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“Looks good on paper, but...” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Jodanga Backpackers Hostel

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Jodanga Backpackers Hostel
El Fuerte N0 1380 | Barrio Los Choferes, Santa Cruz 1380, Bolivia   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Looks good on paper, but...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2011

On paper good amenities (swimming pool, pool table, tv, blah blah blah) however it is well overpriced, has only 2 common bathrooms 1 shower, some unfriendly staff, overpriced drinks (not allowed to bring your own). Rooms are tiny and uncomfortable springy beds.
Not flexible with changing bookings and can't check in till 2pm.
Also it belongs to HI but it is not advertised on the website and you can't get your 10% discount unless you book through the HI site.
Location, only if you want to be close to the train/bus terminal, otherwise 25min walk into the city.
Had a bbq night and the whole place was full of sticky smoke.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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148 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Chicago
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2011

It's just far from the center and from the terminal. But among the expensive places in Santa Cruz, this one offers fantastic service. The pool and jacuzy, wifi, a very clean kitchen to use, and the awesome breakfast are really good. The air conditioning works only at night from 11 to 8, but it is set on perfect temperature, never too hot or cold. Although I was looking for cheaper places to stay, but I recommend this one for a good atmosphere and very nice staff.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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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Santo André, São Paulo
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2011

I lived in Jodanga for a month as I came to Santa Cruz to work as a volunteer.
Staff is always friendly and I have never had any problems here. Besides, they are able to help you with any kind of problems.
The place itself is tidy, clean and shows a very young atmosphere, with a bar, pool table, colourful couches and an amazing swimming pool, which is their best "attraction" during the Santa Cruz summer.
They are located in a noble area of Santa Cruz, with a fantastic park just in front. The city center is 30 minutes away (walking) and you will probably feel like taking a cab to come and go, which can be a little annoying if you have to go there very often.
My only complain about the place is regarding my matress. Maybe I am being a little picky, but it is just too thin and I can feel the whole bed under my back.
Still, the place is amazing. This hostel is completely different from any other hostels I have stayed before and when I come back (I WILL come back), I am surely staying in Jodanga again.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Worldwide
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2010

We stayed here for 2 nights in one of their double rooms. It was a good space, very clean with enough room to fit all our luggage, so was great. There wasn't always hot water, temperamental times of day!

The hostel is very clean and the staff are very friendly and helpful.
Pool is great especially when the weather is as hot as it was.
The BBQ is well worth the B$55! the meat was amazing and drank plenty of vodka to make up for it :)

The location is great for a quiet night's sleep as it is way out from the centre of town. It is a 15-20min walk from the bus station and about 25min walk to town. Fine if you like walking :)

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
San Francisco, CA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2009

Overall, this place is an excellent value for the money. It has a pool, wifi, breakfast with eggs and some very tasty limeade. Normally I don't expect "service" from a hostel, but had a couple really annoying things happen.

1.) We called in advance to see if they had a double room available as I am traveling with my husband. They said they did, so we headed over. We checked in to the double room with air conditioning, everything was fine. Then half an hour later we were told that the room was not available, and we would have to be moved to the non air-conditioned dorm. No accommodation or apologies were made for this inconvenience. The dorm room was very poorly ventilated, smelly, and hot.

2.) We needed to have laundry done. It was very expensive ($18 Bs. per kilo). However, we had a ton of laundry, and didn't want to drag it all over town looking for somewhere cheaper, so we just gave in and had it done. They promised it would be ready for me the same day since we were leaving the next morning. Well, my clothes did go in to the washer that day... but not the drier. They left my clothes in the washing machine to fester overnight. Then, the next morning when I asked about my laundry, they moved it to the drier. However, they put all 6 kilos in one load together, and it didn't get dry. We needed to leave to catch a flight, so they finally returned the laundry to me, half damp, and REALLY smelly (smelled worse than when we gave it to them). So, I paid about US$15 to have pretty much every piece of clothing I own ruined. I'm going to have to pay to have it done again, and PRAY the smell comes out.

The one good part of our stay was the Saturday night barbecue. 45 Bs. for all you can eat meat, and all you can drink vodka and rum. Good thing I was able to take advantage of that, they booze was the only thing that allowed me to get a decent night's sleep in that stinky hot dorm.

P.S. 2 bathrooms for 7 dorms. That's well over 40 people when full... be prepared to wait your turn.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Quito, Ecuador
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2009

I'll begin with the positive. The place is very clean and at night it was quiet. The pool was lovely and useful with the heat. The tv room is comfortable with lots of movies. The breakfast was better than average including eggs and fresh juice and the wifi internet was not terribly slow (not terribly fast either). The staff was friendly and helpful and we liked the location, being a 20 minute walk away from the hectic center and located in a residential neighborhood.

Now the negative. If you plan on hanging out there make sure that you like tecno/house music blasting through the speakers from 9am-10pm. Luckily we could not hear it in our room, but as internet is only available in the lobby we endured long hours of terribly irritating music, not to mention the same 3 cds over the 4 days we were there. Also, when we called only a room with air-conditioning was available. We agreed to pay extra for this as there was nothing else, but we also thought we were paying for a service that would actually work. There was no air-conditioning the first night. I complained and was guaranteed that the next night it would work. Of course the second night there was no air conditioning. I was pretty pissed that I was paying for a service that seemingly did not exist so I complained again and asked to speak with the owner. I was able to speak with him on the phone and although we still had to pay extra for air the 2 nights without it, he was nice and apologetic and said it would work that night. I asked to move to a room where I didn't have to pay for air as I wasn't sure it would really work. This is clearly a problem as the next morning 2 other girls were complaining about paying for non-existent air and they ended up leaving the next day early as they were so pissed about paying for it. I asked these girls before leaving if they finally had air. They said they heard some kind of air noise the second night, but felt nothing. I don't think the air is really necessary as we were comfortable with a fan, but if you are going to make people pay extra for it you better be able to offer it. We felt cheated in that way.

Other than those complaints I would recommend it. I would probably even stay there again, making sure I get a room without the non-existent air and bringing earplugs for the lounge area.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2007

I stayed at this hostel for a few weeks during december and I had a ball! the weather was fantastic they have a swimming pool and a bar with the most fabulous coffee and frappe ever. Its easily the CLEANEST hostel I have ever stayed in and easily the cleanest option in santa cruz - some others were GROSS. I saw at least 3 different cleaners in my time there so there was one there all the time. Also the staff tourism info was great - they have written a guide to santa cruz that is very much more accuarate and up to date than the 2004 lonely planet I was carrying. Everyone must visit beautiful Santa Cruz, explore the jungle and stay in this fabulous hostel for less than $7 a night!! I think they have a website [----]. goodluck with your trip in Bolivia folks!

Stayed November 2006
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Jodanga Backpackers Hostel

Address: El Fuerte N0 1380 | Barrio Los Choferes, Santa Cruz 1380, Bolivia
Location: Bolivia > Santa Cruz Department > Santa Cruz
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 29 Specialty Lodging in Santa Cruz
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
If you want a couple of days chilling in the sun by the pool this is the perfect hostel for you! Come visit our backpacker luxury.The hostel started in 2006 and has established a well-balanced between fun and relaxation. We go according to the guests staying, if you want to have fun and party, we organized BBQ's by the pool “all you can drink and eat” for everyone to meet and have a good time. If you want to rest and relax just watching movies or having a drink at the poolside bar you can also do so. We have years of experience running a confortable, secure and spotlessly clean place with lots of tourist information for your travel. We are not the cheapest place in Santa Cruz, but definitely the best one! ... more   less 
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