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Portal del Sur

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Hostelz.com's Review
Near hotel quality in a central location, Portal del Sur is the perfectly comfortable home base for exploring Buenos Aires' intense personality -- a five star establishment!

Getting there

If you're new to Buenos Aires and just got off a long flight into the international airport, your best bet for finding the hostel is to take the Manuel Leon (Lion) bus shuttle from the airport. Tell the agent or driver you'd like to get the complimentary shuttle to Portal del Sur Hostel and they'll get you there. Otherwise, if you're on a budget and coming from the airport on a city bus, get on the subway/subte C line and take it to Ave de Mayo station. Once out of the subte, face the street (Ave de Mayo) and walk to your left. Take your first left onto H. Yrigoyen. The hostel is on the left on the second block. Look up for the sign/flags.

Reception

This hostel is big on security so there are actually two reception areas. One is immediately upon entering the front door to sign in guests and non-guests and to control the automated lock on the door. The second reception is on the next floor, where you check in and out and get what you need. Be a little persistent about getting attention at the first floor desk, as the staff are often distracted by the phone and letting people in and out of the door (they have to enter a code to unlock the door). Very safe and secure luggage storage is also available in the basement. Staff are diligent about checking ticket stubs to make sure you get only your bag.

Rooms

Spacious with very high ceilings and nice decorative touches, the dorm rooms come with giant lockable wardrobes for each person. Beds are bunked, mostly four to a room, and have good mattresses but somewhat lumpy pillows. Ceiling fans keep it cool at night and phones in each room prove convenient for calling the front desk to order a cab or such. Some rooms are ensuite and some are not. Rooms facing the street have tiny balconies that don't quite make up for the tremendous amount of noise coming from the diesel buses -- ask for a room on the interior for quieter nights. Noise in the hostel itself is minimal.

If you're a couple or a family looking for a little privacy on a cheap budget, you cannot go wrong with booking a private room at this hostel. The rooms are at least as good as a mid-range hotel, including air conditioning, plush towels, large bathrooms, cable TV, phone, and wardrobes. Beds are quite comfy and the decor is superb. Since all private rooms are located on one floor, you really get a sense of privacy but still have easy access to all the hostel activities.

Bathrooms and Kitchen

Nice tile work, updated fixtures, and good hot water pressure make the hostel bathrooms stand out from just about any other hostels'. Bathrooms are very clean. While diminutive, the kitchen is adequate for cooking a decent meal. The refrigerator can be overflowing, though, so be sure not to buy too much at once. The included breakfast is served from the kitchen each morning and is quite good. Staff serve guests at tables in the atrium dining area, dishing out warm sweet rolls, toast, cereal, mate, tea, coffee, tang juice, and fruit.

Common Areas

Gorgeous decor, rich woodwork, elaborate iron castings, plants, murals, skylights, rooftop views -- this hostel has some of the most impressive-looking common areas. The dining room is like an indoor cafe which often hosts games and group activities. There is a travel agency on the third floor that takes up some space that might have been good for lounging but it is very useful for making plans.

The real star of the common areas is the top floor bar and deck. The bar houses a pool/ping pong table and large TV for cable and DVDs. Good beer is cheap and served from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. Off the bar is a fantastic deck with table and chairs and a view of the rooftops across Buenos Aires. Also on the top floor are computers for free internet and a room used for teaching classes, some free, for Spanish and tango. The only drawback to all the common areas is the limited amount of space -- when the evenings get busy with socializing, you might find yourself standing instead of lounging. Still, this hostel has a great social scene -- not a big party, just a nice chill out vibe.

Summary

Overall, this hostel can't be beat. It's particularly nice for solo travelers that aren't looking to party all that much, but still want to meet others. Stay here!

Exclusive Hostelz.com Review
May 2007

Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
Map
Location/Contact
How is Portal del Sur rated on other websites?
 OverallCleanlinessStaffLocationAtmosphereSecurity
Hostelworld  
84%
77%
89%
90%
83%
87%
Hostels.com  
77%
80%
90%
85%
70%
85%
HostelBookers  
85%
78%
85%
93%
88%
87%
HostelsClub  
88%
80%
90%
90%
90%
Average  
84%
79%
89%
90%
83%
86%
Portal del Sur Reviews from the Web
Hostelz.com Guest Reviews
5   Excellent I've stayed there two times, back in '05 and '06, and i have to say that its a great place to stay in. Very very friendly atmosphere (from both employees and visitors). Great playroom (with a bar included) with free internet connection and a very pleasant terrace. Its very clean and has good breakfast. I'd recommend it for sure.  , Argentina ()
5  Amazing! The staff are very very very kind and the rooms are very clean. I recommend!  ()
5  I've been in hundreds of hostels in over 46 countries and I have to say it's one of the best hostels I have ever stayed in. it's got a great cozy atmosphere with a nice roof terrace. Although for a party head half a block down to the Millhouse; you don't actually have to stay there to party with them.  ()
5  I stayed at 3 hotels in Buenos Aires and 2 hostels and the Portal Del Sur was by far the best. The warm and friendly staff are amazing, and willing to help you enjoy your stay in Beunos Aires in whatever way possible.  ()
5  Este hostel es genial. Los desayunos son espectaculares, el diseño del hostel, el staff es super amigable. En Buenos Aires es el mejor! [Translation: This hostel is brilliant. The breakfasts are spectacular, the design of the hostel, the staff are super friendly. In Buenos Aires it is the best one!]  ()

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