On a recent trip to Switzerland, I spent two nights sleeping in a barrel I found on Airbnb.
For about $200 a night, the barrel had a living space, a king-sized bed, and a ton of storage hacks.
My barrel came with access to a garden with luxury perks like wood-fired saunas and hot tubs.
I love the outdoors, but I also love being comfy. That’s why glamping is one of my favorite ways to travel. In the past, I’ve glamped in a treehouse, a dome, a lifeguard tower, and an Airstream trailer.
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But none of those accommodations were as memorable as my most recent glamping experience. During a two-week trip to Europe with my partner, I spent two nights sleeping in a barrel in Switzerland.
For about $200 a night, I thought the barrel looked like something out of a quirky fairytale I’d want to live in, and booked it for my partner and me.
Located about an hour outside of Zurich by train, the Airbnb is in the village of Roggwil.
It’s part of an exhibition is by Sorglos, a company that designs barrel homes and saunas, as well as hot tubs and outdoor fireplaces, according to their website. Some of these structures are also for sale.
Until they’re sold, the two barrel homes are rented to tourists on Airbnb, who also have access to the saunas and hot tubs for an additional fee. Only groups traveling together may book the second barrel, so it was empty during our stay.
The entire property is located inside a garden behind a huge house where 17 full-time residents live, the host, Maria, told me.
To get to the Airbnb, we were coming from Italy, and traveled by train to Zurich, Switzerland. From there, we transferred to local trains that got us to Roggwil in about an hour.
I stayed there just for the barrel, but thought Roggwil was a quaint, modest village with friendly families and a stunning mountain backdrop. People smiled at me and little kids waved when we made eye contact at the train station.
The property was just a two-minute walk from the train station in Roggwil. Maria met us in front of the house and led us through a side gate to our barrel.
We walked through a garden with potted plants alongside communal dining spaces. I saw seven barrel saunas, a few fire pits, and a couple of hot tubs for guests on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Next to each rentable barrel was a private bathroom.
When I opened the door to our barrel, an overwhelming smell of cedar filled my nostrils, which I thought made the place cozy. The barrel was 7-feet tall, so my six-foot-tall partner didn’t have to duck his head.
The barrel is 14-feet-long according to the listing. Inside was a living space in the front where a table pulled out between two couches, plus an elevated king-sized bed in the back.
Beneath the pull out table and under the bed was storage space for our luggage.
In the living space in front of the bed, I noticed additional storage cabinets beneath the couches.
The couches also had little nooks for shoe storage, which I thought was a nice touch.
The barrel had a heater with temperature controls and three power outlets that were accessible from the living space and the bedroom.
In a small cottage next to the barrel was our private bathroom. I thought it was modest, but had everything we needed — towel racks, a sink, a toilet, and a small shower.
There was also a heater and a blow dryer in the bathroom. I thought the heater came in handy for nighttime showers when it was cold outside.
In addition to the bathroom was a partially-exposed private outdoor rainfall shower. I love outdoor showers, so I made sure to use this one on my second night. I liked the feeling of the cool breeze and hot water on my skin.
Maria also gave us a key to the house, where we could use a kitchen shared with the full-time residents. It was the only key provided as the barrel and bathroom didn’t lock. I initially found that odd, but Maria assured us no one would go inside our barrel.
The kitchen was large enough to host an event, I thought. There were rows of long tables and chairs, and we could use any dishes. But aside from residents who I occasionally crossed paths with, it appeared empty.
On the first night, we arrived hungry with no dinner plans. Maria told us we could get delivery, which surprised me since we were in such a small town. I ordered a kebab wrap that I thought was delicious and filling.
Source: Pizzeria Roggu
When we were ready to sleep, to access the bed, we pushed the pullout table almost all the way in, leaving a sliver of room to climb in and out.
I thought the bedroom area was luxurious, especially for such a small space. The bed felt like memory foam and came with soft linen sheets. Towels and robes were provided, too.
On our second day, my partner and I decided to check out the garden’s unique offerings, like the sauna and fire pit.
To use these amenities, we took firewood from the tool shed. Maria told us that our booking included one bag of firewood. Extra was available for a fee, but we didn’t end up needing more.
Once we had the wood, we checked out one of the saunas, which cost $60 to use.
It was my first time in a sauna and I thought it was a spiritual experience. As I sweat through the steam, I felt a tingling sensation in my body.
The wood-fired hot tubs came with an $80 fee, but since we weren’t there for long, my partner and I decided to skip this amenity.
But we did use a fire pit on the second night. The pit came with a mechanism called the tongue of fire, which has a chimney to keep smoke away from people’s faces as they cook.
We roasted sausages and s’mores and I thought it was my most pleasant experience ever cooking over fire since I didn’t breathe in smoke.
On the morning of our departure, I got up early for one final walk through the garden. I thought the barrels complemented the plants, giving the whole space a peaceful, calming vibe.
I longed for more barbecues, sauna sessions, and outdoor showers. But my luxurious stay was over. The barrel offered me my best glamping experience yet, and I won’t soon forget it.
Read the original article on Insider
published 2022-12-05 23:42:25