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The SnowMansion

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Hostelz.com's Review
HI - Taos - Abominable Snowmansion Hostel is as laid back and easy-going as the town of Taos itself, but could probably stand a little deep-cleaning and reorganization. Its reputation as a party pad precedes it; it was super-sleepy upon our admittedly late arrival on a weeknight (so late, in fact, that the guy on the phone told us to just walk in and find a bed, over the phone).

The Location

Where else are you going to stay in Taos, ten miles from the ski valley, for this price?

Rooms and Bathrooms

The house clerk was still hanging around when we arrived (forty-five minutes after their "closing time,") and directed us to the bunkroom. He claimed that "the bottom bunks are probably taken, but I don't know." So pitch-black was the room, we couldn't discern people from belongings, and not wanting to raise a fuss and wake everyone up, we leapt onto the nearest top bunk we could reach. Never mind there isn't a ladder, or hardly any pegs leading up, and never mind also that this bunk is of the "your-face-is-six-inches-from-the-ceiling-and-it-feels-like-you're-in-a-coffin type. It is a miserable experience. Upon waking, we not only found two bottom bunks unoccupied, but a couple other top bunks within a better height for your head that were merely covered with gear from the other fellows. The bathrooms are about as basic as it gets, but we didn't have time for a shower or a chance to test the wireless.

Common Spaces

The Snowmansion itself is a pretty cool joint, our experience notwithstanding. The main anteroom has a lively, grand-hall kind of feel -- with a big staircase leading to upstairs rooms, and a hallway into a rather generous kitchen, eating area, and more rooms. It isn't sparkly clean, and it isn't spanking with newness in any regard, but it's cool. The scene, at least during our stay, was populated with staff from Taos Ski Valley; while this is nice, it also offsets the "traveling" vibe you normally expect from a hostel.

Summary

As we were loading stuff into the car early the next morning, the day staff were puttering around and hardly noticed us; we could have easily skipped out on the tab, but didn't. Now that we know our way around the bunkhouse, we're sure our next experience will be better (our arrival time of 10:45 p.m. was totally ill-advised.)

Exclusive Hostelz.com Review
February 2012

Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
Map
Location/Contact
How is The SnowMansion rated on other websites?
 OverallCleanlinessStaffLocationAtmosphereSecurity
HostelBookers  
74%
56%
80%
81%
78%
78%
Hostelworld  
Not listed on Hostelworld.
Hostels.com  
Not listed on Hostels.com.
HostelsClub  
Not listed on HostelsClub.
Average  
74%
56%
80%
81%
78%
78%
Hostelz.com Guest Reviews
5   SNOW MANSION ROCKS! Single mom with 12 year old type 1 diabetic and 14-year old vegetarian spends 1 week every christmas/new year holiday here. Why? such a funky, quirky out of the ordinary experience. My kids INSIST and why wouldn't they? Owner makes edible ornaments for the tree and bakes fresh bread for guests. The crock pot always bubbles with a veg soup or chili and we can make our eclectic meals in the community kitchen in- house or in the summer kitchen our back. We first came to ski and save money and we keep coming back to see who shows up from last year. Are the south american college students back working at the ski area? how many other kids have arrived to shoot pool and play apples to apples or BS? Oh, my kids are the ones laughing hysterically and disturbing the readers gathered around the cozy fireplace They are also checking out some of the odd ball characters who the owners generously accommodate with work 4 rent plans. I remind my children that the good karma they feel at the snow mansion emanates from the hearts of the owners for whom this is not all business, but rather a labor of love. We embrace the eclectic folks who show up the same week we do and when our week is over and we are driving away I ask the kids, what's the plan for next christmas? They scream, SNOW MANSION!  , USA ()
4   Great place, rent a teepee. This is a well run and iconic hostel. I have stayed here several times, over the years. Always meeting cool people, and enjoying my stay. Only downside, is that it's far from town. If you don't have a car, one would need to hitch. People are very friendly in Taos. Much better alternative to the other New Mexico hostels.  , Chicago, USA ()
5   This place is a wonderful place for travelers we just got back from a trek thru new mexico, and the snowmansion is by far my favorite hostel in N.M., the vibe is very cool and mellow and the scenery is of no other in new mexico, and a great place for the outdoor, nature loving folks such as myself. The people who work and stay there are from all over, very nice, and you feel like youre around friends at all times, i literally felt at peace, recommend this place and if i ever find myself in the area, i will stay there again.  , usa ()
5   Incredible This was the best hostel I have ever stayed in!! The atmosphere, the people, the energy, everything was exactly what I needed!! They have a variety of accommodations and are welcoming to all! Thank you Muna for teaching me how to just breathe, you and all the other people I encountered there will be remembered forever!  , Nashville, TN ()
5   Lovely place with nice facility and wonderful people Me and my friend spent a couple of days recently in the hostel and we were amazed at how friendly and wonderful this place was. We met a bunch of great people there, some of them are regular skiers who stays here every year and some are travelers like us staying for their first time. But we all made great friends with each other instantly. All the staff at the hostel were extremely helpful and welcoming, too. They have a garden where they grow grain and beans -- those are where our meals from the hostels are from. And if you ever go there, be sure to look for Muna -- a great medicist and healer. I'm sure she will be able to help with you one thing or two.  , Chinese ()
5   Great, Family Friendly Hostel In the past ten years I have gone to Abominable Snowmansion three times, and each time I found the atmosphere in the hostel to be very warm and welcoming. First time I was there with a large college group -- we drove there from Austin, and it was a lot of fun. The kitchen and the fireplace made for great gathering spaces for our group, and an opportunity to talk with others in the hostel, and hear some really great stories. Last couple of years, I have been going there with my wife and two children (three- and four- and five- and six-year-olds). Kiddoes made many children and adult friends there. There was so much diversity that one's curiosity is constantly being fed with new wonderful insights about people, places, experiences. We all loved it, and felt sad leaving the place, wonderful hosts, and our fellow guests. If you are looking for a warm, welcoming place with opportunities to talk with folks with very diverse world views, Abominable Snowmansion is where you want to be. If you are looking for a place with brand new furnishings, TVs, and commercialism then this is not a place for you.  , USA ()
5   A slice of the good life, unmatched anywhere. The snowmansion is a beautiful place to be. There are always amazing projects going on there and it really doesn't feel like a hostel but more of a beautiful home with friends. Sure, all hostels have games, books, and a kitchen, but how many have massive gardens, communal meals, and are family run? I recently took a group to the snowmansion and we had a blast. We spent a day harvesting from their fruit trees and preserving applesauce! Being in Arroyo Seco is great, the traffic of taos is far away and the small village surrounding the hostel is very nice. I highly recommend visiting the snowmansion!  , USA ()
4   Nice place I've been traveling to Taos for many years and have wanted to stay at the SnowMansion. Since 1996 when I travel my wife is along too. She has well defined expectations of where we'll stay (as you might guess). Unfortunately for the adventurer side of me those defined expectations do not include the word Hostel (or long distance driving or anything without the word spa). So for this trip I grabbed a couple of buddies of mine and we set off for adventure, which of course included the SnowMansion. We booked a private room that had a queen size bed and an over-under bunk bed. The room was warm and clean, as were the bed linens. The bathroom was fine and the people were very nice. One note, be sure to have a personal supply of toiletries as these can be hard to come by on short, early morning notice. The trip to the mountain and/or into town is short and the fellow travelers at the hostel were quite nice. My buddies and I had a great time.  , USA ()
The SnowMansion Reviews from the Web

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