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YMCA Tourist Hostel
Ranked #86 of 156 Speciality Lodging in Colombo
Reviewed 5 September 2013

For the price I wasn't expecting marvels, but I did expect them to keep their word. Due to arriving at 5 am and having and midnight flight, all I wanted was a bed, somewhere to leave my bag during the day, and to be able to shower before catching my flight.
I was assured over the phone when booking, on arrival (5 am) and at check out (11 am) that it would be no problem to shower after I’d left, as the bathrooms were separate to the rooms.
But when I returned at 8 pm, the man in reception would not let me shower as I didn’t have a room. I told him that I had been promised by 3 different people that it was OK, and he didn’t care. Then he asked for a written document allowing this, which I obviously didn’t have, then he asked for the name of the person who had said it was OK, but I am not in the habit of asking hotel receptionists their names. He was rude and unhelpful, even when I asked if I could PAY to take a shower.
This may sound petty, but anyone who has been to Colombo will know how dirty you are by the end of the day, a combination of sweat, mosquito repellent, sun cream and dust making you feel filthy. And I had a 36 hour economy-class journey ahead of me.
He also caused problems to collect my bag (which I’d paid 400 rupees to leave for the day) as the piece of paper that the morning receptionist had given me wasn’t dated (there was no date box).

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled solo
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4  Thank lolly p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pelhamj, Media Co-ordinator at YMCA Tourist Hostel, responded to this reviewResponded 25 October 2013

The Colombo YMCA has its own rules governing those who occupy rooms. This is true of any hotel or hostel. It is rather silly for a guest to check out of his room and come later and expect to occupy the same room and have a shower.
We believe sensible people with a sound mind will judge those who write ridiculous reports to Trip Advisor.
We welcome constructive criticism and value them and take immediate action to remedy them. Please feel free to write your comments where we will make the YMCA a suitable place where everyone can enjoy our benefits.

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Reviews (56)
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20 - 26 of 56 reviews

Reviewed 15 August 2013

Colombo YMCA is terrible. We asked the manager for dorm rooms because we thought the prices were triple the amount that was given in the Lonely planet. When he said all the dorms were booked we got a really bad double room, without bathroom or any decoration. When we said we thought it was to high en the Lonely planet suggested a different price the manager just raged. Later that night we came back and saw that all the dorm rooms were available. The next morning we talked to the manager and in the middle of our discussion he walked away to get lunch. Please go some where else

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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4  Thank Boudewijnhugo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pelhamj, Media Co-ordinator at YMCA Tourist Hostel, responded to this reviewResponded 25 October 2013

It does seem that an organised group of people with ulterior motives, are bent on tarnishing the image and reputation of the YMCA by making frivolous accusations and feeding inaccurate information on Trip Advisor.
As a matter of policy, the YMCA caters to everybody, both rich and poor. Where accommodation is concerned there is a wide range of rooms with varying facilities, differently priced to meet the demands of all who wish to use this facility. Of course the recent escalation in the electricity tariffs and enhanced costs of utilities has compelled the YMCA to revise its room rates. Yet, a bunk bed will cost less than US $ 7.5 per night and a temporary membership cost less than US $ 50 cts.
What is of pertinence is that the entire hostel has been refurbished to ensure overall cleanliness and provide for a range of facilities that were hitherto unavailable.
Those who wish to make a fair assessment are cordially invited to visit us and ascertain for themselves the transformation that has taken place for the benefit of those who wish to use the facilities provided by the YMCA

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Reviewed 15 July 2013 via mobile

Dirty floor and bed with matresse black and green, crawling coackroaches, smelly, absolutely horrible. Bathroom probably was never cleaned. Ah and they also asked if we were christian (????) Worst place we have ever been to, ever. Ever.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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3  Thank Lobtrip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 May 2013

Massive bed bugs, high prices contrary to the lonely planets guide (2,500 - 4,000 rp), dismal service, upfront payment required, 100 rp membership fee additional, window's un-lockable, female showers viewable from men's change room. We likened it to what we thought a 50's prison cell would be although it is in a convenient location to the train station, airport bus, beach, Galle Face Green and the old dutch hospital.

Female travellers (even travelling with a partner) should avoid this place at all costs.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank ENWO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2013

The YMCA in central Colombo is a terrible place. It is perhaps the only budget accommodation in central Colombo (location is good) but for you can find much better places for little more money within a short tuk tuk ride.
The bulding is in terrible shape. The cheapest rooms are very old, full of bugs (the size of your finger) and extremely hot. The fan is very noisy and don't help much. The bathroom is among the worst I have seen in my life, with unidentified liquids leaking from the pipe.
More expensive rooms are ok (although smelling badly) but highly overpriced (7500 rupees).
The staff is nice though. Overall a terrible place.

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank diegoemme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 March 2013

What the Lonely Planet was doing recommending this place I'll never know. I arrived there tired at midnight with the expectation of basic, cheap accommodation. What I found was a hostel that I can only assume was in the Lonely Planet for the first time and had raised their prices to take advantage. They initially wanted 3500 for a room and I finally settled on 2500 ($20) for a private "double" room. Not particularly cheap anymore, but I was tired and the only other hotels in the area are pretty expensive. But I really should've looked at the room before paying such a ridiculous amount of money. A room with two beds pushed together, a washbasin in the corner and a ceiling fan. That was it. What you might expect for less than $10 anywhere else in Asia. The beds were too short for my body and the bedding was too short for the beds. And the shared bathrooms were dire. I'm not particularly squeamish, but that was the first time I've ever felt the need to shower in flip flops.

And it was the shower that resulted in my one and only interaction with the exceptionally rude staff. You see because despite paying $20 for a grossly substandard room, that didn't include a towel. I would've had to pay $60 for a "luxury room" for that (I'd love to see their idea of luxury). Now I've stayed in places where you don't get a towel as standard, but this was the first place I've stayed where they've flat out refused to give me one or even rent one to me. I was told I should've gone to the Hilton if I wanted a towel. No, I should've just gone to any other hotel or hostel in the world. There's a reason why they ask you to pay up front in this place. No matter how tight your budget, avoid this place at all costs. Not that it will help your budget with their apparently new found rip off prices anyway. I've stayed in some dumps in my time, but this is my all time worst hotel.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled solo
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2  Thank Joe P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 February 2013

huge bugs all over the room, stinky bad sheets, problems with electricity, stinky room. We've leaved in many nasty places but this one is the worst so far.

Well, it was the cheapest accommodation we could find in Colombo but I am happy we had to stay there just a single night.

Room Tip: just avoid YMCA colombo at any costs
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Sokolinskyi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about YMCA Tourist Hostel

Address: 39, Bristol Street, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Colombo
Hotel Style:
Ranked #86 of 156 Speciality Lodging in Colombo
Number of rooms: 19
Also Known As:
Ymca Tourist Hotel Colombo

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