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“The dorm from hell”

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Chameleon Backpackers Hostel
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 19, 2010

Its a backpackers lodge, so this review is written from that viewpoint. As backpackers lodges go, Chameleon is reasonable. The rooms are not bad, but the dorm we stayed in was quite terrible. The dorm was actually a sort of passage next to the bathroom. Only 3 beds in it, but this particular dorm was the hallway that connected 2 other dorms to the bathroom and the lounge....... which means non stop traffic through the dorm from about 5.30 am to about 11 pm.... couple that with the major highway about 50 metres from the window... and forget about sleeping.

Chameleon would be better off to use that dorm for what it is .. a passage ! Rather camp than stay in the dorm.

I stayed in a proper bedroom during a previous visit.. was fine for a backpacker.

The free breakfast was great.

The staff was friendly.

The bar closes at 10 pm... so be it .. in years gone by Chameleon was quite hectic for parties.

All the crime warnings are a bit over the top, although parked cars DO get broken into outside the premises.. thats a fact.

Chameleon is okay , but if you want sleep then do not stay in a dorm, particularly not the one next to the bathroom

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Johnny084
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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275 - 281 of 381 reviews

Reviewed August 21, 2010

Characterful backpacker lodge in the center of town with walking distance of shopping & restaurants. Be warned about walking about in Windhoek especially with valuables. We stayed in an ensuite double for N$300 which was reasonably sized and comfortable with a clean bath. We just stayed the one night and left early in the morning to catch our flight so didnt have the opportunity to check out the breakfast. The free parking is a big plus.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Lucozade_Princess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2010

For a hostel it is a wonderful place to stay. There is a pool, a tv room with films to borrow, a kitchen and a fridge to cool yourself something, and a bar where you can meet a lot of nice people.
You have to go a bit to the next supermarket but its ok. But if you want to go out in the evening take a take, it's dangerous in windhoek at night.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled solo
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Thank UschiL4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2010

Chameleon was excellent. We stayed twice in our recent trip to Namibia. Bed etc were clean, warm and comfortable, staff were exceptionally friendly and helpful, and breakfast was spartan but plentiful.

For budget accommodation, I think you would be hard pressed to find better in Windhoek. The "guesthouse" portion of Chameleon is also quite nice - compared to other places we stayed on the trip, it was definitely the best bang for the buck.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank paddycakes_syd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2010

Chameleon Backpackers Hostel

We stayed here three nights in total but paid for four. It was nothing spactacular. Basic rooms with warm showers.

First night we arrived, we were scared off by all the signs and posters stuck on the walls all over the place saying things like "Have a real Windhoek experience at knife point". Reading all these posters made us very afraid to get out of the hostel. We were advised not to carry any bags when we go out of the hostel and after the first night of reading the posters and speaking to the staff we thought Windhoek was the most dangerous city in the World (especially for two girls). But along the way, we met some locals who brought us out and showed us the real Windhoek by day and night! It was excellent! If we had stuck to following the signs, we would not have seen the real Windhoek, which does not always end up at knife point!

We booked two beds for one night at the Chameleon and could not make it as we were stuck in one of the campsites close to Sossusvlei that had absolutely no telephone reception. We had finished our tour late and instead of rushing back to Windhoek we decided to postpone our travelling plans (including flight tickets) by one day. But since we had no reception, we could not make any calls to Chameleon to cancel our booking. Upon arrival the next day, we decided to stay one night at the Chameleon and were told that we had to pay for the beds the night before as well as they held the beds for us. We spoke to Jackie (owner/manager) hoping for some form of sympathy thinking she may understand that there was no reception and that we were really stranded and perhaps either allow us not to pay for the beds or give us a discount of sorts. We got nothing from her! She was completely unsympathetic and went rattling on over the phone about the professional service they provide and that my "little story" was unfortunate but we still had to pay for the beds. I was completely disgusted with her insensitivity and rudeness.

To make things worse, after I hung up with her, she rang her staff to call the cops on us if we refused to pay!!! The audacity! All for a mere USD15 per bed! I would definitely never go back to this place.

Plus, the bar closes at 945pm!

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank gaimoh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2010

Chameleon Back Packers is the place to stay in Windhoek! You know it's time to go...but you want to stay longer...Well situated, It's so confortable and clean, so relaxing, so friendly...everyone smile all the time from the direction to all the staff. You start your day with a good coffee or tea (free all the time), a great free breakfast, you lay around the pool taking sun during the nice ladies are washing your clothes, you watch a movie or your favorite sport on the big screan TV, you have a beer and chat at the bar... you walk down the street, buy food and make yourself a good dinner in a big fonctionnel kitchen....Well! you realy do and feel like you are at home.. Don't miss this place and enjoy the smilling staff.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank Road20years
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 22, 2010

We stayed there for one night in the honeymoon suite of the guesthouse. The room was really nice, with an outside shower on the balcony, and champagne and flowers were set up on our arrival.
The noisy backpacking setting and the location close to a main road does not fit, however that's not a problem.
Great value.
Safe parking.
Good and free breakfast.
City center is in walking distance.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank AfricaLover33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chameleon Backpackers Hostel

Address: 5 7 Voight Street, Windhoek 9000, Namibia
Location: Namibia > Khomas Region > Windhoek
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 88 Specialty Lodging in Windhoek
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
For Backpackers we offer dormitory beds. There is also a range of twin, double and triple rooms for those wishing for more privacy. Our Guesthouse has spacious rooms with en-suite bathrooms having off street parking and a continental self serve breakfast included. Need safe long term accommodation while staying in Windhoek. We have 3 flats available for stays of more than 3 months. We have recently added air-conditioners to some of our standard and luxury en-suite rooms which is great during the hot summer months. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Chameleon Backpackers Hotel Windhoek

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