Ice bars have been popping up in major cities all over the world. As soon as I heard that there was one opening in my city, I knew that I wanted to check it out (especially with the heat wave that was happening at the time). The bar was called Chill Ice House and located in downtown Toronto.
I decided to pop into the Chill Ice House on a Wednesday night when they had a student special. The cover charge was $5 for students, instead of $10 for an adult. We walked into a lobby where we paid the cover charge, and put on some parkas and gloves that the bar supplied. The parkas are more like ponchos and don’t have any sleeves. You should probably wear a long sleeve shirt if you want to keep warm. The bar was relatively empty, and we had the bar mostly to ourselves for the entire night.
Once we paid our cover charge and got prepared for the cold, we headed into the ice room. The entire bar was made of the ice, as well as the glasses. Beware of grabbing onto the glasses, as they are quite slippery and can easily fall out of your hands. The drinks were quite overpriced for what they were; most of them cost over $10 and were already premixed. They had various seating areas set up that were built out of ice and covered in fur throws (these made for quite the photo op). They also had beer pong tables set up, which we took advantage of when a few more people showed up at the bar.
Once we got a bit too chilly, there was another bar area at the back of the building where we could warm up. I’ve heard some ice bars give you a limit for how long you can stay in the ice room, either for health reasons or capacity issues. Chill Ice House didn’t give us any limits, but it wasn’t very busy when we were there.
Chill Ice House was definitely a cool experience (no pun intended). I would definitely bring someone there who was visiting the city and had never been to an ice bar. I don’t know if it would be a regular hangout for me, as I don’t particularly like the cold, and the bar is quite costly.