KEX Hostel



Hostelz.com's Review

KEX Hostel is a fancy, vintage hostel built on the facilities of an old cookie factory facing the sea in Reykjavik. That should be already enough to attract a lot of people, but there are many other nice features to make this hostel a very pleasant place.

The Location

It is located facing the sea, only four hundred meters far from the new conference center and concert venue and three hundred meters away from Laugavegur, the street where you can find supermarkets, many different types of restaurants, and pubs. The main church is also within walking distance, around six hundred meters. Reykjavik is surprisingly spread around, despite its small population size. But the main attractions are all near this hostel.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The rooms are spread among three different floors, and a wide range of room configurations is available, from single room up to fourteen people! Beds are new, mattresses are in good condition. Linen is given to you personally, so you know it's clean. There are lockers in every room, but you should bring your own lock. Lockers are tall but thin, so don't expect to put your trolley inside it.

Bathrooms are a downside of this hostel. Although there are even lockers in the bathrooms, and a reasonable amount of showers and toilets, showers are not isolated, so it's like a military facility. The idea seems to be in order to keep this vintage atmosphere, but during winter it might be difficult to keep the temperature of such a big room. Moreover, there is no space to stop shampoos, soaps and the like. This can be improved.

Common Spaces

A highlight of this hostel is the common spaces. There is a big pub/restaurant on the reception floor, which is also visited by locals, so it gets crowded almost every evening. There is a reasonable amount of food and drink options in the pub, and the atmosphere is unbeatable. Furthermore, there is a vintage workout place, which is really cool to see. And there is a vintage barber shop, which doesn't seem to be used often -- but it's there. Hundreds of books are in the living room, in several languages and about many different subjects. Travel guides are available, too. A big kitchen is available at the third floor, for those who prefer to cook their own food. Fridges, microwave oven, and all the accessories needed are provided.


The constant positive evaluations that this hostel gets are not by chance. A very sympathetic staff, a very good location, and an excellent cost-benefit ratio make this hostel one of the very best we have ever been in. And of course, the uniqueness and beauty of Iceland contribute for an unforgettable experience.
by Vinicius Tragante
Hostelz.com Staff Reviewer
November 2011


(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "KEX Hostel" at Skúlagata 28.)


Skúlagata 28, Reykjavík (Reykjavik), Capital Region, Iceland
64.145406, -21.919591
booking@kexhostel.is, kexhostel@kexhostel.is
+354 561 6060
+354 561 60 61
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Hostelz.com Guest Reviews

They are fantastic.
Age 32, Portugal
Professional hostel, amazing food.
I had a great stay at this hostel. The main thing that surprised me was how good the food was. I had some of the freshest, best fish I've ever tasted.
Age 24, USA
Loved the focus on detail in every corner of this hostel!
Age 31, Sweden
Great location & entertainment!
Kex is an excellent hostel. A great location, clean rooms and bathrooms, a nice bar/restaurant with a great view and evening jazz concerts make this an exceptional place to stay. The only reason I do not give them a highest rating is I do not like the fact that the linen rental and breakfast is extra. Online they appear to be a great value and they are, but once you add linen and breakfast you get a better comparison with their competitors offering all inclusive services and they are not the cheapest. So if you are on a tight budget just make sure to bring your own sleeping bag and self cater. I would stay there again.
Age 50, USA
Kex Hostel is one of Reykjavik’s newest hostels and probably one of the quirkiest hostels in the world -- they have spent a lot of time and effort making sure that every space has some interesting theme behind it. The Location Kex Hostel is well located to see everything Reykjavik has to offer. It is on a waterfront road so you can walk right out the front door and have marvelous views across the fjord. It is also really easy to get to and from both the domestic and international airport as the Hlemmur bus station is just around the corner and from here you can catch the 15 bus to either the domestic airport or the BSI terminal where you can catch the flybus to the International Airport or buses to the rest of Iceland. You can also get a pick-up for just a bit more from the Kex Hostel that will save you lugging your stuff. Most of Reykjavik’s sights are also accessible on foot from Kex so there is no need to spend money on buses. There is also quite a bit of parking around, so if you have a car it is a great place to stay. Rooms and Bathrooms Kex offers a range of different sized dorm rooms from four- to fourteen-bed as well as private quad, double, and single rooms with shared WC and double with ensuite. The big dorm is really spacious and spread out and the beds are quite comfortable. You will have to bring a sleeping bag or pay for linen though. The rooms also have school-style lockers that come with their own key, which is very handy but it seems that a lot of keys are missing as there were not enough available for everyone in the room. A keycard will give you access to your room as well as the rest of the floor. The rooms also have some interesting framed pictures on the walls as well. The bathrooms cover the entire length of the building on one side, which means you never really have to wait for a toilet. There are fewer showers though with just two individual rooms with showers and two single-sex, communal shower rooms, which could make many people uncomfortable but will prepare you for the pre-showering at any Icelandic public pool. They also have a sort of prison vibe to them as the walls around the showers are concrete painted black. There are quite a few hooks in the showers, so you shouldn’t have any problems keeping your towel dry, but you will be changing in front of everyone if you are in the communal shower. Common Spaces The common spaces in Kex have been well thought out and decorated. Upstairs on the accommodation level you have a big kitchen with a carousel theme (complete with horses hanging from the ceiling) with plenty of seating and microwave, oven, and stove top so it is really simple to cook your own meals. You also have a lounge space on this floor with super comfy leather couches. On the lower level you have the bar and restaurant, which seems to have become a favorite with locals and is always full of people as well as being used frequently for many of Reykjavik’s many festivals. It has a great-looking outdoor patio area here too. You also have another lounge area here as well as a gym room filled with boxing bags and gymnastic equipment. These spaces mean you have the option of mingling with locals and travelers in the bar or you can retreat to the quieter spaces upstairs to cook or relax. Kex also offers free Wi-Fi, which is available in the common rooms, and luggage storage. And reception will also assist you with booking any tours or buses around Iceland. Summary Kex is a great hostel that has a room to suit every budget and is a great place to meet other travelers as well as locals. And it is worth a look just to see how much effort has gone in to decorating every space.

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