We (my brother and I) stayed at Wood Castle for three nights in mid-September 2013. It was an absolutely wonderful experience.
First, the hotel is extremely clean and well kept. The accommodations are an amazing bargain for the price. The beds are comfortable, there is free bottled water, slippers, cable TV with quite a lot of channels, and a very clean and nice bathroom. The wifi in the downstairs main area is fast and free, which is a great help if you need to plan the next leg of your trip like we did. There is also a fairly large supply of books to borrow. There is complimentary breakfast in the morning – both Indian and American options, as well as a kitchen the rest of the day for a fee (but still very cheap) if you wish to eat. The food was amazing – the best meals that we had while in Delhi. The hotel is also only about a 5 minute walk from the metro station – very easily accessed.
While the hotel itself is great, the highlight of our stay was most definitely the people. Rajesh, Hassan, and the rest of the staff were extremely welcoming hosts. We sat for hours in the main area with some of the other travelers and staff drinking whiskey and rum and eating snacks that they had provided. The atmosphere is extremely friendly and communal. Even better than the community, though, was how helpful the staff were. There are many many scammers in Delhi – it’s hard to walk for more than a few minutes without encountering one. The staff warned us of typical scams and stories and provided personal mobile numbers in the event that we ran into any trouble. They provided suggestions for places to stay in the next city we were going to, as well as suggestions as to the best transportation options for each destination – all while never pressuring us to book anything through them. We departed Delhi yesterday and they even messaged to check on us in our next stop.
We really can’t say enough nice things about this place – we’re very grateful to have found it!
For anyone that does decide to stay at Wood Castle, I thought I would add this as an anecdote (both to help future travelers not fall for this scam, as well as to provide a testament to the helpful nature of the staff)… We unfortunately fell for a scam on our first day in Delhi. We were looking for a bookstore as we departed our hotel, and immediately were approached by a rickshaw driver. He said he would bring us to the nearest bookstore for a very reasonable fare. We entered the rickshaw, and after entering, the driver said that he remembered that the bookstore didn’t open until later, but that he could bring us to an office where we could grab a free map. We agreed that that was fine so long as it was close. As soon as we walked in, we realized it was a tour office. We were given tea and sold quite hard on mapping out our next week in India (we were traveling fairly open ended). While we knew the rickshaw driver had delivered us to the tour office on purpose, we did sit and talk with the tour worker for a while and he eventually sold us on a package (for just us, not as part of a tour group) that seemed quite reasonable for the price and amount of time we were to be away. After we had given him the money, he told us not to tell our hotel owners that we had worked with him. While I knew we were paying slightly more b/c we booked via a tour company, I didn’t mind because it was easy to get it all done in one place. However, as soon as he said that we shouldn’t tell our hotel, I had a knot in my stomach.
As soon as we returned to Wood Castle, we discussed what had happened with Hassan, and he immediately explained that we had paid much much more than was necessary. He gave us his mobile number in case anything went wrong during the trip that we had planned. In the end, we departed for our trip the following day, but ended up stopping the trip after only one day. We lost quite a bit of money by cutting it short (over half of what we had paid), but we both decided that we would rather lose the money than continue our work with the tour operator. Rail tickets that were supposed to be a certain class were ultimately booked for classes below what we had paid for, the hotel we stayed at – which the tour operator said would be far superior to Wood Castle – was nowhere near the quality of Wood Castle. Our driver would only take us to restaurants, stores, etc that he suggested because he would receive a commission at those places. It felt that the time wasn’t our own and that we were being scammed constantly, and so we emailed Hassan and told him we were returning to Delhi and Wood Castle immediately.
Long story short: Stay at Wood Castle! Given the sometimes slightly overwhelming nature of Delhi, it’s a very peaceful and welcoming place to go home to.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.