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Interhostel (Stockholm, Sweden)

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Address: Kammakargatan 46 / Stockholm 11160 / Sweden

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      29.02.2012 09:56
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      A well looked after hostel (apart from the microwave!) which I would use again.

      Interhostel, Stockholm, Sweden.

      During our most recent weekend break to Stockholm in Sweden we decided to stay at the Interhostel, hostel in Stockholm city centre. This was my first experience of staying in a hostel and I have to be honest and say that apart from the mould in the microwave, it was a very good hostel and an overall positive experience.


      Why Interhostel?
      We chose Interhostel simply for the fact that it was one of the cheapest hostels in Stockholm and previous guests had given it positive reviews on the hostelbookers.com website. One of my pet hates about travelling is the cost of accommodation, as for me personally, it is simply a place to sleep, wash and eat as the rest of the time chances are I will be out and about exploring the city so with this in mind I usually look for the cheapest place possible without straying too far from the area I want to visit.

      The bonus of this hostel for us was not only that it was cheap, but also the location. Interhostel is located on Kammakargatan street which is pretty much in the centre of Stockholm and just off the main shopping street. The hostel is within a 10 minute walk of most central locations and around a 20 - 30 minute walk away from the Old Town.

      The central train and bus station is also approximately 20 minutes away on foot.


      Making the Booking.
      As I mentioned earlier I used the hostelbookers.com website to make the booking with Interhostel. Making the booking this way was really easy, I simply selected the dates I wanted to stay from and the size room I wanted us to be in, I chose the 12 bed dorm as it was the cheapest they had available at just £16.51 per person per night. I then entered my card details on a secure page to pay a 10% deposit. There was no booking charge for using my card and hostelbookers.com didn't charge any fees for making the booking on my behalf.

      It is possible to simply turn up at the hostel and request a bed, however with this option you might not get the cheapest room as they might be taken and you also run the risk of there being no beds available.


      Car Parking.
      Interhostel doesn't have a car park and from what I could see there wasn't one nearby so if you went in your car or rented a car for your trip then you may struggle to find a parking space as the only available space is on the street, which, seemed rather full every time we walked along it.


      Check In
      After arriving by airport bus transfer to the Central station at around 1am we needed to make our way to Interhostel and check in before 2am. Thankfully we had printed a map out and to our delight we found the hostel within around 15 minutes as it was almost a straight line up the road and then turn right.

      When we arrived at the entrance we had to ring a bell for entry as the front door is locked after midnight. After we were let in we walked round a corner to the small reception area where we were greeted by a really friendly member of staff who asked for the name the reservation was made in and asked if we had our own bed linen, which we did, as if you want to use the hostels linen you will need to pay 50 SEK (Swedish Krona) per night. It was then explained to us where our room was and where the toilets, showers, kitchen and common area were as well as the internet and the access codes to use the available Wi-fi if we wanted to.

      We then had to pay a £10 deposit for our key for the room and were given a card with our bed letters on. It is important that you take the beds that they allocate you as you can be fined 200 SEK if you take the wrong one!


      The Room
      During our stay we were sleeping in a 12 bed dorm. The room itself was an average sized room and contained 6 sets of bunk beds which basically took up most of the space in the room with just enough room to move between them. On the walls in-between the bunk beds were lockers which were free to use, but they didn't actually lock unless you had your own padlock with you or bought one from reception for 50 SEK.

      The decor in the room was very plain with the walls simply painted white. There were some mirrors at the far end of the room and a couple of radiators against the walls behind the beds. There was a window in the room which provided light to my bed and the bed next to me, however most of the window was blocked by lockers and the beds so most of the time additional light was needed. Each bunk has its own wall mounted light and a couple of plug sockets by it so you can charge your phone or use a laptop if needed.

      The bunk beds were all IKEA ones with IKEA mattresses, which did make me smile as we were in Sweden, the home of IKEA!

      The cleanliness of the rooms was of a high standard when we arrived and there were a couple of small bins in the room. The floor looked clean and the beds were all clean and had a single pillow and duvet on them with no covers as you need to make the bed yourself with either the sheets you have taken with you or the ones you have rented.


      Showers and Toilets
      The showers at Interhostel are located on both the ground floor and upstairs. As our room was on the ground floor we had no reason to go upstairs so I can only base my opinion on the ground floor showers.

      The women's shower is located just off the main corridor and is in quite a large room. There is a toilet inside the shower room as well as a sink and wooden stand to place your things on so they don't have to be put on the floor. I used the shower room each morning we were there, so 3 in total and each time I found the room to be clean and tidy, the floor had been cleaned and I didn't feel too concerned about walking on it with bare feet!

      The shower itself is concealed behind a fabric shower curtain which was also clean and had no traces of mould on it, trust me, after years of camp site showers this is one of the things I always look for! Inside the showering area is a shelf, which, in my opinion is a little too high. I am 5ft 1 inch and the shelf was level with my chin. The shower is easy to operate by simply lifting the lever to start the water running, the temperature control is as easy as manoeuvring the lever from left to right until you find your desired temperature.

      There is a seperate shower for men in the corridor around the corner but obviously being female I didn't use this one!

      The toilets in Interhostel were a little hit and miss, but most of the time they were more hit. The toilets were always stocked with toilet paper and a hand towel as well as a bottle of liquid soap, however on the odd occasion the toilets were left un-flushed or the floor dirty, which in all fairness to the staff sometimes cannot be helped as they cannot check a toilet after each use and in general this was only the odd occasion.


      The Common Area and Kitchen
      The common area and kitchen area are next to each other and located at the end of the main corridor on the ground floor. The common area consisted of a large 'U' shaped bench area with around 8 round tables dotted around. The benches had seat cushions on them but in all honesty they weren't that comfy. I found the tables were quite clean as most guests respected others and nipped to the sink and got a cloth to give the table a wipe over when they had finished. This area also has a large TV on the wall with numerous channels from around the world. I think while we were there we managed to watch TV from every country except Sweden!

      The kitchen area is well stocked with cups and plates as well as numerous pots and pans, 3 kettles, a coffee machine, toaster, sink, hob and dishwasher. There were 3 large fridges in the kitchen and to my delight they also had 3 microwaves which made my life easy after a quick trip to Lidl for some microwave meals! (we were on a budget remember!)

      You are welcome to use any of the supplies in the kitchen area as long as you clean up after yourself and leave it tidy. Most people tended to abide by this and in general the kitchen area always seemed reasonably tidy. I used the microwaves' a couple of times and although it is great that they have them I think they need to sort out the mould issue in them! This is quite possibly my only complaint about the hostel.

      On one of the work surfaces is a small basket containing tea, coffee and sugar for you to help yourself to. I thought this was great as I am really not a morning person!

      Overall I found the common area and kitchen to be a nice place to eat our food and also allow us to be sociable with other guests. Most of the people in the common area were friendly and chatty which I found nice and some of the people were quite interesting too.


      A Peaceful Nights Sleep
      When we first entered the hostel we noticed a sign on the door stating that after 22:00 there was to be no noise both inside and outside the hostel. Due to this sign we thought we would be getting a peaceful nights sleep, however we were soon to discover that this sign is simply there for decoration as no-one was quiet after 22:00, it was more like midnight before people really started to settle down. In all honesty though this wasn't too much of a problem for us as we didn't mind being up late as we were on holiday. I can see how this might be a problem for someone who is maybe getting up extra early or is tired from a long day.

      Once everyone had settled down we did manage to get a really good nights sleep and oh how comfy those IKEA mattresses were! I think they were comfier than my own bed! I found that once I was in bed I fell asleep virtually straight away and other than the noise of our room mates coming back late I slept right through the night and was so comfy that I didn't want to get up in the morning!


      Check Out and Luggage Room
      Check out from the hostel is by 11am. To check out you simply need to return your room keys to reception and they will give you your deposit back. There is a locked luggage room for you to leave your bags in if you wish. We chose to do this rather than carry them around for the 3 hours we had to spare before the coach to the airport. The luggage room is small and has many shelves, when we put out bags in there was enough room to walk inside, however when we returned I ended up doing a mini climbing expedition to retrieve our bags which were on the back shelf! I now know that I should always use the shelves nearest the door to avoid having to climb! The room is opened and locked by controls at the reception desk so it is pretty secure.


      Overall
      My overall opinion of Interhostel in Stockholm, Sweden is a positive one. I have never stayed in a hostel before this one and I don't really know what I was expecting to be honest, but I know in my mind I wasn't expecting something as clean and friendly as this. I have spoken to a few of the other guests while I was there and they also agreed that this is a really nice and well looked after hostel. The staff both on the reception desk and around the hostel are really friendly and they all speak fluent English, Swedish and Russian which made communication very easy.

      I would recommend staying at Interhostel, the prices are good and the quality of the hostel is really high. We stayed for a total of 3 nights and really enjoyed it. If I visit Stockholm again I would stay here again.

      Thanks for reading :)

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