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DeborahAnn Nov 19th, 2004 09:22 AM

Please explain how a hotel can also be a hostel in Rome
I have just started the research for our first trip to Italy. While trying to decide where to stay I have found places calling themselves hostels where the individual rooms have ensuite facilities. Isn't that a hotel? If there are housing terms that are unique to Italy I certainly would appreciate a clarification of Italian accommodations. Thank you, Deborah

WillTravel Nov 19th, 2004 09:48 AM

It's quite possible for a hostel to have private ensuite rooms, in addition to dorm rooms. What places are you referring to in particular?

Note that with a hostel there's a good chance you'll have to make up your own bed, even if you have a private room.

DeborahAnn Nov 19th, 2004 09:59 AM

WillTravel, can't remember the individual places but I found them thru a hostel web site once I knew such a thing existed. Just one question, will I get scolded if I leave the room and don't make the bed :-d Are there any drawbacks that you can think of for a couple past their college years staying in a hostel-hotel. The ones I remember seemed to have good locations and more character to offer than a chain or high end hotel. Deborah

kasperdoggie Nov 19th, 2004 10:06 AM

I think Beehive in Rome has both hostel/dorm type rooms and private doubles with ensuite bathrooms. We were going to stay there this year, but even though I tried to book the place some 2 months in advance, it was already full. I understand this hostel/hotel is very popular and has good feedback on many travel sites. It's also in Rick Steve's Rome 2004 guidebook, not that it's necessarily a great recommendation ;)

As for reasons to avoid that kind of a lodging once you are out of student stage, I don't have any. After all, we were planning to stay at Beehive (in a private room), we are both in our thirties and like our creature comforts as much as the next person...


WillTravel Nov 19th, 2004 10:26 AM

DeborahAnn, the hostel booking sites don't restrict themselves to just hostels. They also have bookings for B&Bs, guesthouses, and budget hotels. But in addition to that, most hostels, as I mentioned, also have private rooms. I would guess you were probably looking at a budget hotel on the hostel booking site.

I haven't been scolded yet! :)

WillTravel Nov 19th, 2004 10:27 AM

If it's a good hostel, there is likely a kitchen which will help you save money. Also there are often common areas where you can meet other travelers. The main disadvantage is that there aren't phones in the rooms (but some budget hotels don't have those either). Also many hostels do not provide towels or toiletries.

DeborahAnn Nov 19th, 2004 10:40 AM

WillTravel, Ok, no towels are a big negative for me, I wouldn't want to take the time to buy them before I need a shower and I don't want to use my precious packing space for towels. I guess it would be clear before I booked a room whether towels were provided or not. Have you ever had a SURPRISE like no towels when booked into a hostel/hotel? Thanks for the explanations I am getting here. I still like the idea as long as I get my towels and they don't even have to be plush!!!Deborah

WillTravel Nov 19th, 2004 10:52 AM

DeborahAnn, I always made sure to find out beforehand about towels so I haven't been surprised yet. It's a very big deal to me also! The Beehive, for example, states on their web site that they do have towels, and if I were going to stay there I'd probably try to find out details. But most hostels in Rome do not have towels.

However, once at a hostel in London there was a Brazilian girl who was surprised, and she went out when most shops were closed to try to find one. Incredibly, she found a street vendor who just gave her a towel.

KT Nov 19th, 2004 02:24 PM

You won't get an in-room TV, either. Since I don't watch much TV and dislike hearing one blasting from the next hotel room, I don't consider that a big minus, but you might. No alarm clock, in-room radio, hairdryer, or packets of shampoo, either, but that's no different from a lot of budget hotels.

In some countries, regular hotels sometimes operate hostels or bunkhouses in a separate wing or adjacent building. I've seen this in rural Scandinavia and Britain, for example. I don't know if that's true for Italy, though.

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