I stayed here for a month as a part of an exchange program and it was a great experience. Staff was really helpful. I practiced my German by asking for a light bulb, batteries and change to use on the washer/dryer.
There is a sauna in one of the buildings, but I did not use. I saw some girls in the sauna having fun so I decided not to interrupt them. There is a basement that you can use to have parties 'if you get the permission from the front desk' (nothing crazy or too loud). Quiet time is from 10 pm until 6 am. I know this because we got kicked out of the kitchen a few times for being too loud after 10 am. I stayed in a single-room bed. It took a while to get used to it, but is comfortable enough. You only get one set of clean sheets a week. Check the posting on your floor to find out which day they clean it. On the day you get room service, make sure you put your pillow case, sheets, towels and everything that you want new, neatly arranged on the floor otherwise it will not be replaced. The water from the kitchen sink is safe for drinking. There is stove in the commons' kitchen, but you have to use your pans.
Since a lot of students stay here because it's close to the University you might students from all over the world. It was a wonderful experience meeting people from Korea, Syria, Turkey, Mexico, Russia, etc. A lot of times they get together in the kitchen to make plans to go out. Don't be afraid to talk as mostly everybody speaks English and are very friendly.
The atmosphere is very calm and the surrounding areas are pretty safe, even though it might not look like it. One time I had to walk from downtown (Essen HBF) to Bildungshotel as there are no subways available after 11'ish pm. I thought about getting a taxi, but I thought 'what the heck' and I walked. The walk was about 20-30 min long, but pleasant. There are some areas that don't look very safe, but nothing really happened. I walked at night a few other times and I saw some other people walking too. You can take the tram from Katzenbruchstrasse and be in downtown in 5 minutes or take it to the main station so you can hop on a train and go anywhere in Europe. I loved it!!! I loved going to Essen hbf and buying those German bratwurst.
There is a Lidl store (like neighborhood walmart) where you can get water, food or anything else you might need. They close around 8 pm and don't open on Sundays. There is a bakery down the street that sells fresh pastries.
Overall is a really great place for the value. If you know your way around it's good place to stay and save a few euros.
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