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“The best location in Popayan”

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ParkLife Hostel Popayan
Reviewed December 28, 2012

I went to Popayan for a weekend with a group of friends (9 of us in total) and we loved the Park Life hostel right from the get go.
Firstly the location is spectacular, right on the beautiful central square of Popayan's historic center and within walking distance of all the museums, churches and sites in the city.
The hostel looks great with a fantastic common area made nice and bright by a giant skylight above. The beds in the dorms were comfortable and spacious and I got to use one of the private rooms too which was beautiful and well worth forking out a little extra for.
The staff were great at accommodating our big group and were full of all the info we needed to have a great few days in Popayan. From good local restaurants (very important for me) to bars, dance clubs and activities outside the city they were really knowledgeable and very friendly and down to earth.
The next time I'm in Popayan I'll definitely be staying in Park Life.

Room Tip: If you're a couple definitely splash out for one of the beautiful private rooms!
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Richie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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92 - 98 of 203 reviews

Reviewed December 26, 2012

I checked out other hostels in Popayan and decided on Parklife. The location is excellent, right on the plaza. It's clean and has a wonderful kitchen which guests can use. The owners have a lot of information for travelers, including bus information, and ideas for activities and side trips. They were extremely friendly and helpful.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Pat M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2012

This place is bang in the centre, right next to the cathedral and the views from the rooms are wicked. It is in a few words, the best hostel I've ever been in. The owners are super friendly, so much so we went to see ballet together. The rooms are so nicely decorated and the beds are so comfortable you end up sleeping in more than you should. The kitchen is fantastic, equipped with everything and the glass roof just attracts so much warmth and light. Every night they also show a movie at 9 pm so you can chill at the hostel if you don't feel like exploring the city. The owners give out so much information that you'll fill your days with sightseeing though. The common room is also roofed with glass and it's got huge colourful cushions and gets very warm. There's always some eclectic background music playing on so this hostel is simply great for relaxing, uploading some facebook pics or just chatting to other travellers. I am not kidding when I say this is the best hostel in Colombia, well South America.

Room Tip: All rooms are special
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank esmeralda_attard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 4, 2012

I’m still unsure as to how I feel about this hostel. The location can’t be beaten as it is on the main square of Popayan next door to the cathedral. The owners of the property are kind and welcoming and even got up at 3am to let us in as our bus was delayed. The hostel is light, spacious and has all the facilities you need. There were a few things that might have tainted my view of this hostel though. Firstly the bathroom bin wasn’t emptied once whilst we were there and as with most countries in South America you have to put your dirty toilet paper into the bins rather than the toilet. The communal kitchen was big but it didn’t have all the amenities for cooking and there were no tea towels to dry hands or washing up. Because people weren’t able to dry the dishes and put them away they would all just get stacked up. Whilst in an attempt to put some dishes away to make way for more washing up a plate fell and broke. We had our washing done whilst we were there and although it was very cheap to do our washing came back full of lint and one of my boyfriends t-shirts has been ruined somehow. Also the wifi is awful. The rooter was outside our room but we still had weak signal and pages took forever to load up. The beds aren't overly comfortable and the pillows were hard.The last comment I have is we decided to stay for an extra night and the staff said this was fine. When we went to settle the bill they said it was more expensive for the extra night than what it would have been if we had gone through hostelbookers. I found this very strange. Saying all this we enjoyed our time there and felt quite comfortable.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Gabriella B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ParkLife H, Propietario at ParkLife Hostel Popayan, responded to this reviewResponded November 6, 2012

Thank you for your comments guys. We have been around for a year and a half and we are still learning and improving. So it is good to receive constructive critics and tips.

We normally don´t reply to our guests reviews, as everybody is entitled to an opinion. However, we feel that the last bit of your review about the price we charged you it is an important point and want to make things clear.

When you book a room through hostelbookers or hostelworld you pay a 10% to these companies that we will never receive back because it is the rate that we, hostels, have to pay for their booking service. So that if the price of a room is 50.000, you will be paying to them 5.000 pesos and to us 45.000. When you are staying with us without booking in these sites you will be paying exactly the same price (50.000), but won´t be paying the 10% to these companies. In every hostel should be the same and if hostel owners want to charge you exactly the same price when you book in hostelbookers than when you book directly with them, they will be overcharging you. You can as well see this in the booking confirmation email they send you.

Take a look to the part of the contract we sign with hostelbookers explaining this:
“Commission and Rates
4.1 Except Bookings made subject to a Net Rate agreement, the Company shall be entitled to commission of 10% of the total value of each confirmed Booking. This will be collected by the Company in the form of a deposit from each Client at the time that they make a Booking.”

Hope this clarifies the issue.

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Reviewed October 24, 2012

Randomly came upon this cute little place in Popayan. The staff is amazing (English speaking, too). Very friendly and helpful with information. Kieran, one of the staff members, played board games will us for our stay there and showed us some great spots to eat. Our favorite, though, was definitely Sushi, the hostel cat! We loved the place so much, we decided to volunteer to work there for a week.
Very clean (cleaning lade comes almost every day), great mix of travelers that come stay, atmosphere is very comfortable, amazing central location in the plaza, and a good size kitchen for all your cooking needs.
I would recommend that anybody who visits popayan should come stay here.
You wont regret it!

Room Tip: The smaller dorm room is a bit quieter and darker, so if you want to sleep in longer, I recommend th...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank SeaBear49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2012 via mobile

Well I was recommended parklife a few times too but I have to say I just don't get all the fuss (maybe I've been lucky elsewhere and I've been travelling a long time). It's true, the guys are very helpful and the location is cool, right on Parque Ceras! I got a perfect view of a traditional catholic parade and the Sunday morning I was up for an early start and had my spirits lifted by hyms coming from the cathedral. They play descent movies every night at 9 (it's shame they don't post it earlier so you can plan around the ones you actually want to see)
But... the wifi was probably the worst I've had in 8 months travelling. Every door and floor board creaks. Beds are a bit small and not very comfortable. Showers are average. And the rules/signage written in hand with a red marker put up with tape all over the place make you feel like you are in your 1st share house when you leave home.
My review is a little negative but between stays at La Serrena and Casa de Francois it failed to impress. 

  • Stayed: October 2012
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Thank peeet77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 17, 2012

This hostel was already recommended to me in quito. And as soon as I entered the door I couldn't stop smiling - this place is just wonderful. It immediately felt like home, which is partly because of the warmth of the old building but mainly due to the kindness and charm of the owners and staff. And not to forget the location. Right next to the cathedral at parque caldas, which is one of the nicest and liveliest parks I've seen in colombia.

I stayed in a dorm. The price was fair and the room was good. You will only need it for sleeping anyway, as there is a wonderful hangout area under a glass roof, a kitchen and a tv/dvd room. Ask at the reception for good bars, and make sure to meet Augustin, the owner of el sotareño, to listen to old argentinian tango music.

I can only agree with everyone that the staff is very knowledgeable about popayan and the surroundings. I was always helped with every issue or question I had. And I had a lot of them. And finally a big thank you to all the staff for looking so kindly after me when I received bad news from home.

  • Stayed: September 2012
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Thank kruigo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about ParkLife Hostel Popayan

Address: Calle 5 6-19, Popayan, Colombia
Location: Colombia > Cauca Department > Popayan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 21 Specialty Lodging in Popayan
Price Range: $15 - $21 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Parklife Hostal is a hostel that has opened its doors in May 2011 in the very center of colonial Popayan, Colombia. Our concept of accommodation is based on comfort, good music and a good service. Park Life is the perfect place to sit around a table with your new found friends and a good cup of Colombian coffee. The comfort and the spaciousness of our common areas turn Parklife into a favorite place for the "adventurers" that decide to come to Colombia. Getting to Park Life hostel is easy, very easy. You only have to ask for the Central Park which in Popayan is called Parque Caldas or the Cathedral. In fact it is a nice 12-15 minutes walk from the bus station. ... more   less 
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