Sunday 8 November 2015

HOTEL REVIEW: KEX Hostel, Reykjavik, Iceland

I was determined to stay in some sort of boutique hotel type place in Reykjavik but as is the case with most Nordic countries, prices can get very expensive. Fortunately I discovered KEX Hostel, an ultra cool hostel in the heart of down town Reykajavik that offers private rooms as well as your standard dorms.

I booked our room really far in advance as I knew we'd be in town during a music festival so it was likely spaces would fill up quickly. When it comes to the private rooms for 2 you have the option to book an en suite or shared bathroom. We opted for a shared bathroom because of the huge difference in price. I'm annoyed with myself for not taking any pictures of the bathrooms but they were absolutely fine. Most mornings I didn't have to queue for a shower and the rooms themselves were spacious with a shower, sink and toilet. I know bathroom sharing isn't for everybody but I really didn't have a problem with this at KEX, there were plenty of bathrooms available for the number of bedrooms.The bathrooms were at the end of the corridor so it's only a quick walk from your bedroom.

I'm not going to lie, the rooms were basic and I found the twin bed situation a little annoying (twin beds are pretty popular in Iceland) but nevertheless I did enjoy our stay at the hostel. Storage for the room consisted of a few hooks on the wall and 3 old school American style lockers. We stayed for 4 nights which is more than enough time to see Reykajavik (I can't imagine many people stay for longer) so even though the storage wasn't amazing it was fine for our needs. The desk by the window, which overlooked the fjord, was a nice touch but the fact the beds weren't against a wall meant my pillow kept falling out of the back which was a little annoying.

Despite these 'issues' the bed was comfortable, the shower was powerful and the room was clean which are the most important features. This is a hostel so it's important to keep in mind that it isn't going to be a luxurious as a hotel. 

The thing that really makes KEX stand out is the communal space. The hostel is pretty big and the first floor is dedicated to a huge communal area consisting of a library, a beautiful tiled bar, and plenty of relaxing / dining space. The outside patio consists of a huge deck with plenty more seats and tables including heaters and outdoors beds for ultimate relaxation. There's even a barber shop in the old lift shaft, self service kitchen space and laundry room.

We didn't have breakfast at KEX but there is a buffet available for an extra free. We did however have a very tasty dinner one evening which I wrote about in my Reykajavik food guide.

The location of KEX is hard to beat, right next the the fjord the rooms offer wonderful views of the sea and it only takes a couple of minutes to walk into the centre of town. Reykjavik is really small so it doesn't take long to get around which means you can fall into bed without too much trouble after a night out.

KEX is the perfect place to stay with friends or if you're travelling alone as it's a super social hostel. It's also a great option if you're trying to stick to a budget as the other hotels in town are a lot more expensive.

Disclaimer: KEX offered me a discount in exchange for review.

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  1. I've only now started to stay at hostels but I am being converted from my "5 star hotel only" days of old! The common areas here look so nice and I definitely agree that hostels are great for solo travellers as you can be as social or anti-social you like! x

  2. My friend Rosie stayed the night here with a guy when we went on holiday. He smelled of chicken nuggets and had "tiny acorn balls". I have a photo of her pretending to hold them outside the hostel the morning after hahahaha
    But from what I saw on my short visit (to look after Rosie's date's friend who was Sicilian and told me he slept with a knife under his pillow), the hostel was lovely!

  3. So glad you're back on a roll with your travel posts Hannah!


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