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John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
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Is Albergue de San Francisco in Zafra open or closed?

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amancio

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances, Norte, Primit, Salvador, Portug, Arag, Ingles, VdlP, Leban-Vadin, Fisterra, Invierno, LePuy
I am pretty sure I read it is open now again
 
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A collection of Camino Fridge Magnets
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Via2010

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
06/07 & 12 Camino Francés, 08-10 Via de la Plata, 13/14 & 17 Camino Portugués, 18 Camino Primitivo
Antonio Retamosa is the author of the most up-to-date list of accomodation on VdP. So if he declares, that this albergue has re-opened, you can rely on that information

Antonio Retamosa

According to his Homepage the albergue is open now.

BC
Alexandra
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
But why stay at the albergue turístico when you can stay with Antonio at Albergue Van Gogh. Thanks to him and the Amigos association, the signage into Zafra is excellent. The arrows take you straight to his place. He has a real love for the Camino and remains open all year round when the Albergue Turísticos along the Plata close whenever they feel like it. I personally would rather give my money to him.
 

Via2010

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
06/07 & 12 Camino Francés, 08-10 Via de la Plata, 13/14 & 17 Camino Portugués, 18 Camino Primitivo
I know both albergues. I stayed in San Francisco 2008 and in the Association Albergue this summer.
I really like the spirit of the Association Albergue and think that Antonio is a great host. So if I had a choice, I would go there again.

But I know that there were pilgrims complaining and they probably would have felt more comfortable in the other Albergue.

Antonio speaks only little english and some of my fellow pilgrims who did not speak spanish interpreted his limited expression in English as rudeness. He has some strict rules, e. g. he does not want you to shower more than 10 minutes (as other pilgrims need hot water, too) and he may start bumming on the bathroom door. He closes the albergue at 21.30 h and then he closes the kitchen and the upper bathroom (unless the upper dormitory is opened and occupied by pilgrims) during the night. So there is only one bathroom available during the night. If you have put food and drinks for your journey in the fridge in the evening, you have to wait until he opens the kitchen for communal breakfast at 7.30 h (which some pilgrims thought to be pretty late, as they wanted to leave earlier). It is one cup of coffee or tea p.P. for breakfast, one Magdalena, one Joghurt...
Antonio asks for a "donativo" of 12.50 €, which is definitely ok for bed and breakfast, but does not really fit into the concept of a donativo-albergue (where your donation should be orientated on what you pay elsewhere, but leaves the amount at your discretion).

I found Antonio very kind and helpful. Upon Arrival my watch needed new batteries, he explained me where to go. When he had Gazpacho for lunch, he offered me a cup of it, too. Later I found out that the Association was selling very nice and unique VdP-T-Shirts at this albergue and I wanted to buy one as a souvenir. Unfortunately on the shelf there was none left in size L, which I thought to be the right size for me. He looked in his storage-room for a size L and then he started to unfold the remaining T-Shirts in size M until we both found one which seemed to be big enough for me. We had a long conversation about the VdP, the recent changes on various Caminos and the Associations work.

BC
Alexandra
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I know both albergues. I stayed in San Francisco 2008 and in the Association Albergue this summer.
I really like the spirit of the Association Albergue and think that Antonio is a great host. So if I had a choice, I would go there again.

But I know that there were pilgrims complaining and they probably would have felt more comfortable in the other Albergue.

Antonio speaks only little english and some of my fellow pilgrims who did not speak spanish interpreted his limited expression in English as rudeness. He has some strict rules, e. g. he does not want you to shower more than 10 minutes (as other pilgrims need hot water, too) and he may start bumming on the bathroom door. He closes the albergue at 21.30 h and then he closes the kitchen and the upper bathroom (unless the upper dormitory is opened and occupied by pilgrims) during the night. So there is only one bathroom available during the night. If you have put food and drinks for your journey in the fridge in the evening, you have to wait until he opens the kitchen for communal breakfast at 7.30 h (which some pilgrims thought to be pretty late, as they wanted to leave earlier). It is one cup of coffee or tea p.P. for breakfast, one Magdalena, one Joghurt...
Antonio asks for a "donativo" of 12.50 €, which is definitely ok for bed and breakfast, but does not really fit into the concept of a donativo-albergue (where your donation should be orientated on what you pay elsewhere, but leaves the amount at your discretion).

I found Antonio very kind and helpful. Upon Arrival my watch needed new batteries, he explained me where to go. When he had Gazpacho for lunch, he offered me a cup of it, too. Later I found out that the Association was selling very nice and unique VdP-T-Shirts at this albergue and I wanted to buy one as a souvenir. Unfortunately on the shelf there was none left in size L, which I thought to be the right size for me. He looked in his storage-room for a size L and then he started to unfold the remaining T-Shirts in size M until we both found one which seemed to be big enough for me. We had a long conversation about the VdP, the recent changes on various Caminos and the Associations work.

BC
Alexandra

Thank you so much for this info!
We will try the Association Albergue if they are open early March.
 
Camino Jewellery
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Learn how to Get "Camino Ready " 2nd Edition. In English, Spanish, German and Korean
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
But why stay at the albergue turístico when you can stay with Antonio at Albergue Van Gogh. Thanks to him and the Amigos association, the signage into Zafra is excellent. The arrows take you straight to his place. He has a real love for the Camino and remains open all year round when the Albergue Turísticos along the Plata close whenever they feel like it. I personally would rather give my money to him.

Thank you.
I stayed at Albergue SFO the last time I walked the VDLP.
We have decided to walk it again, picking up where Joe had to stop.
We will try Albergue Van Gogh this time.
Thanks everyone.
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
I know both albergues. I stayed in San Francisco 2008 and in the Association Albergue this summer.
I really like the spirit of the Association Albergue and think that Antonio is a great host. So if I had a choice, I would go there again.

But I know that there were pilgrims complaining and they probably would have felt more comfortable in the other Albergue.

Antonio speaks only little english and some of my fellow pilgrims who did not speak spanish interpreted his limited expression in English as rudeness. He has some strict rules, e. g. he does not want you to shower more than 10 minutes (as other pilgrims need hot water, too) and he may start bumming on the bathroom door. He closes the albergue at 21.30 h and then he closes the kitchen and the upper bathroom (unless the upper dormitory is opened and occupied by pilgrims) during the night. So there is only one bathroom available during the night. If you have put food and drinks for your journey in the fridge in the evening, you have to wait until he opens the kitchen for communal breakfast at 7.30 h (which some pilgrims thought to be pretty late, as they wanted to leave earlier). It is one cup of coffee or tea p.P. for breakfast, one Magdalena, one Joghurt...
Antonio asks for a "donativo" of 12.50 €, which is definitely ok for bed and breakfast, but does not really fit into the concept of a donativo-albergue (where your donation should be orientated on what you pay elsewhere, but leaves the amount at your discretion).

I found Antonio very kind and helpful. Upon Arrival my watch needed new batteries, he explained me where to go. When he had Gazpacho for lunch, he offered me a cup of it, too. Later I found out that the Association was selling very nice and unique VdP-T-Shirts at this albergue and I wanted to buy one as a souvenir. Unfortunately on the shelf there was none left in size L, which I thought to be the right size for me. He looked in his storage-room for a size L and then he started to unfold the remaining T-Shirts in size M until we both found one which seemed to be big enough for me. We had a long conversation about the VdP, the recent changes on various Caminos and the Associations work.

BC
Alexandra

Thanks for your detailed account! In 2011 Antonio was not yet open so I stayed in SF which was fine. In subsequent years (2014, 2016) I stayed with Antonio. He originally opened as a true donativo but just couldn't cover his costs. He was quite open and Frank with me (I do speak Spanish) and lamented the fact that he now asks a fee. It was then €10 if I recall. I never experienced the rules you mentioned - closing the kitchen and certainly no pounding at the bathroom door but maybe people have been taking advantage of him. Times have changed I guess.
 

Paladina

old woman of the roads
Year of past OR future Camino
CF, primitivo & del norte (2017); VdlP/Sanabres, ingles etc (2018), Mozarabe etc (2019), tbc (2020)
I really like the spirit of the Association Albergue and think that Antonio is a great host. ...He has some strict rules, e. g. he does not want you to shower more than 10 minutes (as other pilgrims need hot water, too) and he may start bumming on the bathroom door. He closes the albergue at 21.30 h and then he closes the kitchen and the upper bathroom (unless the upper dormitory is opened and occupied by pilgrims) during the night. So there is only one bathroom available during the night.
Alexandra

I arrived at Antonio’s door on a miserable wet evening in May 2018, and was profoundly grateful for his hospitality. Few pilgrims were staying there that night, so there was no need to enforce the 10-minute-shower rule, but it might have been necessary had the albergue been full. The surprisingly glamorous downstairs bathroom, which even contains a disused whirlpool bath, can currently only be used by one person at a time, and should ideally be subdivided to provide a separate lavatory and wash basins. Assuming that the albergue’s income would not cover the cost of the conversion, I would happily make a contribution to a renovation fund.
 
John Brierley Camino Frances Guide
This guide is one of the ones that has been around for over 15 years. Updated yearly. Please read the reviews.
Peaceable Projects Inc.
Peaceable Projects Inc. is a U.S.-based non-profit group that brings the vast resources of the wide world together with the ongoing needs of the people who live, work, and travel on the Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail network in Spain.

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