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“I always stay here when I go to London” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Smart Russell Square Hostel

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Smart Russell Square Hostel
1.0 of 5 Hostel   |   70 - 72 Guilford Street, London WC1N 1DF , England (Bloomsbury / Holborn)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #366 of 662 Specialty Lodging in London
Bergen, Norway
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“I always stay here when I go to London”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2012

The hostel is basic, but the location is great. I have tried a few other places in London, and this is the best I have found. It is cheap and is close to the underground. The staff is generally not nice. If you want some peace the 4-bed dorms are a good choice. But they are at the top floor so if your baggage is heavy it will get heavy. It is a short walk to british museum. You need flip flops for the shower. If you shower late morning there probably won't be any hot water. If you are there too early it might be scolding hot.

Room Tip: The four-bed dorms might be a good idea if you want to be away from the bigger dorms (where there of...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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354 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 stars
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2012

It wasn't awful, let's just say that. If all you want is a bed (albeit a tiny bed in a squishy room) and a shower (which, might I add, are only available in the sub-basement area on the other side of the building and are too hot) then it's fine.
For 35£ a night, I kind of expected more. There was no wifi, the breakfast was cheap and tasteless; the workers were all Eastern European and unhelpful... The one person that was helpful was a French receptionist, but she isn't always there.
One of the only GOOD things about this hostel is the location.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Toronto
Top Contributor
118 reviews 118 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2012

I stayed hre for a few days but I have been back since and found much nicer hostels. The beds are pods which is nice to hide away from the over crammed rooms. The showers are a little scary and made me think of a jail, down in the basement with load of stalls all together. Breakfast is toast, what else, and the wifi could only be had in the lounge where everyone fought for power outlets. On a plus free lugage storage which I totally abused when I left a case there for a week without them noticing (beat the system!). I mean yes, it's a hostel but you can try to be nice about it.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2012

The rooms were spacious! I stayed in a 9 person mixed dorm and there was plenty of room. Each bed had curtains. There was only one power outlet in the room which wasn't enough. The bathrooms are small and the showers are in the basement making it sorta awkward to get to. The free breakfast was good! The staff was friendly and helpful. The wifi is limited to one hour per 24 hour period which sucks! Overall worth the price! 

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Hoofddorp, The Netherlands
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012

I've travelled quite a lot in my life, and having stayed at 4 or 5 star hotels during most of my journeys, I was anxious to stay at a hostel for the first time in my life.
Me and two friends booked a trip to London, and only about a week before our departure did we book this hostel. It was by far the cheapest thing in central London (I think we paid something close to 18 GBP p.p.p.n inc. breakfast, for a 9 person room).

The location is absolutely perfect. St. Pancras, Easton and Kings Cross station are just a 10 minute walk away, and Russel Square tube station is right around the corner.

Inside the hostel it isn't what one would call homely or well decorated. But remember; it's a hostel, things are made with durability and low cost in mind. So, it isn't the most beautifull place you'll ever stay, but it does what you pay for.
The rooms, bathroom, shower area, changing rooms and public areas are all clean and well maintained. Nothing wrong with that.
I'll admit, the bed are a bit small (my 1,90 meter tall friend just barely fitted in the bed).

The hotel staff is mostly Eastern European, but their English does the trick of getting you checked in and out. They could be a bit friendlier though.
During the night several security guards patrol the corridors, making sure no strangers enter the hostel and kindly asking everyone to keep quiet.

The included breakfast is very simple; coffee, tea, toast, butter, jam, cornflaked and milk. That's it, but then again, what does one expect for 18 GBP per night?!

All in all I can say my first 'Hostel-experience' once, contrary to expectations, a very happy one. When returning to London I will definitely consider Smart Russel Square again.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Paris
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2012

It was a horrid hostel.

The room were VERY tiny (approximately 9 square meters for 12 beds!!). The beds are very small and the room was very smelly and not clean at all. The bunk beds were 3 floors ! It felt like we were in a rabbit cage.

The showers are always dirty and NO HOT WATER. The kitchen was always crowded and very noisy.

It is well located, sure, but it is so uncomfortable that i really recommend you don't go there..

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2012

I stayed here in July 2012, I'm from England and found this hostel as I was on a budget. After reading a few bad reviews I was unsure, but once there I found that the hostel was very clean, friendly staff, safe and secure lockers and security gaurds on the door. Excellent location, could be quite loud at night but earplugs did the trick. Breakfast was simple but generally ok. The only downside would be that my pillow had yellow stains on it but was happily swapped and that the showers were extremely hot. Value for money, travelling atmosphere, I would visit again!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Smart Russell Square Hostel

Address: 70 - 72 Guilford Street, London WC1N 1DF , England
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Bloomsbury / Holborn
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #366 of 662 Specialty Lodging in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:1 star — Smart Russell Square Hostel 1*
Number of rooms: 60
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Also Known As:
Smart Russell Square Hotel London
Smart Russell Square Hostel London, England

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