Saltaskja (Apartment): "Your chance to experience Icelandic living!" Reykjavík Hotel Tip by xuessium
Reykjavík Hotels: 84 reviews and 158 photos
"A charming apartment in an Icelandic House: Bedroom with twin beds, living room, kitchen and bathroom" announced the non-descript words.
Trust me, that's pretty much the mother of all understatement from my travels so far.
MAN! This was as good a deal I could get. For the price of a private room in a Reykjavik hostel, I get to stay in a REAL Icelandic house (built around the turn of the previous century, 1908) and I get not only a room with twin beds, but a living room and a kitchen with all modern amenities (oven, stove & fridge) but also my private bathroom with toilets! I could not believed it and was in fact a little trepid to begin with. How legit was this?? I was to about give up getting a decent price for a room in pricey Reykjavik and like manna from heaven, I must thank the owner Marlene, whose kindness and generosity in spirit in helping us travellers roaming the Earth on a budget, could only be grateful for.
Owner is Ms Marlene Pernier.
Unique Qualities: Gosh! I have too many fond memories of the place to write it all down.
The exterior of the house is corrugated metal, as per the usual construction materials used in Icelandic housing pre-WW2. The interior is a combination of warm wood and cement. I was fortunate to have the basement apartment to myself. Marlene had grown redcurrants in a little patch of green outside, which I did not hesitate to use on my skyrs! I like the living room walls, done up in cement, papier-marche style to give it a rough irregular feel and then painted white to contrast starkly against the red coloured furnitures of the room. Very striking, especially in the evening with the warm lights turned on.
The bathroom comes with a ceramic standing bathing space kinda like a bath-tub without the walls, something quite peculiar to Iceland.
I even had 2 bees as "room mates" during my stay there. No, nothing dramatic happened - they kept to themselves, loved to buzz the lights and left a day before I did.
My only complain? The reception of the TV in the basement is a little wanting - lots of static, but then again, I can't understand Icelandic either so I usually left the TV on in low volume as background noise while I read my book, cooked my meals or planned my next daytrip.
I was so rueful when I had to leave. Don't mind sounding sappy, I actually bade farewell to the house when I left Reykjavik that morning at 4am.
Address: Hverfisgata 75, 101 Reykjavik
Price Comparison: least expensive
Directions: Hverfisgata is next to Laugavegur. The nearest lodging of note is Domus Guesthouse (Lonely Planet Iceland). Saltaskja is about another 10-15 minutes walk away, and is right next to a new modern apartment with a large blue "P" sign on the roof.
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