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All reviews earls court station bunk beds free breakfast is a great hostel is conveniently located free tea and coffee ensuite bathroom no elevator communal areas great bathroom location is excellent wi fi dorm cereal sink heathrow charger kensington
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Reviewed 14 February 2017

Stayed here for a week when working in the area.

Suited our needs, staff were nice and friendly but the bathroom could have been a tad better for 6 big men sharing a room.

Would definitely stay here again!

Stayed: August 2016, travelled on business
2  Thank Chris G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 December 2016

I currently stayed here for the third time, and I have the same experience every time...a fantastic one! I've stayed in several hostels now, and this is the only one that I can say is consistently excellent; I have never not had a good night's sleep at the Badger!

The staff are all wonderful. At the end of my previous stay (in October 2016), I checked-out and walked down the street, when the main zip on my backpack burst open. Ken very kindly let me come back into the hostel and drop my back off at the reception office. He also gave me directions to the nearest place to buy a new backpack. Liz is so lovely! We had a marvellous chat the other day at reception, which ended up lasting for around an hour, talking about books and travelling. Liz is also fantastic about giving advice on where to travel. Other staff are also very helpful. I didn't realise that you have to hold in the knobs on the cooker hob to get the gas to come on, so I popped up to reception, and they very kindly came down with me to show me how to do it. The kitchen closes very late as well, at 11p.m., so you have plenty of time to cook away when you come back from a day of sightseeing.

The breakfast is free (always a bonus!), and is continental style with bread for toast, nutella and jams, fruit, cereal, and hot coffee. Whenever I have the Badger’s breakfast, I always feel full to start the day ahead.

The hostel really feels like a homely space. The living room is great for relaxing, with the television, board games, and even a fantastic selection of books (ranging from Lonely Planet travel guides, to fiction). It is currently decorated for Christmas, with a pretty Christmas tree by the window; this just adds to the homely feel! There is an outside area, with wooden decking and wooden benches, that is fantastic to socialise in the evenings. The kitchen itself is incredibly clean, and spacious, with a large wooden table. It is easy to find cutlery and other kitchen equipment in the drawers, and the plates and glasses/mugs in the upper cabinets. I’ve yet to encounter a problem regarding dishes that have not been cleaned properly, everyone does seem to pull their weight. The cooker is easy to use, as is the microwave, and with the helpful placement of a reasonably priced Sainsbury's Local seconds away from the hostel, there is never any excuse to not cook your own food, as it is nearer to the hostel than the restaurants and fast food (which are also within minutes walking distance, if you are feeling naughty). There are two free food cupboards, and there are usually essential items such as oil to be found within. I really do appreciate the provided essential cooking equipment ,I believe I encountered two or three sieve strainers in the bottom cupboard the other day, which just goes to show that the Badger has thought of everything, as you won’t have to wait for others to finish up to crack on with your own food. There are two fridges, one large silver one, and one smaller white one. Even in the height of summer (July 2016, my first visit), I never had a problem with finding a space for my food, and every food item has to be named and dated, and placed inside a named and dated bag, as the fridge is cleaned out regularly. This really just attests to the high standard of care that the Badger operates, as mouldy food is eradicated swiftly.

Now, I’ve always stayed in the four bed en-suite female dorm room, which is room 6. It is up one flight of stairs, and is unlocked by a traditional key. Beds are not assigned, but the letter written on your keyring corresponds to your locker; reception are very receptive to changing lockers if possible, if you want to (as happened with me in July, as I couldn’t quite reach the top of my locker unless standing on the foot stall!).

The lockers are huge. There’s a shelf nearer the top, and an actual laptop safe as well, which just adds that little layer of security to your belongings (not that I’ve ever had any issues with any items’ safety!). You can bring your own lock, and most generally will fit, or you can buy one for £5 at the reception. The locker is so big, that you can quite easily fit a large backpacking pack, and several other items in there. If you have a suitcase that is just too big, you can either empty the contents into the locker (it is big enough, after all), or place it in one of the four open wooden squares that are placed under the bunk beds. If that is not desirable, I do believe that the Badger offers long-term luggage storage for £1 per bag per day, a very reasonable price indeed.

The beds themselves are glorious. Being in the technology orientated world that we now all live in, and being someone who is very much ingrained in this technological culture; one of my first questions when booking a hostel is: “Is there a plug socket?!”. You needn’t fear when staying at the Badger, as EACH BED has two normal UK plug sockets (although one does have the personal reading lamp in it, but you can easily unplug that), and two USB plug sockets! When staying at the Badger, I know that my tech items are in good hands, as I can easily charge my phone, portable charger, iPod, and Kindle all at once. As well as this, the Badger also provides a clever little shelf just under the plug sockets. Ever worried that you’ve pulled your off phone of charge in the night as you toss and turn in bed? Well that is a non-issue at this hostel, as the shelf is quite a generous space, and you can line all of your tech items smartly, as well as strategically placing a book, some snacks, and a drink!
You do have to make your own bed, but I think that that is pretty great, as it easily enables you to tell if the bed is free or not, based on the appearance of the made bed. The mattresses and pillows are made of memory foam. I normally sleep with two pillows at home, but since staying at the Badger, I have become fully accustomed to sleeping with one – it is bliss!

The Badger has ample opportunities for bathroom usage. There is an extra toilet and sink in the same room as the washer and dryer, as well as an extra bathroom and shower near the stairs leading down to the kitchen; there really is no problem if someone is using the bathroom, as you can just go and find another one. The en-suite bathroom and toilet in the female dorm is great. The shower has a detachable head, and is adjustable height-wise. It also has good water pressure, and is fairly easy to use. I have not once had a cold shower here, as the water warms very quickly. One thing I am grateful for, is the inclusion of a shower shelf; it is otherwise always frustrating having to leave your bath-time products on the floor of the shower. I have also never experienced a clogged drain there. The bathroom is fitted out with a mirror (at a reasonable height too, so short people like me can see themselves!), and has a tiled interior, which looks very stylish and modern. Another great plus about the en-suite (other than the fact that it is always cleaned to a high specification), is that even if someone is taking a shower late at night, you can barely here a thing in the room.

Alongside the £5 locker available to purchase at the reception, you can also get a variety of different travel essentials. If you’ve forgotten your hairdryer, you can hire one for a £20 refundable deposit, same with the towels which are a refundable £10. Helpfully, you can get your boarding pass printed off, pay 50p to have something printed off, and even received post at the hostel. Further facilities includes free wifi, and the ability to wash and dry your clothes in the room downstairs adjacent to the kitchen, too. Furthermore, the hostel is incredibly secure, as it uses a passcode entry system which changes often for security.

As mentioned above, the hostel is within seconds of the Sainbury’s Local. As well as this, you are a few minutes from Kensington high street, as well as approximately 7 minutes (that’s taking in to account my short height, small stride, and carrying a very heavy backpack) to Earl’s Court Underground station, which can get you to central London within half an hour, really, or directly to Victoria (for the coach station), or numerous different stations in London (chiefly Paddington and King’s Cross). I have felt very comfortable walking around the area at night, as I’ve been to see several different plays in Covent Garden and other areas of London which has meant getting back to the hostel at nearly midnight – I have felt safe every time as there are always people around, and it is just such a short walk back to the hostel! You are also just around the corner from the Co-Op, McDonald’s, Nando’s, and Gregg’s – just to name a few. As I found out the other day, it is only a 20 minute walk to the Cineworld in Fulham Road, which is also pretty safe to walk back through the dark. Plus, at Christmas, you are not far from Knightsbridge and the Hyde Park Winter Wonderland.

Finally, I could not write a review about the Badger, without mentioning Tinka and Malarkey. I fell in love with Malarkey during my previous stay, when the sleepy pup request plenty of belly rubs. I finally met Tinka during this trip, who was soundly asleep on the doggy bed in the reception office. As a dog lover, Tinka and Malarkey’s appearance (Monday – Friday) makes a fantastic hostel even more amazing, and feels ever more like home.

Also, despite the fact that I’ve stayed here a few times now, my stays have been fairly far apart. Therefore, it is really lovely to be remembered by the staff!
So, this is my entirely honest and totally unbiased review of my recent stay at the Badger. There are some hostels that feel like hotels; they may feel spacious with cool artsy décor, but there is always a subtle sterile feeling that is a stark reminder that you are not at home. This is definitely not the case with Barmy Badger Backpackers. The warm colours of the hostel, and real wooden furniture, mixed with the genuinely warm people (staff and inhabitants alike!), make the whole hostel feel like a cosy, welcoming, and warm home. It is somewhere that I feel safe, can get a brilliant night’s sleep, and I have never not made at least one new friend whilst staying here. I can’t wait to come back soon!

It is, quite simply, my London home away from home.

  • Stayed: December 2016, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
4  Thank Rebecca F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 November 2016

Every time I come to London, I stay here. The position is excellent, near the center without being too overwhelming and the staff really is friendly and ready to help. There's no elevator, so, if you don't like stairs, this might not be the choice for you.

Room Tip: If you don't like the concept of a hostel, they do have individual rooms.
  • Stayed: October 2016, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Chiara B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Barmy Badger B, Manager at Barmy Badger Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 22 November 2016

Thank you for taking the time to write a review and for choosing to stay with us again. We are so pleased that you find our location to be excellent and that our staff are really friendly and helpful! Safe onward travels from all of us here :)

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 November 2016

Even the most seasoned of travelers will fall in love with this place. It got off to a great start as the staff went above and beyond to accommodate a special request I had made. It was very symbolic of their overall approach to customer service...they will do anything they can to make your stay more enjoyable. Great bathrooms/showers, comfortable beds, excellent location, a family atmosphere and so much more stood out during my time there. I would absolutely recommend staying here and am already looking forward to going back!

  • Stayed: November 2016, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Matthew S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Barmy Badger B, Manager at Barmy Badger Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 11 November 2016

Thank you for taking the time to write a review and for choosing to stay with us. We are so pleased that you fell in love with the Badger, found our customer service to be excellent, enjoyed our unique atmosphere and that you will stay with us again! Safe onward travels from all of us here :)

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Reviewed 31 October 2016 via mobile

Really good hostel,good location,few minutes of walk from tube,nice neighbourhood ,few shops,pubs,places to eat,good and fast free wifi,super clean every day ,free breakfast,very nice staff.
Will be back!

Stayed: October 2016
Thank Vinko B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Barmy Badger B, Manager at Barmy Badger Backpackers, responded to this reviewResponded 2 November 2016

Thank you for taking the time to write a review and for choosing to stay with us. We are so pleased that you found the Badger to be the best hostel in London and that you will stay with us again! Safe onward travels from all of us here :)

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