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“Not the best place to stay in Jerusalem” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Armenian Guest House

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Armenian Guest House
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Via Dolorosa 36, Jerusalem 91194, Israel (Muslim Quarter)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #37 of 53 Jerusalem B&B and Inns
Palo Alto, California
Top Contributor
189 reviews 189 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 66 cities Reviews in 66 cities
102 helpful votes 102 helpful votes
“Not the best place to stay in Jerusalem”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

We stayed at the Armenian Guesthouse for 3 nights in May. It was supposed to be 4 nights, but on Jerusalem Day, the Old City was closed (Jewish settlers had occupied Al-Aqsa Mosque), and we couldn't get to the guesthouse. They wouldn't refund our deposit, and wouldn't even consider a compromise (splitting it 50-50), even though some of us had also all reserved one additional night at the end of our trip, a week later.

The guesthouse is on the narrow road to the Lion's Gate, and many small buses and taxis are reluctant to drive down it, and sometimes it is closed to traffic. So with each arrival and departure, we did not know whether we would have to cart all of our bags on a 10 minute walk up and down hills on cobblestone. And the hotel refused to help us with any part of that (with planning, with the bags themselves, coordination with the drivers, etc). Our second arrival was stopped just inside the gate (soldiers had closed the road), and we had our difficult walk, at the end of our long day. The next morning's very early departure was also a long walk with our bags because the cab driver wouldn't come inside the gate.

The rooms inside the main guesthouse are sparse and worthy of a 2-star hotel. The beds were small (nearly cots), the towels small and old, the bathroom fixtures were loose and in danger of falling apart, there was no soap, the shower was a handheld with no hook to hang it above ones head). They brought us a fan when asked, so be sure to ask. Also ask for an inside (courtyard) room as you'll have a better chance of quiet. The room was clean enough, and there were no bugs, even though there were no screens on the windows (which had to be open to get any air at all).

There are 2 rooms called the "Bishop's Quarters" in a nearby building. Two in our party stayed there, and I heard those rooms are luxurious by comparison. They are up steep steps (over 60), and so are not accessible to everyone. They also came with warnings not to stare out the windows or from the balcony or look too pointedly at the settlement building next door, "because they get agitated and might call the police". Also, these rooms are subject to the street noise, which can be substantial.

Breakfast was in the church courtyard, which is a walk from the main guesthouse rooms. It wasn't bad, but never varied from hard boiled eggs, hummus, yogurt, pita, jam. There is filtered coffee in addition to the instant, if you ask.

Aside from the manager, the rest of the staff was friendly. However, I would not return. I hear the Christ Church Guesthouse is very nice.

Room Tip: Choose an inside (courtyard-facing) room to avoid street noise.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
armenianguesthouse, Front Office Manager at Armenian Guest House, responded to this review, May 30, 2013
First of all we accept every review, every one has his own opinion but to lie on public this is unacceptable. We want to mention that the guide of this group called late at night one day before their arrival to the guest house saying that they changed planes & that they will arrive a day later.
Do you think that this is logic to call 16 hours before their arrival & cancel the reservation for that night? & to ask a refund? even hotels in the States will not accept such a thing.

The second LIE:
The mentioned group didn't arrive on the day where the Israelis were celebrating the unification of both parts of Jerusalem East & West. (Jerusalem Day)

The third LIE:
The settlers didn't occupy Al-Aqsa Mosque that day or any other day.

Complaining that the guest house is located in a narrow street: Lady, the guest house is located inside the Old City, all the streets of the Old City are narrow even the famous KING DVID hotel is not located in a big street being outside of the Old City.

Lions Gate is located 4 to 5 minutes walking distance from the guest house, for some people it might take 30 minutes to reach the guest house if they want to look around while walking.
It's the mistake of your driver & guide that dropped you in Lions Gate, he should have dropped you in Damascus Gate, maybe lake of experience or don't care about their group.

We don't have the service to bring the luggage of our guests from their car to the guest house while their car or bus stopped in front one the gates.
When you choose a hotel inside the Old City you should take into consideration that you might to carry your luggage from the gate to the guest house (5 minutes walking distance)

If the Police refused to let a car to enter Lions Gate, do you have to blame the Guest house for that?
Is it our mistake when you stay for 1 night, you arrive in the late afternoon & the next day you leave, do you blame the guest house for that? you are really exaggerating.
There are some Taxi drivers don't want to go inside the Old City, they lie to their clients & tell them that the police is refusing to let him in, by the way there restrictions for private cars to go inside the Old City but NOT FOR TAXI.

Maybe you forgot to blame the guest house for the weather, may be you wanted us to fix certain temperature while you are in Jerusalem.

Next time we suggest that you choose a room in the King David Hotel, over their the rooms are better that you think but don't forget you pay ten times more that what you paid here even more.

We really don't know from where you bring these stories, over 60 stairs, even when you can't complain about anything you start complaining about the number of stairs by doubling them.

So the manager was not friendly because he refused to refund you the night that you cancelled, he had to refund you in order to become friendly, I suggest that you inquire about the rules in hotel reservation before blaming the others being not friendly.
If the manager is doing his job, this doesn't mean that he's not friendly.

We are pretty sure that if we offer you few nights free you accept to come back to the Armenian Guest House, all what you wrote is about the refund issue, just because the manager refused the refund issue the Guest House became bad the manager not friendly.

Next time when you write a review about any place try to be honest, this is not the best way, what you did is wrong.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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39 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    17
    3
    6
    7
    6
See reviews for
5
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3
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (5)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2013

I wanted to comment on how wonderful the guest house and its staff was. We found Jerusalem rather intimidating in some ways but our accommodations were really superb and made the experience much more enjoyable. We really appreciate the help from the women working there, all of whom were competent, friendly and generous to an unusual degree.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2012

I would like to give my personal review on my trip to the guesthouse. I travelled with my 2 friends and we arrived at 3am. I really appreciated the fact that Alex was there to greet us. On arrival we had to pay for our accommodation up front, I was initially shocked as i am used to paying at the end of my trip. On reflection it is no big deal! I found the guesthouse to be very clean and the cleaning staff especially were very friendly and kind to me. The breakfast we were given was in keeping to the norm in the old city of Jersulam. Personally for me the only thing missing was a communal area within the guesthouse. I have travelled to Jerusalem many times and I enjoy meeting new people, this would have been a good way to meet other guests. In Sept 2012 I travelled back to the old city, I met up again with Alex and the rest of the staff, I was treated like a friend as opposed to a tourist. I will be back again next year god willing.

Room Tip: I opted to stay in a dorm, as I like to meet and share new experiences.
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
American Canyon, California
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2012

Its was a very good experience, I stayed there for 6days, the place was very clean !! and what is good about this hostel is that its right in the center of the old city, walking distance from the wailing wall is 5 minutes .and also 5 minutes walking to the market and the buses that take you to Bethlehem and Ramallah exc.
The bed was very comfortable. The friendly staff over there were very sweet and kind, and will help you in anything you need.
You shouldnt expect 5 star hotel service because its the old city but compared to the hostels in the old city i guess its the best :) Enjoy your stay in Jerusalem

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vienna
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2012

The place is dirty, the Hotel Management is more than rude (Mr. Alex Jololian & Co), toilet & bathroom equipment was broken in every room we looked at, no cleaning and no fresh towel for 6 days!! Best of all: we had to pay 200 Euro for the reservation 5 months in advance, they charged for it 229 Euro. They interpreted the money exchange rate from Euro to Shekel as they wanted: it was 4.9 in these days, they charged 5.2. Therefore the whole bill was about 15% more totally ... (some percent like 3 to 5% are taken by the bank as exchange fee, so pay in cash in Euro if possible!!). We had an extremely unfriendly discussion, we would have left the house immediately, but it was high season and no chance to get another Hotel in similar category.

The rooms are as rude as the Hotel Management (see attached fotos), without any charme or personal touch. No tables in some room, no chairs!

One day there suddenly was extremely loud noise at 7 a.m. Without any information beforehand they started to clean and renovate the outside house walls (with Kärcher High Pressure Engines). The whole hotel was filled with dust, dirt and extremely noise the whole day. No excuse or even compensation for the inconveniance by the Hotel Management. They are just little gangsters in their way of thinking and acting. Avoid the place if you want to live in peace.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kassel, Germany
1 review
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2011

If you know Jerusalem and feel sympathy for its people, religious life and history, if you are openminded and ready for new experiences - be a guest in the Armenian Guest House, right on the Via Dolorosa.
On the first view it's the location with its atmosphere, that makes the place unique.
You will find renovated rooms, super clean and comfortable beds, to relax after full-day-programms.
The atrium in the church-yard will give you the taste of the middle east and the globe.
Next to you is the armenian-catholic church and your neighbours will be a yewish Yeshiva and a mosque.
You will meet christians from all over the world, listen to their prayers and chorals - if you want. If not: also. Also the muezzin fivetimes a day.
And you will get in tuch with the people, who will accommodate you. If you stay longer, you can leave as a friend.
Don't expect "Hilton": Armenian Guest House is a different classification!
Sleep well (for some hours), and enjoy an oriental food cooked with love!

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 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 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ghent, Belgium
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
78 hotel reviews
Reviews in 80 cities Reviews in 80 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2011

The room itself was rather nice, but the bedding wasn't suitable for the bed, we also didn't get any new towels (we stayed for five nights). The breakfast is poor and the service also. The man who treated the breakfast had a serious lung illness, not a good idea....

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Armenian Guest House

Address: Via Dolorosa 36, Jerusalem 91194, Israel
Location: Israel > Jerusalem District > Jerusalem > Muslim Quarter
Hotel Style:
Ranked #37 of 53 B&Bs / Inns in Jerusalem
Number of rooms: 20
Also Known As:
Armenian Guest House Hotel Jerusalem

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