When did you open Hosteria Patagonia and what inspired you to do so?
We opened Hosteria Patagonia on the 1st of May, 2019. My boyfriend and I always wanted to open a business related to our profession, but that never happened (I’m a nurse and my boyfriend is a medical visitor). But for the last four years, I worked in the reception of a hotel and, three years ago, we started studying to be tour guides. We’ve temporarily suspended our studies because we had a baby 16 months ago called Eloy and he occupies all our free time at the moment. I think that, when he starts school, I can resume my studies.
We have loved Calafate since the first time we came here (we have lived here since 2015) and we wanted to do something that gave us freedom with our schedules, and we realised that we had the ability to manage a property. We set out and everything went perfectly.
What do you love most about Hosteria Patagonia?
What I like most about my job is meeting people from all over the world and learning about different cultures through the people we meet.
What has been the most rewarding part of opening Hosteria Patagonia?
The most rewarding thing about having my own business is being able to manage my schedule according to my needs.
What has been your biggest challenge and how have you overcome this?
My biggest fear was not raising the money to pay the rent. I used everything I learned during my years of work and made the prices of my accommodation competitive and accessible, compared to the rest of the accommodations in the same category.
Tell us about your team!
There are four of us working now: me, my boyfriend Nahuel, and two cleaning service ladies: Mariel and Macarena. We also have a female cat called Frida!
What's next for Hosteria Patagonia?
We are currently in high season, but when the season ends in May, we want to renovate some spaces, paint walls, redecorate, and then the holidays will come of course.
How has Tab helped Hosteria Patagonia?
Tab was a turning point in our business, since it allowed us to charge in foreign currencies and allowed us all our reservations to be in order.
Why is El Calafate a great place to visit?
Calafate is the best place in the whole world to visit! Here we have the most important, imposing and beautiful glacier called Perito Moreno. It is a natural wonder and part of our global heritage.
Are there any trends or changes that you've noticed in tourism?
The most important change that I have noticed is that tourists want to have more freedom when they visit El Calafate. There are a lot of tours, agencies, and options, but people now want to rent a car, go to visit places on their own, and experience freedom and nature.
What would your advice be for anyone thinking about starting their own hotel business?
My advice to any entrepreneur is: faith, perseverance, and trust. Everything is possible.
You can find out more about Hosteria Patagonia on their website at https://www.hosteria-patagonia.com.ar/es-ar.