The Burrard Hotel, Vancouver, Canada

7 Hidden Hotel Gems Around the World – From $100 a Night or Less

A hotel stay need not be a pricey or franchise-driven affair. Ever since I’ve started working at HotelsCombined, I’ve stumbled upon dozens of unique hotels around the globe that are not only quirky and cool, but also won’t break the bank.

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Here are some of my top recommendations for budget-friendly accommodation options that go beyond the cookie-cutter mould:

#1: The Burrard (Vancouver, Canada)

The Burrard Hotel, Vancouver, Canada
The Burrard Hotel, Vancouver, Canada

It may not look like much from the outside, but the historic Burrard hotel is one of the city’s newest retro hot spots. Thanks to a recent renovation, this once run-down motel now offers sleek, playful lodgings that have made it a favourite amongst travellers. Boasting a 1950s-esque courtyard and located just around the corner from quirky Davie Street (the hub of Vancouver’s vibrant gay community), this budget-friendly hotel is the perfect home base for the young and trendy. Bonus: it’s a quick hop from the city centre and Robson Street — Canada’s version of Rodeo Drive. Nightly rates from $100.

#2: The Good Hotel (San Francisco, U.S.A)

The Good Hotel, San Francisco, California
The Good Hotel, San Francisco, California

Tucked away in what some might refer to as one of San Francisco’s more “interesting” neighbourhoods, this philanthropic venture features a phone that connects you directly to a local non-profit for volunteer gigs. The furniture is eco-friendly and guests are encouraged to reuse and recycle throughout their stay. Bonus: The Good Hotel is a pet-friendly property — there’s just an additional $25 fee per furry friend you bring along with you. Fifi or Fido will even receive treats and water/food bowls upon check-in! Nightly rates from $95.

#3: Citta del Mare Hotel Village (Terrasini, Italy)

Citta del Mare Hotel Village (Terrasini, Italy)
Citta del Mare Hotel Village (Terrasini, Italy)

Situated along the Northwest coast of Sicily, Citta del Mare Hotel Village boasts spectacular panoramic seaside views, three swimming pools, a private beach, a slew of activities and rooms with ocean view balconies. Not too shabby for a budget stay. Bonus: the most awesome waterslide of all time. OF. ALL.TIME! Nightly rates from $85.

#4: Hotel the Exchange (Amsterdam, Netherlands)

Hotel the Exchange, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Hotel the Exchange, Amsterdam, Netherlands

A design hotel with out-of-this-world décor (picture rooms dotted with mannequins and draped in rope and wire), the centrally-located Hotel the Exchange partnered with the Amsterdam Fashion Institute to create 61 entirely original quarters. Bonus: the hotel’s trendy neighbours include a boutique department store and a funky café. Nightly rates from $83.

#5: Relax Bay Resort (Ko Lanta, Thailand)

Relax Bay Resort, Ko Lanta, Thailand
Relax Bay Resort, Ko Lanta, Thailand

It doesn’t get much better than this — featuring an exclusive stretch of sandy beach with turquoise waters, quaint tent and bungalow lodgings, a lively beach bar and hammocks galore, it’s hard to believe the idyllic Relax Bay Resort is actually within a backpacker’s budget. Bonus: morning yoga sessions are offered on the beach to help guests fully embrace the hotel’s Zen-like atmosphere. Nightly rates from $52.

#6: Qbic Hotel (Amsterdam, Netherlands)

Qbic Hotel, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Qbic Hotel, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Colourful and compact, the Qbic Hotel‘s cutting-edge “cube” rooms are lit with vibrant neon lights and a futuristic feel. And though small and refreshingly clutter-free, the space here accommodates all the usual hotel amenities including a TV, safe and fully-equipped bathroom. Bonus: this forward-thinking hotel even offers a self-serve check-in terminal in its lobby — no waiting in line. Nightly rates from $60.

#7: Hotel 1961 (Siem Reap, Cambodia)

Hotel 1961, Siem Reap, Cambodia
Hotel 1961, Siem Reap, Cambodia

Quirky and playful, the ultra-affordable Hotel 1961 is a pop culture museum and art gallery in one. Its four theme rooms include a Kennedy suite filled with JFK memorabilia and a “propaganda” room that narrates the standoff between the US and Soviet Union throughout the Cold War. Bonus: rooms are stocked with an assortment of books and DVDs — now that’s what we call getting bang for your buck. Nightly rates from $32.

*All prices quoted in US dollars. Prices are dependent on dates and rooms booked.

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