For my first visit to Montevideo, Uruguay, I was looking for a centrally located hotel and chose the Axsur Design Hotel, a small, independent hotel in the old town with walking access to the sights I was interested to see. It turned out to be a positive surprise and a great base for my stay – read on to find out why!
Location: The Axsur Design Hotel is located in the old town of Montevideo, a block away from the Rambla waterfront promenade, two blocks from the pedestrian area and within 10 minutes walking distance of many of the historic sights, restaurants and shops. The hotel is about 35-45 minutes by taxi from the airport or about 1h by bus. You can reach the ferry terminal with connection to Buenos Aires in a 5 minute taxi ride or a 15 minute walk. This makes it a great base to explore Montevideo’s old town and its historic and cultural sights. If you are planning to spend most of your time on the beach, Pocito Beach is about 15 minutes by taxi or 30 minutes by bus and a beachfront hotel would make more sense.
Room: Despite closely resembling the internet photos, the room was a positive surprise, due to the size, quality of materials and design. My room was the size of a studio apartment, with a sitting area, a kitchen and an open, but separated bedroom. There is plenty of storage space, so you could easily plan a longer stay in comfort. The floors were a very nice, shiny hardwood, furniture was modern and stylish and there were some color accents without being loud. There was a dining table with chairs, as well as a small desk to work and lounger to relax. The bed was queen-size, comfortable and made up with high quality sheets. The closet is used as a room divider, providing distinct sleeping and living/working areas. The kitchen is small and has a sink, fridge and cabinets, but oddly no microwave, coffee facilities or stove, so you are limited to buy, store and consume food, but can’t do much cooking or preparing. The free wifi internet in the room is reliable and fast at 6.2 Mbps.
Off the sleeping area is a large bathroom, held in black & white, with a large shower-over tub with partial glass partition, a stylish and practical sink and a toilet and bidet. Everything was modern, clean and functional – so style and function went hand in hand, not always a given in independent boutique hotels!
Service: Service throughout my stay was friendly, attentive and helpful. My check-in was quick and the staff spoke English well. I was on my way quickly and received all the information about town, a map and some tips. Housekeeping did it’s job well throughout my stay, cleaning the room each day thoroughly, replacing towels and amenities as desired and without getting into the way. The restaurant staff for breakfast was equally friendly, kept the buffet stocked, tables clean and brought special order items quickly. English was limited, but it worked out well enough.
Restaurant & Amenities: My room rate included breakfast served on the ground floor. The restaurant is small, but tastefully designed. The buffet consisted of a small selection of fruit, bread, pastries, jams, cheese and cold cuts. Staff could make a selection of made-to-order egg dishes and they were well done and tasty. The buffet is geared towards local customers, so if you are keen on specific European croissants, American muffins or hot Asian dishes, you are out of luck.
Value & Conclusion: At a rate of $77/night for a large, modern suite in a central location, including breakfast, the Axsur Design Hotel is great value and deserves its positive online reviews. If you want a central location in the old town, this is a great choice and I’d recommend it. If you are planning a beach getaway, I’d suggest something right on the beach of your choice, and going to the old town for a day trip instead!