including Shirley Temple, Montgomery Clift, Charlie Chaplin, and many more. A few of The Hollywood Roosevelt’s most famous guests might have returned in the afterlife — Marilyn Monroe lived in room 1200 for two years at the beginning of her career, and some report seeing her reflection in the room’s mirror. The hotel is currently open with COVID-19 policies in place for any fall travelers who hope to glimpse a spirit for themselves.

4. Omni Parker House, Massachusetts 

Exterior entrance view Omni Parker House

One of the longest continuously operating hotels in the United States, Boston’s Omni Parker House has seen its fair share of history. It’s rumored that the ghost of the hotel’s founder, Harvey Parker, still roams the halls, checking to make sure guests are enjoying their stay — talk about hospitality that goes above and beyond. Others report that the spirit of Charles Dickens, who briefly lived in the hotel, may still linger on the third floor where he stayed. Thrill-seekers can now book a room at this historic hotel — it recently reopened after closing amid the pandemic.

5. 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa, Arkansas

Crescent Hotel & Spa Arkansas

Originally built in 1886, the Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, was taken over by criminal and entrepreneur Norman Baker in 1937, who turned the property into a hospital and health resort, claiming to have a cure for cancer. Some paranormal experts say the hotel’s sordid past is one reason why spirits stuck around. The hotel (currently open) is now a beautiful, expansive retreat, and it offers ghost tours and even features images of ghosts spotted at the resort on their website.

6. The Don CeSar, Florida

Sunset view of The Don Cesar Hotel showing the beach

For nearly 100 years, the stunning “Pink Palace” has welcomed guests to St. Pete Beach on the Gulf Coast of Florida, but its eternal guests have a surprisingly heartwarming story. Thomas Rowe fell madly in love with Spanish opera singer Lucinda while in London, but her parents forbade their relationship, leaving the lovebirds heartbroken. Thomas returned to America and built The Don Cesar as a tribute to his lost love, and some say that since his passing, they have seen the couple — reunited in death — roaming around the resort. The hotel is currently open with health and safety measures in place. Visit, and you may spot Thomas and Lucinda wandering the hotel, hand in hand.

Related: 10 Real Haunted Houses From All Over the United States

7. Jekyll Island Club Resort, Georgia

Jekyll Island Club Resort

Once a playground for America’s wealthiest families, including the Morgans, Vanderbilts, and Rockefellers, this historic Georgia resort opened in 1886 as a recreational club. Some say you can still feel the presence of wealthy visitors and hotel workers today. The resort is currently open, and it offers an annual ghost hunt weekend — this year falling on Halloween.

8. The Equinox, Vermont

This Manchester, Vermont, resort has welcomed guests for over 250 years, and it has a couple of lingering spirits. President Lincoln’s family vacationed at The Equinox, and it’s said that the ghost of his wife, Mary Todd Lincoln, is still spotted around the property. The resort is currently open with new health and safety measures in place.

9. The Pfister Hotel, Wisconsin 

Double bed room at Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee, WI

The historic Pfister Hotel opened in Milwaukee in 1893 with elegant interiors and advanced technology for the times, including electricity, individual thermostat controls, and fireproofing, making it one of the most sought-after accommodations in the city. The hotel is supposedly home to a number of spooky sightings — in fact, several MLB players have reported their own personal ghost experiences in the hotel, and some are even too scared to stay there. For guests who want to hunt for ghosts this season, the hotel is currently open with new health and safety procedures in place.

10. Emily Morgan Hotel, Texas

Lobby view of Emily Morgan Hotel in San Antonio, Texas

The beautiful Emily Morgan Hotel in San Antonio, Texas, wasn’t always a hotel. The 1924 building first housed a hospital and doctors’ offices, and before that, this was near the site of the deadly Battle of the Alamo. It’s believed that this history is the reason for the mysterious occurrences that happen throughout the hotel; some guests have even reported seeing a woman in white wander the halls. The hotel is now open, if you want to check it out for yourself.

11. La Fonda on the Plaza, New Mexico

Lobby rendering of La Fonda on the Plaza hotel in Santa Fe

This beautiful Santa Fe, New Mexico, hotel has an incredibly rich history. Since 1609, a number of inns have been located on this very site, but a handful of events may be the cause of continued hauntings. According to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the ghosts of a judge shot in the lobby, a businessman who gambled everything away at the hotel before jumping down a well, and a bride killed on her wedding night are just a few of the spirits that you may come across during your stay here. The hotel is currently open with COVID-19 procedures in place.

12. The Marshall House, Georgia 

Exterior view of Marshall House in New Orleans, LA

Savannah, Georgia, is known for being a hotbed of paranormal activity, and The Marshall House is just the place to stay if you want a fully immersive spooky experience in the city. Since 1851, the property was used once as a wartime hospital and twice as a hospital during the yellow fever epidemics. Any hotel with such a history is bound to have a few residual spirits hanging around, and guests report seeing ghosts and hearing children running down the halls late at night.

13. Omni Shoreham Hotel, Washington, D.C.

Exterior view of Omni Shoreham Hotel showing back staircase and terrace

The luxurious Omni Shoreham Hotel is one of D.C.’s most historic hotels, and arguably one of the most haunted. A young girl and a maid both died of mysterious causes in one suite during the early 1900s, and some guests report bizarre noises with no explanation on the floor where they passed away. The hotel is temporarily closed due to the pandemic, so ghost hunters will have to wait a little longer to check out this beautiful property.

Elizabeth Rhodes is an associate digital editor at Travel + Leisure who loves a good ghost story. Follow her adventures on Instagram

Oslo set to be a zero-emissions city by 2030, in moves which seeks to make climate-friendly choices easier — Life & Soul Magazine

Oslo is aiming for a 95% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, under a new climate strategy which seeks to make climate-friendly choices on a daily basis easier. The climate strategy, adopted by Oslo City Council, includes a target to reduce traffic and to make walking, cycling and public transport simple. All public transport […]

Oslo set to be a zero-emissions city by 2030, in moves which seeks to make climate-friendly choices easier — Life & Soul Magazine