Newest Review: ... the Irish bus system. "It's as easy as a banana!" they say in the video, and I have to say it did help us all out as we ende... more
Nothing To Fear
Avalon House Hostel (Dublin)
Member Name: musicmad2020
Avalon House Hostel (Dublin)
Advantages: Great atmosphere, friendly people, much cheaper than a hotel
Disadvantages: Needs more "single" rooms
After my horror of Swiss hostels earlier in the week, I was naturally apprehensive about staying in another one whilst on my week long travels around Europe. As many of my friends had booked to stay in Avalon House which is located in Aungier St Dublin, and as it was close to the venue we needed to be at for the show, I decided to book a room here.
It was a little frustrating that the only room I could book was a double room instead of a single room, as this meant I would be paying for two people. However as it is a hostel, this is still relatively cheap compared to a hotel and a 2 night stay ended up costing me £90. If I had managed to book a single room it would have come to £45. As I was close to where I needed to be and with many friends, I wasn't too bothered about this price difference.
This was to be my first time in Ireland, and so I was apprehensive about how to find the location of the hostel from the airport. Avalon have their own YouTube channel with video instructions comprising of a guy in a banana suit navigating the Irish bus system. "It's as easy as a banana!" they say in the video, and I have to say it did help us all out as we ended up on the right bus and found the hostel with ease.
When you walk into Avalon House, you instantly are relaxed as the main reception is a bright, homely area with benches to sit down on, information leaflets, free internet access and of course a huge open reception desk. The staff behind the desk seemed friendly enough, perhaps not the most talkative of people but they were just doing their job. When my swipe card for my room didn't work one night, they sorted it out for me no problem so no complaints there.
Given the horror of Zurich, I was worried about what the room would be like, but as I was staying in a room by myself which had its own bathroom, I was optimistic. I wasn't disappointed!
The rooms contain bunk-beds, which I kinda expected and since it was just me, I slept in the bottom bunk which happened to be a double bed, and a welcome comfort after all that travelling. I think it would have been better if they used plain bedding instead of patterned bedding, as it was a little like sleeping round at Grandma's or something - a little strange and too personal.
The Bathroom reminded me alot of my student accommodation, and wasn't bad at all considering it was a hostel we were staying in not a plush hotel. Although it was small, it did have a really nice fitted shower which looked as if it had only been recently installed. Slightly annoying that the water went off every minute or so, but I am guessing this is for environmental purposes, which in turn means no waste so it's not such a bad thing.
I would say that as the floors throughout are vinyl it means it can be hazardous as I certainly nearly slipped especially as the shower water can sometimes hit the floor, and there is nothing in the bathroom to really stop you slipping over!
Avalon House does offer free breakfast, however I didn't get to try this out myself as I was out very early in the mornings. But I think this has to be a great thing for people travelling to make sure they are full up in the mornings before they go out.
What I did warm to was how friendly people seemed. For young travellers in particular, the ambiance created is very warming and inviting which is ideal for those who may have not travelled much or left home before.
There is luggage storage and clothes washing facilities, and there is also a games room meaning you are never stuck for things to do here. There is also a lift as well as stairs, both of which are nice and I noticed on the stairs everyone opened the doors for each other, which was very polite.
I have also done a little research prior and since staying at Avalon, on what people on the whole have said about their stay here. I struggle to find anyone who rates this place below 4 stars, which is a fantastic credit to the Avalon chain, considering many hotels out there who charge astronomical rates can easily be rated poorly, when they are actual hotels.
My whole experience of Avalon House has totally changed my view on hostels. Although I would always prefer to stay in a hotel, in terms of value for money and ideal for large groups of travellers, this has to be one of my best experiences, as I struggle to fault this place.
Summary: Not to be overlooked just because it's a hostel