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Hotel Extremes: the World's Smallest, Tallest, and Beyond

Tired of the same old hotel tropes and pandering marketing campaigns? Ever wish you could stay somewhere either wildly too big or too small, or maybe 500 feet underground, instead? In that case, consider exploring the wild world of extreme hotels, with their precarious heights, wacky themes, and extraordinary geographical locales. What these destinations might lack in practicality, they more that make up for in rich history, or at least a really good story. Pick an adventure, below.

(↑) The world's smallest hotel is the wee eight-by-10-foot Central Hotel, which sits on top of Copenhagen's smallest coffee shop, and makes room for a flatscreen TV, a double bed, and unbridled adorableness.

(↑) The tallest hotel in the world is the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel in Dubai, which stands at a proud 1,165.84 feet and consists of twin 77-floor towers. Plans are in place to tack on a third tower by 2015 because, hey, why not?

(↑) The world's largest hotel is the Venetian Palazzo in Las Vegas, Nev., which is technically two connected hotels that happen to share one monstrous complex and operate under the same license. The miniature city the two make up together offers a combined 8,108 rooms, as well as a casino (duh), a shopping mall, and one very confused David Spade, who has been looking for the exit forever.

(↑) The highest altitude hotel on the planet sits high above the village of Namche, Nepal. Called the Hotel Everest View, the inn offers some very hard to reach lodging at 13,000 feet.

(↑) The heaviest hotel to ever be relocated is the Hotel Fairmount in San Antonio, Texas. In 1985, when a massive mall building project threatened to raze the place, the city instead opted to move the three-story, 1,451-ton structure to another part of town using 36 dollies. The five-block move took six days and cost $650K.

(↑) Located in Svalbard, Norway, the northernmost hotel in the world is the Radisson Blu Polar Hotel, which sits ridiculously close to the North Pole and boasts "magical winter darkness of the polar night or four months of constant sunlight in the summer."

(↑) Called Nisiyama Onsen Keiunkan, the world's oldest hotel is this mysterious hot springs locale in Yamanashi, Japan. Apparently it has been operating since 705 AD.

(↑) The largest hotel suite in the world is at the epic Grand Hills Hotel & Spa in Broummana, Lebanon. The Royal Suite measures in at 145,883 square feet, and boasts six floors of decor "fit for royalty," private gardens and swimming pools, and a full service staff.

(↑) The most expensive hotel suite in the world is the Royal Penthouse Suite at the Hotel President Wilson in Geneva, Switzerland. The place covers the entire top floor of a converted palace, with panoramic views of Lake Geneva and the Alps. This 12,917-square-foot suite has four bedrooms, six bathrooms, and a cocktail lounge with room for 40 guests, all to the tune of roughly $82,433 a night. So if you charge everyone at your cocktail party a buck or two...

(↑) The narrowest hotel is the 16-foot-wide Hotel Molinos in Granada, Spain. It flaunts its extreme narrowness with pride, displaying its Guinness World Record badge in the lobby and proudly boasting about the fact that "only 9 rooms make it an intimate family hotel."

(↑) The deepest hotel in the world is Sweden's Sala Silvermine. For those just dying to spend their vacation days as deep underground as possible, the hotel offers rooms at 508 feet below the earth's surface. Guests, do keep in mind that the cave-like suite's temperature never rises above 35 degrees.

(↑) The coldest hotel in the world is Sweden's Icehotel. Temperatures at the Jukkasjärvi, Sweden inn—which is, of course, made completely from ice—have never risen above 23 degrees, but the roomscome stocked with polar-tested sleeping bags, plenty of fur blankets, and some lovely ice art to take guest's minds off the fact that they are paying to sleep in a freezer.

(↑) The hottest hotel in the world is the Furnace Creek Resort in Death Valley, Calif.. Why anyone would want to stay at a hotel called 'the furnace" in a scorching national park—which holds the record for the hottest temperature ever recorded at 134 degrees—is a mystery. At the very least, though, those who do can brag that they've spent the night at the hottest hotel on the planet.

(↑) The "best" hotel in the world is the Burj Al Arab hotel in Dubai, which famously dubbed itself both the "the world's most luxurious hotel" and the world's "only seven-star hotel." While a stay at the ritzy hotel does come with such bonkers amenities as Rolls Royce chauffeur service, personal butlers, and private beaches, such glowing reviews sort of need to come from other people to count. Until then, the hotel can at least rightfully claim the world's highest tennis court.

(↑) The quietest hotel in the world is the Grand Canyon Caverns Cave Motel, located in—or under, as it where—Kingman, Ariz.. Vacationers in search of a little peace and quiet should consider making the 220-foot descent into its shadowy depths, where $800 buys a night in a 200-by-400-foot cavern room, which is so dry that nothing can live down there—rendering it completely silent. "Nothing lives in the caverns, not a fly, not a mouse, a bat, bug or animal. Nothing," explains the motel's website. "The only thing moving or breathing is you."

(↑) According to a panel of judges organized by the boutique hotel booking site Mr. & Mrs. Smith, "the world's sexiest bedroom" is this alabaster-themed Corfu Suite at London's Blakes Hotel. It apparently won the honor thanks to its "sumptuous decor,""bed you can't leave," and "seductive air of serenity."

The least inviting hotel:

(↑) The least inviting hotel in the world is the Karosta Prison in Liepāja, Latvia. Once a 20th-century military jail, the place now invites guests to come be treated like inmates and sleep in a cell. Maybe one has to see it in real life to get the appeal?

· Records [Curbed National]
· Central Hotel [Official site]
· Tallest Hotel [Guinness World Records]
· JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai [Official site]
· Tallest Hotel [Guinness World Records]
· Highest Altitude [Guinness World Records]
· Hotel Everest view [Official site]
· Heaviest Hotel Re-Located [Guinness World Records]
· The Fairmount Hotel [Official site]
· Radisson Blu Polar Hotel [Official site]
· Most Northerly Hotel [Guinness World Records]
· Oldest Hotel [Guinness World Records]
· Largest Hotel Suite [Guinness World Records]
· Grand Hills Hitel and Spa [Official site]
· Sala Silvermine [Official site]
· Grand Canyon Caverns [Official site]
· Is this London Suite the 'Sexiest Hotel Room' in the World? [Curbed National]
· Hotel Molinos [Official site]
· Here Now, 17 of the World's Most Bizarre Hotel Gimmicks [Curbed National]
· All Hotels Weeks 2014 posts [Curbed National]