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Venice Beach Hostel and Hotel
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Reviews (98)
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64 - 69 of 98 reviews
Reviewed 2 February 2011

Nothing like taking the early train, carrying your luggage up the Venice Beach hostel stairs, and being given the choice between paying 3 1/2 times what your reservation quotes or being charged for a night or more as a "no show" cancellation fee to go back out on the street.

Online, Venice Beach looked like too much savings to pass up, so I forced myself to forgo a reservation at a much higher-rated, favorite hostel. The email confirmation of my Venice Beach reservation quoted $59.22 for 4 nights, and the breakdown of those charges per night. Like my confirmations for other hostels, it said taxes would also be added, and a refundable deposit.

The Venice Beach Hostel receptionist printed out an invoice for the same $59.22. She hand wrote in ~$10 for taxes. So far, so good.

Then she hand wrote in a $40 charge for food and internet. Never at any point online or in person, had I been asked whether I wanted to purchase food and internet for an additional charge. This addition brought Venice Beach to the same price as the much higher-rated hostel (which offered free internet & breakfast) I'd forgone out of thrift.

Finally she hand wrote in a deposit of $100. One hundred dollars? My forgone favorite hostel charges NO deposit.

What's the highest deposit you've ever been charged for a 4 night hostel stay? $20 for the key? $25? How about $100? Do we have the winner here or what? Good thing Venice Beach had already won my trust by sticking so closely to its advertising and reservation quote.

I said the $210 she was asking for looked unbelievably different from the less than $60 I'd been quoted. She asked if I'd like to speak to the manager, who told me the extra charges had all been in the fine print online.

Here are direct quotes pasted from the web page that sold me Venice Beach hostel:

"Free Internet & computer in rooms & ** free wireless"
" free food - breakfast fixings & dinner basics for you to cook."

I guess this is where keeping up your hand writing skills in the computer age can be worth it. Look how creative you can be with your invoices!

Stayed: February 2011, travelled solo
2  Thank traveller1052
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 August 2010

I can't even say that despite all the short comings this hostel had, "you get what you pay for", because I didn't pay 20 bucks a night, but should have. The common area and hallways will be sure to annoy you if you don't smoke, because everybody else does.
Compared to other hostels of the same price, the kitchen facilities are poor, with few utensils or crockery and the lure of a free breakfast involves pancake/waffle mix only.
On the plus side the staff seemed friendly and helpful enough and the large common area did lend itself to be a good area to meet everyone.
The hostel is in a large enough building right in the center if Venice Beach. With a new owner that runs a professional business and not a rip off outlet, the place could be brought up to scratch.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled solo
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2  Thank PlanetaryPalooza
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2009

I booked a private room for myself for 3 nights, ahving read the reviews on other websites, it sounded nice. I have stayed in hostels all around the world, so i know not to expect hotel standards, but htis was, by far THE WORST hostel room i have ever stayed in. I cannot comment about the rest of the place (common areas, kitchen etc) as i didnt stay long enought to see.
As soon as I came into the room, i wanted to leave, however it was midnight on a saturday night, so I had no choice but to stay. I left as soon as I could the next day and stayedd in a hotel (there was no other private room at hostels available in LA) The room stunk like urine, the tv didnt work (the lady at the counter said none of them do and havent for ages), there is no aircon (lady said open the window). There is a kitchen, but is nothing in there but a sink, so basically a waste of space. The only positve thing was the computer an internet in every room, it was fast and free, so cant complain about that.

  • Stayed: September 2009, travelled solo
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2  Thank nikifini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2009

We were booked at the venice beach cotel, around the corner, but when we arrived they had had plumbing problems and couldn't give us a room with private bathroom. They phoned this hostel who could give us a private room. The room was spacious, with computor (free of charge), and TV (which didn't seem to work). The only negative thing was the smell of the room, really awful! the rate for private with bathroom was $91.25 incl taxes. They said we could have free pancakes and coffee in the morning but we didn't. the kitchen was open for all of the hostel. We didn't hang around much and didn't mix with others. the MUST is Mao's kitchen opposite, the cheapest restaurant possible with huge quantities and delicious asian food, we were there every evening. very popular!

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank serena99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 September 2008

We stayed here for 3 nights. To start off with I booked a private room throuogh their website at $80. I never got an email confirmation. I had to call them a week later to see if it was booked. I asked them to email me. Two and a half months later and four days before im due to stay there they email to say I am booked in. When I get there it's now $89 and as i didn't have a confirmation email I have no proof it was any cheaper. They then charge you an extra $3 per night for using a card. I questioned this as I was only making one payment not 3. They also don't tell you about the tax of 14%. So from going in expecting to pay $80 per night I am now paying $105. Then theres the $100 deposit. This is all before seeing the room! The room is big with a computer. The bathroom smells really strangely, the toilet seat and shower rail is hanging on by their last threads. Theres also a lot of mould around the shower. There is lots of noise through the night from the streets nearby. The main problem we had though was when i sat on a corner of the bed the wheel bent back. Im not very heavy and the bed was very old and rickety. I went and reported this straightaway and the woman on the desk said it was fine they would sorted and said I wouldn't be charged. Then when checking out they have now decided to charge me for replacing the bed! I can guarantee the bed wasn't replaced the wheel was just knocked back into place as that wasn't a new bed we were sleeping on. The manager is extremely rude and did is best to ignore us and let his staff deal with the matter. After talking to him he said he wouldn't charge us aslong as we reported it but the woman I reported it to wasn't there until 8pm. Yet when I called back later that night I was told he was still going to charge us. He had obviously no intention of not charging us he just wanted us out of his office. He is rude and arrogant, I urge you to go anywhere but here! It's near the beach and has a computer. Thats the two positoives but instead of staying here you could camp on the beach and use an internet cafe and probably have a much better experience!!

  • Stayed: August 2008
    • Value
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
5  Thank ctg85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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