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“Prime location, great food, icky bathroom”
Review of Beit Shmuel Hostel

Beit Shmuel Hostel
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Beit Shmuel Hostel
Reviewed June 10, 2012

I can't figure out how the owners of such prime real estate could keep it in such poor condition, but I guess if they fixed it up it wouldn't be a hostel anymore, so I shouldn't complain. Beit Shmuel is right around the corner from two of the most expensive hotels in Jerusalem, with a fantastic view of the Old City and easy walking distance to the Jaffa Gate, Mamilla and Yemin Moshe. The lobby and courtyard are very attractive, but once you get upstairs, the rooms are not in great condition. My shower was so mildewed that it was really gross. In my room the door to the balcony wouldn't open, but in a friend's room, the balcony door wouldn't lock, and in another room, the whole window popped right out of its frame. The mattresses were hard, but actually comfortable for sleeping. They have rooms that sleep up to six with all the bunks set up, but the upper bunks fold away to make a very spacious room for 2 or 3 people. The shower and toilet were in separate bathrooms, which was convenient for room-sharing. The best thing about Beit Shmuel, though, was the food. The buffet featured really interesting salads and vegetables, far beyond the usual array at Israeli hotels. Shabbat meals there were outstanding. My room was on the 2nd floor, and I heard that the upper floors were a little nicer, so I'd recommend asking for the 3rd floor if you stay there.

Room Tip: go for 3rd floor or higher
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  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Sudranski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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6 - 12 of 26 reviews

Reviewed May 3, 2012

For location and a clean, attractive "no frills" room, nothing beats Beit Shmuel. Near Mamilla, the Old City and King David , you can walk to most of central Jerusalem.
I was easily able to walk to the Old City, German Colony, King George St in Talbieh and Rehavia and to downtown along Jaffa Road. You are close to public transit.
Breakfasts are simple and delicious.
This was my fifth stay

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a balcony facing the Old City
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  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank leaffan2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 20, 2012

My sister-in-law and her hsuband to be were getting married and decided to get rooms in the place where they were marrying. Great location to marry due to the room at th etop and outside space where the chuppa was--was an amazing place for scenery looking out over the old city. But that is where the good stops.

We stayed in the hotel portion--buffet, very basic and very terrible--how can you screw up scramble eggs and why are your hard boiled eggs runny? Place is dirty. We did have a great view from the room but their staff was rude and basically clueless. Nissim--front desk person--yes I'm calling you out--take a customer service class and get a brain. Something that is so basic such as a person locked out of their room--why on earth are you looking for your cell phone instead of using the front desk phone to locate the house cleaning staff that has keys to every room? The you claim it will take at least 15 minutes to handle this request--really?! I found them myself in less than 3 minutes.

My sister-in-law was ripped off by the guy in the cafe -- he didn't give her the right change back. Due to her having food poison, she was not feeling that great and wasn't thinking clearly. Please explain why he took over 180 schekels for himself--she gave him 200 for something that cost 16 and he only gave her back 4 claiming she only gave him a 20. All she had was 200's.

This place was not worth a dime. They need new management and new staff. Especially the hotel--you cannot even call it a hotel. And for those people who are staying in the hostel section--find another place--pay the extra money and find a hotel that takes care of their guests and treats them like they are supposed to be treated.

Room Tip: find another hotel
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  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank Joyia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ruth K, Manager at Beit Shmuel Hostel, responded to this reviewResponded May 6, 2012

Thank you for your comments. During March-April 2012 Beit Shmuel was in a process of rennovations in order to improve the facilities of the place. While we made every effort to ensure our guests' comfort and the level of services rendered are not compromised, I understand you have, unfortunately, experienced certain inconveniences and I sincerely apologize for that.
I feel that the phrasing of your complaint about Nissim from the Front Office was rather harsh and offensive, as he is a most dedicated and service oriented emloyee. The cell phone at the front desk, which is a duty one and not a private one, is exactly the tool required in order to speedily call the housekeeping employee on duty who could to let you into your room, once you locked yourself out. I am sorry you got the impression he was doing something wrong by using it.
The Cafeteria at our establishment is a private outlet, unrelated to the hotel. However, in the many years that it operates here, we have had nothing but praises to their service, honesty and generousity. The situation you describe is undoubtedly an honest mistake by one of the parties involved in the transaction, which I am sure could have been sorted out immediately if brought to our knowledge.
I have also relayed your comments regarding the egg at breakfast to our Food & Beverage manager.
I hope the wedding you attended here was a beautiful event to remember and assure you we are doing our utmost to make our guests welcome and happy.

Sincerely,
Ruth Kaplan
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 8, 2012

I have stayed in a hostle-room (few beds, few people per room). I must say that this place was really dirty. Everything was mouldy. There was not enough storage space in the room for so many people as they have put in the room. Towels were not changed during stay. I went to a lecture in the lecture room located at the same floor as the accommodation. There was a huge hole in the sealing with mould dripping out from it. And the smell was just terrible in the entire permises. Selection for breakfast and dinner were basic but OK. The dining room, again, was dirty. Dirty dishes, dirty table cloths, dirty floor. "Abandoned" dirty grill in the corner of the room.
I must admit that the location was the only plus of this place. It is very close to the old city!
Staff were nice.
If not the wonderful people who have stayed with me in Beit Shmuel, I would escape from there during the first 5 minutes of my stay.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled on business
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2  Thank Olgitit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2012

We stayed for 2 nights in a hotel room (which is different than the hostel). Location to old city is the best feature only 5 mins. We had a great view of the old city from our room. Room was quiet, spacious and clean with comfortable bed. Tea and coffe making and a fridge were also supplied. Front desk staff were helpful. No car parking. Breakfast buffet very basic, shared with the hostel. Cost - reasonable.

Room Tip: Hotel room with balcony that overlooks old city.
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank swalee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2012

This hotel is a very short walk from the Old City's Jaffa gate and even shorter to the Mamilla Mall, which offers several restuarants and many shops. It is situated between the King David Hotel and the David Citadel Hotel, which are both upscale hotels, but costs far less. It is also one block from the YMCA. Lunch at the nearby King David Hotel was convenient and very pleasant.

Cleanliness was poor. Dust deposited on the floor remained untouched after several days and a bathtub stopper coated with mold was ignored even when placed where it was obvious to the cleaning person. Towels were changed every day, however.

Events, including concerts in the auditorium located in the same building, meant that noise was a problem for those who wish to retire early. However, the noise generally abated by about 11 p.m. Some rooms have a view only of the interior courtyard, but mine had a balcony with a view of the Old City's wall.

Only a single hair dryer was available for guests. Free wi-fi is provided. There is a very small cafe with sandwiches and drinks located on the premises.

Most of the front desk personnel was helpful, but one person was not at all helpful.

This might be a good choice if you need a location within walking distance of the Old City, you are on a tight budget, and you can tolerate the shortcomings.

Room Tip: Try to get a room with a view of the Old City.
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  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Compositor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2011

Make no mistake, it is a dormitory/hostel and they put as much attention into it as that. The general appearance of the public areas need a good scrub. The walls, baseboards, backs of chairs, table clothes are all dirty. But if you need a " dirt" cheap accommodation close to the old city, this is it

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank spinach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Beit Shmuel Hostel

Address: 13 King David St., Jerusalem 94101, Israel
Location: Israel > Jerusalem District > Jerusalem > Mammilla
Hotel Style:
Ranked #35 of 71 Specialty Lodging in Jerusalem
Price Range: $60 - $100 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 40
Also Known As:
Beit Shmuel Hotel Jerusalem

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