There is a new trend sweeping across Europe, enamoring rugged backpackers, adventurous families, and refined business travelers alike: the Haute Hostel. These luxurious but affordable establishments are out to reinvent the hotel image. They are out to prove that hostels can be much more than just a boisterous, grimy backpacker watering hole and that hostels can, in fact, be down right opulent. At these luxury hostels as little as twenty euros can buy you a room in a modern establishment complete with private terraces, posh wine bars, and magnificent rooftop pools. For the best of the best of this Haute Hostel trend check out our list of Europe’s most luxurious hostels.
The Independente Hostel, Lisbon (main image)
Lisbon’s Independente is situated in a former Swiss Ambassador’s residence, complete with a sweeping stone staircase, dramatic skylights, and enormous windows. The only thing rivaling the Independente’s stunning 19th century historical architecture is its unique modern décor. Guests can unwind with a cocktail at the hostel’s posh wine bar or enjoy a book in one of the Arne Jacobsen swan chairs that dot common spaces. Eleven modern dorm rooms provide lodging, while four private suites are available for guests in search of a bit more privacy. The hostel’s top-floor suite is true gem, boasting stunning views of the city from a private outdoor terrace. Even the food is spectacular. Guests can dine in style at the hostel’s Decadente restaurant where, for as little as €10 on weekdays, you can try their fixed price lunch menu.
U Hostels, Madrid
At U Hostels, Madrid you can unwind and decompress after a busy day of Madrid sightseeing in a palace. Literally. This lavish hostel is set is a stunning 19th-century palace situated right next to the Alonso Martinez Metro station, meaning accommodations are fit for a king. Dorms are air conditioned and come with private lockers. Bunk beds are custom made and boast comfortable mattresses and individual reading lights. The hostel offers a basic free breakfast of toast, ham and cheese but for an extra €1 you get great cup of Lavazza coffee. World-class coffee in a 19th century palace for a mere twenty-euros. What could be better?
This unique Amsterdam gem, set a 20-minute walk from Amsterdam’s red light district and a stone’s throw away from Rembrandt Square and the Heineken Museum, is actually situated in restored brothel. The building itself is truly beautiful, with high ceilings and ornate chandeliers. There is a garden complete with gnomes, a hostel cat named Joop, a spacious common room housing a great collection of books and movies (and even an old-school Nintendo!), and a kitchen generously stocked with beers for mere €1. An added bonus? Cocomama never caters to groups, giving it a chill and refined vive. It is the perfect spot for solo travellers who want to mingle with other guests without having to deal with a boisterous gaggle of adolescents on a school trip.
Plus Berlin is situated just off Warschauer Strasse near the S-Bahn station, in the heart of one Berlin’s most exclusive (and expensive) neighborhoods. The east side gallery, one of the remaining stretches of the Berlin Wall, is just a few hundred yards away and there certainly isn’t any shortage of hip bars in the area. If you wander across the bridge you’ll find the hip Watergate club, one of Berlin’s hottest clubs. But you certainly don’t have to leave the hostel to have a good time. It seems like there isn’t much that this hostel doesn’t offer. There are free yoga sessions on Tuesday, an expansive restaurant, laundry facilities, and a beautiful garden. Oh, and did we mention the indoor pool and sauna?
Oasis Backpackers’ Palace, Seville, Spain
Situated in a 19th-century building near Plaza Encarnación, this Seville hostel is just a skip and a hop away from some of Seville’s oldest tapas bars and cafes. Commodious, chill, and comfortable, Oasis Backpackers’ Palace is the perfect jumping off point to explore the city. Dorms are spacious and secure, bunk beds are sturdy and comfortable, and all private rooms come with a balcony and en suite bathroom. The hostel offers a free breakfast of pancakes, toast, cereal, tea and coffee, as well as a number of free hostel activities such as free walking tours and flamenco shows. The true highlight, however, is the impressive rooftop pool and bar area. Nothing is more luxurious than taking a refreshing dip in the balmy Seville evening while enjoying stunning views of the city.