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“Have no fear, Gladys is here.”

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El Retorno Travellers' Hostel
Reviewed March 31, 2014

I lost all my credit cards on the way to the airport and had only
enough money to reach El Retorno completely unsure of what would
happen. Gladys put me at ease and told me to enjoy my holiday exuding
complete and reassuring confidence that everything would work out. It
did, largely because of her. Gladys calmed me down, helped me get
assistance, helped me organize a holiday within Puerto Madryn in
record time. It was the best part of my entire Argentinian voyage.
All her recommendations worked well for me.

The staff is friendly but thankfully neither overly earnest nor
formulaic in their interaction. It felt like a genuinely homely
atmosphere. The rooms were clean and I had a well-lit room. The
kitchen was sufficient for my needs.

I am in my late 20s and was travelling alone. I don't enjoy large
youth hostels but didn't want to stay in a resort-style hotel either,
for financial as well as social reasons. El Retorno perfectly
suited my needs for a reasonably priced, quiet but social environment.

Room Tip: I took a single room. When I travelled the wireless signal was very weak in my room, so you might wa...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled solo
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Thank DoktorVee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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23 - 29 of 156 reviews

Reviewed March 18, 2014

We planned to stay only 1 night, but ended up staying 3 nights. The lady that ownes the hostal is super friendly and helpful. She can arrange all kinds of excursions for you and treats you like family! The rooms are small, but very clean and light with nice high ceilings. Location is perfect. We would for sure go here again!!

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank Geert P P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2014 via mobile

Positives are that wifi works well, room is clean and there is a small courtyard with a few lines to hang your clothes.

Positive is also that you can get a private double bed roon with shared bathroom for 300 pesos, which is relatively cheap.

Negative is the service. Breakfast is not self-service and you have to wait that they kindly serve you, taking a long long time.

Moreover the quantity of bread, jam and butter is ridiculous for two people so you end up asking several times to top up with some waiting time between.

Other big negative point is excursions offered through her. It was said that a guide would bring us to see Elephant Seals but it was actually just a driving service. The lady who gave us a ride was not a qualified guide and did not explain nothing about these animals. When you pay for a service it is expected to receive it.

Additionnally we logically expected an English speaking guide as we both speak much better English thab Spanish. Of course the lady did noy speak a word of English and looked like a person using her spare time to nake some black market money.

According to other qualified guides and tourist agencies, they feedback us the same issue whe we were mentioning the hostel name.

It is a shame.

Stayed: February 2014, traveled with friends
1  Thank francoiskrafft
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2014

We had a private room with a shared bathroom, we had to share it with another double room which was fine. The room is pretty small as there is only a place for a double sized bed. The big fan hanging above the bed is a big plus though. Furthermore the room and bathroom were clean, so we were happy with that aswell. The staff is nice and had some good advice on tours which they were happy to book for us. Besides that they made sure we had a good time and were very friendly. We would like to recommend the Punta Nimfas tour where we saw elephant seals. This tour also offers some great views of the coast line. Ask for Hugo the guide at the reception, he speaks English and is a lot of fun!

Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
Thank Michiel L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 3, 2013

Staying in this hostel was a truly terrible experience solely because of the owner who makes her guests really uncomfortable after they have booked their tours, so that she can get more guests to stay and book more tours.

From the first minute we got there we realized we had been deceived by her descriptions on hostelbookers.com. A double room with room facilities listed as including: 'bathroom, toilet and shower' apparently means a shared bathroom, because it does not say the word 'ensuite' next to it. No other hostel has ever made such false claims in 10 months of using hostelbookers.com all around South America, yet the owner insisted that this was industry standard. She offered us an 'ensuite' but it was a massive price gouge, so we were left with a shared room (which we accepted in defeat after a 10 hour bus journey from across Argentina). She then proceeded to harangue us with all sorts of timeshare-alike sales patter about the tours she offers. We declined due to her pushy nature, which shortly became beyond pushy, and veered into aggressive and rude. This persisted the duration of our stay.

Along with the extremely annoying sales pitches, we also caught her out listening to our conversations secretly while hiding in another room behind a door, moaning about the foreign guests like us in Spanish (she thought, incorrectly that we did not speak Spanish), and generally being rude to all the guests who stayed there.

We booked our tours direct with some local operator who actually knew what he was doing (El Chalten), and when she found out, she began what almost amounted to a hate campaign against us. She questioned us: 'why did you no book through me?' as if we had murdered her cat or something, trying to make us feel guilty. She told us she had no time to check anything that we asked for - she told other guests who had already gone on their tours with her the same thing. Don't even dream of staying longer here if you have the misfortune to find yourself checked in, she would never permit that unless you were to book on more tours.

Even other operators in the area referred to her as crazy and greedy. And now I look back on the reviews warning us of what to expect, I see she was always like this since 2007, so I now really pity her, because she will always be greedy and horrible, and will never be satisfied.

One of the other tricks the hostel pulled was telling us that water from the shower was restricted to 2 minutes of usage, because of the water scarcity in Puerto Madryn. She only did this with guests who had booked tours already, even going so far as to turn lights off when people were in the shower to make them uncomfortable.

My advice is to run as far away from this place as fast as you can. There are numerous hostels in Puerto Madryn - we stayed in one after we left which is nicer, bigger, cheaper AND has a private bathroom. The reason there are so many good reviews for this hostel? Simple: people check in, they do their tour, they leave after a day or two, and do not realize that the tour was too expensive, and their review is about the memory of the beautiful Puerto Madryn nature tours, NOT the awful hostel they stayed in, ruined by the greedy owner.

Also the breakfast was minimal and tasteless, the hostel was noisy with too many beds for the size of the living space (so the owner can make even more money!), and the WiFi never worked properly, and things we left in the fridge mysteriously disappeared. Avoid!

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank colincclark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 20, 2013

This was the only place we were able to book a room in Puerto Madryn. It seemed clean, and said breakfast was included. Everything was fine until we booked out excursions through Chalten travel instead of through the hostel, at which point Glady became less friendly. We almost didn't get breakfast one morning as it took half an hour to be served despite sitting there from when breakfast was meant to start. Breakfast is basic. Fresh bread and butter with jam, and a coffee.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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3  Thank fantasticrachelfox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 26, 2013

Had a good time in that Hostel. Staff was helpful and nice. Breakfast was pretty good in comparison to other hostels. Location is ok, walkable distance to the bus terminal. The hostel is very safe, the door is always locked. They are helpful espcially for planning trips. I did for example a full day trip to peninsula valdes, which I strongly recommend.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled solo
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Thank Max A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Retorno Travellers' Hostel

Address: Calle B Mitre 798 | Mitre 798, Puerto Madryn U9120AOP, Argentina
Location: Argentina > Patagonia > Province of Chubut > Puerto Madryn
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 64 Specialty Lodging in Puerto Madryn
Price Range: $74 - $119 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
If you´re looking for a cosy place to chill out after travelling around for such a long time, Hostel El Retorno offers you the peace and quiet that you would expect from your own home.Free pick up from bus station! Please!! Send´s your arrival time and bus company name.From 12am the hostel has a calm and relaxed atmosphere,so you can finally enjoy a good night´s sleep!!!Gladys and Matías will look after you and help you on your way to having a fantastic time here in Patagonia.Friendly and family atmosphere!! Located downtown, 2 blocks from the seashore and also close to restaurants, shops etc.Private or shared accomodation in large brigth rooms:- Private rooms with a choice from 2 to 6 beds and doubles ensuite, with tv cable, wi fi,heater,ceiling fan, lockers. Linen blankets and towels are included in the price.Room is serviced every day. Constant hot water available.-Shared rooms with 4/6/8 beds with individual lockers, heater, wi fi, 24 hs hot water.Linen and blankets are included in the price.Room services every day.Three large common area:-Fully-equipped kitchen with dining room and patio.-Bright and spacious living room with a nice balcony.-Comfortable dining room with tv cable, internet and wi fi. Excursions to península Valdés and Punta Tombo at discount prices!!!! If you want to know the rates please contact us in advance.Pick up from Trelew airport $arg 35.00. Send us your arrival time and flight number 24hrs access to the hostel..If you need apartments in front of the sea for rent( 2 bedrooms, bathroom- kitchen- big living room with tv cable-garage) contact us, we´ll be able to inform you.We look forward to meeting you soon!!! Regards ! Gladys and Matias. ... more   less 
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