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“Overpriced and unclean.” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Apple Hostels Philadelphia

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Apple Hostels Philadelphia
2.0 of 5 Hostel   |   32 Bank Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106 (Formerly Bank Street Hostel) (City Center East)   |  
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Hotel amenities
Special Offer
3 Night $20 Special
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Melbourne
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Overpriced and unclean.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

I stayed in a very noisy 16-bed dorm room. It is in close proximity to the centre of town, shops and places of interest. Plenty of information available at reception and on notice boards, as well as many activities offered. Security was tight. Everyday, the code changed which allowed access to the hostel rooms. Internet facilities were also available, for a small fee. Wi Fi was also available; however, the speed was slow and not always functioning. The lounge room and kitchen were a great way to meet new people. The bathroom was very small, considering it catered for 16 people. It was also very messy and unclean. I found lots of hair on the linen. The staff were ok. It was overpriced for what it had to offer. I stayed for only 2 nights, which made it bearable. It served its purpose, but I would not stay there again.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AppleHostels, Owner at Apple Hostels Philadelphia, responded to this review, January 17, 2013
Hi Candace,

I'm so sorry that the cleaning wasn't up to par during your stay on the 7th and 8th of November, 20012. I remember doing an inspection of the hostel that week and was also extremely disappointed with the work of the cleaning crew as well as management for not catching the problem sooner. A new supervisor has been put in place since then and our cleanliness ratings are back up to where they're supposed to be: among the highest of any hostel in North America.

We've never had complaints about the size of our bathrooms as there is rarely a wait to use them, and if there is, we have more available in other parts of the hostel that never ever have a wait.

If you're ever back in Philadelphia I hope that you give us another chance, I'm certain that you won't be disappointed!
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247 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
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English first
Nashville, Tennessee
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013 via mobile

Ended up flying out of Philly and decided to make a weekend of it. Charming city; nothing spectacular and hostel provided a clean safe sleeping environment during my time here. Hostel is in a nice location in town and close to city centre and south street. A little more than what I wanted to pay for a hostel but I'm over it.

I had no problems with stolen/missing items, but as a precaution I still packed my "precious" items in a locker. Staff was helpful and friendly. Restrooms were clean at all times. I wish they would put paper towels in bathroom. Not to keen on sharing 1 handtowel with 27 other girls.

Other than the above mentioned, there will be noise in a 28 bed dorm. Surprisingly, even with the club right across the alleyway, the noise was non-existent (even without earplugs) after 1ish. Give or take the few girls tht came home at 5:00am, I slept well.

Having said all this, I would stay again at the hostel. Not sure if ill be in Philly again - I can think of a number of other places to go visit before Philly. If you are looking for a safe, convenient hostel experience, stay here.



M

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
AppleHostels, Owner at Apple Hostels Philadelphia, responded to this review, January 17, 2013
Hi Marilyn,

I'm happy that you enjoyed your stay with us. I hope that you give Philadelphia another chance to impress you! It sounds as though you may not have approached any of our staff to ask for a free map and suggestions on what to see and do in the city. Philadelphia is ranked as the 3rd most walkable city in America behind NYC and San Francisco, and has a lot of interesting things to see and do, most of which are free or inexpensive. We also have a laminated information sheet on every bed with some great suggestions. Thousands more people are flocking to Philadelphia these days ever since the Barnes Foundation opened it's doors last year. There's more to see and do in Philadelphia than any other city on the East Coast with the only exceptions being NYC and Montreal. So I hope we see you again!
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Wellington, New Zealand
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2012

Stayed here a few months back. A cute hostel right in the centre of town, close to loads of shops and places of interest and the megabus stop.

Except for the fact I got bitten in my bed by something I don't have any complaints about the facilities. Loads of information on the boards, and a really cool hang out area with a nice TV and lots of DVD's. There's also lots of planned events and a really nice kitchen area. The facilities are really awesome and we didn't find the lights out policy or large dorms a problem. Although due to the nature of the building you will have a hard time getting your suitcase up the stairs if it's big as there are no lifts.

All in all a nice hostel, unfortunately just a couple of rude staff members. I've seen other users have similar experience. We saw one of the management staff literally yell at a girl who complained that she was rude. Mortified to hear things such as "I think you should re evaluate your life" "Admit that you are wrong" "Stop thinking you're more important." and pretty much waving the complaint note in her face. While I understand some customers can be difficult my review does no justice to the sort of attitude witnessed and how this person was treated. Just like Robboshef mentioned below I think it may be due to the fact that she was foreign.

After this I dare't mention that something bit me on one of the nights.

I think we heard this particular staff answer the phone as Shauna/Shana. Wondering if this is the same person some of the other users have had experiences with.

An okay hostel in terms of facilities but again as someone mentioned they take advantage of being the only hostel in Philly and I would be hesitant to stay here again. Now that I know the city I'd probably stay at a cheap hotel as I don't remember the prices varying too much.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AppleHostels, Owner at Apple Hostels Philadelphia, responded to this review, January 2, 2013
I'm very sorry that you were disappointed with our hostel. My staff and I do our best to make the hostel as enjoyable as possible and to make it as easy as possible for our guests to get acquainted with one another. Our staff reviews are among the best of any hotel or hostel on every website on which we're reviewed. That being said, we did have an employee who we hired in September who we had to let go after we received several complaints. He did actually have mostly positive reviews, but his sarcasm was not enjoyed by all of our guests. We had to terminate his employment because we want everyone to be happy, not just the majority of our guests.

Regarding your comment about something biting you. That's a bit of an odd one since we're in the middle of one of America's largest cities and we don't have any type of rodent or bug problem (our building is treated regularly to prevent such a thing). I would assume that you were either bitten by something while out in the park that flared up later or you were bitten by one of your roommates. But please don't hesitate to report bites to us or the staff of any other hostel as it could actually be serious and we would want to investigate the matter immediately in case anything needs to be done. No other guests have reported any bites so I'm fairly confident that it was an isolated incident. Probably just a sleepwalker with an appetite.
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Boston, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2012

I just came back from visiting Philly and stayed at Apple Hostels for 2 nights. Upon arriving, I was greated by a rude (or rather not interested) staff worker and really wasn't given a great welcome that you usually get from other hostels. I'm thinking maybe the staff worker was just having an off day since other staff workers I met later that weekend was friendly and nice.

There are three floors to the hostel. The second floor is for females and the third floor is for males. Each floor has separate bathroom and showers that are located outside of the rooms. Be warned though, there are a lot of bunked beds in one room. I think there must have been about 20+ or so beds so if you are OK with lots of snoring and people walking around at random times, then this should be OK.

Each bed also comes with two outlets, one for your reading light and another for your personal use. I also have to mention that the place's WiFi isn't all that fast. I was only really able to stream music on my iPod but anything with video wasn't all that great. Make sure to also ask for towels and go for their free tea/coffee. They also have a movie night where they have free beer and other times they have wine and cheese. There also isn't any free breakfast other than Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays where you get cereal and toast.

The plus about this place is obviously the location. You are pretty much in a shady alley way, but right in the historical center of Philly. City Hall is about a mile a way while the great Museum of Arts is about 2 miles away. Anyone who is remotely fit should be able to walk to these places. The night lift is also good, lots of young people and bars that are open. Also! Make sure to check out South Street where the lesser known cheesesteak joins are located!

Overall, the place wasn't BAD, but it wasn't GREAT either. Maybe I been spoiled by my past hostels at New York City or Kyoto, but this place just didn't do it for me.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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AppleHostels, Owner at Apple Hostels Philadelphia, responded to this review, December 18, 2012
I'm very sorry that your visit was spoiled by a rude employee. We have since let him go as we received several complaints about his humour. He's a great guy, but unfortunately just did not come across well with other guests especially if their English wasn't very good or didn't have a good sense of humour themselves, so obviously NOT a good fit for a hostel. We did have lots (even a large majority) of guests who absolutely loved him, but in our business we need EVERYONE to be happy!
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Yorktown, Virginia
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

Like William S. this, too, was my first stay at a hostel. I came up to PHL for an interview and needed something inexpensive but well-located at the last minute. When Apple Hostel first popped up, I thought "oh, NO."

1) I didn't want to die (have you seen the movie Hostel?! No thanks.) and
2) I'm have a serious fear of public restrooms, so how on Earth would I handle a public SHOWER?

In this case though, cost trumped fear so I booked the reservation and prayed for the best. When I arrived, I was surprised. It was clean, modern, people seemed normal. The folks at the front desk were so friendly and efficient. The room (which had 32 beds, I think) was clean and quiet. Despite the numerous beds, it wasn't crowded or packed. I definitely didn't feel like a sardine. I was able to take a nap and, later on, sleep with no problem.

The bathrooms were clean as well, thank GOD. The showers were decent and it wasn't difficult to get in and out of one, even with the number of girls in one room.

The hostel itself is located on South Bank and I know they call it a street, but it really does seem like an alley. I didn't have any problem or feel unsafe walking to the hostel late at night (I returned at 11:30/12:00am I believe) but I understand why people would feel a bit uncomfortable.

There are several restaurants & bars within walking distance so if, after a long day of sightseeing, you didn't feel like traveling far for a drink, you can literally walk two minutes and it upon a bar, a pizza place and more.

All in all, it was a great stay. If I find myself in a pinch again, I'll definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AppleHostels, Owner at Apple Hostels Philadelphia, responded to this review, December 22, 2012
Thanks for the nice review - I'm glad that you enjoyed your stay! We never take anyone to the dungeon on their first stay. And yes, it is a street even though it is very narrow. It's one of Philly's oldest streets and they didn't make them very wide back in the day! I hope the interview went well and hope to see you again in the near future!
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London
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

They have a monopoly on the hostel market as I believe they are the only one downtown. The hotel lobby and the end rooms feel clean to be fair, but they have a member of male staff who I found was very rude. I saw him on a number of occasions over my 3 day stay here being patronising, sarcastic and belittling to foreign guests, basically because he was being ignorant to the fact they don't speak 100% perfect English etc. He shouldn't have been employed to work at a hostel where there are guests on a daily basis from all around the world. I should comment, the other male member of staff I saw regularly was very very friendly and helpful.

Bedrooms are rammed full and breakfast is very basic.
Locations alright though. Near the greyhound garage and 10/15 minute walk to the extremities such as Benjamin Franklin bridge to New Jersey, or to South Street which is lively and where the action is.
Would think twice about staying here.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AppleHostels, Owner at Apple Hostels Philadelphia, responded to this review, December 18, 2012
I am very sorry for the poor service you received from one of our employees. We received several other complaints from guests and had the same observation as you did so we obviously had no choice but to let him go. We also had many guests who absolutely love him, but unfortunately if he comes off as rude if you don't have a good command of the English language or don't have a good sense of humour. Obviously we want to please EVERYONE, not just the majority of them, so he is no longer employed at our hostel.

We are the only hostel in the Old City district of Center City Philadelphia, but by no means do we "take advantage" of that, otherwise how could you explain that we're the 2nd-highest rated hostel in America? Our rooms are not crammed, quite the opposite, they have an unusually large amount of space between the beds and our hostel has an especially generous amount of common space for the tiny amount of people that we accommodate. We also have the best kitchen of any hostel in North America.

Instead of offering breakfast, every night we have free drinks or food to get everyone to socialize with one another. On Wednesday nights we have a free pasta dinner, Thursdays we have an open bar from 8 pm to 9 pm before our free pub crawl, on Fridays we have free wine and cheese and every other night we have free beer.
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South Wales, New York
Top Contributor
108 reviews 108 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2012

I decided to experience my first hostel during a recent conference in Philadelphia. I am sold on the hostel experience! Not only was the location amazing, but I met many international travelers from Europe, Asia and Africa. The hostel experience is a subculture. By design, it created a true community of international travelers. I paid around $35 a night, and, in addition to my sleeping space, this price included access to a lounge area, a kitchen, laundry facilities and washroom facilities.

My sleeping space was a dorm room, perfectly represented by the one in the picture, which contained 12 bunk beds. Everyone was friendly, and I had no issues with leaving my stuff on top of my bed while I was out all day. (There was the availability of lockers and locked storage space for large luggage items.) The only downside to the sleeping arrangement was that the guy below me snored loudly. However, I was so tired after my conference and all of my adventures around the city, that this did not affect me.

The kitchen was in the basement of the building. It seems like someone went to an Ikea store, saw a model kitchen, and said, "I'll take that kitchen. All of it." The kitchen at the hostel had pots & pans, utensils, cups, plates, bowls, etc. It looked like it could have been a kosher kitchen at one point, because there was two of everything. There were two sinks, two refrigerators, two oven / stove units and lots of counter space. Off to the side, there was a seating area with about eight small (five - person) round tables. There was always plenty of room to spread out, 24 hours a day. There were spaces and a labeling system which allowed me to store my food. In addition, there was a cabinet which was labeled "free food." It had things like cereal, pancake mix and spices. I also found condiments, such as ketchup and ranch dressing in the refrigerator.

I washed a load of laundry while I was there. I liked their system. They charged $5 USD, and this included the laundry soap, the use of the washer and dryer and dryer sheets. The laundry machines were not coin operated, so I did not have to mess with coins or anything like that.

On the first floor, a private washroom was available. It had a shower, toilet and sink. I used this one every morning to get ready for the day.

Staying at this hostel was an amazing experience that greatly enhanced my overall trip to Philadelphia. I enjoyed meeting new people. And, I was even able to make some contacts which has the possibility of benefiting my organization. Everything was very well organized. The staff was unique and friendly. Everything was clean and well managed. Next time I am in Philadelphia, I will surely stay here!

Room Tip: Book early. This hostel is in high demand.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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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Additional Information about Apple Hostels Philadelphia

Address: 32 Bank Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106 (Formerly Bank Street Hostel)
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia > City Center East
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Philadelphia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Apple Hostels Philadelphia 2*
Number of rooms: 70
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Apple Hostels is the only hostel in downtown Philadelphia, close to all major attractions and the best bars and clubs in Philly. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Apple Hostels Of Philadelphia Hotel Philadelphia

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