This is a massive hostel, I think it has over 600 beds, and the building is a great character buildings with a gothic style of construction. Location is decent - to the northwestern side of Central Park, about a 10-15 minute sub ride into Manhattan, it makes for a good base of operations. However, the neighbourhood is a bit on the shady side, especially towards Central Park.
Hostel has tons of amenities, including a huge kitchen, theater, lots of public spaces, laundry facilities, and even a cafe. Be advised, though, that breakfast is not included for more basic dorm accommodations. Baggage storage is also offered for those who arrive early. The lone elevator is terrible, and incredibly slow, so take the stairs when possible.
Dorm rooms are very basic, and could use an upgrade. Prices are expensive, >$50 minimum, but that is par for the course in New York. The rooms themselves need an upgrade, and traffic and heating/air conditioning noise levels are high. Don't expect good sleeps, especially in the larger dorm rooms. People will be coming and going all night (it's New York after all), and snorers will be common.
Staff are good, but do seem a bit disinterested. Customer service could use a bit of an upgrade, but they do the job. I was a few hours late for my check-in, and they had given away my bed, despite a reservation, but they did manage to accommodate my stay (had to change rooms a few times) and added free breakfast to make up for my inconvenience.
The hostel offers tons of free activities each day, either on or off the premises, so you will always have something to do. Also, the wireless is fairly decent, and there are lots of outlets for charging electronics. Also, lockers are included, so bring a lock.
On the whole, it's a good hostel, not a great one, but about as good as you will find in the Big Apple. There is little the hostel does not have, but the large size also leads to a bit of a non-human element to things. If I go back to New York, I would probably return.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- HI-New York is located in a landmark building on the Upper West Side. One block from Broadway and a main subway line. Minutes from glorious Central Park. Situated near Central Park and Columbia University, the hostel is in a historic Victorian Gothic-style building on the Upper West Side. It organizes walking tours, sporting events, group outings to concerts and more. There is capacity for 672 guests, and facilities include internet access, kitchen and laundry. From an all-day walking tour to a viewing of a New York movie in our cozy TV room to a quiet cup of coffee in our cafe, Hostelling International New York has everything you need to make your group happy. Play the latest games on Play Station 2. Check your email without leaving the hostel. Wash and dry your clothes in our new laundry room on the second floor. Pick up subway/bus MetroCards, sundries, NY souvenirs, calling cards, and more. The hostel is located steps from the subways and minutes from Times Square and other major NYC attractions. Ask our friendly staff what they can do for you. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hostelling International - New York Hotel New York City