We stayed at the Katyusha for one week in late June 2008, and found the guest house to be a great deal. Hotels in St Petersburg during the high season are extremely expensive. The Katyusha is relatively cheap compared to other hotels, and thus provides great value for money.
Unlike the name implies, it isn't a hotel, but a guest house - basically a large apparment where the rooms are rented out. Our room was very clean and modern, but small (we had to move the bed in order to fully open the wardrobe door). It contained a double bed, a dresser, a wardrobe and a small desk (all from Ikea) as well as a television with satellite reception (the downside of which is that we couldn't find any local stations, and information about local weather predictions).
A tiled alcove in the very clean and modern private bathroom was separated by a shower curtain and served as the shower. The smallest shower I've even been in; a person of size would definitely find it a challenge.
The hosts were courteous and very helpful, most of whom spoke excellent English. Olga, the "headmistress" spoke broken English but was charming, and tried extremely hard to pass along recommendations for restaurants, places to see, things to do, etc.
The location couldn't be better; located literally next door to the Winter Palace/Hermitage, it allowed us to easily walk to all the sites of interest.
We were looking for a good-quality, low-cost accomodation in a central location, and the Katyusha proved to be a perfect choice.
To address some of the issues raised by previous reviewers:
Window screen (mosquito netting). Our room had two windows; one with a screen and the other without. A quick look outside the windows of the other rooms indicate that most windows do have screens.
Air conditionning: There was definitely no air conditionner (or a fan) in our room, and I saw no evidence of one in the others. There is a central unit in the hallway, but that would prove useless to guests inside their room, unless they slept with their room door open. The nights were rather cool during our stay, so heat was not a problem, but I could see that on hot, humid nights, the lack of air conditionning could prove a problem to North Americans unused to humid weather.
Noise/party boat: There was definitely no party boat anywhere near the guest house when we were there. However, the Katyusha is located on a side street off Admiralty Embankment, a popular place for strollers, buskers and a few cafes (both on land, and on boats moored to the embankment) which can be noisy. The noise they generated didn't bother us, but we slept with our windows closed each night. However, there isn't much sound insulation between the rooms. We could occasionally hear our neighbours talk if they were loud (and even heard some snoring). However, on the whole the guest house is quite quiet.
Would I recommend the Katyusha? To a budget-minded traveller looking for no-frills, basic lodgings, the Katyusha is an excellent choice, and the location is unbeatable. If you're looking for North American-style lodgings, you will probably be disapointed.
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- Also Known As:
- Mini Hotel St Petersburg