First off, the two bad reviews where not only from only two guests, i too am one of many that was inconvenienced that week because this guy could not withhold his verbal agreement on rates. I'm surprised the many others have not written to express there disgust at the way they were spoke to and treated.
I think it's important to note that I am a 31 year old, easy going backpacker who has seen a really good share of hostels in my life. I've had a fair amount of distasteful situations at some of them, but never anything that couldn't be resolved. I have never written a bad review about anything in my life and always feel like some things aren't worth the effort but this place however, changed that!
A few days before my arrival I sent the Manager and Owners son Alex, a request to book a few rooms. I recieved his reply saying that they do not take reservations and to please just come in when we got to Bocas and he would help sort things out. So a few days later we arrived and thought ourselves lucky that he had space. Myself, my friends and bunch of backpackers staying here were welcomed in that day under the impression of having found a place to kick back for a few days at an affordable rate that was web based as well as verbally agreed upon.
So to cut a long, ugly story short. The following morning I'm first told that no one in the hosel can stay more than one more night as Alex has long standing booking for a big group the the following day (I thought he didn't do bookings???) then at 10:30am Alex decides he's upping all his rates by 50% (this is 30 mins before check out). He sent one of his employees to do the dirty work of spreading the news while he cowardly tried to escape for a bike ride hoping to avoid a definate uproar. I caught him just before he left to dispute this sudden change in agreement, and he went off in a frenzy of excuses about how all the other hostels were upping their rates for that weeks town fair and how he was doing it too "if no one likes it check out is at 11am." He put is headphones in and rode off before I could get in another word.
Needless to say everyone in the hostel was furious when the word had spread, many had bought groceries and planned tours. Now they were being told that they could only stay for one night and they had to pay 50% more if they did. So naturally that inconveniently changed a lot of plans.
A couple of us took the liberty of speaking to the Owner (Alex's father) who we thought would have more common sense of business ethic in Hospitality, but we were sadly mistaken and were told "My son Alex runs the hostel, you need to speak to him, that's just the way it works around here". (The early twenty-something kid with more attitude than common sense? - We were lost for words)
Upon Alex's arrival from his bike ride he basically walked into the common area and told an enraged and argumentative bunch "I'm upping my rates for the fair, everyone is upping their rates, if you don't like it, I'm sorry! Check out was 30 mins ago" He basically cleaned out his hostel.
Can you imagine 1 hour after waking up in a hostel on the first day you're there and being told to pay more for your bed or get out.
We had to cancel a tour that we had already paid for, waste 4 hours of mid day trying to find accommodation in a town that was almost completely booked out because of the town fair, we ultimately lost a day of enjoying Bocus del Toro, all at the account of a spoilt brat who obviously has no sense of respect or hospitality for his guests. Oh, and everywhere we asked knew nothing of this rate increase, and we went to a lot of hostels.
As we were leaving he sat back in a chair at the entrance insultingly whimpering "Bye guys!"
Hosteluego, with no remorse, inconveniently put us out. There was no sense of customer service or gratitude in the way we were treated. It was untruthful and unfair. I have a feeling we were lured in to be taken advantage of, to fill beds temporarily without being told of the group booking in fear that we might have gone somewhere else from the start. The price hike I think was an attempt to try put us out of pocket in hope that everyone would believe his lies about all the other hostels hiking prices, which they didn't, in fact only one out of the 10 plus that we went to did this.
In my opinion people like this don't deserve to be supported, there are many other hostels in and around Bocus that are really nice and many are run by honest, amazing, helpful people who deserve the support of the backpacking community. Casa Max for one is only down the street from here and it's much better and honest.
Please consider this carefully if your heading that way, don't let this guy pull the wool over your eyes!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
October 31, 2012
This is one of a group of 4 traveling together who threatened to leave HosteLuego a bad review if we did not maintain our prices for them during two days of Feria. We were completely full and following local pricing protocol, as was every other hotel and hostel on the island. Unfortunately, you can't please everyone. Fortunately, though, we get very few guests like this.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.