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“Location is king - and that balcony!”
Review of El Hussein Hotel

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El Hussein Hotel
Ranked #91 of 139 Hotels in Cairo
Reviewed 22 August 2010

I always stay in this hotel - several times over the last 10 years. True, service can be lazy and surly, the bathroom might not be spotless, but the ceiling fan works! The real gem is the balcony with chairs overlooking the Midan el Hussein, with mosque and tables and restaurants below, the best place to watch the world go by. Breakfast is basic - get a table by the window - and ask for Turkish coffee - so much better than the lousy instant. Staff are friendly when they're expecting a tip, but the good news is that the place seems very safe and I've never had a problem there as a lone female traveller. Great value at around £10 a night - well worth the extra little for the balcony.

  • Stayed: January 2009, travelled solo
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4  Thank LondonBantamBabe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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4 - 10 of 14 reviews

Reviewed 4 December 2008

True, this is not a five star hotel, but what do you expect for under $20.00 a night with breakfast included..which is edible, a hard boiled egg, 3 bread rolls, butter, jam, piece of cheese and a choice
of coffee or tea. Just pretend that you're camping out, at least you
have your own toilet and shower. I always buy a large bath towel in
the bazaar for a couple of bucks and I leave it there when I check
out. You can also buy a cheap bath mat too. You can keep botttles
of water, fruit, your left over meal in the refrig. Sitting out on the
balcony at night and catching all the action is a must, or you can hang out in the coffee shops. To sleep, I bring a pair of ear plugs,
and my neck roll which I pack in my carry on baggage. The staff is
very friendly and you can carry a conversation with them...they'll
give you hints on where to shop for the best prices. Have stayed
there many times and often bring American chocolates for the staff
which they enjoy always. They are poor hard working people trying
to make an honest living. Be nice.

  • Stayed: April 2006, travelled with friends
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8  Thank nefertari007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 November 2008

First ask yourself a question .... are you adventurous, independent, not easily spooked, and able to tolerate cultural differences? If yes, then this hotel offers a chance to stay in the heart of Old Islamic Cairo and really, really, feel the essence of the city and its people.

The El Hussein Hotel is situated directly on top of El Hussein square ... a square which is alive with activity from early morning until the late evening.

In the early morning (daybreak) the call to prayers will awaken all ... especially those in the hotel which is directly opposite some very large and loud speakers ... but in Islamic Cairo, isn't that part of the experience? It's a call to move to the balcony to watch the city come to life ... worshippers, bread makers, coffee sellers, moms and kids on the way to school ... life Cairo style ... a procession of activity that will continue throughout the day into the evening.

At about lunch time, a legion of tour buses will arrive, bringing the less intrepid to sample the exotic side of Cairo ... but only until nightfall when most retreat to a cocoon of western style and comforts. The El Hussein is about experiencing Cairo without retreat.

Now, about the hotel. The hotel is **not** kept up to 1st world standards. I arrived late at night and found the darkly lit lobby by following the snoring of the duty manager. Once he was awake he was friendly enough and sent me to my room. On the way I encountered one or two other harmless attendents sleeping in the hall along the way.

The public areas of the hotel are simply dirty. Expect to see garbage left in the hallways, peeling paint, and dirt and dust everywhere. But .. you don't sleep in the hallway, so don't worry about it. I didn't.

The rooms are much better (comparatively speaking). My room was clean enough and quite large. The floor was clean and the bedding looked clean as well. There was a tiny TV (with rabbit ears) and a huge refrigerator. The worst part of the room is the bathroom which looked quite worn and dusty. However, the water was hot-ish and the shower worked. If you bring your own towels, toilet paper, and a couple bathroom floor-mats, you can make it just fine.

Now, the best part of the room is the balcony (if you get a room facing the square). This balcony made up for any deficiency in the room. Huge, comfortable and what a view! Right below your room are some of the best coffee houses in Cairo ... and the bazaar is right around the corner.

In conclusion, this hotel is not for everyone. If you choose to stay here and can adapt to life in a local style, I can't think of a better way to experience the real Cairo. I give the hotel 4-stars because of its location, the balcony and the experience. If someone ever took over this hotel and upgraded it to western standards, it could command $250 per night.

  • Stayed: November 2008, travelled solo
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10  Thank PacificJet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 August 2006

I chose this hotel because it is in Khan Al-Khalili and overlooks a lively square.

The good:
The room has a balcony that overlooks a busy square. At night, people sit at the shops to eat, drink and smoke. They brought their own musical instruments to play and sang through the night (till around 3am). I liked the music and the "Arabian night" atmosphere. This hotel is not for you if you cannot sleep with noise.

The bad:
The toilet was not flushed when I checked in (the worst possible thing was in there! i think it was human faeces) and there were small cockroaches crawling around the toilet and room. The bathtub was dirty and badly stained red. There were peanut shells in the corner of the bedroom. The thankfully sheets were clean and neat. I told the person at the reception to send someone to clean the place but I waited 1 hr and nobody came. The attendants did not look very busy to me - they were sitting around watching tv. In the end, my husband bought dettol to clean the toilet himself. I could not bring myself to use the toilet or shower. This is by far the worst hotel experience I have ever had. I still have nightmares about it. I could not sleep here a 2nd night so I move to another hotel even though I had paid for the 2nd night here.

  • Stayed: July 2006, travelled as a couple
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9  Thank working4vacations
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 January 2006

No argument that the location (Islamic Cairo) is great but believe it or not, the fact that the hotel is so dirty offsets the location advantage. The bathrooms are never cleaned (even after guests leave), there are no towels, and the floors are dirty. There were several cockroachs in our room. There was mud in the tub and the pillows were yelllow! There was also a pile of smelly garbage outside of the hotel.

If you can handle the filth, try to stay here otherwise stay at a more upscale hotel in centeral Cairo and take a $1 cab ride to the area to enjoy the location.

  • Stayed: January 2006
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5  Thank AntiquityTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 August 2005

Okay it's not clean and the noise from the market below is so incessant that's it's hard to get any sleep, but this place is wonderful. There isn't a better positioned hotel in all of Cairo. Positioned right in the middle of the medieval Khan Al-Khalili market the nubian drummers play all night in the square outside and wails of surrounding (and stunning i might add) mosques wake you in the morning. The staff are friendly but don't expect them to speak English. They were a little shocked that I, a young woman, was there alone and went out of their way to make me welcome. My bathroom was filthy but it was there. My room was huge and had a balcony which overlooked the square and surrounding mosques. Entry to this hotel is from one of the many wonderful alleys which make up the market. This place is right in the hub of everything that's great about Cairo. I found the big tourist hotels sterile and removed from the culture and bustling reality of this city. Busloads or tourists are dropped off near El Hussein's. They do a circuit of the market and get back in their bus and move on to their next destination. This is a great place for backpackers or anyone who really wants to enjoy Cairo at more than a glance.

  • Stayed: January 2005
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18  Thank vwoolf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 May 2017
Google Translation

Room Tip: en la habitación 3
See more room tips
  • Stayed: June 2016, travelled solo
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Thank mariabrandan24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about El Hussein Hotel

Address: Taha Hussein | Khan Al-Khalili, Cairo, Egypt
Region: Egypt > Cairo Governorate > Cairo
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #91 of 139 Hotels in Cairo
Number of rooms: 56
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