The Rose Hotel in Peshawar is something like a traveller's classic. Being located in bustling Khyber Bazar, it offers comparably cheap rooms located near the most interesting Tourist highlights of Peshawar. The Hotel is surrounded by eateries, bakeries and chaikhannas, so getting food is never a problem. In fact if you order your lunch in the Hotel Rose, they get it from outside. But beware: do not sit down in the Hotel's restaurant, unless you are prepared to get old before being served. Almost next door (at the Hotel exit turn left) is a very popular eatery with prompt service, serving extremely cheap and tasty food.
To start with, the Hotel is 24 hours guarded, but do not consider the elderly guy at the entrance to be a real obstacle if someone is trying to force his entry into the Hotel.
Booking is pretty easily done by fax (and should be tried - because of it's popularity) and check-in at the reception is straight froward if you have a booking. Also, at the reception is the hang-out of some (more or less useful) guys, who know the area. Some of them are local freelancers, trying to get into contact with foreign travellers, while others are engaged in the tours and travels sector (like Prince). In any case it is interesting to talk to them, even if you are not in need of a guide.
The rooms come in two classes: non-ac and ac. Do not expect a first class Hotel, as it is one of the local cheapos, but for this money it is reasonably clean - though the carpets, pillows and sheets have without any doubt seen better times. Each room has a tv, a clean bathroom and
room service is available, as is housekeeping service. Just call the reception or one of the service guys who are located on each storey. They are only too happy to help, but remember: they are poor and they are offering extra attention to you, so it is fair to reward their services with 20 to 50 Rs or so (of course in addition for the food, laundry or cold drink price). Not 10 times a day for everyone, but perhaps once a day for the food- and housekeeping guy.
From March to October you may like to benefit from an ac room, as frequent power cuts (with failing fans and ac) can render nights rather sweaty, and a pre-cooled room can hold out the heat of the day a little bit longer, but again, be aware. The ac rooms that I have had in the past were all cockroach infested, but not so the non-ac ones. You choose: cockroaches or heat.
This Hotel is frequented mainly by pakistani and afghani businessmen, so it is very calm during daytime as everyone is out. The evenings usually get very lively though, with people shouting and yelling around until well after midnight - but that applies to most other midrange Hotels in Pakistan and Afghanistan as well.
All in all it is a place worth every Rupee, if you can tolerate the few short-comings. It is relatively safe, reasonably clean, dirt cheap and right near most of the places you will like to see. When I am in Peshawar, I never stay somewhere else (and that is my own honest statement).