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“Cheap prison-like accommodation” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Akinabalu Youth Hostel

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Akinabalu Youth Hostel
1st Floor, No. 133 Jalan Gaya, Kota Kinabalu 88000, Malaysia   |  
Hotel amenities
1 review
“Cheap prison-like accommodation”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2012 via mobile

This place was recommended to me by two of my friends. Unfortunately I have to disagree with them; the place was mediocre at best.

The private rooms with their 'all concrete' looks and creaky beds mostly resemble prison cells. Wifi is very poor/unusable in the rooms, toilets are messy and street noise penetrates the room walls very effectively. The niceness/helpfulness of the staff was average.

On the good side the location is pretty good, common space was roomy & comfortable and the price wasn't bad. Wouldn't still recommend this place.

  • Stayed March 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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80 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
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Bristol, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2012

Akinabalu was recommended to me by a good friend of mine. It has a good location at one end of Gaya Street for the weekend market and local sights, although its location backing onto a main road does make it pretty noisy. That seems to be a standard for KK hostels though. The common area is great - airy, spacious and sociable. Breakfast includes the mandatory cheap toast but also noodles for the bread-weary; a nice touch.

I'm not a big fan of rooms without exterior windows so some of the internal rooms weren't very appealing to me.

The biggest complaint from me was the way that staff dealt with the bed bugs that made themselves known in my bed. I went to the pharmacy when a rash of itchy bites appeared all over my shoulders, ankles and back on day one. They confirmed that it was most likely bed bugs, which I fed straight back to the hostel staff who were reluctant to move me to a new bed ('we're full') or even give me clean sheets. Another lady on the later shift told me she was 'very ashamed', but it didn't spur her into any real action. It transpired that every person who had slept in that bad over the course of a week or more had complained about being bitten, but nothing had been done. Displeased.

A complimentary night would be nice, no? Think again. What about removing everyone from the room and dealing with the problem swiftly and comprehensively? Not on your nelly. Laundering and tumble drying my clothes to prevent me carry the beasties with me? Wishful thinking.

I had to wash the entire contents myself, a couple of loads of laundry and I still fear I just saw a rogue crawling out of a pair of tumble-dried trousers, not to mention the fact that I couldn't sleep for the intense itching for several nights and have had to stock up on piles of antihistamines.

Skin discomfort some two weeks later, while not wholly the hostel's fault, stops me from recommending the place to friends.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Bangkok, Thailand
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2012

Superb location with Sunday morning market as close as foot step. However, shared toilet and bathroom facilities should be frequently looked after and well maintained. Good value for money though..

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Edmonton, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2012

While I was in KK me and a friend stayed here for 4 nights. Great location, cheap rates, great atmosphere, free computer use, clean rooms, 24 hr concession (4MR beers), lounge chairs. The staff were very helpful and knowledgeable about the city and Borneo Island. I met some new friends and have some great memories to take with me on my next adventure.

Thanks Akinabalu!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Sydney, Australia
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2012

I stayed here only one night on my way from Mt.Kinabulu. For 56 ringit I got a private room (even though it had 4 beds) was nice of the hotel to give me a private room which would usually probably costs 80 RM (for 4 people).

Staff friendly enough, also 2 computers free to use whcih is nice (and usually available + standard free WIFI). Free breakfast, as always, consisted of a disappointing white toast + Nescafe (I prefer to pay 3RM for a Nasi Lemak + Kopi Tarik... but then again I am a yuppie).

So why only 3 stars? The location is very central, however, not ideal, as it sits between Jalan Gaya and the main arterial road of KK, which gets ALOT of traffic (by KK standards). So there is a fair bit of traffic noise. If you are on the Jln Gaya side it is quieter, however, I was woken up by a whole troup of high pitched birds at 3:30am (they were very loud and I suspect that they are resident on the nature strip outside every day - but I cannot confirm as I was there only 1 night). I shoved my ear plugs in, and turned the ceiling fan only cyclone setting to try and drown out the noise and slept ok after that. But sleep was a bit uneasy, and to me this is the cornerstone of a good hostel.

My recommendation if you are a light skeeper would be to take a guesthouse on the quiet and chilled out Australia place (there are 3 there). But like I said, a nice, well priced place aside from the sleep.

Room Tip: Away from the main road!!!
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
xi'an
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2012

i stayed in this hostel for 6days and 5days in dorm beds &1night in private room ( for 4 person). i recommend this hostel to you all, specially for the low budget ,such as me...
it's with great location, in gaya street , by the way. and the hostel is very clean and MOST staff are very kind. you also can get the useful info from them once you required.
anyway, it's a great place.

Room Tip: booked as earlier as you can, if you don't mind, i think the upper dorms are much better.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
85 reviews 85 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2012

Having originally booked into the awful Tropicana Lodge, we were delighted to find this clean and spacious hostel, so obviously the best in KK. Great rooms with fan were good price. Wifi and internet, great local information, free noodles for breakfast, tea & coffee. Staff were fantastic and common room was great place to escape the heat and the rain. Great for a chill out, many thanks for a great stay!

Room Tip: 3rd floor fan rooms are good option as i cheaper and away from road noise. **Try to stay at shop...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Akinabalu Youth Hostel

Address: 1st Floor, No. 133 Jalan Gaya, Kota Kinabalu 88000, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Sabah > West Coast Division > Kota Kinabalu District > Kota Kinabalu
Amenities:
Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 70 Specialty lodging in Kota Kinabalu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
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Also Known As:
Akinabalu Youth Hotel Kota Kinabalu
Akinabalu Youth Hostel Kota Kinabalu, Sabah

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