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“All in one”

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Brown Sugar Backpackers
Armacao dos Buzios, RJ
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“All in one”
Reviewed November 30, 2013

I personally didn't enjoy my time in Joburg (ppl would often up prices based on our accent--I hate being cheated [robbed--those prices were higher then living in England]) But here's my two cents:

Pros:
Location:
I liked Brown Sugar because it is an all in one stop.
Nice rooms
A lot of great plcaes for you to sit and relax and enjoy the view of Cape Town.
Safe location.
Near by China town and couple of places to eat.

Food:
Complementary yummy hot breakfast
Offer dinner at a really cheap price (You have to register for the dinner before 4 I think.)

Amenities
The staff was super helpful and accommodating.
The hostel has internet in the main room.
They have three computers that guest are allowed to use for free.
They offer a place for you to store your things (even after you check out).
Amazing decro


CONS:
The internet only works in that one.
Only have few liquor options i think 5...but i think you can bring your own. LOL
rooms don't have TV but that's normal for hostels.
the dinner isn't vegetarian friendly

Advice:
Make sure you plane arrives in time for the complimentary pick up. if not it is $40 to drive 10 min drive.

Room Tip: Advice: Make sure you plane arrives in time for the complimentary pick up. if not it is $40 to driv...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Chanel M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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130 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
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  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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  • Spanish first
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English first
brighton
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed November 15, 2013

I stayed at this hostel twice. The free airport pick up is efficient. All of the staff were really friendly and helpful. I stayed in a room that was clean and comfortable. I found the other people staying there friendly and did various outings with them. All in all very enjoyable.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank debbie021
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Caversham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
56 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed October 2, 2013

Plenty has been said about the high quality of the accommodation, food, bar and location. I totaly endorse these comments There is by the way, also space for campers, laundry facilities and even a swimming pool.

I would like to focus on the welcome and ambiance of the lodge. Personnel go out of their way to help. You are treated like a friend rather than a customer. Would recommend this place without hesitation. The staff are a brilliant advertisement for South Africa.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mr_metaxa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sawbridgeworth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
82 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed September 2, 2013

This hostel is perfect. Johannessburg has NO hostels or ANY accommodation in the city as it isn't safe enough so the location for this hostel is perfect. In a very safe neighbourhood. You can walk to china tour or to one of the biggest shopping malls I have ever been too! They offer some great tours including the town tour which was awesome. The lady who owns the hostel is awesome! Soooo helpful, so friendly and they offer free wifi and free breakfast!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank KiwiB34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Veit an der Glan, Austria
Level Contributor
34 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed August 10, 2013

actually thats the hostel in Jozi! it is an old villa of a forgotten mafioso boss lol but the place is awesome!!

the welcoming is great, they will pick you up at the airport or the main train station if you call them early enough and it is for free!! its not to far from the city center but far enough to be in a very safe are of the city. the staff is very friendly and helpful and they do take care about you!

in the dorms, yeah well, 18 beds or have it been 20? can´t remind but anyway its clean and tidy just be the first who fall asleep lol.. quiet cheap to stay there and plan your next moves.

they do offer day trips with their own driver so you can easily visit SOWETO and get in touch with the people there. but they will also help you to organize tours and so on.

you can get food there, they cook every evening just write your name on the board and pay 50 RAND or something.. very very delicious food! but there is also a kitchen which you can use to prepare your own meal.

the area around is pretty cool, china town is not to far, and the big shopping mall which you must see on your stay, just half an hour to walk or take a taxi..

don´t forget the breakfast, I stayed in many hostels all over the places.. this breakfast was awesome!! eat as much as you want! and everything fresh and nice!!

also don´t forget to check out the swimming pool in the backyard on the top, haha well perfect place to relax or make a party at night ;)

all-together a very nice place and perfect to relax!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank XChristian90X
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
56 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2013

Brown sugar is a good backpackers base in Johannesburg. They provide a good (& free!!) airport collection service, free tea/coffee and breakfast, which was of good standard. The owner was very knowledgable and helpful when advising us for travel plans within South Africa. The communal facilities (bathrooms, kitchen, seating areas etc.) are nice and well kept although there is no cash bar - think this is due draconian laws in Johannesburg, however, and not the fault of the owners. Highly recommended for a short stay in Jo'berg.

  • Stayed May 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Joe-p-01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berlin
Level Contributor
37 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed July 2, 2013

I ended up cancelling my reservation after half a dozen emails about a very simple question I had about getting to the pick-up point for a transfer to the hostel. Response from the staff was completely disrespectful (one email included the line "IF YOU READ" in all caps)...

The final frustration was when the owner, in response to my cancellation request, for some reason needed a full day to "review my correspondence" before actually cancelling my booking. Her final email told me that I previously had all the info I needed and that the confusion was my fault as I had not provided adequate information for her staff to assist me (I beg to differ but that's beside the point). She also wrote "I trust that your reasons for this cancellation is valid."

The staff here is more interested in telling customers why they are wrong for requesting help than in answering simple questions from a women traveling alone in South Africa.

Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
Helpful?
5 Thank E H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LiezelRoux, Owner at Brown Sugar Backpackers, responded to this review, December 2, 2014
I recall our conversations very clearly. We have standard signatures for our e-mails to ensure that all our potential guests get the same information and provide them with as much detail needed for every type of enquiry to avoid endless e-mails being send back and forth.
The e-mail clearly stated where you should wait for our driver as well as the pick up point at the airport, which you did not understand for some reason?
At the time of your cancellation I was not at the office (I do not live on the premises and was not at my desk) and had to meet with my manager on duty that dealt with your booking to find out what was happening and why you were not in agreement with our pick up arrangements to get you to the hostel.
Once again we have a standard e-mail signature for all cancellations and the wording on all of them read "I trust your reason for cancellation is valid"
I am sorry that you did not stay with us and maybe one day in the near future you will come past Joburg and we will be more than happy to accommodate you.
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 Brown Sugar Backpackers

Property: Brown Sugar Backpackers
Address: 75 Observatory Avenue | Observatory Extension, Johannesburg 2198, South Africa
Location: South Africa > Gauteng > Greater Johannesburg > Johannesburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 103 Specialty Lodging in Johannesburg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This 'Ex-Mafia Mansion' offers clean, spacious, comfy and secure accommodation from camping, dormitories, family rooms, doubles, twin, triples and singles with shared or privite bathrooms. We are the largest hostel in Johannesburg and offer the following freebies: A Scrumptious breakfast, Free pick up from OR Tambo Airport or Park Station, Wi-Fi and internet, safes in all private rooms and private lockers in dorms, day and long term storage, tea and coffee. Print, scan and postage facilities available. Self service coin operated laundry room and swimming pool with amazing views. We have credit card facilities and our own ATM on site. We have our own drivers and vehicles for cheap shuttles to the shops and other locations. Our in-house tour guide is available daily for the most popular local tours of Joburg. The staff can assist you with a Kruger Park Tour, Victoria Falls or Chobe National Park tours. We are a Baz Bus stop and just waiting to welcome you. ... more   less 
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