The only place I ever wanted to visit in Los Angeles was Santa Monica. I think it is the beach that drew me. So when I was in LA, I looked specifically for a place in Santa Monica to stay. There is literally only 1 hostel/backpacker/cheap accommodation and I’m pretty lucky to have got it seeing as I booked it 2 days before the flight. Thank goodness I was not going to be homeless. That would have been a downer and bad first impression of Los Angeles.
The hostel has a secluded front so keep watch of the street numbers but once you enter, it has a young and hip vibe that you want from a hostel. You get the odd older couple but they’re not creepy, they’re just there for the cheap accommodation. And good on them I say. I hope when I’m that old I’ll still be comfortable enough to stay in hostels.
I think there are 3 stories to the hostel (I just remember seeing a 3rd floor button) so there’s plenty of rooms. There are female only, male only and mixed dorms available. I stayed in a 10 bed female only and it was basic. 5 bunk beds, each bed had their own charging station which I loved because there was no fighting as to who needed to charge their phone first, lockers, 1 shower and 1 toilet (that was the shit part but there are communal showers down the hall). Everything about the room is fine if you are just using it for 6-8 hrs a night, like I was. If you were going to spend more time in the room than on the beach, then maybe upgrade to a 6-person room.
The hostel promotes a social environment by having comedy nights, cheap tours around the LA area and large open areas to hang and get to know your fellow traveller’s. I met an interesting Japanese-Hawaiian guy on my first morning there in the dining hall, 2 Aussie chicks in the smoking area outside the hostel and an English chick in the room.
It’s a really central place to stay if you’re planning on spending time on the beach, shopping on the 3rd Street promenade, exploring downtown Santa Monica or doing the Hop-on Hop-off tours (stop 57 is literally round the corner).
Stay here knowing the hostel is part of the Hostelling International group so the place is legit.