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“Ugly, bug ridden and rude staff” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Hostelling International San Diego Downtown

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Hostelling International San Diego Downtown
1.5 of 5 Hostel   |   521 Market St., San Diego, CA 92101   |  
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GreenLeadersSilver level
Madrid
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Ugly, bug ridden and rude staff”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2006

Old building in down town San Diego needs to be torn down. Found bugs in bathrooms as well as bedrooms. Found staff members more focused on ordering people around instead of being accomodating to the obvious discrepencies in the place.

Downtown location is a wonderful place to walk around however
don't plan on getting any sleep as there is people noise all through the day and night and since the hostel building walls are by no means sound proof falling and staying asleep is a challange.

Stayed October 2006
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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232 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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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
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
Date | Rating
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English first
Los Angeles
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2006

I would not recommend this place. The main lobby, hallways and public areas appeared old, rundown and dirty. The staff appeared to be confused and disorganized. Also, I had booked a private room, expecting a private bath (as advertised in their website). Instead, I had to use a public bathroom. There were only two in my floor. One of the bathrooms was not in service for a long time; and the other one had a long wait. Since my dark, closet-like room was also adjacent to the central patio and laundry facility, it was constantly noisy. I had to use earplugs at night to sleep....there were other problems as well. Perhaps the only positive aspects about this hostel is its location (in the historic Gaslamp district) and its cheap price. But I would definitely not stay here again!

  • Liked — N/A
  • Disliked — old, dirty, noisy, poor service,
  • Tips/Secrets — good for those in very tight budgets w/low expectations
  • Stayed July 2006, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reno, Nevada
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2006

I decided a couple years ago at the last minute to go to San Diego Street Scene which is this huge music festival with lots of great bands.

I thought since it was last minute, I'd try this place. It was right by the festival and it was super cheap.

Problem 1 - No a/c and it was HOT

Problem 2- other roommate LIVED at the place and would talk incessantly. god she would babble NONSTOP! When I was trying to sleep! GRRR.

Problem 3-they wouldn't let you bring alcohol into the place. Wha? I'm over 21 and I like beer dangit! It wasn't like this was run for children or people that go to AA. Sheesh.

Problem 4 - THE SNOTTY STAFF. I got physically sick from the heat and the staff could have cared less. I was lying in my bed half dead and everyone had their doors open because it was so hot. Some jerk who worked here made a snide remark to me about lying around all day & when I told him I was sick he basically said well go some where else.

I took his advice and LEFT AND I WILL NEVER EVER STAY HERE AGAIN AND DON'T RECOMMEND IT AT ALL unless you like a hot room (even at night) and want to be basically treated like you owe the staff a favor for paying to stay in this rat hole. It was not literally full of rats but the staff made an excellent substitute. I'd probably PREFER the company of rodants to them actually!

It was clean (almost sterile in a military kind of way) and in a good location close to the Gaslamp and East Village.

That's it. End of topic. And I RARELY give bad reviews and I have stayed in all manner of crudholes. But this one was inexcusable.

I

  • Liked — location, clean
  • Disliked — everything else
  • Tips/Secrets — Motel 6 just north of downtown is cheap and private
  • Stayed July 2006, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orange County
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2006

Cleanliness and aroma of the place wasn't great, and it was pretty noisy too. On the upside, it's fantastic location and very cheap - fine for the budget traveller, although if i went again i would go for a private room, it's worth the extra money to get some sleep.

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Chicago
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2005

I say its too darn noisy - but what you expect its loacted on one of the main streets in the city where people go drinking! - if you are unfortunate they will accomodate you on the front fascade facing rooms (above when you go upstairs to the hostel)

Nice environment - loads of beautiful women packers....and men too!! lol

the toilets and showers are shared very well simply because they are fully enclosed unlike many toilets in america with gaps between cubicles that I cant stand! - 5/5 for facilites in a hostel no question!

Free waffle mixture everyday which is nice too! - perfect for night dwellers too! - and the price is good - however staying in the front rooms was hell too noisy....you pay what you get though....!

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2005

I became a lifetime HI member long ago(1991) while living in San Diego.I returned to the city in 2000 on a visit and was told that city residents are not allowed in the hostel.I produced a Hawaii drivers license,Passport,visa to Russia, and ticket to Moscow Russia.The male ignoramus continued to harangue me to the point of putting his hand on me to push me out the door.I actually nearly,and was seconds from punching him out.

He was a 20 ish caucasian male.I am a 49 year old Samoan male.I noticed it was also obvious racial hatred too.Later that night i saw him drunk on booze and smoking Reefer.The Hostel is not a good place to stay unless a boozer or you intend to go out and traverse bars.If you need rest then stay away from it by all means!

  • Stayed July 2000, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Dublin, Ireland
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2004

I have just returned from a 7 night stay at the HI hostel in the Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego. I have to say I was disappointed with service we got. When I book a hostel I look for those that are clean and in a safe location. Maybe my expectations were too high.

I had originally booked myself and my friend into a 6 bed female dorm and on checking-in we found ourselves in a 10 bed female dorm. It wasn't until the 3rd day that the room was completly full but when it was there wasn't a lot of room for anyone, let alone backpacks and suitcases.

For 3 days our bathroom remained uncleaned and with 10 people using it constantly it became very annoying. The bins in the rooms also remained unemptied for 3 days. By the time they finally were they were overflowing. The first set of sheets I was given had large rips in the them and after changing them I found the undersheet in the second set was also ripped. At this stage I just gave up and didn't bother changing them again. I was made feel like I was complaining excessivley the first time I changed them and so sent my friend down the second time. Also the blanket on my bed had a stain on it.

For the most part visitors at the hostel seemed to be people travelling around the country, however, in our room we had 2 people who were living there until the found somewhere in the city!

We were unlucky enough to have a room facing the main street in the Gaslamp. The noise is unreal at night time especially at the weekends. There is a cigar shop below the hostel and it is frequented by large numbers of people on Harleys. Between the noise from the bikes, the bar underneaths music and all the people on the street we rarely got to sleep before 3am. Several people resorted to using ear plugs and even that didn't drown out the noise. Whatever you do steer clear from room 217 if you ever want to sleep. Also be warned the ATM in the hostel charges a service fee on credit cards for making withdrawls.

Overall the hostel wasn't too bad, I suppose for $21 a night what can you expect. It's location is great but the noise is a problem. The one staff member we came across at reception didn't seem too knowledgeable about the area and actually gave us the wrong information about a few things we asked. However, San Diego is a great city so don't let this put you off.

  • Stayed July 2004
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hostelling International San Diego Downtown

Address: 521 Market St., San Diego, CA 92101
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > San Diego
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 53 Specialty Lodging in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:1.5 star — Hostelling International San Diego Downtown 1.5*
Number of rooms: 48
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We’re here to help you with the most central and accessible hostel in San Diego. Let our award winning staff ensure you receive the most comfortable and enjoyable hostel stay you’ve ever had. We offer a myriad of free tours and activities, and all of our beds are Tempur-Pedic mattresses. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hostelling International San Diego Downtown Hotel San Diego

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