We loved most of the hostels we stayed in South America. I added a page with a list of hostels we stayed in.
- clean beds and bathrooms
- kitchen to cook meals
- not a party hostel with teenagers and early 20 somethings
We would choose a dorm room or a private room depending on the price. In big cities, we tended to go towards dorm rooms (4-bed dorms), while in countries like Peru and Bolivia, we almost entirely stayed in private rooms.
You can find the list of hotels/hostels here.