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“matress with a plastic cover”

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Key West Youth Hostel & Seashell Motel
Chicago, IL
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“matress with a plastic cover”
Reviewed 12 December 2005

The room looks quite clean. However, it is a total turn off that the matress is wraped with plastic.
Also, we hear roosters calling out at 5:00am. For over $105 per night, it is not worth it.

Stayed December 2005
4 Thank AroundWorld88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Delray Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
42 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 September 2005

For a second year in a row, we've stayed in one of the private motel rooms and it was just as good the second time! The rooms consist of 2 (full? size) beds, refrigerator, t.v., a 3 drawer dresser, and your own private bathroom with cute little bottles of shampoo plus conditioner and 2 of every size towel. Everything in the rooms is very clean, and the cleaning staff comes by every day to give you fresh towels and spruce up. We stayed for 3 nights. When we visited, the price for a weeknight was $75 and for a Friday or Saturday $95. That may sound like a lot, but this is by far the least expensive place in all of Key West.

It's located in a quiet neighborhood a few blocks away from the Southernmost Point; one block from Simonton St. and two blocks from the southern end of Duval St. The even numbered motel rooms face the parking lot (only a few steps away from your car) and the odd numbered motel rooms are on the other side of the building (facing the courtyard and the communal hostel dorms). The reservations don't say which room number you have, so if it matters to you what side of the building you'll be on, remember to ask.

All of the interior walls are thick and muffle sound very well. I've never been able to hear neighboring rooms. Sadly the outer walls don't seem to share that quality. You can easily hear anyone talking out on the porch. Another complaint is that there are no shelves in the shower except for the soapdish so you have to either balance your shampoo/conditioner on the back of the toilet or keep it on the shower floor.

The people in the office (Russian, I think?) were nice and friendly to us. They seemed a little overworked and tired of people constantly yelling at them about the price, but were quick to help us and accommodating to our requests. And the cleaning lady was always busy cleaning up and taking care of things on the grounds, even though she didn't smile.

After reading some of the bad reviews for the communal hostel half of this property, I strongly recommend that you spend the extra money for one of the private motel rooms instead. You've already decided to visit one of the most expensive cities in the U.S. so go ahead and splurge on the extra $50 a night. You'll be much, much happier. Not only will your room be clean and private, but you won't have to deal with potentially rude male roommates.

All of the good points aside, these are still basic motel rooms. Since you will be paying for the lowest cost private rooms in all of Key West, don't expect anything fancy. But for the basics, it's good.


P.S. One last point no matter where you stay on the island, DO NOT VISIT KEY WEST DURING POKER RUN WEEKEND UNLESS YOU YOURSELF ARE A BIKER OR LOVE BIKERS! The motorcyclists, although pleasant to talk to in person, were extremely rude while on their bikes. They drove their motorcycles on the sidewalks, across people's lawns, 24 hours a day (yes, even as late as 4am and 5am), gunning their motors so loud that it made pedestrians jump and store owners curse at them for rattling the windows, conversation anywhere outside on Duval was impossible, one motorcyclist almost ran me over from behind when I was walking on the sidewalk, and a lot of the best stores/restaurants had closed for the entire week because they didn't want to have to deal with the bikers. Plus there was a lot of tension and grumbling on Duval Street concerning the gay community of Key West. Although the bikers were nice when talking to you off of their bikes, their rude, self-centered behavior while on their bikes made me hate all of Key West with a vengence. I'm a girl, but I spent an entire day wanting to punch the living daylights out of everyone because of the damn inconsiderate bikers. After Poker Run was over and the bikers were gone, every store owner we talked to commented on how happy they were that things had gone back to being quieter. I only wish we had known beforehand that our visit would coincide with Poker Run, because then we would have known to spend our anniversary somewhere else other than Key West, ANY other city that weekend would have been more romantic.

Stayed September 2005
19 Thank Purple_Tursi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 20 June 2005

End of March we stayed in this hostel for two nights. Considering the high prices of hotels in Key West, we decided that we - two 20-years-old girls- can surely stay in that hostel for two nights - in spite of all the bad reviews I read. When we arrived there and saw where we had to sleep (a 9-bed room that didn't look very cozy with its jail-beds), we decided to spend as less time as possible in our room. Our sheets had this aweful smell of fish (who knows why?!), so I used my towel as a blanket and my own pillow case because I just couldn't stand it.
The hostel is located very well, in walking distance to the bars and restaurants - what is definitely a plus! If you want to see something of Key West, rent a scooter that can bring you easily to the beach (it would be a long walk).

To make a long story short: There are definitely better hostels in this world but if you stay only for one or two nights, it's okay. Compared to the high prices of the hotels in Key West, Key West Youth Hostel is a place where you can stay for less money! But don't expect to much...

  • Stayed March 2005
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5 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Key West hotels

Sparks, Nevada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 March 2005

We stayed at the hostel, AKA The Sea Shell Motel, in a private room during the 1st week of February. The room was clean, fresh towels and and sheets offered daily. The room had an a/c unit , it was a little loud, a Tv with cable and a phone. The courtyard was a nice place to wind down in the evening with a game of pool. The kitchen area was in the courtyard, it was neat, clean and well equipped. The staff was polite, helpful and spent alot of time on the computer in the office. The hostel is in a great location with terrific restaurants, shops and sites nearby. The price was right, the rooms are comparable to nearby resorts at double the cost. Make sure to take an evening stroll through the neighborhood and take in the beautiful homes and aromas.

  • Stayed February 2005
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10 Thank faithstclair
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 26 October 2004

to say i was dissapointed at this hostel is an understatement, the staff were not very friendly at all, the rooms were not very clean, you are not allowed any alcohol, there is no laundry facilities, there is no kitchen, insufficient A/C, overall i would rather sleep on the beach. What is annoying is that it has so much potential, i just want to buy the place and make it so much better. If i could get a green card to the US i would move to Key west and either buy the place or open a rival hostel and that would put an end to this awful place... be warned...

  • Stayed December 2003
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8 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 13 July 2004

I guess that all of the other reviewers on this website stayed in the communal dormitory rooms instead of the private motel rooms at this location. Being newlyweds, my husband and I wanted to stay in our own private room. The private motel rooms (called the SeaShell Motel) are within the same complex but are almost $70 more expensive per night. You reserve and pay for them at the same office. We were charged $89 per night in July 2004 for a private room (a communal dormitory room would have cost about $23). But for the price we got a very good deal. The private motel rooms are on the opposite side of the building from the dorm rooms. They are directly in front of the parking lot. Our private room had two full beds, its own refrigerator, its own t.v., and its own bathroom. I was even pleasantly surprised that they provided us with clean towels and free shampoo/soap every day! Everything was clean and in good condition. Even the pillows were dustfree! The only thing wrong was that the filter in our air conditioner vibrated slightly, but we were able to fix this easily. This was the first U.S. hostel I've ever been in, but I have stayed in several private rooms in hostels/backpackers outside of the U.S. and based on those experiences I was not expecting much. Private rooms in foreign hostels are usually not much better than their dorm rooms. Our private room here exceeded my expectations tremendously!!! Except for a car alarm one night, it was very quiet. The location is wonderful! It's so central! It's within a quiet residential neighborhood far away from the loud party crowd, but close enough to all the tourist attractions that it was very convenient. There is even a small grocery store within a 5 minute walk away!

It's true that the office staff seem lazy and unhelpful, but this didn't affect our stay any. The only thing that made me nervous about the staff was that they require you to fax your credit card information to them, which is a very insecure way to do it. With such bad staffing this made us both nervous, especially since they didn't even e-mail us a confirmation ever! But, so far nothing amiss seems to have happened to our credit card number. And after we arrived, we never had to interact with the staff again.

Note that the cost of bicycle rentals has now gone up to $10 per day. But you can easily walk to almost anywhere in Key West from the hostel (we did). Also, the staff has now implemented a "No Locals Allowed Ever" policy. They make you prove that you are not from Key West before they allow you to stay there, so that seems to have solved the previous problem of homeless people staying here that a previous reviewer mentioned. I know that I certainly didn't see anyone dirty, scary, or unruly during the entire time we were there. There also seemed to be plenty of women staying at the hostel/motel. More women than men, actually. As a woman, I never felt uncomfortable, even after dark.

If you can afford to pay the extra $70 dollars (expensive for a hostel!) for a private room here, do it!! They are very clean, very convenient, and everything inside them works well. Just in case our particular room was somehow better than the rest, I'll let you know that we stayed in Room #8, so you can ask if you can stay in that same one. However, all of the private rooms really seemed the same to me. I gave it 3 stars only because it IS still a low-cost motel, so you don't get any extras like you would at an expensive resort. But as far as hostels go, I would definitely give their private rooms 5 stars! Staying here turned out to be like a second honeymoon for us! In fact, our room here was actually nicer than any of the 4 New Zealand hostels that we stayed in during our REAL honeymoon!

26 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 14 March 2004

Key West is notorious for homeless people and the Rainbow children" It seemed to me when I went to get my sisiter there, that they rent to filthy transients, more like a homeless shelter for drunks than backpackers. This drove away the rest of my sisters teacher group. They lost a group of good clientele in favor of people who flat out refuse to shower for weeks!!!! Gross!!!!! not like the other hostels we have used

4 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Key West Youth Hostel & Seashell Motel

Property: Key West Youth Hostel & Seashell Motel
Address: 718 South St, Key West, FL 33040-4770
Region: United States > Florida > Florida Keys > Key West
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 21 Speciality Lodging in Key West
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:1.5 star — Key West Youth Hostel & Seashell Motel 1.5*
Number of rooms: 14
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Also Known As:
Key West Youth Hostel & Seashell Hotel Key West
Key West Youth Hostel And Seashell Motel
Key West Hostel
Key West Youth Hostel & Seashell Motel Florida

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