Dear Bob’s Hostel:
You seemed inciting. The picture on your website showed crisp, clean, white sheets in a modest bunk setting. You were located near Central Station. You didn’t seem as careless and disgusting as The Flying Pig nor as uppity as the HI Hostel, requiring some membership fee and advance notice. Plus, you had breakfast! I was sold. Arriving at midnight in Amsterdam probably wasn’t the best idea. As soon as I stepped out of Central Station I was dizzy from the ringing bells on the bicycles. I was blindsided by a tram, but finally made my way for a pleasant stay. I was greeted by the sleepy array of pot smokers who were excited by a female presence (excited enough that they opened their eyes). Later, I was led around a corner to another building and up four flights of stairs Surprisingly, everyone was asleep. The sheets were clean enough. There were two Canadian girls and an Israeli (who was apparently in the army). “Did you see anyone die?” we asked. “Yes,” he said solemnly. “Yes.” The next night, he screeched like a seven year old girl when we saw five blind mice scurrying across the cement floor. Five blind mice. We screeched as we saw how they ran. So much for being our “protector.” We decided to skip the rotten eggs in a room filled of pot smoke, as lovely as it might have been. After our stay, I realized I had some major “mosquito” bites. A week later, as identified in Paris, these turned out to be bed bug bites (and thankfully, not AIDS…you never know! Thank you Google). The scars are gone. The memories are forever. So much for booking a hostel based on the name of my father.
What hell holes have you stayed in? Pray tell.
I will not endorse Bob’s Hostel and do not know if they have changed their sanitation since my stay. That said, they have added graffiti in the dorms. Banksy may have made it “cool,” but Bob’s version is not pretty.
And who has heard of the Hans Brinker Budget Hotel in Amsterdam? They make their living off marketing it as the Worst Hotel in The World. They even made the advertisements into a book!
Here’s a sample of their advertising.: