October 21, 2004

St. Christopher's - Here, There and Everywhere

So, once again I find myself staying at a St. Christopher's Hostel in London. Over the last couple of weeks I've had a few nights at the one in Greenwich, a couple of nights at St. Christopher's - Southwark, and a few nights at the main one, which is entitled 'St. Christopher's Village' for some reason.

The Orient Espresso, Southwark, and the Village are all pretty much in a row on Borough High Street, so they make the most convenient location for work at Old Street. There are six hostels in the London chain, and I am only one away from having stayed in the complete set. It does seem unlikely that the set will be completed, as the final one is in Sheperd's Bush, and it would take a lot of convincing to get me all the way out there.

Sheperd's Bush aside, I've generally been staying in whichever one offers the lowest price, which changes on a daily basis on their website - www.st-christophers.co.uk
If you just 'turn up' at the door, you will pay a lot more, so book online even if it's for the same night, and you are just around the corner.

St. Christopher's - Greenwich tends to be a little cheaper than the rest, and it is in a nice quiet location. Greenwich is a nice place to be wandering about in, although it's a little far from Central London. I found it very difficult to judge the shower to person ratio, and the facilities are not quite up to the standard of Camden and The Village.

St. Christopher's - Southwark is the oldest of the hostels as far as I can tell. It's a bit rickety and maze like and I think the shower to person ratio is not too good, as well as the showers being a bit old. The 'chill-out' room is a great place to 'chill-out' as the lights seem to be broken and it's full of old furniture. I was in there twice, and never saw another soul. It's a ghost 'chill-out' room. There are posters everywhere advertising the 'brand new chill-out room' in the main building, so I guess that's where everybody goes. Feels like a hostel that's had its day.

And finally to St. Christopher's Village, the 'flagship hostel' as they call it. The main reception for the 3 Borough hostels is here, and it's a pretty decent place. There seems to be a good number of showers and toilets per person, and it's all quite new. The duvets seemed a bit thicker too! It has a jacuzzi and a sauna on the roof, which is quite a novel idea, as well as a couple of battered washing machines.

Overall, i think i liked the Camden one the best, but there's not that much between them, except St. Christopher's - Southwark is definitely the worst (except Sheperd's Bush - which is automatically the worst because it is in Sheperd's Bush...)

St. Christopher's - Camden
St. Christopher's - Orient Espresso

Posted by paul at October 21, 2004 08:28 PM