Staying in a poshtel is the trend right now. As travellers get bored with ordinary hotels, poshtels are stepping in. Long tipped as a travel trend, these now-popular hostel-hotel hybrids cater for tourists keen to skimp on costs, but not glamour or style. Poshtel – otherwise known as an upscale or luxury hostel – combines the style and comfort of a boutique hotel with the price and sensibilities of a hostel. Poshtels often occupy intriguing buildings, place an emphasis on design, and offer spacious, clean rooms, freebies and perks, cool bars, top-notch restaurants and, perhaps, even a rooftop lounge or pool – and all at an affordable price.
Here’s our pick of six of the best poshtels in Malaysia.
Located on Jalan Sultan, Poshtel Mingle was derelict until two years ago. Transformed from a century-old colonial-era building from the 1920s, the establishment is now a great social hostel to stay in Kuala Lumpur. Mingle’s combination of heritage, culture, and aesthetics makes it a great option for travellers who crave authentic experiences and opportunities to connect socially with like-minded travellers and backpackers.
While heritage and cultural tradition are the main draw of Poshtel, the hostel also offers a series of whimsical spaces, like The Deceased@Chinatown, a death-themed cafe; Potions@Highstreet, a cocktail parlour inspired by spellbinding fantasy sagas like Harry Potter and The Chronicles of Narnia; Leaf & Co, a cafe with the old world charm of 'Kopitiam'. Mingle isn't like any other hostel or boutique hotel – the poshtel combines affordable rooms with unique social events for the travellers and locals, including daily tours, events, and activities exclusively for Mingle guests.
A short walk away from the hustle and bustle of the more touristy areas, Paper Plane is a favourite among flashpackers and budget seekers. Located in a quieter part of Bukit Bintang, Paper Plane differentiates itself from other hostels in the city with a characterful, modern and hip design. Refurbished and rebuilt from a 100-year-old colonial house, the interior of the hostel is decorated with wall paintings by artists, so every corner has a story to tell. This place oozes with quirky details, while still feeling cosy. Ideal for backpackers on a slightly higher budget, Paper Plane is among the best hostels in Kuala Lumpur for its high standards of accommodation. Paper Plane has a wide range of rooms, from single and family rooms to dorm-like lodgings for small groups. Upon arrival, one is greeted by a glasshouse lobby that filled with plants and natural light. The hostel also features a charming rooftop garden – a perfect place to chill out.
BackHome is housed in a row of pre-war shophouses, carefully preserved since the 1880s. The modern interiors feature spacious dorms built around a light filled courtyard, a screening room and a buzzing hipster café that serves the best coffee in the area. Conveniently located within walking distance of Masjid Jamek LRT station, this poshtel is set among an enclave rich with cultural attractions, hundreds of f textile, sundry shops and food outlets. As the name suggests, BackHome exudes a homey feel by placing guest names on doors for everyone to interact on first name terms, encourages and nurtures a laid-back, homey vibe where travellers can mingle with locals, immersing themselves in the KL way of life.
Reggae Mansion, located in the heart of the capital, occupies an immaculate, updated historic building. The poshtel is housed inside a big converted mansion, with lovely high ceilings and a sense of nostalgic feel throughout the inviting reception and relaxation areas. Surrounded by shops 2-minute walk from Masjid Jamek LRT station, and 6-minute walk from the lively stalls of the Central Market, this funky poshtel benefits much from the feel of the surrounding neighbourhood. Dubbed the best party hostel in Kuala Lumpur, Reggae Mansion’s main draw is their roof terrace. The terrace has a rooftop bar with awe-inspiring views of Petronas Twin Tower, KL Tower and the historical Masjid Jamek neighbourhood. Equipped with BBQ area, affordable booze and an awesome lineup of DJs each night, anyone looking for late-night music with a fun-loving young crowd will find Reggae Mansion to be the best hostel in Kuala Lumpur.
Established as the first ever flashpacker hostel in Malaysia, Ryokan Muntri Boutique Hostel is a heritage guesthouse that combines the charm of Penang's yesteryears with modern amenities. Conveniently located on Muntri Street, the poshtel is a stone's throw from Penang's major historical landmarks and tourist attractions. The rich influence of culture and heritage of this vicinity adds yet another trait to its personality – a backpacker haven. Sandwiched between the famous bar streets of Penang – Jalan Penang and Lebuh Chulia – and surrounded by picture perfect architectural and cultural sites, Ryokan is the perfect accommodation to be for an all-round experience on a budget.
Located in Downtown Kota Kinabalu, Hostel Oikos Poshtel has all the luxuries one would expect in a boutique hotel – it serves a scrumptious continental breakfast and the restaurant dishes out some excellent Malaysian food. The interiors spell of class and sophistication, and it has a shared lounge as well. Other perks include Wi-Fi, electric kettles, free bottled water, dry cleaning services, and private bathroom with a shower and a hairdryer. What’s more, all 10 rooms feature comforts like memory foam beds and premium bedding, while conveniences include refrigerators and microwaves. Located a mere 1.9km from Gaya Street, this poshtel is within a 15-minute walk of Imago Shopping Mall and Filipino Market. Sabah State Mosque and Centre Point are also within 2 km. Guests can easily access nearby destinations from its location without missing the wholesome, cosy and home-away-from-home experience of a poshtel.