notoriously expensive, along with the rest of Scandinavia and Japan, for
example. Because one can only eat so many hot dogs for the sake of
budget, I wanted my accommodation to be private, stylish and
inexpensive. These were the three items that I would not skimp on – cue Hostel B47.
The hostelAs the first reception-free hostel in Iceland, Hostel B47 is
definitely forward-thinking. No need to wait in line for check-in; just
punch in the code you received via email, and voilà, your room is ready,
at any time of the day. This also insures maximum security for the
hostel’s visitors (although Reykjavik is definitely one of the least
dangerous places on the globe).
This modern mindset also comes with free, fast WiFi and no-frills,
basic amenities that are complimented by the quirky movie-inspired
decor. There are two fairly large common rooms within the hostel: a
lounging area with a 50″ TV and sofas, and a kitchen/dining room with
kitchenware and vending machines.
One of the most interesting features of the hostel, however, is the
building itself. Heilsuverndarstodin, as it is officially called, was
built in 1952 and commissioned by none other than Einar Sveisson, one of
Iceland’s most famous architects and often considered to be the father
of the Bauhaus revolution in Iceland. He was the appointed official
architect of Reykjavik, and played a significant role in shaping the
city’s evolution in the 20th century. You can even see the hostel from
atop the Hallgrímskirkja
I had only been there for a few hours but I already knew the hostel would be part of my popular Best Hostels in Europe series.
Those traveling within Iceland by car should note that Hostel B47
offers free, secure parking, which is a rarity in downtown Reykjavik!
The hostel is also served by the many transfer buses from Keflavik
The roomsThe rooms are quite compact but feature everything a jetlagged
traveler needs: comfortable beds, free WiFi, wash basin and ample
storage space. The WC and showers were located just a few steps away
from my room, which wasn’t a bother at all – they were never occupied
when I was there, and they were always clean.
Bonus points for having tablets in each of the room! The tablets are connected to the hostel’s day trip booking site and makes it super easy for visitors to book a guided visit of Reykjavik or an excursion around ingvellir, for example.
The locationAs far as inexpensive accommodation goes, Hostel B47 has one of the
best locations there is. Just a stone throw’s from the
iconic Hallgrímskirkja and one of Reykjavik’s top swimming pools (a
great place to meet locals, as every Icelander is obsessed with
swimming, from what I’ve been told!), visitors can reach the two main
streets of Reykjavik in just a couple of minutes. There are many cafés
and restaurants nearby, and the neighborhood itself is quite charming
with its rows of colorful houses.