If you’re looking for a cheap and friendly hostel in Miraflores, Friend’s House is certainly worth considering. The small hostel has a welcoming atmosphere and a sociable vibe, without the noise and excesses found in many of Lima’s “party hostels.”
A Family Atmosphere in Miraflores, Lima
Friend’s House is a family-run hostel, run on a day-to-day basis by a friendly female administrator who treats guests like extended family members (unless someone steps way out of line, in which case you can expect a slap on the wrist). There’s a good chance you’ll also meet Andrea, an inquisitive four-year-old who has boundless energy and a fondness for conversation.
It’s easy to feel at home in Friend’s House. The communal spaces are cramped and the corridors are narrow, but everyone seems to get along rather than get in each other’s way. The dining room is a great spot for a chat over breakfast, while the lounge area is perfect for meeting fellow travelers.
Due to the affordable prices, the hostel tends to attract backpackers from Peru and other parts of South America. If you want to mingle with a few South Americans rather than wall-to-wall gringos, Friend’s House is a better option than many of the more expensive Miraflores hostels.
A Hostel in the Heart of Miraflores
Friend’s House is located on Manco Capac 368, about four blocks south of Parque Kennedy and four blocks north from El Malecón. In other words, it’s perfectly placed between the center of Miraflores and the coastal cliffs. The area is safe and the nearby streets are low on traffic, so noise is not a problem. The hostel has no sign outside; keep an eye out for the “Manco Capac 368” house number by the front door (see photo below).
As well as a prime location, you’ll also find plenty of handy services right on your doorstep. There’s a convenience store across the street from the hostel and a couple of laundry services half a block away. The nearby Avenida José Larco is home to most major Peruvian banks, all of which have ATMs.
There are two helpful travel agents -- TravelNet and Colón Travel -- on Jr. Colón (about two blocks from Friend’s House), both of which provide information about, and reservations for, bus travel and domestic airlines to numerous destinations in Peru.
If you arrive at Friend’s House without a reservation, you might find it fully booked (there are normally a few beds available, but not always). Don’t panic -- there are some decent alternatives nearby, including the slightly more expensive Friend’s House 2 on Jose Gonzalez 427.
Other options within walking distance include Lex Luthor’s House (Porta 550), Boulevard Backpacker Hostel (Porta 461) and -- going up a notch in both quality and price -- the two-star Solis Dies Hotel (Porta 245).
Hostel Rates and Services
The rooms in Friend’s House are far from sophisticated, but they are perfectly adequate considering the prices. The beds are comfortable, with warm blankets to keep off the coastal chill.
As of June 2012, prices are as follows (per person, per night):
- Dorm (up to eight beds): S/.20 (US$7.50)
- Quadruple (four beds): S/.20 (US$7.50)
- Triple (three beds): S/.23 (US$8.50)
- Double (two single beds): S/.25 (US$9.30)
Checkout is at midday. If you want to stay for a week or more, it’s worth asking for a discount (you might not get one, but there’s no harm in trying -- Peru is a haggling nation).
Additional services include:
- Free breakfast from 7 am to 10 am approx. (coffee, tea, bread, jelly/jam, eggs available)
- Lounge area with cable TV and free internet access (one computer)
- Free Wi-Fi in lounge area and in rooms next to the lounge area (not in those further away)
- Cable TV in some rooms
- Three bathrooms with hot water
- Free use of kitchen
- Book exchange (limited)
- Staff can arrange taxis upon request
I’ve stayed at Friend’s House on many occasions: as a solo traveler, with friends and even with my family when they came to visit (we took a six-bed room for ourselves). The hostel is great value for money, the staff is friendly and always helpful, and the location is excellent.
It’s not a fancy establishment, nor is it faultless (no safe deposit boxes; hit-and-miss hot showers; can get crowded when fully booked). For budget travelers, however, Friend’s House is a welcoming hostel in the heart of Miraflores. It also seems to attract a friendly and mixed group of travelers from across the globe. Recommended.
Friend's House Contact Information
Address: Friend’s House, Manco Capac 368, Miraflores, Lima
Phone: (511) 4466248
Website: No website at time of writing