The Victoria Hotel is a San Telmo institution and one of the best deals for budget travelers to Buenos Aires.
This historic, family-run hotel sits on the narrow and lively Chacabuco Street, but once you enter its sturdy confines you’ll find a tranquil old-style pensión with rooms surrounding an open patio full of plants.
For some reason the San Telmo hotel ‘for families and gentlemen’ doesn’t make it into the listings of many popular guidebooks anymore, and maybe that’s why it’s still so affordable.
A private room with a shared bathroom costs a mere AR$80 (under US$10 as of November 2013) for one and AR$150 (under US$20) for two. A room for one with a private bathroom runs for AR$150. The reasonable rates are quite a contrast to the numerous ‘tango hostels’ in the neighborhood, which charge about the same rate for a bed in a dormitory shared with strangers.
Here you’ll inevitably meet the hard-working owner, 87-year-old Victoriano Prieto, who continues to oversee the hotel. He took over management in 1959 here, eight years after emigrating from Galicia, Spain.
The international array of guests here includes experienced travelers and tango aficionados mostly from Europe and a handful from Japan. Housed on the third floor of the hotel are long-term guests — mostly a mix of students, travelers and families from neighboring Latin American countries.
There are shared kitchen and laundry facilities available for all guests. The first floor courtyard has wifi and is a lovely place to sit outside and lunch with visitors or catch up on email.
“We think we offer a good deal here. This is a unique place,” says Daniel Daglio, Prieto’s son-in-law who also works at the hotel.
The Victoria may also be more secure than the more transitory hostels on the surrounding blocks. No one messes with the Victoria — they have their ears on the ground.
The front door is locked from 10 p.m. and guests are given a key.
The Victoria is a safe, affordable option for savvy travelers who are beyond the typical hostel age and willing to forfeit a bit of luxury for an authentic Argentine hotel experience.
The Victoria has partnered with Wander Argentina to offer exclusive online booking through our website.