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“My Saving Grace”

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American Dream Hostel
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 15 September 2010

I am a 26-year-old, female, solo traveler that comes to NYC a few times a year on business. I honestly chose this hostel out of pure desperation to escape the horrible situation that I was experiencing at a disgusting, bug infested, unsafe, rudely managed hotel - The Latham Hotel (I have warned you! It's straight out of a bad scene in CSI NY!)

Anyway, I called American Dream Hostel at about 11:00pm after I found it on my map on my iPhone after I typed in "hotel". The man on the phone (I'm kicking myself for forgetting his name - the owner's son) was amazingly understanding and kind and although American Dream didn't have any openings, at the time, he said that the time for "no-shows" was at midnight and I was more than welcome to come and sit at the hostel to gamble with an opening. To my joy, midnight arrived and there were two no-shows so I was able to get a room. The owner's son was nice enough to walk me to both of the available rooms to let me pick which one I preferred.

The rooms aren't anything but ordinary but, THEY ARE CLEAN! I just read a review about American Dream that was posted about how some of the windows leading to a brick wall (like practically touching, no alley, kind of amazing actually) and that was something I found kind of humorous - it also made the room really quiet because there wasn't any outside noise. The bathrooms are also very clean, which I totally appreciate.

Another really neat thing about the hostel is that breakfast is included in your stay. It's basic breakfast but, I'm not an extravagant breakfast eater I guess...

Bottom line, I already booked a room there for October and I'm looking forward to it. If you are in need of frills, unnecessary square footage, and a private bathroom, this is not the place for you.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled on business
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1  Thank ChiroKid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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139 - 145 of 274 reviews

Reviewed 14 May 2010

This was my first visit to New York and I was unsure of where to stay, particularly as I am a female travelling on my own. I chose the American Dream Hostel as it was located in the middle of Manhattan Island and I'm so glad I did.

The location is fantastic, you within a short walk from 5th Avenue and Broadway plus you are pretty well in between the lower side and upper side of Manhattan so both are easily reachable.

The hostel is more like a B&B hotel, the only downside with this is that there are no cooking facilities but there is a great pub around the corner that does good meals for around $10. Breakfast is included with your stay and is very generous.

The rooms are not large as you would expect in New York but they are very clean and comfortable. The bathrooms are shared by all of the guests on the floor which isn't really a problem as you can use the bathrooms on other floors if yours is in use. There are security cameras visible everywhere and anyone coming in off the street will pass by the reception so you are very safe.

I would recommend the American Dream Hostel to anyone visiting New York.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled solo
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2  Thank Brisvegas_Boarder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2009

This Hostel is renovated, the pictures in this website no reflect actual facilities.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled solo
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1  Thank Rafico10010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 July 2009

Breakfeast is great...the staffs are really nice...they work hard to keep place clean...friendly environment...great location...its hostel not a hotel so i dont know why people would complain about the size of the room...i havent seen a roach or any bugs...renovating rooms on the 3rd floor...rooms look clean...i recommend this place it stay

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled with friends
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2  Thank mightymouse30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2009

My perspective: 36 year old UK married NHS surgeon, with young family back home, in the middle of 6 months doing fellowships in UK, Germany and the US. I have travelled widely in Europe, the US, Africa, India and Australia as a student and younger professional, so hopefully have an idea of what is reasonable.

Travelling alone in the context of the recent drop in sterling against the dollar and Euro and keen to cut costs as self-funding. Also had been recommended a terrible 3 star hotel in Munich, Germany but ended up in a fantastic private room in a clean youth hostel (Euro-Youth-Hotel) with a buzzing bar with food, plenty of interesting people and in the centre of town. It reminded me of the best days I had travelling as a student but with my own room and privacy.

Keen to apply the same logic in the US, the home of customer service and value, I chose the American Dream Hostel for a 1 week visit, soon after. Imagine how impressed I was with the reception on a first floor, in a place revamped a lifetime ago, boasting an impressive variety of carpets. The complete opposite of what I was hoping for. The first room I was given on the second floor, had a classic window that I have only ever seen in cartoons, that was just bricks. Asked to be moved and was given the smallest room I have ever seen but with a window. I could virtually touch both walls with both hands. To be fair, this room was recently painted, clean but very hot. Perfect for drying towels I'd say.

The old chap across the way was interesting to chat to, especially if you like cats, and amenable, offering to turn down his TV in the evening - it still meant using my headphones to sleep as the walls are so thin and it was obviously his only enjoyment besides his cat, so felt it unfair to ask further.

The breakfast was basic and by now no surprise, basic cereal, toast, spreads etc.. The bathroom was an experience, I could not find it as I had walked past the door because it seemed to be a cupboard. Small, old but clean.

I was lucky in that in the end I came to my senses and moved to the recommended Hotel Union Square Inn (14th St) but at 110 bucks a night. It is true, you get what you pay for but it does not have to be this bad. I could not believe how poor the place was in central Manhattan, USA in the 21st century for 50 bucks a night. Save your money, stay in Hoboken or Brooklyn and take the subway! It is so cheap and easy to use. I have been to New York many times and never as appalled as I have been by this dump. 3rd world accommodation. Worse than places I have stayed in South Africa and India and Australia.

The only saving grace was the cleaner, who seemed to try her best to clean this worn out building and the guys on reception were friendly but ineffective; I had to set up another traveller's internet connection.

If you want an authentic visit to a post-war America hostel or have a particularly perverse expectation of the 'American Dream', then this is for you. Do not be this cheap if at all possible, New York is better than this.

P.S. This is the first, and probably only, time I have felt the need to write a review of a place I have stayed and have tried to be balanced.

  • Stayed: February 2009, travelled on business
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8  Thank LondonMooToo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 February 2009

This is the worst place I ever stayed in my life.

When I first came there I didn't have any expectations at all, it was my first time staying in a hostel.
The owner showed us the breakfast area, were we could eat for free. If you like sitting next to a crank old man that lives in there, then this is the place to be.

When we got into the room, we saw a window with the aircondition barely hanging with ducktape.
Ok, its a hostel. What can I expect?
In the night the bugs start crawling out from their hideouts, its not just a few.. Its a whole army crawling around there.
The second day the owner asked if we heard scrathing on the door, because one of the residence in the hostel lets out the his cat to hunt down the rats.

I thought, Ok! It's a cheap hostel!
The last night before leaving, one of the many pipes on the wall cracks. Some type of gas is pouring out of the pipe, making the noise of a teapot boiling.
So I went down to the reception, told him the problem.
He said he couldn't move us to some other room, because its full. Not just only that did he say, he said the gas coming out is probably not dangerous.
Think I got 5min with sleep that night, we didn't get any discount or anything for the trouble.

There must be better places than this!

  • Stayed: December 2006, travelled with family
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2  Thank travelolsen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 September 2008

Stayed here for 4 nights Sept 8 - 12.
Enjoyed our stay for the most part.
Just make sure you don't get room #1 as there is a separate door inside that leads to the main office and you can hear full conversations no less the telephone rings constantly throughout the night. So we ran on a lack of sleep throughout our stay. The rooms did have Air Conditioning though which was great considering it was still a bit humid in September for us.
For the price though (we paid $90 USD/night for a private room) it was as we expected.
This includes breakfast each morning from 700am - 1200pm which is great! They had hard boiled eggs, selection of breads for toast with all the fixins....cream cheese, jam, peanut butter, etc. They also had cereals with milk each day and fresh fruit as well. It's a good way to start a budget day in New York.
The rooms are small but again for the price nothing to complain about at all!
Shared bathrooms & showers could make for a slow start in the morning. But as long as you were up around 730am/800am to get in there before someone else there was never a problem for us.
Could use a bit of a makeover - fresh carpets & paint would do wonders here!
Location is great - 1 1/2 blocks to a Metro station to go anywhere you want on the island. We never felt threatened or unsafe even when returning at night. There are pizza places & cute cafes to eat at close by. Also drug stores incase you forgot a tooth brush or something.

Staff was very nice and helpful with information.
Internet available onsite for a $2.50 US for 1/2 hour. Pretty reasonable considering....

As it was mentioned in previous reviews about roaches - we did not see any bugs not even a spider the whole time we were there! Very well cleaned and kept.

Hope this helps with your trip plans!
Enjoy New York it is a fabulous city! :)

  • Stayed: September 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank kristybrules
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about American Dream Hostel

Address: 168 E 24th St, midtown Manhattan, New York City, NY 10010-3703
Region: United States > New York > New York City > Manhattan , Murray Hill
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 163 Speciality Lodging in New York City
Price Range: £80 - £135 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A family owned business, American Dream Hostel welcomes you to New York City. Our prices include breakfast in the morning and WiFi. You will be in Manhattan, Flatiron District/Gramercy Park, close to the most exciting locations and events; most main points of interest including restaurants, bars, clubs, shops and stores are studded around the neighborhood and all within walking distance. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
American Dream Hotel New York City

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