Either Somewhere To Stay has undergone a dramatic improvement or several previous reviewers didn’t quite realise what they were booking themselves into.
I quit staying in hostel dorms years ago, but since I’ve gone back to studying again I’m not willing to pay hotel prices. A private room in a hostel such as this one is perfect for me. It was my first visit in a decade where I didn’t stay at the Astoria (see a previous review) and I can’t comment about the dorm rooms because I didn’t stay in one. I booked into a standard single room.
Location: Somewhere To Stay is not in the city. It is barely even next to the city. Once you’ve done the walk from the city to the hostel through the West End once you won’t want to do it again. If it’s raining, you will get wet and if it’s late (anytime after dusk) you’ll be accosted by locals asking for money or wanting to pick a fight with you. Do the walk in daylight and be careful if you’re walking around after dark because it doesn’t feel safe. Somewhere To Stay is, however, just far enough away from this area and in a quiet suburban Street that it seems OK. You will choose to stay here because of the right balance of cost, quality and location.
Transport: Realise now that you will use the hostel’s free shuttle bus to get to the city, I hadn’t planned to and the alternative is a train from Southbank station. The shuttle bus is quick, convenient, safe and easy. It only takes about 10 minutes to get you where you want to go. The train station is about a 10 to 15 minute walk away, the opposite direction to the West End along a main road and feels reasonably safe – there’s no cover though so if it’s raining you’ll get wet. If there are a few of you then a cab will be the easiest option and probably no more expensive than train fares.
Somewhere To Stay is a backpackers. It has a common room where there are always a half dozen or so people watching one of the many free DVDs available. It has a bank of computers where you can pay for internet (or hotspot) access and plenty of comfy chairs to sit and read a book in. The kitchen looked good and there is plenty of fridge space if you prefer to shop at the local Coles and cook for yourself – which, given the food on offer nearby, is going to be either much cheaper or much healthier than other options. There’s no McDonalds, KFC etc. anywhere nearby but plenty of pizza, burger and kebab places. The laundry looked fine and I met someone who has been living there (and working in Brisbane) for five months, so it’s all very functional.
Your room will be nothing flash. It isn’t air-conditioned but it will have a pedestal fan in it along with a desk, a chair and somewhere to hang your clothes. Despite a previous reviewer’s comments I saw no sign that Somewhere To Stay is a party joint. There are signs everywhere laying down the rules for when noise needs to stop and I had no issues with noise even though the walls are pretty thin. No problems other than the person in the neighbouring room who snored incredibly loudly and the token loud American who either didn’t realise or didn’t care that at 2:15am when she wants to have a shouted conversation with her friend in the next room that everyone can hear it – So, to be honest I didn’t sleep all that well but it’s nothing a pair of earplugs wouldn’t fix, I just kept forgetting to buy some!
The toilets and showers have seen better days and that part of the hostel probably needs looking at. Some shelving in the showers wouldn’t go astray and the sinks are in the toilets and very small, which makes shaving, brushing your teeth etc. a bit pokey and generally unpleasant if the previous user has left their 'brand' – so to speak.
Overall, Somewhere To Stay was perfect for my brief (3 night) visit. The staff are great. Very helpful and very friendly. I didn’t tax them with any touristy questions but I suspect they could answer most things. I chose to stay there this time because of the price... next time I will probably stay there because it suits me and I know what I'm in for - it is, literally, Somewhere To Stay
If this sounds like the sort of place you’d be happy to stay then I recommend it!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- An amazing tropical style resort hostel. Dorms starting from $19 and private rooms from $49 pn. Situated 20 mins walk from Brisbane City, our hostel is located in the laid-back suburb of West End. An eclectic mix of shops, cafes, restaurants and bars are just a few minutes stroll from the hostel. Relax in our salt water pool or catch our free bus service to the city or Southbank and soak up the atmosphere. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Somewhere To Stay Hotel Brisbane