The changing world of the youth hostel

By | Category: Travel news
youth hostel - Sydney

the youth hostel is in Sydney. What will Cardiff’s be like?

I wrote recently about a youth hostel in Australia that looms over and gives some of the best views of Sydney Harbour. Gone, it seems, are those days or rows of hard bunks, cheap and cheerful digs that weary backpackers headed for at the end of a long day.

Youth hostels are changing over here too.  YHA (England and Wales) is investing £4million in Cardiff, creating a new 92 bedroom world-class YHA set to open in March 2015.

Situated only 15 minutes’ walk from the city centre, Central train station and the Millennium Stadium, the new YHA Cardiff Central will be one of only a handful of accommodation providers near the centre, so the press release says, that has cost effective group accommodation for schools, colleges or universities with classrooms on site. Or individuals.

Every room will have ensuite facilities and there will be free wifi throughout the building, a secure luggage store, free onsite parking for cars and coaches, and conferencing facilities available for private hire. Catering for travellers of all tastes and budgets, YHA Cardiff Central will also boast a licensed restaurant and a self-catering kitchen.

YHA will be retaining the hotel’s upper floor as premium bedrooms, featuring Queen size beds and TVs, which will be targeted at the weekday corporate and weekend travel market and city breakers looking for comfortable, welcoming, low cost, centrally-located accommodation.

The world of my youth has changed. Since 2011 YHA (England and Wales) has invested more than £25million in its properties, creating comfortable, contemporary-styled accommodation, helping put further distance between the outdated public perception of Youth Hostels and the modern reality, which is proving particularly popular with young families looking for great value, child-friendly breaks.

Never having been a fan of the old youth hostels of my youth, all for the better I say. But at prices that people can readily afford in locations that usually cost a lot, the YHA must be making some traditional hoteliers look over their shoulders.

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