1. This hostel goes by a number of different names, so please pay attention to the address of other places that look strangely similar
2. This hostel is by no means centrally located. It is half a dozen stops on the metro out of the center, and then a 20 minute walk from the station. The bus to the city is a horrible experience, with no English directions + an absolute multitude of people cram on like sardines.. on a Sunday afternoon the trip to Gion took us over an hour when we decided that we'd rather walk the rest of the way & besides, we had no idea when to get off because there is no English anywhere displayed on the bus routes.. highly recommend avoiding all buses and sticking to the metro line
3. When we finally arrived to the hostel to check in, we met the infamous Oliver (owner) who quite unnecessarily jumped down our throats about confirming the price he was charging our group for accommodation.. this guy really doesnt care about the experience of his guests - he's in it to make money and thats it
4. The room we booked was ridiculously small + had 9 SELF ASSEMBLED bunks (3x3) squished in each tiny room. Seeing as we could not sleep, we were talking to other guests who mentioned that the night before one of the middle bunks collapsed during the middle of the night, but luckily there was nobody underneath it, because it would have resulted in a trip to the hospital. Oliver (owner) managed to fix it up himself the next morning and my bed happened to be underneath the make-shift replacement. The rooms let in a draft from the door outside and the bottom bunk is literally a foam mattress directly on the floor = guarantee you will wake up with a sore back. There were no sheets for us or towels, and it simply was a horrible cold night's sleep. Half of my group ended up paying for a twin room at the SuperHotel at Kawaramagachi for around 400 Yen and had the best night's sleep in comparison
5. On our first day staying there another guest hired a bicycle, which had faulty brakes and the poor guy ended up having an accident and scraping his face up.. We were leaving to get a bite to eat when the argument over who would cover the medical bills was taking place
6. The toilets are a joke = one or two unclean toilets for over 30 guests + the staff.. there are no bath sinks - just one cold tap in a laundry sink downstairs + two or three cold taps in laundry sinks on the second level in one of the dorm rooms (again no hot water). No mirrors and two showers that you have to walk through the common room where everyone is congregated.. most of our group of guys (who arent usually that pedantic) decided that showering would probably do more bad than good
7. You may at first be deceived by the nice entrance and living room at the front of the hostel, but this is used by Oliver to run his second business teaching English.. the hostel itself is way below par in amenities, location and friendliness. The owner acted rude and clearly was trying to squeeze as many guests in his place without providing the adequate services.
8. If this hostel was in the middle of the city, you may be able to put up with all of the above. But just traveling from downtown Kyoto (which itself is a small city) back to the hostel via bus or via Imadegawa metro station takes close to an hour. There are a multitude of better options, and quite frankly our stay at this hostel spoiled the city of Kyoto for us.
9. I have never written a hostel review before, but feel so strongly about our experience here that I wish no other traveler has to endure what we went through. I wish I could upload photos to demonstrate what a joke this place is. But ultimately, make up your own mind if the above points are what you look for in a hostel.