What’s big, green, orange and awesome? If you answered a ripe mango tree – you are correct. If you answered 06 Central Hostel in Buenos Aires – congratulations you are somehow MORE correct.
06 Central is a cute hostel that sits in an upstairs space in the dead centre of Buenos Aires. At the corner of the streets of Sarmiento and Maipu, in between BA’s main plaza and its famous obelisk, you’re in as prime a position as anyone to attack Buenos Aires proper.
One of the original hostels in BA, 06 Central is run by a few permanent staff, helped by a rotating team of backpacking volunteers. The owner, Martin, and manager, Fernando, work together to create an atmosphere that is often hard to capture for a hostel. You get the intimate and homely feel of a small boutique hostel, but the lively and energetic atmosphere of a bigger party hostel.
But how the heck do they do it??
Firstly, the size of the place helps. It’s right in that mid-sized bracket, with space for around 70 people. Enough to make the place feel alive, but not so many that it feels overwhelming and as though you’re just one face in a sea of faces.
Secondly, the layout is perfect. The dorms and privates circle the edge of a massive communal area, so everyone’s bed is directly next to where everybody hangs out. It means that there’s always people using the communal area, and we found it one of the best hostels to meet (and drink with) new people.
A weekly tango session is on the cards within the hostel, which is another great chance to meet and mingle with fellow travellers. Cheap drinks are available on-site, although there is no issue with people bringing in their own tipples.
There is a quieter TV room for those looking for a more relaxed Saturday night, and a patio out back that bathes in sunshine. The main wall of the patio is home to an awesome collection of graffiti from people who have wandered through the hostel over the years.
Toilets and showers are roomy and plentiful, and a free breakfast (including awesome pastries) is served every morning.
The thing that we most liked about 06 though was the clientele they attract. This was hands-down the most international hostel that we’ve been to on our trip, and whether that was intentional or not, it was awesome.
There was no gringo-specific focus – the group was made up of a great mix of South Americans, gringos, volunteers and local Porteño workers (people from Buenos Aires). It felt truly multi-cultural and was a great escape from the English-speaking-only gringo trail hostels that are unfortunately so common in South America.
We loved our stay in 06 Central. It felt like home within minutes of arriving, and was a pleasure to stay at for a few days. If you’re looking to relax in Buenos Aires, look no further.