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“Worst Hostel Ever.” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Cowgate Tourist Hostel

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Cowgate Tourist Hostel
96 - 112 Cowgate, Edinburgh EH1 1JN, Scotland (Cowgate)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #133 of 177 Specialty lodging in Edinburgh
Malaga, Spain
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Worst Hostel Ever.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2013

This hostel is unacceptable, the only good things are the recepcionist Alberto and George, Longtermers of this hostel are people really funny and friendly as well

Good, im goin to start to speak about the other things, ALL is Dirty, the cleaners dont clean NOTHING, and if the Kitchen are dirty, THEY CRY because they have to clean ( yes, do his work).

THe internet is really bad, they only have in the recepcion and it is always crowded of people. The showers are usually broken and they dont have hot water in the kitchen, a DISASTER.

...and one last thing, the manager is really annoying.

Room Tip: Not come here, RUN!
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
    • 5 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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155 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
    5
    21
    31
    27
    71
See reviews for
6
27
14
4
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 stars
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2013

Had the sickest time at the Cowgate! Nice separate apartments, huge, quality kitchen perfect for hanging out and cooking meals. The toilets probably need an upgrade but still useable and very clean. Staff were helpful, especially Alberto and the new manager is awesome! We booked for one night, ended up staying for five and will defs be back!

  • Stayed May 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Peterborough, United Kingdom
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

The quality of this hostel is unacceptable. I stayed in early April and the disgust I still feel for this hostel has driven me to write this review and warn people away from staying there. I have frequented a number of hostels throughout Europe and this is the worst i have seen. Deepest darkest Romania can do hostels better than Cowgate.

If you fancy cooking here, don't. I thought they had shipped the pans in from 'How Clean Is Your House' but without Kim and Aggie. The bedding would have been fantastic had I been in a 5-star hotel, but I wasn't, I was at Cowgate, it was terrible.

I am not sufficiently verbose to express my disgust at this accommodation any further.

NOTE: Edinburgh is a fantastic city, do not let this hostel put you off, just stay elsewhere!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
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Scarborough, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

I went to Edinburgh on an educational visit with a group of teens and two of their teachers, so the idea of being able to rent dorms in a hostel which were collected together in a private apartment seemed perfect. And that bit of the experience was. I'd also like to mention Alberto and George who were on the reception desk at various times during our stay and who were helpful, kind and thoughtful. The rooms/apartment, well... When I walked into our apartment my first reaction was an overwhelming feeling to break down in tears. Plaster and wallpaper peeling off the walls, dark black patches of damp in the shower rooms, chunks out of the walls. Dirty sticky marks on the window sills, dirty glasses in the sink with lumps of suspicious-looking food debris blocking the plughole. The bin in the kitchen was half-full. The dining room table had a cracked and peeling surface and wobbled so much it made me feel seasick. The toilets were dirty (and I mean DIRTY) and there were hairs and dead skin in the showers. Alberto offered to send up a cleaner for me, but it seemed that the cleaners had already done their best and it wasn't really up to the mark, so I bought myself some cleaning products and marigolds and bleached and disinfected before my group came back from a shopping trip.
This hostel is in a great location, it has fantastic potential, but nobody in the management appears to care about it or take any interest in it. 10 years ago it was probably a brilliant place to stay but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone now.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Athens, Greece
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

I've been to Edinburgh enough times to consider it my second home. I visited Cowgate Hostel in August 2008, during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. I would be hosted by friends until a specific date, so I needed to stay a couple of days in a hostel. So I had booked my room several months before arriving to town. I saw on the internet that there was no booking from other people in a specific room, so I would be by myself (although it was a dormitory). When I arrived there, the staff was friendly and willing to help me out. The second day of my stay a group of tourists arrived and I was asked if I was willing to exchange my room and move to another, smaller one. It was fine with me, so I was happy to do so.

But here comes the big problem.When I arrived late at night and tried to unlock the outdoor, it would not open. The key would stack and it was impossible for me to open the door. There was nobody at the reception, so I had to call some guy from the staff to help me out. Nobody answered my calls. I was desperate and alone at 2 am, with no money left on me, since my wallet was locked into my room with the rest of my luggage, so I had to ask some local friends to host me for the night. I had to walk from cowgate to the other side of the town, for more than an hour. In the morning I asked to talk to the manager, in order to ask for a refund. The manager was missing, only to be found a few hours later, on his cell phone. He spoke with the receptionist -not with me- and the answer was that they wouldn't refund me, although it was their fault that I had to spend the night elsewhere. The guy from the staff wasn't polite anymore, he almost raised his voice immediately when I said I'd go to the police. Anyway, this was the worst nightmare ever....

Other "lovely" info regarding this hell of a place:

-it was dirty and smelly. I had to buy dettol to clean the wc and the tab

-the blankets and the sheets I was given didn't seem to be clean. Actually, the blanket had a touch of naphthalin smell. I had to use my sleeping bag.

-The only good things about this place were:

1) the location
2) it had a boiler, so we could make coffee
3) there was free wi-fi (but so many people who'd pile over your head to wait for their turn, some of them weren't even customers)

Room Tip: You'd better find yourself another place to stay
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Paris, France
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2013

If you want to visit Edinburgh for one week or a couple of days, don't go on this Hostel. I didn't know the meaning of hostel which means that's for student especially. By the way the cleanliness was horrible. I could look at under my bed and there were around 2 cm of dust. The staff didn't clean that at least 1 months ago. Happiness our sheets were clean. I remember we had to share our bedroom with others people especially girl. The price was really approachable but not for this statut. We had 1 bathroom in common for more than 12 people. Two toilets whose one was totally blocked. The next day the WC was repaired but the pump didn't work as well. The bathroom Oh My God, we could close that but we had to be strong if nobody want to go in. We had no heating in our bedroom (didn't work). I was wondering how people could be hot inside. Anyway I was really really disappointed about this accomodation and never I am going to be back on this kind of room.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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London, United Kingdom
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

I spent one night with friends. The Hostel had lost the key of the room so we had to leave our room unlocked, the restrooms were smelly and unclean. The location was great and for the price we paid I cant complain. The person who attended us upon arrival was nice and cared for our needs.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Cowgate Tourist Hostel

Address: 96 - 112 Cowgate, Edinburgh EH1 1JN, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Edinburgh > Cowgate , Old Town
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #133 of 177 Specialty lodging in Edinburgh
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A hostel with a difference! Our 168 bed hostel contains 12 individually lockable apartments all fully fitted with their own toilet, shower rooms and kitchen/lounge including an oven, microwave, fridge freezer, toaster, plates, dishes, cutlery and cooking pots. An apartment sleeps between 8 and 22 people in a combination of 4 and 6 bed dorms and twin or double rooms. That's 12 fully fitted kitchens and 17 shower rooms with toilets plus 12 separate private toilets! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cowgate Tourist Hotel Edinburgh
Cowgate Tourist Hostel Edinburgh, Scotland

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