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“First Time”

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Hostelling International San Diego Downtown
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Columbus, Georgia
Level Contributor
30 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“First Time”
Reviewed 19 May 2014 via mobile

I gotta say not what I was expecting. Our private room with private bathroom and AC unit was really clean. Everything was modern and artsy. The only thing I'd have to say bad about this place was that the elevators really slow and smells like a Hippy's buttcrack when you get inside. Haha. No curfew and it was really laid back. Don't bank on breakfast to fill you up though, it was just cantelope and toast.

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank GlittaShimma00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 20 May 2014
Congratulations on your first hostel stay, we're always happy to host new hostellers! The elevator is a little slow, but it's the one we've got (and, boy, are we glad it's there!). For future guests: breakfast does have fresh fruit and several varieties of bread, but also includes hot and cold cereals; tea, coffee, hot cocoa; regular and soy milk. Thank you again and safe travels to you!
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348 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (55)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Oswego, New York, United States
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 May 2014

I stayed there for New Years Eve. The location is perfect, in the middle of Gaslamp Quarter. But the bedrooms were old, and the elevantors and some bathrooms were not working well. The breakfast was very good.

Stayed December 2013, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Ana R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 20 May 2014
Ana, thank you for the stay and taking the time to review us! You bring up some points that we are currently working on addressing: we are remodeling many parts of the interior building, including some bathrooms, hallways/common spaces, and rooms. I hope you have the opportunity to come back and tell us what you think! Safe Travels to you.
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Miami, Florida
1 review
Reviewed 3 May 2014

It was my first time staying in a hostel and I have to say I had a great time. By far the best service I've had in a while. The always have the best info of stuff to do,eat,and to visit. Vo gave the best service ever had. They have therapeutic beds location is great and they do offer great food selections. I would definitely recommend this to everyone I know. Thank you for a great time. Til next time.
Junior

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Juniorlan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 7 May 2014
Junior, Thank you for the kind recommendation and I hope we may host you again next time you travel through San Diego. Take Care!
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Chippenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2014

All in all this isn't a bad hostel, we arrived early evening after a long flight and we're met to see they were carrying out renovations in the hostel, although this worried us at first it had no impact on our stay.

The rooms were clean, tidy and a good size, we'd booked a private room with bathroom and our first impressions were good.

The hostel is situated right in the middle of the Gasslamp Quarter, which is where the majority of bars, clubs and restaurants are situated. This was great for us as each evening we were able to walk to have something to eat and a few drinks before returning.

I've always enjoyed staying in hostels as you get to meet interesting people from all over the world, however, the problem with Hosteling International is that it seems that it is mostly used by young American kids on their first trip away without their mum and dad. From 12-3am every night there would be drunk people coming back from nights out screaming, running round, making as much noise as they could without any regard or respect for anyone else staying there or the apparent Noise Policy of being quiet between 11pm - 7am. This was highly frustrating when you needed to be up early to see the city instead of loafing in bed with a hangover all day.

To summarise, it's clean and in a great location but if you value your sleep then don't stay here.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kermitthe60poundfrog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 25 April 2014
Thank you for your candid feedback, Kermitthe60poundfrog. I will be contacting you privately regarding your experience here.
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United Kingdom
Level Contributor
106 reviews
72 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 April 2014

After reading reviews, I was worried that this hostel was going to be noisey and we were going to get little sleep...but actually we had the best two nights sleep we have had in a while. We had a really quiet loft room, which was really spacey, but a tad difficult to get down from the bed. The bathrooms were always free, never had to wait for one and they are in fairly good condition. The lesser used ones in better condition. They were doing renovation works while we were there but never heard any noise from this. This hostel is in a great location, and the guy who works there is super friendly, always smiling and really helpful. Breakfast is a bit meh, but was happy that the was a breakfast so shan't complain about it. Room came with sink which was good for brushing teeth rather than having to take a trip to the bathroom, room also came with soft towels which was a bonus. Cheap laundry...couldn't ask for anything more!decor was nice. Really can't fault this place, I mean it's not the ritz, but your not exactly paying ritz prices so I say go for it! Stay here you won't regret it.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank zobug3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 25 April 2014
Happy to hear you enjoyed your stay, zobug3. Safe Travels and I hope we may host you again!
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Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
31 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 March 2014

Of all the hostels I've stayed in so far, this one is definitely in the top three. Why?

1. IT'S CLEAN
2. GREAT location - smack dab in the middle of the Gaslamp Quarter, many bars, clubs, restaurants, etc. are within walking distance! (ex: Stingaree is just one block away!)
3. Helpful staff (shout out to Vo who was friendly and accommodating)
4. FREE breakfast from 8 to 10 a.m. (also a spacious and clean kitchen)
5. FREE tea bags, cocoa powder and more!

Went for a private room this time around, and I was more than happy with what I got. There was a lot of space to just throw my bags on the ground upon arriving.

It's also obvious the staff does an excellent job of keeping the rooms spick and span. I was able to walk around the room barefoot without feeling the need to tiptoe to keep filth off my feet. Same goes for the bathrooms. Found no problematic slime, mold, or gunk in the shower stall/bathtub, toilets, or floors. So if you're a stickler for cleanliness, this is a good choice.

I also found the mattresses to be comfortable enough, and the beddings are fresh and clean.

Stayed for two nights and because there was something going on that required the water to be off for eight hours, I had to move to another room. So I got to see different private rooms. Both were equally clean and tidy. The first room had a bit of a tight shower stall, and the second room had a bathtub.

I actually feel like there's a hotel kind of feel to this hostel because it seems well maintained. It's definitely not a hotel, but it is on the higher end of hostels.

Didn't spend so much time on the second floor, but that's where you can find the computers, laundry room, TV room, and courtyard.

The kitchen and game room are on the third floor. There are also vending machines and couches on this floor.

I would stay here again. If you're looking for affordable accommodations in San Diego and enjoy hostels, I would recommend this place.

Some cons:

1. Rooms facing the street can get noisy, especially on weekend evenings/early mornings. Perhaps if you ask the front desk for a quieter room they can help with that.
2. If you have a car, parking takes patience and/or money. There are structures nearby, but those cost between $10-$25 depending on how long you park. Meters are also another option, and there is free parking several blocks away if you're willing to invest some time in walking.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Agnes C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 26 March 2014
Agnes, thank you for your business and taking the time to review us. It sounds like you are a well-seasoned hosteller, so it is a pleasure to hear you enjoyed your stay. Safe travels and I hope we may host you next time you return to San Diego!
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Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
485 reviews
77 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 March 2014

I enjoyed my stay here in a shared room...Facilities were clean, staff is friendly and helpful.

One drawback - Room 209, its facing 2 streets, very loud on weekend nights, no A/C, so windows must be open. Maybe other rooms are quieter.

All in all, very good deal for the price.

Room Tip: Ask for a quiet room.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank joshua b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
norcalitaliana, Manager at Hostelling International San Diego Downtown, responded to this review, 13 March 2014
Thanks for taking the time to leave some thoughts for future guests, joshbash. Some notes for readers: 209 is our one (and only) co-ed dormitory. We have many other dorms and private rooms that offer different things. Some dorms face the alley (or just one street) and are much quieter; we also have private rooms with A/C for those who need quiet and private--just ask (in advance)! Thank you and safe travels.
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Additional Information about Hostelling International San Diego Downtown

Property: Hostelling International San Diego Downtown
Address: 521 Market St, San Diego, CA 92101
Region: United States > California > San Diego
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 63 Speciality Lodging in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:1.5 star — Hostelling International San Diego Downtown 1.5*
Number of rooms: 48
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We’re here to help you with the most central and accessible hostel in San Diego. Let our award winning staff ensure you receive the most comfortable and enjoyable hostel stay you’ve ever had. We offer a myriad of free tours and activities, and all of our beds are Tempur-Pedic mattresses. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hostelling International San Diego Downtown Hotel San Diego

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