Strictly speaking, Maurie and I aren’t digital nomads – we have a lovely home and way too many personal possessions – but we do spend a lot of time working while we’re on the road. I’ve been working that way for years, but it’s certainly got easier in recent years with more streamlined technology and near-universal wi-fi. And now with e-sims in our phones, it’s even easier to stay connected when we’re abroad.
So I guess you could say we are digital nomads of sorts. In fact, this very post is being written from our temporary pad in The Netherlands. This flexible working life calls for all sorts of creative solutions and there are lots of places helping to meet that demand. One such is YHA Australia, a member of Hostelling International. Two of its hostels, YHA Brisbane City and YHA Blue Mountains, have introduced Y-Hive: workspaces and meeting rooms that make it super easy to combine work and travel. A third Y-Hive is planned for YHA Byron Bay.
We were invited to experience Y-Hive during a stay at YHA Brisbane City. We were impressed with the workspace and the accommodation on many counts, not least being that this hostel has some of the most stunning views in Brisbane. Its rooftop terrace has a swimming pool, an outdoor dining area, and a bar from which we were able to order cocktails and snacks. We enjoyed sweet potato fries, dumplings, and an Aperol Spritz that met our exacting standards (!) Like other YHAs, it also has a kitchen where you can cook your own meals.
The terrace looks out over the Brisbane River and the view is especially grand at night when you can see all the buildings on the city skyline lit up. It’s a great ambience. Brisbane’s semi-tropical climate means the weather is almost always balmy and perfect for relaxing alfresco.
The co-working space, Y-Hive, is on the same level as the rooftop terrace. It’s very spacious and light-filled, with a variety of desks and meeting rooms. It’s a quiet space with ergonomic chairs, high-speed wi-fi, and tea and coffee making facilities. Inclusions depend on what sort of package you buy. Options range from hourly passes to annual memberships loaded with perks.
For $10 a day, you can book a hot desk/shared bench with charging points. Alternatively, you can pay a further $5 and reserve a large sit/stand desk with ergonomic chair, wireless charging and a monitor to act as your second screen. You can also book a 4-6 person meeting room for a fee, including catering if you need it.
Staff are on hand 24/7 to help, and printing and scanning facilities are available. Whether you are true digital nomads, or you’re like us and just want to combine some work with your travels, or you simply need a quiet place to take a meeting, YHA has you covered with this well thought out co-working space.
For guests who are staying in, there are various activities so you can get to know your fellow co-workers (and don’t forget, people of all ages stay at hostels these days, despite the Y in the name). YHA Brisbane City has trivia nights, movie nights, meditation classes, yoga classes and more.
As well as shared rooms and shared ensuites, the hostel has family rooms and double rooms with private ensuite bathrooms. We stayed in a ‘double ensuite premium room’ on the second floor and while it was relatively compact, it had everything we needed for a very comfortable stay, including tea and coffee making facilities. The staff were very helpful and kindly helped carry our luggage to the second floor. Checkout, done online, was quick and easy.
We couldn’t have faulted the accommodation yet it’s about to get even better as the private rooms are set to be upgraded this month.
Aside from the stunning view, one of the great things about YHA Brisbane City is its location. Just 10 minutes’ walk from Roma Street station, it’s ideal for catching public transport including the Airtrain to Brisbane Airport. It’s an easy walk to Roma Street Parkland, the entertainment and museum precinct at South Bank, the pubs and restaurants in Caxton Street, and sporting and other events at Suncorp Stadium. There are so many things to do when you want to step out of the office.
If you go:
With thanks to YHA for very generously hosting us for two nights. We stayed in room 214. The top 2 photos were supplied by YHA and are used with permission.
If you enjoyed this post, you might also like our post about Sydney Harbour YHA, which has a fascinating story behind it.