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“This place is just OK”

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Guilin Central Hostel
Ranked #1 of 47 Specialty Lodging in Guilin
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 9, 2009

Guilin was the first place in China that my partner and I stayed in on our backpacking trip around China (apart from Hong Kong) and so initially I wasn't too disappointed by the way we were treated by staff, but after travelling the rest of China and meeting a lot of wonderful people (pretty much everyone else in the country) I then realised that the staff at the Backstreet Hostel were pretty dismal. When we arrived about 5 girls were sitting around a table in the common room and no-one seemed too enthusiastic to get up and serve us (They turned out to be receptionists but we thought they were guests because they barely looked at us). Eventually one of them got up and decided to serve us.
Everytime we went to Reception (which we tried to avoid) we got the same average treatment - vague looks, complete disinterest and general apathy. As someone else mentioned, this poor treatment especially applied to female guests. Male guests got the full cheery, giggly and over the top treatment.
We booked a private room with ensuite and this was very large and clean. It was airconditioned and the bed was huge. The bathroom was a decent size and also clean. The place is in a good location near the river. The breakfast was pretty yummy. The rental bikes were old but worked well enough. And the girls did book train tickets and tours which was helpful.
If they got better staff I would almost recommend this place. It justs lacks a bit of character and the common area - where the staff hang out - is a bit small and dark and the only place to sit apart from your room.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank AustraliaJam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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123 - 129 of 190 reviews

Reviewed September 25, 2009

The rooms are clean and fairly spacious but the staff was fairly unfriendly to female travelers. One of the girls working there yelled at me in Chinese (and I assume cursed me out) when I asked her a question. I decided to let her be for a while & when I came back later and asked her the same question she was civil towards me. I had a couple other times when the female staff were fairly unfriendly to me. They appeared to be very friendly to the male guests I hung out with so it is probably fine for male travelers.

They speak English fairly well but were not able to give much advice about traveling to other places.

The location is good- its just off of a street with a market and lots of restaurants. Its also within walking distance of most of the sights in central Guilin.

I would recommend getting the river trip though them as they have a discounted price compared to with what is offered at other hotels in the area.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled solo
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Thank SsStar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 22, 2009

we arrived from guangzhou and arrived in the early evening. the staff seemed stressed out and brusque and weren't able to tell us if we could stay longer than 1 night.

we stayed in room 302 and it was nice and big.

pros: the room had a/c, it was pretty clean, it was in a good location and wifi in the lobby.

cons: there was mold on the wall, the tv didn't work and there was stagnant water on the bathroom floor because the drain wasn't positioned in the lowest point of the floor. the staff were rude.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank cheeeena
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2009

Great location, spacious rooms and comfortable beds. Beware... the rooms smell like mold! If you have allergies this may not be a good place for you!

The staff seem very helpful with booking you taxis and tours at first... until you realize that the only reason is because they are gaining commission. As soon as you ask them for help on something that does not have to do with a commission-based sale, they cite a language barrier or say that they cannot help you. Perfect example: booking a taxi for the airport. First of all, our flight kept getting changed. All we asked was if they could call the airport and confirm our flight time. No matter how many times we asked, they always had an excuse as to why they couldn't help us... even when we brought them the phone number! We had met a taxi driver who we really felt comfortable with and had booked him privately to bring us to the airport. He gave us his card in case we needed to call him. Well, we ended up needing to change our departure time when it seemed as though our flight had been moved back (thanks to a kind travel agent in town, NOT the hostel staff). My putonghua is minimal so I asked the staff to please call his number and ask him to come at a later time. They refused to call him, citing that they would call and arrange our ride through "the company" and that we may or may not have the same driver. Okay... I was slightly annoyed, but didn't concern myself too much. I finally called a friend of mine who was at our next destination and asked him to check out our flight status. When he said we would be leaving at an earlier time than expected, we rushed back to the hostel and told them we needed a taxi RIGHT THEN so we could make it to the airport in time. They first said, "Well it will take at least 20 minutes for someone to get here" and they only volunteered further help when we said that we'd just catch a taxi from the road. The thought of lost commission sparked them into "helpful" mode and all of a sudden they produced the phone number for the airport to call and confirm our departure time... something they'd feigned ignorance with all morning. I couldn't believe it!

Anyways, I'm not sure if their obvious greed would be reason enough for me to not recommend the place, but it was a huge annoyance as many people have quoted them on being so helpful. They demonstrated to me that they will only help when it serves their own interests and do NOT put their guests first.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled with family
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Thank audjie504
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2009

We recently stayed at Backstreet both before and after a trip to Yangshuo - the double room that we booked was big though a bit dingy with mold or dirt on the ceilings and the bathrooms are a bit dark. The common room was comfy though rather dark and stuffy and the lounge covers are in desperate need of a good washing though we did enjoy the free wi-fi and though that the breakfast was good value though it was a disappointment that they don't actually serve any of the other items on their menu. The staff was less than enthusiastic about helping but they got the job done. On the plus side, they do pay for your taxi from the train/bus when you arrive which makes it easy to get to them!

All in all, the negatives aren't such a big deal when you consider the fantastic location and good value at 100RMB for a double room with an en suite.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Keshira haLev F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 15, 2009

i didn't actually stay the night but arrived early and needed to wait to take an evening train. they were extremely helpful about letting me use the luggage storage and shower for free! their location is really ideal - sandwiched between the lovely riverside and the busy shopping street with lots of restaurants.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled solo
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Thank taura_e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2009

We walked into the Backstreet BP after our friends had a horror time in the nearby Flowers Hostel. From the moment we walked in, the staff were fabulous.

Admittedly, we booked a private room, so had our own ensuite so can't comment on a dorm room situation at Backstreet but our room was clean, simple and cheap (by comparison with other hostels we had tried throughout China)

The staff were outstanding, Kitty and the girls went out of their way to look after us. We asked them to book us some daytrips - one being to the rice paddies. Our car unfortunately broke down halfway there and a replacement was arranged but Kitty stayed back at the hostel for an extra four hours after her shift ended to be there when we arrived back to apologise and make sure we were okay.

Our three day visit turned into almost two weeks as we were so happy where we were.

Would recommend highly.

  • Stayed: November 2006, traveled as a couple
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Thank Maccan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Guilin Central Hostel

Address: No.3 Renmin Road, Xiufeng District, Guilin 541001, China (Formerly Backstreet Youth Hostel)
Location: China > Guangxi > Guilin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 47 Specialty Lodging in Guilin
Price Range: $11 - $41 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Guilin Central Hostel 2*
Number of rooms: 14
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Also Known As:
Guilin Backstreet International Youth Hotel Guilin

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