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“Wake Up! And party, or struggle to get back to sleep...” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Wake Up! Sydney

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Wake Up! Sydney
1.0 of 5 Hostel   |   509 Pitt St, Sydney, New South Wales 2000, Australia   |  
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Ranked #12 of 134 Specialty Lodging in Sydney
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
68 reviews 68 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“Wake Up! And party, or struggle to get back to sleep...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

I chose to stay at Wake Up! because it was one of Sydney's most highly-rated hostels. I was going to be there for New Year, definitely Sydney's busiest time of year, and I wanted to be in the centre of the action where I was most likely to meet people to hang out with to celebrate New Year. On that count, Wake Up! delivered. I was in a sociable 10-person dorm and I saw the New Year in watching the fireworks outside the Opera House with four of my roommates.

When it is not full to the seams, I could imagine that Wake Up! would be a great place to stay. Side Bar is one of the best hostel bars I've ever been to – their resident singer/guitarist is really excellent, the place has a good atmosphere and there are plenty of drinks offers that make a night out there cheaper than most of the other things you'll find in the CBD. In theory, lots of the other facilities such as the kitchen and the TV room would also be good when the hostel is not totally full. But when I was there, it became abundantly clear that the facilities in this hostel don't match the number of beds. Getting fridge space was a real challenge and one evening, after waiting 45 minutes in vain to get on one of the five cooking spots (for how many guests? 1000?), I gave up and went to McDonalds. Waiting for the lifts (you're not allowed to use the stairs for some reason) was a real hassle – if you were unfortunate enough to be taking one near check-out time you could wait 15 minutes plus just to get downstairs.

Although my dorm room was a source of friends, the open-plan 10 person rooms afford no privacy (compare with Space Hotel in Melbourne for an example of how a large dorm can offer a good deal of privacy if designed well – without being any more expensive), and the culture of the hostel was a very noisy one. One night the room next door had a party until 5am and no one came to tell them to keep it down. The next night, someone from the hostel came to tell us they had booked a Malaysian family into our room (mum and three kids) and so we weren't allowed to stay up late, have alcohol or bring anyone back. In the event, the Malaysians were busy plastic bag rustling until well after 1am. The dorm was also only cleaned once in the week I was there - so it spent most of the time really messy.

All in all, I was disappointed with my stay at Wake Up! It's not a bad hostel at all – but staying there at New Year (perhaps anywhere in Sydney would be the same) was a trying experience at times.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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686 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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English first
Perth, Australia
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

Great location, easy to access public transport or walk into the city or Chinatown. Staff were friendly and welcoming. Very impressed with the organisation of the hostel - lots of great activities on offer and the cafe and bar are great. Rooms were basic but clean and roomy. Only downside would have to be the bathrooms which were sometimes dirty no matter what time you went to them. Definitely recommend it!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013 via mobile

Stayed in wake up for 10 nights in September 2012... Wanted somewhere decent to stay once I arrived in Australia and it was recommended to me.... Room 201 was for 10 people but I think on my last night it was the first time it was full. Cosy bed, size of room was fine, chilled in there having a few cups of goon before shooting out most nights. Great showers, kitchen was fine never that busy when I was cooking the pasta & sauce ... Tv room wasn't ready as they were doing it up.. They arrange walks to the city and the beach walk was fab... Pricey yes but it is central Sydney I guess... Sidebar was great too, vodka jugs went down a treat! Good hostel!

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013 via mobile

Me and my wife Stayed here for a week over the new year period and booked this in march 2012 so we could be in sydney for new year.

Its just a short walk around the corner from central station so if arriving by greyhound it's perfect.

In checking in the girl was clueless and clearly wasn't yet trained fully and remarked to us that she was new at doing this ( this didn't fill us with confidence ) and I had to keep asking questions like do I need a key card for the lift etc or do we get towels etc? She did try bless her but was a little out of her depth and the staff around her should have been behind her going through it with her etc.

** A word of warning if you see a nice picture of a double room ensuite on the website then you may have a better chance of seeing an oasis in a desert, we booked and paid the extra after seeing these few pictures but on being allocated room 209 I knew this wouldn't be the same as we were smack bang next to the lift ( noisy as anything and disrespectful guests shouting laughing and screaming all the time whilst waiting for the lift, even at 4am ) no signs or anything to say respect other guests etc and no security patrolling the floors.

On entering the room to my horror we had a bunk bed that brought back memories of being 12 and staying round a mates. So clearly not what the pictures showed! Yes it had a double bed with a single so to speak but if we wanted to watch tv then we had to squeeze up on the edge of the bed so we could see the tv as it Watson the wall next to the bed really high up or sleep in the single above us! So if you watch tv have a strong neck and good eyes and you will be ok, - why not just have the double bed and tv on the wall opposite - happy days.

Shower was powerful and hot but was like a tsunami as all the water came out through all the cracks in the walls so we had to ask for extra towels and use them as mats otherwise you would need you flippers.

Location is perfect right on george street the other side to Pitt street so everything is there you need. ATM, cinemas, shopping you name it.

They have an arranged sydney walk which was really good for meeting people and seeing the city, there are also other theme days so this is a positive and shows they try hard,

Agree with other reviews - kitchen is tiny and not enough space for the amount of people - why don't they remove the tv communal area next to the kitchen elsewhere and make the kitchen area all round huge? Why would you have both next to each other anyway?

The cafe is really good value - $13 for steak and chips which is huge! And great variety and prices that we ate here most nights.

Staff are much more helpful in the cafe than reception, they were friendly and nothing was too much trouble for them and we had a laugh with a few of them whereas reception were hard work at times - some were friendly but others were hard work like a lad with dark hair and stubble, every time I went to reception he said nothing just looked at me and gave me a raised eyebrow really patronising I thought he was auditioning to be the next James Bond! No hi mate how are you or let me see if I can sort something just the raised eyebrow prompting you to speak to him.

You have to wait ages for the lifts so be prepared and also a word of warning if you are planning the shuttle bus they offer to the airport allocate yourself hours before! We asked what time the first shuttle was to the airport and were advised 5.25 - when we got to reception at 5.10 the guy said oh you missed our first shuttle at 5am!!! So the communication is far from good. When the shuttle bus arrived the old guy who looked like an extra from the sopranos made us wait whilst he had a smoke and drank his coffee, just before leaving I asked the guy on reception how long does the shuttle take again to which he remarked " oh only 25 minutes as there is no traffic this early"
let me put it this way the way al Capone drove it was over an hour that we were almost late for the flight as it was like driving miss daisy so allow yourself plenty of time.

With the double room ensuites resembling the two photos I saw ( no bunk beds ) & more space in the kitchen & staff on reception that are like the ones in the cafe and just some alterations like the tv not being 9 ft up and the bathroom leaks this place would be ideal as location and cafe excellent.

Why don't they put all the double rooms or double rooms ensuites higher up for couples or close mates and all the dorms on the bottom floors so the noise and revellers are not an issue??

Went past the YHA 100 yards away and this looks nice.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
50 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013 via mobile

I stayed at wake up Sydney over new year, but I had booked the week a year in advanced so got quite a good deal! I found the hostel as a whole decent with good facilities the staff were very friendly and fun however extremely unhelpful when we asked what to do on our first day the reply we got was sleep so we sod off and explored ourselves! The bar/club downstairs was busy, cheap and fun however we didn't try out the cafe! The rooms were clean, decent size and the bed were comfy the only problem was the lockers wernt big enough for our bags and the aircon is absolutely freezing and you have no control over it!! The bathrooms were very clean and the showers were always hot and powerful!! The whole hostel including the bathroom and our rooms were cleaned properly which was really good! The kitchen area did get very busy and crowded however it was new year so was to be expected and couple days after they wernt to bad at all the only problem is the lack of big pans to cook pasta etc and the kitchen closes at 10pm which isn't helpful and I had cooked a massive chilli con carne left it in our pot with our cheese and rice clearly marked with our name and found the next day it was gone so we were really stuck for dinner that night!! Overall I would stay here again as the location is brilliant right opposite central station and is clean and very safe with security always on the door of a night and in the lift!! Thanks

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

Very clean with big communal bathrooms so you don't have to wait and large rooms with lockers. The bar downstairs is really good. Only problem was that you need your key card to use the lift and can't access any floor other than your own.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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
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Melbourne, Australia
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

I stayed at Wake Up in Sydney over the New Year period. On arriving at the hostel, I was informed that the $42 per night I had been quoted when I booked back in June was actually bumped up to $62 per night over the Christmas/New Year period, however I was not informed of this at all in advance. Staff were on the whole pretty unfriendly and unhelpful. It felt as if there was a real money grabbing mentality too, with other guests I spoke to saying they had been charged twice by Wake Up - once when they booked and then again when they arrived. Be careful! They also charge you $5 for every 4 hrs you want to leave your bags when you check out - I've never experienced this at a hostel before. The rooms were adequate, but felt damp with the air con pumping out cold (loud) air at all times of the day and night. I would question how clean the beds were as you only had to hand in your pillow case at reception when you checked out and not your sheet or duvet cover. The bunk bed I stayed in had no safety bar and no ladder, which proved a little tricky being on the top bunk! The stairs at the hostel were closed off, so you were forced to use the lift even to go one floor and this meant you often had to wait for a long time. The kitchen was often very crowded and despite me clearly marking my food in the fridge, I found this had suspiciously disappeared a couple of days into my stay which was also very frustrating! I went on an organised day tour to the Blue Mountains, recommended by Wake Up, which also proved to be a disaster! Surprise, surprise! All in all, I would definitely not recommend staying at Wake Up when there are much better hostels on offer in Sydney to choose from e.g. the YHA. Phew! Glad to get that off my chest!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Wake Up! Sydney

Address: 509 Pitt St, Sydney, New South Wales 2000, Australia
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > New South Wales > Sydney
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 134 Specialty Lodging in Sydney
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:1 star — Wake Up! Sydney 1*
Number of rooms: 113
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Wake Up! Sydney Central is a modern, purpose built hostel with large spacious rooms. All the facilities you need under the one roof and fantastically located across the road from the central railway station. Wake Up! was voted "Best Large Hostel in the World" and "Best Hostel in Oceania" based on character, security, location, staff, fun and cleanliness, when surveyed by 500,000 Hostelworld customers worldwide. ... more   less 
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Wake Up! Hotel Sydney

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