Going into our time in Patagonia, we knew that hostels were going to be more expensive than other places that we visited. We upped our budget a bit but were lucky enough to find a discounted rate at Hotel Milodon in Puerto Natales, the city near Torres del Paine national park.
Hotel Milodon – Room 11
We were put into room #11 which was close to the communal dining area. We got a little bit of noise as people headed to breakfast but the noise wasn’t too bad.
Everything was clean and our bed was comfortable enough. It wasn’t the most spacious room that we have had, but we have also had much smaller rooms.
Our biggest complaint about our room was the fact that it was always quite cold. We had heaters in the room but later learned that they are connected with a thermostat and only turn on when the temperature is a certain temperature. Annoyingly, the thermostats are located in the lower lobby where there is a gas burning fireplace which keeps the temperature high. I think in the 3 nights that we were in the room, our heat may have been turned on once. Whenever we were in the room we were under the covers in our bed or covered with throw blankets that were left in our room.
When we first saw the shower we laughed and called it the car wash shower. It had 3 options – a rainfall showerhead, hand held showerhead and a 6 showerhead body shower. We learned that high demand shower times like the morning were not the best for showers as we had low water pressure and the temperature was finicky. When we showered in the middle of the afternoon we had great water pressure and a consistent temperature.
There was a heated towel rack which excited me but was flawed for 2 reasons: it was across the bathroom from the shower, so it wasn’t really functional and similar to the heater, it didn’t really turn on during our time at the hotel.
Hotel Milodon – Amenities
Since things in Patagonia were expensive, we were looking forward to getting a free breakfast. When we went to eat, we realized that the breakfast was pretty weak. There was toast, cold cuts, cheese and cupcakes. Fortunately for us, Andy noticed that the breakfast was put out the night before. Since everything was out unrefrigerated all night, we avoided anything that required refrigeration to avoid any possible sickness.
One evening Andy and I wanted something sweet. Andy noticed that the cupcakes were out in the kitchen. He very sneakily ran to the kitchen, grabbed 2 cupcakes and ran back to the room. I thought it was hilarious that he was worried about getting caught taking something that was in the common area. The cupcakes were alright, but as is common with all of our South American desserts, there was something that was a little off of what we really wanted.
We had wifi that worked in our room which was a plus. It was decent speed but nothing to write home about. Whenever we were at the hostel, we loaded our pictures to our Google drive to keep everything safe should anything happen to our computer.
The location was great. We were right in the heart of the downtown area, close to restaurants, bars and shops.
The hostel was alright but there were a few issues that we had with it:
- The front door was locked and often times we had to wait a while after ringing the bell before the door was opened. One would think this is a non-issue but in the cold of the city, even a short period of time felt like an eternity.
- Only 1 person on staff spoke English and she wasn’t around. We got around with our basic Spanish, but someone that doesn’t speak Spanish could struggle.
- Cash is the only way to pay, a non-issue, but when we paid in Chilean pesos we were charged a 19% tax. Tax on lodging is something that we didn’t pay anywhere else in Chile. I think that this was a scam as they only wanted to be paid in US dollars, demanding more to be paid in the local currency.
If we were to return to Puerto Natales, I would stay somewhere else. While the location was good, the fact that the room was cold and it was hard to communicate with the staff was a deal breaker. I would try and book a room at Wild, a hostel that I originally wanted to book but did not have any private rooms available on the days that we needed.