It's not that this place was terrible, it was ok. It was cheap and clean and modern and had a great staff (mostly.) The problems were all mostly small but really added up to make a sub-par experience.
I stayed here for five nights in April 2013 in a 20 bed dorm.
It felt like it was a cattle-herding most of the time, huge groups of high school students were the norm here, and seemed like there was a new group every day, and they'd be the ones taking over the place. There is a big common area but didn't feel very welcoming or a good place to meet people or socialize. Seemed like everyone was looking down at their glowing rectangular screens of whatever variety the entire time. It all felt a bit sterile. It also took a while to check in or ask the staff anything because there was always a queue at the desk, even at 2-3am.
The wifi worked sometimes, and only from the main cafe room. I had to ask them to reset the router at least once a day, and it was almost always slow.
For breakfast you have two choices: for £3.50 (about $5.40 right now,) you got toast and cereal with OJ and coffee. A pretty typical free breakfast anywhere else. To get a decent breakfast with sausage and beans, etc (an English breakfast,) it cost you £5.50 ($8.45.) I skipped bfast here and went across the street to the cafe which had a better selection for less money. Otherwise the food prices were pretty decent for London.
It takes about 10 minutes at a brisk walk to get to Elephant & Castle, which doesn't have much around but a couple crappy pubs and a Nandos. There are, however, a few kebab and chicken shops nearby and a Tesco open until 11pm very close.
There is a bus stop right outside the hostel which is well-connected, and my favorite part is that it'll get you straight to Camden in one ride. Waterloo station is a 25 minute walk or that same bus will get you there a bit quicker.
The staff at the desk were really great and helpful, but there was one guy, I think the kitchen manager, who was a complete jerk. It's not even that he was mean, but he just walked around like he was king and if you said "good morning" or anything to him he'd just give you a look and walk away. But again, otherwise the staff were good.
The rooms were ok - I really liked the curtains on the beds which helped with privacy and light. Really nice for the couple (or random hookup) in the bed next to me who decided to have sex in the late evening. Normally that doesn't bother me but in this case I was just jealous...it'd been over a month for me. Since the window didn't close it was also quite loud in there - I didn't get a proper sleep at all, I kept waking up in the middle of the night and I'm a heavy sleeper. Definitely bring an eyemask and ear plugs.
The window of the room wouldn't completely close, and my bed was right next to it. Quite cold, but good for the groceries I left on the sill to stay cold. Luckily the duvet we're given was warm.
The shower suck - scalding hot with no way to adjust the temperature and you had to push the button every 10 seconds to keep the water going.
No kitchen in the place of course, they want you to buy their food. Oh, and no alcohol allowed in the entire place.
That's a lot of what lead to it feeling like less of a hostel and more of a cheap hotel for kids. It's ok for a short stay, especially if you're spending most of your time out exploring the city, but it's not really a place for backpackers and solo travelers.
- Also Known As:
- RestUp London England
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Following a year of extensive refurbishment, we are proud to welcome you to RestUp London. RestUp London youth hostel is a great new stylish, purpose built hostel in the heart of London, created with today’s traveller in mind. The hostel is set in a large building steeped with history and tradition, combined with all the state of the art convenience perfect for today’s travellers, the hostel provides excellent value for money accommodation, together with cutting edge technology to ensure you have a home from home experience at the hostel. ... more less
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