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“A pleasant and cosy hostel that was let down by a couple of staff”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Hola Cairo Hostel

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Hola Cairo Hostel
Ranked #37 of 124 Specialty Lodging in Cairo
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
57 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“A pleasant and cosy hostel that was let down by a couple of staff”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 6, 2012

Hola Hostel is located on the 4th floor of a once grand, early 20th century apartment building that like much of the downtown area has long since lost its grandeur. The building’s communal entry was shabby and hard to discover for a first time visitor so take up the free pickup offer. While a central lift from the 1920s, making it almost an antique, looked dubious but worked fine. The surrounding area contained a metro stop that was couple of hundred metres walk and a number of local-style restaurants and cheap-eats.

Inside, the hostel was compact with only a limited number of beds. All rooms had massive ceilings of 4 to 5 metres in height that give it a greater sense of space. There were two clean communal wet rooms which did not require queuing. When I stayed though, one of the shower head fittings was broken which left it unusable unless you washed with only one hand free.

The small common-room was basically useless as it amounted to a couple of cane table sets, a pay-as-you-go computer, a bookshelf and a tiny-TV connected to NileSat. The common-room fed onto an outdoor balcony that overlooked a Parisian-style cafe-lined but very rundown laneway.

Breakfast was the lightest I experienced during my travels through the Middle East. It involved three pieces of tasty, short-soft white baguettes, jam+butter, coffee or tea and a piece of fruit or a boiled egg. Breakfast technically would only be served after 8.30am which was a bit late if you wanted to make an early start. Though reasonably priced refrigerated bottles of water could be purchased at any time.

I stayed in a private single which was actually a twin that contained a double-bed as well as a single. The dark wood furnishings were nice while the beds were comfortable and large. The choice of a pink feature wall and mock leopard print bed covers were unusual. The only issue I had with the room was the front door that had problems staying closed without the deadlock enabled.

Despite the mostly comfortable amenities I would not return to Hola Hostel. I organised an in-house tour to visit Giza and Saqqara. It went fine except for the final Saqqara leg where the hostel employed driver was adamant in saying that there was no reason to pay 65LE to drive past a checkpoint to get closer to the step-pyramid. He had insisted that post-revolution everything within the Saqqara site was closed and that the pyramid under the scaffolding was not worth a lookup-close. Instead we stopped at a vantage point 1km or 2 away for a couple of distant photo opportunities. On his insistence we skipped the checkpoint and returned to the hostel.

That night I looked at the Tripadvisor’s forums, browsed through some Egypt blogs and discovered that he was incorrect. There were plenty of sites within Saqqara that had remained open. So I bought the issue up with the staff member who organised the trip as I didn’t agree with the driver second-guessing the itinerary. After a heated conversation he eventually agreed to talk to the driver and stated he would get back to me.

The following morning the driver pulled me up on my way to breakfast and grilled me with numerous questions. The staff member also threw questions my way and the whole situation got quite heated. I had never asked for a refund or compensation but both men were at times very defensive and loud. The drawn out experience left a bitter taste in my mouth and I decided against the eventual offer of a heavily discounted day trip to Djoser and Saqqara.

As a guest at any hotel or hostel I would never expect to be treated in such a verbally aggressive manner. Some of the staff need to remember that they work in hospitality, that their guests are on holidays, have probably travelled a long way and are not there to be on the receiving end of their berates!

There is plenty of competition for the supply of excellent, affordable accommodation in downtown Cairo.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Benrett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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26 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    8
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Palawan Island, Philippines
Level Contributor
115 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 198 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 29, 2012

Hola Cairo is the same management as the Brothers Hostel and another hostel that I forgot the name. Hola is one of the clean hostels that I’ve stayed in Cairo.

Shared toilets/shower cubicles are spic n’ span, there’s a balcony overlooking the interior of the building making you watch daily activities of locals down below. Connection to the wifi internet though is not good.

The single room they gave me is on the upper floor, not facing the main street so it’s quiet, big room with 3 beds and a small lounge area. The toilet/shower is shared outside though toilet paper isn’t available. I was upgraded – as they call it – to a 2 beds room with toilet/shower inside, though I was more comfortable with the previous room as it’s bigger in space, toilet though in the new room is convenient.

I stayed 3 nights from March 30 before heading to Siwa, and left a word that I will be back on a specific date.

I think the main problem with Hola is their booking system, they tend to overbook. On my first night, I heard the manager arguing with 3 koreans about their booking. Alas! it also happened to me , I told them that I will be back and will be staying with them and I even left my 2 luggages with them as I don’t want to drag them around the desert oasis. When I arrived, the reception guy whom I forgot the name (Mohamed I think?) told me that they are full. His english is ok so I understand very well that they don’t have available room for me. So I was left roaming around big Cairo for a place to sleep. I found a proper hotel but at a cost twice of Hola. So I came back to Hola to get my luggages to bring it to my new hotel. The manager was thre and he told me that I misunderstood the reception guy, that what he meant was that the room isn’t available yet, but will be available later. Hmmmm…that was not what he told me, he said sorry but there’s no room available.

The hostel staff are composed of young giggling teens, I don’t know though if that's the negative part or it contributes to its atmosphere?

I'll be fair, minus the booking system fiasco, the facilities of Hola is good enough compared to other hostels in the area.

I would still recommend it, at $16 per night with small breakfast, it’s a good value for money. Be sure though that you have a reconfirmed booking otherwise you’ll end up scouting for a place to stay under the rain (emotional rain I mean).

Room Tip: No. 1 tip: Be sure that you have a RECONFIRMED booking. The rooms upstairs are quiet.
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TheShoppelifter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Helsinki, Finland
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 24, 2012

Helpfull and nice staff. Good downtown location. Thank you for helping with everything. :)

Room Tip: Remember when you are choosing room for your trip to Cairo, try to find place where you can easily m...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MallaEk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
samar301, Public Relations Manager at Hola Cairo Hostel, responded to this review, January 9, 2014
Thank you very much for the positive comment. We are also so glad your visit was enjoyable. We will pass your feedback on to the team, and we look forward to seeing you again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 25, 2011

Stayed in the hostel for almost 2 weeks now. Very nice place to stay! Close to a big shopping street and to a bunch of western cafe's in Al Zamalek (just over the bidge). Staff is really friendly - so they helped me with finding the Iran embassy by writing me the address in Arabic and English, without any request. Was invited to a night meal during Ramadan as well. Also could send a package here before I arrived. Cairo is a save place to stay these days... just walked straight through the city and didn't feel uncomfortable at all. I highly recommend this place!

  • Stayed August 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank SebastianSeidel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
samar301, Public Relations Manager at Hola Cairo Hostel, responded to this review, January 9, 2014
Thank you very much for the positive comments, We hope your stay was great. We look forward to seeing you again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Crete, Greece
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 2, 2010

great place to stay. We stayed two nights and they were perfectly willing to book affordable travel options to Giza, Luxor and anywhere else we wanted to go. Never felt like we were being hustled. We utilized a trip to Giza and our driver spoke very good English, giving us details we would not have received otherwise, and he was cheap! Very enjoyable stay.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank goragea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
samar301, Guest Relations Manager at Hola Cairo Hostel, responded to this review, January 10, 2014
Thank you very much for the positive comments.. We work hard to offer good food and friendly, efficient service, and We are also so glad your visit was enjoyable. We will pass your feedback on to the team, and we look forward to seeing you again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hola Cairo Hostel

Property: Hola Cairo Hostel
Address: 19 ( 26 July St ) 4th Floor, Cairo 11511, Egypt
Location: Egypt > Cairo Governorate > Cairo
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #37 of 124 Specialty Lodging in Cairo
Hotel Class:2 star — Hola Cairo Hostel 2*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A place to chill out and relax with friends is always welcome. That's what we offer at Hola Cairo Hostel, Cairo and we offer it in a prime location - easily accessible from the airport, and within easy striking distance of the city's biggest attractions. At Hola Cairo you can feel at home in our Common Rooms (1 with Balcony) and Guest Kitchen. For your entertainment we have a library, Games to play, Internet and Free WIFI. The Rooms have modern furniture and are all Airconditioned. With High Ceilings, wooden floors and Large windows you will have a comfortable stay in our spacious rooms. The staff at the Hola Cairo Hostel are fluent in English and Spanish and will be happy to assist with any enquirers customers have regarding transport and tours around Egypt. ... more   less 
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