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“Location, but...”

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Petra Hotel & Hostel
Reviewed May 31, 2013

Yes, the location is absolutely unbeatable. Just a few steps from Jaffa Gate, opposite Citadel. The view from the roof terrase is absolutely terrific. Breakfast reasonable, fresh, coffee, tea and water is available all the time. The staff is very friendly and helpful, you can check in even very early, they can also store your luggage if you depart late.
But... The problem is that it is neglected and the rooms are dirty. This is the main problem. If the owners made some effort and cleaned the rooms and common space, it culd be recommended. Until then - rather avoid

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled solo
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1  Thank Katarzyna B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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51 - 57 of 160 reviews

Reviewed May 22, 2013

Nov 16~20/2012

After arriving at the Old City of Jerusalem around 4.00 am, finding help let alone accommodations is difficult. Locating the police station proved unhelpful until a man going to morning prayer stopped to help.

We awoke the night time clerk, and I was invited for tea, coffee, water and a seat. After a short check-in process I was shown to my 6 bed dorm room where I quickly readied myself for sleep, so as not to bother my roommate.

They offered free breakfast which consisted of bread, hummus', tomato and cucumber, it won't last a day but good enough to get you till lunch. Coffee, tea and purified water all available all day for free. Breakfast is taken up on the roof with great views of the Old City.

They did not have any maps and trying to get any good information was not easy. Thankfully the visitor center is 100m away where they were happy to supply me with a map and answer any questions I had.

The next night I had my 3 x 3m room all to myself, it seems even here in Israel people do not like snoring....sorry. With three bunk beds the room is tight but with only one occupant, adequate, would not want to see it full. The bathroom was beside the room with an open shower design.

I peaked in on a private room which was spacious with ensuite and balcony, but at 4x the cost not needed as my 70 shekels (and snoring) was getting me my own room. There was a bookshelf for book exchange and reading and a tv which stayed on Middle Eastern news in the common area.

A cleaning lady came every morning for the common spaces, which were tidy yet dated, but your room had to be vacated before it would see any cleaning again. The staff for the most part(95%) smoked outside which is great considering even the twelve year olds are up to a pack a day.

The location is superb. Exchange, store, tourism info all underneath you as well as cafes and restaurants of all kinds within 100m radius. Jaffa gate is a very "central" place even though it is a gate to the Old City. It is very hard to rate the feel of a place when you are there during low tourism season and especially considering the news North Americans are fed relating to the Middle East, but there was probably 10-12 persons staying from different parts of the world and all were pleasant.

I would probably check into other places within the area before staying again but would not be shy to stay either.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Michael S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 22, 2013

Our family of 4 stayed at a family (quad) room in this hotel for 4 nights on 3/30~4/2/2013.

We were looking a hotel at a good location in the old city. This hotel definitely meets our location requirement; any attraction in the old city is within walking distance. Plus, it is close to Jaffa Gate, and easy to get a taxi, bus or tram.

The view at the roof of this hotel is spectacular. Breakfast is offered here daily, and we can enjoy the view while eating, though the breakfast was just pita, humus and some veggie. We went up the roof at night, and the view was also amazing.

Cold and hot drinking water is offered at the lobby. We had the habit of drinking the water when we walked in and out of the hotel, as the weather in Jerusalem was already hot in early April. We also used the hot water to prepare the cup noodles.

Wi-Fi is offered in the lobby, the signal is strong, and the speed is pretty fast for internet browsing, emails, facebook. But the wifi signal was almost undetectable at our room.

There are some major issues:
1) This building of this hotel is old, very old, could be over 1000 years. The dirt/dust from the wall, ceiling keeps on falling off, you will see dust on the floor, on the table, on your bed.
2) The bed sheets are in dark color with ugly pattern, and I wasn't sure if they were washed regularly.
3) The bathroom is small. The shower is only offered between 8pm~12pm, but the warm (never hot) water is only enough for 2 showers, and we had to wait at least 30 minutes for the next 2 people.
4) Every night, there were always one or two mosquitoes flying around the room.

Location is the only shining point of this hotel. Location of easy transportation; location of going to any attractions in the old city; roof top for wonderful city view (non hotel guest pays 5 shekels for the view). If you expect anything more than the location, you need think twice.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank PVZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2013

the hostel isn't in the range of 3 stars hotel, it have many good things: it's really central in the historical centre, the privates rooms have private bathroom, the view from the room is simple amazing. So, if you are not scared to stay in a hostel (remember it's a HOSTEL not HOTEL) choose it!!

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank fradelar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 13, 2012

The Petra is kind of a luck-of-the-draw situation: if you get a good room and have a balcony, it's not at all bad. The bathrooms are definitely not what Americans are used to, but in my experience they were clean.

There aren't many places to stay in the Old City, and the Petra is centrally located with a very nice staff and good breakfast. Undoubtedly the best thing about this place is the view- from the roof, you have a 360 degree vista of the Old City, including the Dome of the Rock. If you are on a budget, or are not a high maintenance traveler, you can even sleep on the roof and wake up to the best view in the city!

Room Tip: Room 11 is nice and big with two balconies, and the roof is an option for a cheap and unique night...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Leah W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 1, 2012

This hostel to justify the money. The main pluses are the price, the location, the view from the roof and included light breakfast. Hostel belong to Muslims, friendly, but not very cleanly. The main feature of the hostel is its guests - unusual people from all world

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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Thank 990479_
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2012

No effort put into the upkeep or cleanliness. Stayed with a homeless man who was a regular but was removed later by police for stealing from us. The shower and toilet were in the same small area and in bad shape. The WiFi was working though, it was in a very central location with nice views and was cheap. Maybe they neglect it during the quiet season but I still wouldn't stay again unless I was stuck.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Mikemaher1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Petra Hotel & Hostel

Address: Jaffa Gate 1, David, Jerusalem 9534710, Israel
Location: Israel > Jerusalem District > Jerusalem
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #50 of 71 Specialty Lodging in Jerusalem
Price Range: $37 - $79 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 42
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Petra Hostel is a large and remarkable hostel that is located directly inside Jaffa Gate, offering a prime location. We have wide range of options, we have deluxe and super deluxe and simple rooms, for every kind of budget. The hostel has four floors. The roof of the hostel also offers additional rooms, as well as the option to rent a mattress or tent on the roof itself and sleep under the Jerusalem stars. It is a simple yet quite large hostel, considering it is inside the Old City. Each floor is has of a large common area, which includes several seating areas, a communal kitchen and fridge, and a TV (shared) as well as a common library where you can select different books and a dining table. Our hotel is reachable by taxi and car (right up to the front door)Much has changed since the Petra Hostel's conception in the early 1830's. But the wonderful ambiance, clean and beautiful well priced rooms, and the most beautiful views in Jerusalem of the old city have remained and continue to be a 180 year constant. With such famous budget travelers such as; Herman Melville, Mark Twain and General Allenby- Petra Hostel's reputation is as poetic and as mystical as the Holy Land itself A common kitchen can be used for cooking is available, as well as laundry service, an airport shuttle service, internet service, and amazing roof Most of the rooms are ensuite with private bathroom. Common bathrooms are also available. The atmosphere is home-like. There are stained glass windows and light fixtures.The outstanding feature of this hostel is its view. Because of its prime location, every window in the hostel has a stunning view of either the wall of the Old City and the street below, or the rooftops of the Old City. Seemingly every room opens onto a balcony. The best area, by far, is the roof, where there are separate rooms with an incredible panoramic view of the entire Old City as well as the Mount of Olives, Mount Scopus, etc. Every landmark is visible!Free breakfast now available for everyone staying in the hostel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Petra Hotel Jerusalem
Petra Hotel And Hostel

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