Feels like a homestay
Hospitality and customer service sets Long Hostel apart from other budget joints in the city and staying here is more like staying with extended family than in a hotel.
If it feels like you are walking into a family’s living room, it’s because you are. That, and the two free beers a day and legendary breakfast pancakes establishes the homestay feel of the place.
The four-person dorm room we saw was small yet adequate. The frame of the metal bunks are thinner than we like but they are topped with clean sheets, a towel is provided and there’s reading lights, plug and medium size lockers. Be prepared for a hike up five flights of stairs to the top floor dorm as there is no elevator.
Aside from the dorm, there are clean private rooms complete with a private bath, television and air-con. The rooms are good for the price but the reason to stay at Long Hostel is the service. The Long family goes out of their way to make guests feel like they’re staying with family. New arrivals are given a crash course on what to do in Saigon and how to stay safe. We’d normally encourage backpackers to skip included breakfasts in favour of a bowl of pho but this is the rare exception. The breakfast they serve each morning, included with the price of your room, is made with care so give it a go.
Long Hostel has a lot of competition in the alley at 373 Pham Ngu Lao. This alley is close to the western edge of the Pham Ngu Lao backpacker area and is quieter, relatively speaking, than those on the eastern side, close to the concentration of big bars at the intersection of De Tham and Bui Vien. Most accommodation on 373 tend to be under six-storeys and offer both dorm and private room without any special view.
Despite many new, modern, flashpacker hostels in this alley, Long Hostel’s reputation keeps it consistently full, especially the private rooms. Advanced booking is recommended and expect a busy, convivial, social atmosphere.
Address: 373/10 Pham Ngu Lao St, Pham Ngu Lao Ward, District 1
T: (28) 3836 0184;
Coordinates (for GPS): 106º41'22.43" E, 10º46'0.4" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: US$10 to 20
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
4-person or 6-person dorm
|Standard double room||US$22||US$22|
Cindy Fan is a Canadian writer/photographer and author of So Many Miles, a website that chronicles the love of adventure, food and culture. After falling in love with sticky rice and Mekong sunsets, in 2011 she uprooted her life in Toronto to live la vida Laos. She’s travelled to over 40 countries and harbours a deep affection for Africa and Southeast Asia. In between jaunts around the world, she calls Laos and Vietnam home where you'll find her traipsing through rice paddies, standing beside broken-down buses and in villages laughing with the locals.
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