hotel check-in

Laid-back hostel-hotel hybrid in Iceland

Hlemmur Square, centrally located in downtown Reykjavik, is emblematic of a new breed of stylish hostel-hotel hybrids, with 180 hostel beds in shared dorms spread across two floors, and 17 hotel rooms on a separate floor, with more to come. The hotel room was simply yet tastefully decorated with a white love seat, a wooden coffee table, a shaggy brown rug and an exceptionally comfortable king bed. The lobby’s vibe, though, was all backpacker, no bellhop. Rates for a hostel bed start at about $20; for a hotel room, $175 (

New York Times

deal of the week

Renovations bring price drop at classic hotel

El Tovar Hotel on the south rim of the Grand Canyon is offering sale rates during its renovation. The Raise the Roof Winter sale applies to stays through March 6, except blackout dates of Feb. 14-16. Discounted rates start at $139, including taxes, a savings of $60. The historic hotel, which opened in 1905, is undergoing roof replacement and structural work on its terrace level. Work will be done only from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 1-888-297-2757 or go to www.grand The sale prices end in March, but renovations will continue through June.

Washington Post