Where to stay in Reykjavik: Hostel B47

Posted on 18. Jul, 2014 by in Destinations, Europe Travel, Iceland, Reviews

Iceland is one of the handful of places in the world that are 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 hostel

As 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 airport.

The rooms

The 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 Þingvellir, for example.

The location

As 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.

Disclaimer: I was a guest of Hostel B47 but as always, all opinions are my own.

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One Response to “Where to stay in Reykjavik: Hostel B47”

  1. Looks great! I’ve stayed in such a wide range of hostels, from really excellent ones, to those that really shouldn’t be mentioned. So it’s great when you hear stories of clean, stylish, forward-thinking hostels like this one. Thanks for sharing!

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