There’s a Swedish Hotel Where Guests Pay to Be Homeless

What's next? Will guests have to panhandle to afford a mini bar?

  • Share
  • Read Later
Håkan Ludwigson and Forsman & Bodenfors for Faktum

A room at the old paper mill in Gothenburg

The Faktum hotel in Gothenburg, Sweden’s second largest city, is only a hotel in the loosest sense of the word, with ten ‘rooms’ for guests who desire a unique sleeping experience. Like any hotel, guests are able to select and pay for their room, but there’s a catch: the rooms themselves happen to be the locations where Gothenburg’s estimated 3,400 homeless people commonly sleep.

For those who wish to experience what it’s like to be homeless, rooms costs just $15 a night and are advertised on the hotels sleek website, featuring darkly-lit, night-time shots of each location. Guests can chose from seemingly picturesque options such as Haga Park — where they can sleep among the trees by the local church. Or they can opt to huddle underneath concrete arches by shipyards, or sleep on a stained mattress in an abandoned paper mill.

(MORE: Battered and Bruised Minds Lead to Homelessness)

This concept was conceived by Faktum magazine, a publication sold by homeless people in Gothenburg. The money spent on the ‘rooms’ goes towards funding the paper. Since its inception in November 2012, the hotel has received some 1,000 bookings according to Faktum magazine editor, Aaron Israelson.

Not many guests make it through their entire stay, though “some really tried,” Israelson told the Swedish paper the Local, “with one woman managing to stay for about four hours.” Israelson and his colleagues hope the hotel concept will help raise public awareness and spur debate on the realities of living rough in Gothenburg. He said local government officials have shown little interest in the project so far and have put in place “no real support systems” for the thousands living on the streets.

“A couple of guests who spend the night outdoors told me that it made them appreciate their every day life in a new way,” said Israelson. “The simple things like a warm bed, a roof and a job.”

MORE: Down and Out in L.A.: When the Middle Class Goes Homeless


Thanks for the information, I have forwarded this video to Faktum Hotels.

a poetic video tribute to homeless issues‏

This is something you might have an interest in viewing, as it visualizes homelessness in a musical format set to poetry!

This video has been endorsed by Michael Stoops:

Thanks for sending us your video. I just watched it and it is very good, creative and political in a good way.I will share it with my colleagues.

Sincerely,Michael Stoops

Michael Stoops

Director of Community Organizing

National Coalition for the Homeless2201 P St., NWWashington, DC 20037-1033


I would love to book a stay for my ex wife


My only question is why someone needs to pay the "hotel" in order to go sleep under a bridge? 


The Faktum magazine/newspaper  sounds like several projects around the world . In Australia and England the magazines are called the Big Issue. They are run as a charity/community group , any actual professionals involved are volunteers ,most of the production costs come from fundraising or grants from other groups as well as from part of the sales price ..Homeless people do 90% of the production including the writing of articles , they get job training and also a small wage . The magazine is sold by homeless people ,in Australia they buy the magazine for $3 and sell it for $6 and they get to keep the full $6. the people generally start out buying 2 or 3 copies and selling them , then use  some of that money to buy more magazines to sell , thus increasing their income . They also get sales training and set locations to sell at so they also get a work ethic as they sell the magazine .


The money raised should go to feed and shelter the homeless not the newspaper.


Sounds like a scam to me. It's obviously a lack of sensitivity towards people down on their luck. Homelessness is not just about being without a home, From a psychological standpoint, it's a very demeaning experience from which one may never recover. As a homeless person, one's options are limited. family not around, government institutions don't quite have a long solution to this issues and government dont really care. 

shameless hooligans these hotel owners are.

Read more: