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“Can't be more authentic”

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Lorenc Guesthouse & Hostel Gorica
Ranked #2 of 18 Specialty Lodging in Berat
Blacksburg, VA
Level Contributor
40 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Can't be more authentic”
Reviewed June 2, 2012

We had a wonderful time in Berat and were treated like family by Lorenc and Mamma. The house is really interesting and Lorenc is doing great work to preserve and enhance it. The garden is ideal to sit and relax, and sample some homemade treats and Raki. We were torn between talking with Lorenc about the house, the area and Albania past and present, and wanting just to chill out by ourselves with some wine in a very peaceful place. Not a bad conundrum in which to find oneself.

The place is not at all fancy and is more hostel than B&B (hence my rating of 4 rather than 5), although Lorenc does provide a private room for couples who request it; but it's not that private and the bath is shared. Also, there are many steps so it would not be appropriate for those with mobility issues. But if you want to meet a real person and stay in an authentic, original Berat house, this will help make your trip even more memorable. Lorence even took us into a couple of local churches, including Kisha e shen Mehillit halfway up the hill to the Kala, where he had to stop and get someone to come with the key. You don't get that kind of personal service everywhere.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank sjacobs07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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91 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    18
    5
    1
    0
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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
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  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
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  • Russian first
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English first
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 1, 2012

+ Lorenc's mother is an amazing cook. She fed me home-made spinach burek, even though I had my own lunch, I have never liked spinach burek, but I realised that is because I have been eating overcooked spinach in burek all my life until I tasted this woman's burek.
+ Everytime, I am back at the hostel, she will feed me home-made fruits (cherry, orange) in sugar syrup. I am not fond of sweets, but a taste of this will make any dessert chef weep with shame and beat a path to her door. I ate every morsel of it, including scraping the syrup from the plate.
+ She even offered to cook dinner. She asked me what I wanted to eat. She is a good cook and the generosity of the portion she provides surpassed the amount of money she asked for.
+ She turned down the bed. Lorenc brought me a hot water bottle for the night.
+ I felt like I was being with family. The kind of service she provided is a rarity in this world we lived in.

Room Tip: There are 3 rooms, 1 with a double bed, 2 rooms with 4-5 beds. There is 1 bathroom to be shared amo...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank ilovelive
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Level Contributor
46 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 129 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2012

I stayed 3 nights with Lorenc & Mamma and used Berat as my base for exploring Albania. Right from the word go Lorenc was helpful and a fantastic host - he met our taxi at the bridge accross the river and carried our packs to the hostel for us (note: it is a very easy walk from the bus station to the hostel but it was raining and we were feeling lazy, taxi was cheap too)! The hostel is located in the old part of Berat and has a fantastic view down over the river, the castle and hill top church and surrounding mountains - definitely the best view any hostel we have stayed at has had! The hostel is in a beautiful 400 year old stone house, it is very clean and the beds are comfortable. Breakfast is included within the price and is cooked freshly when you wake up - bread, white cheese, olives, tea etc, very tasty!
We were also lucky to try some of Mamma's home cooked meals and these were delicious and we recommend trying this if you are able to!

Lorenc is very helpful in planning your trip, he escorted us down to the main road each morning and flagged down the Furgon (minibus) and told the driver where we wanted to go and negotiated the price for us - we would have been lost without this! It is an easy day trip to Appollonia (ancient ruins) from Berat, it is also possible to travel to Lake Ohrid in Macedonia in one day from Berat. Ask Lorenc and he shall help you!

Overall, I would definitely stay with Lorenc and Mamma again if I was to return to Berat, I am sure you will enjoy your stay as well!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank MelissaLee89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 7, 2012

Lorenc and Mamma are two of the best hosts I've encountered so far. On arrival, we were greeted with tea and home made sweets, and Lorenc filled us in on the history of the 400-year old house. The view across the river to the castle is magnificent, and the guesthouse is a short walk from the road leading to the castle and the central part of Berat. The rooms are simple but very clean and comfortable. We especially enjoyed having Mamma's cheese pie and pasta, she is an excellent cook! Lorenc is great company, and knows everything about the area, including the finer points of the furgons (private minibuses that go between towns) and how to make raki (traditional Albanian spirits). If you ask him nicely, he may even sing Nessun Dorma for you... I really recommend you stay here!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank lana_the_lost
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Banning, California
Level Contributor
55 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed November 26, 2011

If you want to stay at a "bed and breakfast" where you are treated as part of the family, then Lorenc Guesthouse & Hostel in historic Goric (a neighborhood of Berat nestled against the hills containing narrow cobblestone roads and 350-year old homes) is the place for you. Lorenc Pushi will make sure all of your needs are taken care of and evn provide you with a serenade with his beautiful operatic voice. Be aware, that the guesthouse requires climbing many steps, but the effort is worth it. You can also relax in a beautiful garden area in his backyard amongst grape vines and fruit trees. The accomodations are simple, but traditional and clean. Lorenc can also provide you with his extensive knowledge of the area.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank RobertPC118
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vienna, Austria
Level Contributor
30 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
Reviewed August 23, 2011

This little place might not look much upon first impressions but you have to believe us, we couldnt have asked for a better, nicer, friendlier, most awesome place to stay in Berat. The hosts are sooooooo nice, so giving and warm and we totally enjoyed our short stay here. The rooms are simple but clean, the service wonderful - they really could not do enough for us. Breakfast (French toast with local cheese and Greek coffee or local mint tea) is served outside on a lovely terrace, strewn with grapevines. The house is a traditional historic Gorica home, 350 years old, set amidst the old part of the town and just down a short cobbled alley. Easy to reach the main town and river (which looks pretty dirty). There are quite a few steps up to the house so that may not suit all travellers.
The Berat castle is a let down, meant to be the only inhabited castle in Europe so we were told, but it is dirty, so much rubbish around and way run down, people living there like gypsies (which is fine if thats what you're into) but not a great tourist attraction.
Thank you Lorenc guesthouse, we had a lovely experience of true Albania, thanks to you.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Kiwis74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belgrade, Serbia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed June 30, 2011

You would never dare to hope that walking through fantastic streets of Gorica quarter you could actually spend night in one of those old rustic family houses. Lorenc Pushi does not do this for money, you will see that from the way he welcomes you in, introduces you to his family and the time he spends with you so that he can be your own tour guide. You will hear from him everything about the house it self (one of the oldest in the city with original wooden ceilings almost three hundred years old), Berat and Albania. Beautiful garden, very clean rooms and bathroom, and if you take the room facing the river Osum-fantastic view on Mangalem and the castle. Price was 15 euros per night, but we think Lorenc should charge his opera singing extra:)
We visited during the Easter holidays and we were invited to join the midnight church ceremony and we felt very welcome from the hole community.
Also, you can use internet if needed.
Highly recommended!

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank macakmare
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lorenc Guesthouse & Hostel Gorica

Property: Lorenc Guesthouse & Hostel Gorica
Address: Stiljano Bandilli | Entrance nr.18, Berat, Albania
Location: Albania > Berat County > Berat
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 18 Specialty Lodging in Berat
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Authentic traditional house. Wonderful views, garden, vineyard and very attractive architectural features. ... more   less 
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