As I was in Dublin for #TBEX (Travel Blog Exchange), I needed somewhere to stay close to the city centre that was easy walking distance and more important, a unique hostel. Dublin is well-known for party animals on their stag and hen weekends and the last thing I wanted was to share a grotty hostel room that has dorm-mates flinging on the lights and making as much noise in their drunken stupor as they could at 4am in the morning. I wanted to stay in a hostel that has people travelling from all round the world and looking for that spot of culture and beauty in this quintessential capital of Ireland. Enter Generator Hostel Dublin.
I knew I could trust this place. I got given rave reviews from Kash of Budget Traveller in his guide to Luxury Hostels of Europe and I was waiting to be more than impressed when I enter their doors. And you know what? Generator Hostel Dublin didn’t disappoint. Slammed with a sense of awe and wonderment as I walked into their beautifully decorated lobby that bustled with eager backpackers and flashpackers looking to get involved in the many activities that the hostel offer. How about a free walking tour at 10.30am? (just the right time to have that sleep in!)
Staff and Facilities
Trying not to be torn away to the lounge areas and sit in their plush seats and perhaps sample the taste of Guinness at the funky bar in the back, I had to be checked in at their reception desk manned by absolutely fantastic and friendly staff who greeted me with their #GenLove. Also, a cheeky Jameson Whiskey that I asked prior to my arrival. The check in was fast, they explained the rules and most of all, they told me to just have fun! Leaving the really good-looking staff (they were REALLY good-looking!), I waited in the bar while my bed was being made up. Looking around at the facilities, I was rather impressed by the range of activities they had on offer whether they were movie themed nights, local musicians that come to play often (they were AMAZING!), free activities to explore the city of Dublin, Salsa beginners lesson (which I loved) or free cocktail making lessons. If you are just looking to just chill out, there are a few games that you can play quietly with your friends or shoot some pool.
Breakfast and Location
The breakfast room offers a great start to your day. With a range of fresh breads, croissants, fruit, cereals, and other spreads, you can tuck in ready to conserve your energy for the exciting day ahead. I really liked the breakfast experience with the slow plink plonkey music that makes your transition from a growling, ruffled-hair sleepy monster into a pleasant, smartly dressed and eager visitor ready to knock back some pints of Guinness.
As I finished my Jameson Whiskey, it was interesting to note that the Generator Hostel Dublin backs onto the Jameson Whiskey Distillery so you don’t have far to go if you want to visit one of Dublin’s biggest attractions. It’s a fantastic place to get 360 degree views of Dublin from the northern part of the city in their bar at the top of the building.
The location of the hostel in Smithfield Square is not in the city centre where the night-life in Temple Bar is about 10-15 minutes walk but I much preferred this as I got a quiet and relaxing stay in this bubbly and unique hostel. However, great transport links can be found in the square where a regular Hop-on and Hop-off bus city bus stops here along with a stop for Airport buses (40mins from the airport) at the end of the square.
Room and Bathroom
Once my room was ready, I was very pleased by the space in the room. There was more than enough room to swing a cat attached on a backpack on me. That’s a great thing. What’s more, they have spacious lockers underneath the bunk beds to store a whole backpack in but please remember to bring your padlock with you. Linen and Towels (obtained from the reception desk) are supplied and they are crisp and smooth allowing visitors to relax in comfort during the night. I also have to say that the mattress has been one of the softest I’ve ever laid on during my last two years of travelling. I even asked if I could take my mattress home with me at the desk but sadly, I was told no. What was even more impressive were the very large windows that let in a lot of light and you can even crank open the window to let in a lot of fresh air.
The en-suite bathroom was satisfactory and the shower was immensely powerful so many a morning was enjoyed in there! However, when I first came in, it was evident that the bathroom hasn’t been cleaned and there was no toilet paper! The next day, there was no issue any longer as it was cleaned daily.
If there was any issues I had with the Generator Hostel, it was the Wi-Fi. I couldn’t receive any Wi-Fi in my room, only in the lobby. Sometimes the bandwidth becomes overloaded slowing down my speed when I tried to find out information for my stay in Dublin. However, upon reporting this, I’m pleased to find out that Generator Hostel Dublin will be implementing a new Wi-Fi system in place very shortly (if they haven;t done so already). You can find the password on the daily board in the Lobby and you can also read funny and informative material there as well.
My verdict would have to be four and a half stars out of five. I really enjoyed by five night stay in this quirky and funky hostel that was a hubbub of activity in the lobby on the ground floor yet you could escape to the quiet confines of your room. The activities put on were varied and you could see everyone enjoyed getting involved and meeting each other whether it was at the bar or getting involved in salsa lessons. I couldn’t fault the friendliness of the staff, particularly the one who cooked my amazing chicken burger for me. To achieve the five-star rating from me, I would want the Wi-Fi to be better and also clean bathrooms on arrival. But they were small issues that are being corrected.
I shall be coming to Dublin again in 2014 and you know what? I’ll be staying in the Generator Hostel Dublin. But only if they give me another Jameson Whiskey and spread more #GenLove to me…
If you want to know more about the Generator Hostel Dublin, here are their details:
Website: Generator Hostel Dublin
Address: Smithfield Square, Dublin 7, Ireland
Phone Number: (+353) 1 9010222