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“Living off past glory” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Athens Backpackers

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Athens Backpackers
12 Makri Street | Makrigianni, Athens 11742, Greece   |  
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HOT DEALS ALL WINTER
Ranked #5 of 34 Specialty Lodging in Athens
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Living off past glory”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2014 via mobile

Athens Backpackers is living off past glory and awards, but really needs to lift its game.

Start off with some positives: it's very well located, was clean, and the staff were helpful.

However, the negatives are many and really are simple things that are basics for any good hostel:
The beds in the dorms are camp-bed style that are low to the ground and creaky. Furthermore, the mattresses are covered in plastic and make noise all night whenever anyone moves. Plus you had to make your own beds.

There are not enough lockers in each room - four beds in room, but only three lockers.

Each bed does not have a reading light. There was one moveable lamp in each room, so three people miss out. However not everyone can use the light as each bed does not have access to a PowerPoint.

You have to pay for secure luggage storage. Otherwise it's in a wide open room. I can understand paying for a locker, but to not even lock the luggage storage room is poor form.

The shared bathrooms were few and far between. A single joint toilet/shower room on our floor.

Breakfast was very poor. We had it at both the backpackers and at the Studio/Fish cafe. Having to pay extra for orange juice or even the slighest bit of additional food other than the small portion of cold food you get is poor form. Plus there were often large lines and waits as the staff were thin on the ground.

When we stayed in the Studio Apartments (we stayed in dorms and apartments), there was no shampoo or soap provided.

In the backpackers, despite advertising on the website and all over the hostel, both the basement and rooftop bars were closed. Furthermore, there was a lack of any decent common rooms.

While all these issues could be forgiven on their own, together they make up for a really basic hostel. Considering the premium prices Athens Backpackers charge, it simply isn't acceptable. There are many less expensive options who have the basics right.

Athens Backpackers really is living off past glory (all their awards for best hostel) and it's location. It needs to smarten up and get the basics that every other good hostel does right, otherwise there will be more and more bad reviews.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Davo F, Owner at Athens Backpackers, responded to this review, April 18, 2014
Hi Jim,

We really appreciate your feedback as it's how we get better at what we do. And it helps us offer our guests an even better experience.

The property has just opened up after winter and we are replacing all the 3 and 4 person beds as the old ones are too close to the ground, as you mentioned. The beds will incorporate reading lights and be bigger than the last. The arrive on the 23rd of April.

The rooms are cleaned daily and we are constantly praised by our guests to the levels of cleanliness we provide. We have 2 secure and FREE luggage storage areas as we believe guests should not have to pay for this privilege. This area also has cctv and we have never had anything stolen in all our years of operation. All our rooms have lockers and there are enough lockers in each room. Perhaps another guest in your room was using 2 lockers?

We also have the Athens Sports Bar and Fish Cafe which are open 365 days a year as well as 4 common areas. This lets our guests always have somewhere to meet people and socialize. Unfortunately as stated on our website the SkyBar opens for Spring/Summer which means it will be open in less than 4 days.

We pride ourselves on being very affordable for what we provide and I feel that its unfair your feedback on our pricing. But its something I will review over the next week just to be sure. We can never charge ridiculously low prices like properties located in Monasterakki and on that side of town as our area is in the most central and safest area plus its a stones throw from the Acropolis.

Breakfast is freshly baked bread, Jams, free range eggs, coffee and tea all for FREE.

Anyway its a shame we didn't completely live up to your expectations. And for this reason please email me personally so I can give you a complimentary few nights, a free Organic Burger and a couple of local beers on me at our cafe and bar. We look forward to having you back and giving you an exceptional experience. Thanks again. Daniel
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309 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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English first
Boston, Massachusetts
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2014

While studying abroad, my first independent travel break was spent with two friends in Athens. We found Athens Backpackers and it ended up being a great decision!
Our room was being renovated, so Athens Backpackers upgraded our room for us. It was gorgeous and had a beautiful bathroom and kitchenette. Also, the room was spacious and had a balcony overlooking gorgeous Athens streets. We were so close to the Acropolis (which was great for our tired feet after hiking all day). While here, we also received free breakfast and all of the food was amazing. You're walking distance from plenty of things, so no worries about what to do, how to get there, etc. Athens Backpackers was in a convenient location for a good price and the staff were incredibly nice.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bratislava Region, Slovakia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2014

The location of this hostel is unbeatable. Just 2minutes walk from the metro-station and right near the acropolis. Loved their rooftop bar with nice view and good opportunity to make friends.
Rooms are clean and staff is very friendly. Recommend the 3hours walking tour to see all the important sights of Athens.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2014 via mobile

I had been recommended this place by a friend, on arrival at the desk, I was pleasantly greeted by a member of staff, given my key card code for the wifi and voucher for two free shots of ouzo at the rooftop bar, perfect after a 4 1/2 hour flight. Great view of the acropolis and Athens, good company as long as you like young travelling people who want to have a good time. €22 per night and in the center of Athens too

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014

I truly enjoyed my stay here. The location can't be better - 1 min from metro, 5 mins from Acropolis. The staff are very friendly and helpful, and speak good English. My room was clean with good ventilation (no strange smell in the room). Highly recommend it!!!!

Stayed January 2014, traveled solo
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Singapore, Singapore
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
88 helpful votes 88 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2013

Period of Stay: 20th Dec - 25th Dec 2013 (5 nights)
Cost (PER NIGHT): 30 Euros (including taxes - via Booking.com) for studio for 3 adults (Studio 6)

+ points:
(1) Location: very near Acropolis metro station, which is just one stop away from Syntagma Square (where you will need to change trains if you are coming by metro from the airport) and obviously very near Acropolis, which is the MUST visit place in Athens! It is only about 2 minutes walk, be it to the backpackers' site or studio site. After I had booked, the address given is only for the backpackers site (12 Makri Street). The address for the studios is 3 Veikou Street. I suggest you get the map of Athens from this website - http://www.visitgreece.gr/en/downloads/maps/athens to find these streets near the metro station. It is a really solid map and in fact it is also the one that Athens Backpackers will give you, though that would be a truncated version from the one you get from the website.

12 Makri Street is very easy to find - when you get up to the control station just walk straight (the museum displays will be on your right) and at the top of the escalator, a souvlaki shop is on your left. Just walk straight and the first left and you are more or less there. 3 Veikou Street is also fairly easy - take the other escalator and you will be on Makrigiani Street. Turn right and walk down Makrigiani and you will see a mini junction. Just look for the little kiosk (it is 2 small roads from the junction) and the studios site is just a bit behind along that street.

(2) The studio is just 1 big room (not like a typical apartment with different rooms) but it is pretty clean, especially the toilet.

(3) Staff was generally helpful - sometimes some didn't look too happy. The best was Stavroulou (I hope I remember her name correctly and didn't mangle the spelling too badly!) who tried to help me with regards to getting to Lake Vouliagmeni and also allowed me to check out later on Xmas at 1pm.

(4) Wifi was fast and reliable - I noticed that in many of the reviews I read of OTHER hotels, many complained about poor Wifi so to me this is actually an important strength.

- point:
(1) Food - breakfast was the same and quite poor everyday - just 2 buns, 2 hard boiled eggs, and coffee or tea (even for Xmas). For the Fish Cafe, I ordered Fish and Chips which I felt was quite pricey for 9 Euros and just 5-6 small pieces of fish and mainly chips.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2013

Generally, I'd recommend this place. They have two locations about five minutes from each other and the Acropolis. One is a backpackers' hostel with a kitchen and rooftop bar (Acropolis views, but only open in summer), and a metro station and great gyros at the end of the street. The other has private rooms, an adjoining sports bar, luggage storage, book exchange, laundromat, and a cafe (breakfast there is included in all rates, and is much better than the breakfast on offer at the hostel location). My dorm (room and bathroom) was clean, spacious and well-maintained, and staff at both locations are friendly and welcoming. The sports bar is open year-round and has events most nights (pub quiz, karaoke, etc) and good meals. The hostel also runs three-hour tours of the main sights; your guide (one of the hostel staff) is an archaeologist with extensive knowledge of Greek history, who can answer pretty much any question you throw at him. Definitely one of the best options in Athens.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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 Athens Backpackers

Address: 12 Makri Street | Makrigianni, Athens 11742, Greece
Phone Number:
Location: Greece > Attica > Athens
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 34 Specialty Lodging in Athens
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lonely Planet 2012 says "Athens Backpackers has fast become the hostel of choice for visitors, thanks to its excellent facilities and unbeatable location." In Your Pocket March 2012 says "A never-to-be-forgotten experience, people adore this non-smoking, English speaking joint - great opportunity to meet free-style travellers like you"Free WiFi all day, everyday, everywhereAthens' famous Australian-owned and run hostel, right in the heart of classical Athens, an up-market area (98% rated best location) that is safe, central and door-to-door from the airport by metro. You'll have an amazing time at AB's, there is always something on from Quiz nights, Karaoke Nights, Twice weekly LIVE music, Walking tours and Happy Hour 7 days a week.* No hidden charges (no penalties for using credit cards) free breakfast, free tea and coffee all day and luggage storage.* ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Athens Backpackers Hotel Athens

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