You want to love this hostel, you really do want to love it. It ticks so many good boxes and has a nice environment, but the things it misses on are painfully annoying. Essentially, Artanor Hostel Tashkent, Uzbekistan is the hostel equivalent of that gorgeous hunky man that has an awful personality, so awful it makes them unattractive.
Let’s start with the good things shall we, as girls, it’s going to be a long one after that whole unrealistic positive mental attitude mantra dies out.
Artanors location is fabulous, it’s right in the heart of Tashkent, round the corner from an abundance of restaurants, shops, banks and alcohol shops; shame you can’t drink alcohol openly in the hostel but a £2.50 bottle of vodka inside a magic bottle (alcohol poured into a bottle of the mixer so no one knows it’s alcoholic) does the trick. Beds are on the solid side but the body adjusts to it fast, there are curtains next to the bed, a light and plug sockets as well. The room itself is rather small space wise but the storage under the beds and the area where you place your large baggage defers from going arse over tit from tripping on someone’s Peppa pig suitcase.
There’s a very homely environment in the establishment. Genuinely is like a fancy wee Uzbeki home with a large lounge and a small kitchen that does the job. Can’t fault its aesthetics and the jazzy middle Eastern style tiles which is what makes it such a nice environment. It’s a rather clean hotel and the owner is just a cool guy; gives off serious ‘I’m a cool dad’ vibes but not the dad who thinks they’re cool because they use words such as ‘hip’ ‘trendy’ ‘ratchet’ and likes all that new coolio rapper music. The owner is a legend, however, he is 100% hoping his niceness doesn’t lead to bad reviews for the things the hostel fucks up on. Sorry pal, you’re sound but you can’t escape a Loser Travels review!
First of all, WiFi. The WiFi is fucking garbage. And by garbage, we mean utter shit and an internet modem that’s overall speed depends on a paralysed hamster shagging speed would run much faster and better than Artanor WiFi. It’s painful. When you’re in the lounge and kitchen area you get a better WiFi connection from sitting in a specific corner and connecting to the ‘#SOLA FREE’ public WiFi even though you only get 1 bar of that at best. We all know the importance of WiFi, especially when you’re travelling and how we need WiFi in this world today, and it’s infuriating how god-awful this WiFi is. The lovely owner says WiFi is good but he’s chatting as much shit as that Andrew Tait arsehole. The pain of the WiFi being utter shit dampens your stay which gets further damped when you realise you’re sharing a hostel room with a child.
Yes, you are very likely to be placed in one of the few rooms in this small hostel with a child. And not just any child. The owners’ child. You are reading this correctly there will be one bed occupied by a child who can not be any older than 10 in amongst 11 beds occupied by fully grown adults. Talk about a massive safeguarding issue! The owners’ other child lives in the female dorm room in the hostel as well. Hostels are adult environments and should always be strictly 18 plus! What’s worse is that at times the hostel felt like an after-school club for kids with a total of 4 kids and a baby kicking about the lounge all at once at its peak. Oh, and yes, your eyes did not deceive you, you intact read that right, a baby. A baby in a hostel. Thankfully the baby isn’t on the top bunk of a dorm and is sharing with its parents in a private room, but what the fuck is a baby doing in a hostel! Kids don’t belong in hostels let alone babies! Taking a baby to a hostel is like taking your street preaching, Satan-fearing Christian pal to a Satanist convention – just a recipe for disaster. The playground and daycare centre atmosphere at Artanor Hostel Tashkent sucks mouldy sausages.
What makes you rather uneasy about this as well is the bathroom situation. There’s one bathroom for males and one bathroom for females in the hostel. With it being a small hostel it’s manageable as there are 2 toilets and 2 showers in the bathroom itself. The showers are ok but the shower curtain doesn’t go across the whole way. It is covered enough that you’re not showing naked and people won’t walk in to see your wee willy winky dancing about, but it doesn’t close fully that people can see you shower a little bit. Being able to sort of see into the shower while there are kids around makes it really uncomfortable. Say one of the kids went to go potty and then wash their hands they’d be able to see you a little bit which is not ok. It’s safe to say that, unless you’re a nonce, no one is comfortable with the prospect of a child potentially seeing you shower naked. There’s also a lack of space to put your towel and clothes without dumping them on the floor to get wet, the pegs aren’t close to the shower cubicle which means you kinda have to quickly grab your towel and expose your self hoping no one comes into the bathroom at the worst time, and especially if one of the kids walked in. It’s not comfortable at all.
Take away the kids club nature and if the WiFi wasn’t garbage you’d have a reasonably good hostel. There are plenty of good things about this hostel that tick many positive Paul boxes but the things it misses on, it boots the ball miles over the crossbar into the back row of a stadium when there was a gaping empty net. Uzbekistan is cheap enough that you’d rather spend a little more money to stay in a better hostel or even fork out for a hotel than stay at Artanor Hostel Tashkent. Better Than A Park Bench is what it gets graded but it’s the low end of that grade, just escaped being the lowest grade. Sorry owner my friend, you’re a great person but Artanor needs to change.
Overall Score: Better Than A Park Bench
. Curtains around the bed
. Plug sockets and light next to beds
. Fabulous location
. WiFi is utter fucking shit
. Allow kids and even babies in the hostel
. Very likely to be sharing a room with a child
. Not allowed to drink in the hostel
. Can see people a little shower – fucking awful when kids are cutting around the place