There was a time when if you mentioned the word “hostel’” to any traveller who’d stayed in one, you’d likely elicit a small shudder in response, as the memories came flooding back. With insides more akin to dingy student digs – think backpackers sharing bunk beds – and locations that were typically less-than-salubrious, they were not generally the kinds of places you’d want to remember.
Praise be, then, for a new type of hostel that’s turning the old cliché on its head. With nary a stained mattress in sight, these clean, comfy and super-stylish boltholes are fast becoming a firm favourite among discerning – but budget-conscious – travellers, offering the kind of amenities and services you’d previously find in a boutique hotel.
Flying the flag for this exciting new accommodation category in Switzerland is SILO hostel by TALENT, which can proudly claim to be the first of its kind in the land.
Housed inside a newly renovated former grain warehouse in Basel’s trendy Erlenmatt Ost neighbourhood. Within walking distance of the Badischer Bahnhof and the Basel Exhibition Centre, it is everything an old-school hostel is not – with a hipster-friendly industrial aesthetic, modern minimalist bedrooms (both dorms and doubles) and, most importantly, some incredible dining.
The culinary experience at Soulfood – Silo’s in-house restaurant – starts with breakfast (avo on toast, anyone?); before moving onto a lunch and dinner menu that’s big on, ahem, soulful flavours and locally sourced ingredients, including some great vegan options. And don’t forget to retire to the restaurant's inviting sofa area for a well-earned night cap.
So, whether you’re in town for Basel’s vibrant art scene, a summer weekender by the river, or to complete a business deal, Silo makes for a rather perfect boutique base – and one that will only leave you with positive travel memories…
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