You won’t believe these are Hostels! Not when they are this cosy and comfortable. These posh-tels wow with their wallet-friendly prices and surprisingly impressive facilities and service.
MEANDER TAIPEI HOSTEL (Taipei, Taiwan)
Just 10 minutes by foot from the vibrant Ximending area, this hostel is a winner both in terms of convenience and service. It greets each guest with welcome drinks and gives the option of mini tours around the hostel. Tours around the Ximen district are also conducted every evening at 7pm.
Additionally, the hostel screens movies every evening at 8pm in the communal area. If you’re lucky, you might get to take part in one of their fortnightly food tastings, right on the premises – Taiwanese dumplings, anyone? Wi-Fi is available in the cosy, simply decorated rooms.
RATES: From $24 a bed for a night in a shared room for 10 people.
163 Chengdu Road, Wanhua District, tel: +886 2 2383 1334
BED STATION HOSTEL (Bangkok, Thailand)
Designed to reflect modern Bangkok, the hostel uses lots of concrete, bricks and steel, and dim lights – it almost feels like a cosy hipster cafe. In the rooms, each bed is equipped with its own reading light, two electrical outlets and a personal shelf for your essentials, as well as a blackout curtain for more privacy.
Private rooms (for up to two persons) are outfitted with a television, iPod dock and deposit box. Pay an extra 50 baht (S$2!) to upgrade to a room with an en-suite bathroom – it’s almost like staying in a boutique hotel, minus the heftier price tag.
RATES: From $19 a bed for a night in a shared room for eight people.
486/149-150 Soi Petchaburi 16, Petchaburi Road, Ratchathewi, tel: +66 2019 5477/+66 8 1807 8454
RETRA’S HOSTEL (Yogyakarta, Indonesia)
The resort-inspired double-storey house is near a beach, so there’s a constant sea breeze – just the thing to put you in the mood for a proper recharging. Every room – from the shared to the private ones – has an en-suite bathroom. The hostel also offers private rooms (bottom left) for up to two persons, and these have a flat-screen television.
Feeling hungry? The House of Raminten, the hostel’s recommendation for authentic Indonesian food, is just a five- to 10-minute walk away.
RATES: From $9 a bed for a night in a shared room for four people.
Jalan Pandega Mandala No. 25C, Jalan Kaliurang Km 5,5, tel: +62 821 3310 6466
SEOUL BASE CAMP HOSTEL (Seoul, South Korea)
When owner Jake Kim and his partner chanced upon an abandoned dance hall, they knew it was their chance to turn their childhood memory of building their own blanket forts into a reality. They recreated the raw aesthetic of those “forts” by transforming the space into an upgraded campsite of sorts, with tiled floors, steel bunk beds and wooden furniture – a no-frills spot to retire to at the end of the day.
It’s minutes from the exciting nightlife and endless street stalls of Hongdae, but if you’re looking to explore other parts of Seoul, popular spots like Myeongdong, Gangnam and Dongdaemun are just a 30-minute ride from the nearby Hapjeong station.
The hostel prides itself on its cleanliness, so it provides new towels and sheets upon check-in, and these can be changed upon request, without charge. You also get to enjoy free, freshly baked waffles every morning!
RATES: From $15 a bed for a night in a shared room for 10 people.
Level 3, 383-14 Hapjeong-dong, Mapo-gu, tel: +82 2 3144 2565
YESINN@CAUSEWAY BAY (Hong Kong)
Great news for budget travellers who can never seem to travel light, or who always go home with lots of shopping bags: This hostel, spanning seven levels in a stand-alone building, has a lift. There’s also a daily room-cleaning service, so you don’t have to do the chores yourself like in most hostels.
Once you’ve settled down in one of the cheery rooms (right), it’s time to do some shopping – the hostel is conveniently located in Causeway Bay and just a couple of minutes away from the main shopping centres. When you’re all tired out from traipsing around Hong Kong, retire to the living area and treat yourself to the massage chair, or head for the rooftop garden to enjoy the (relatively) fresh air and evening chit-chat with other travellers.
RATES: From $28 a bed for a night in a shared room for 21 people.
HW 2/F Nan Yip Building, 472 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay, tel: +852 2213 4567
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By Smita Wee, Her World, June 2015