An allrounder, in cricketing terms at least, is someone who can perform all aspects of the game – batting, bowling and fielding – with a ridiculously high level of expertise. At the elite international level these multiple players in one, these nuggets of athletic gold, are understandably a rarity.
The same can be said about hostels. It’s rare to find a true allrounder; a hostel that just does everything well. People being people, there’s always some stupidly minor thing that’ll have a hostel being marked down. The WiFi dropped out. The fan made a ticking noise. My pillow wasn’t fluffed.
That all being said, let me introduce you to World House Hostel in Istanbul.
Sitting fair in the middle of Istanbul’s New Town, World House is in an absolutely prime location. This area of Istanbul is marked by Galata Tower, which stands like a sentry atop the New Town hill. Pretty much at the base of Galata you’ll find World House, marked by a subtle sign next to a cool little coffee shop. Wandering through the apparent hole-in-the-wall entrance you’ll soon find it expanding into 4 storey building that stretches deep into the surrounding block.
Along with being spitting distance* away from Galata Tower, World House is also situated on a street that forms the beginning of Istanbul’s main mall on Istiklal Cd., and it’s just a quick roll down the hill and over the bridge to hit up the famous old town. Prime property with the most capital ‘P’.
*Don’t spit at Galata Tower.
I’m biased here. Turkish food, for mine, is some of the best in the world. A mish-mash of Middle Eastern and European flavours, it’s always delicious and always filling. And World House offer it up by the bucket.
Breakfast is included, and is all-you-can-eat buffet style. But quality buffet, with everything being prepared fresh in front of you by the exact sort of Turks that you’d want preparing your Turkish food. Lunch (AU$5-$6) is another buffet style setup, and is a constant rotation of Turkish favourites. Head to the mall and purchase some of those sweet elastic-waisted pregnancy pants – you’ll be needing them.
Smiles. Smiles for miles. World House feels like a big old share house, and I put that down entirely to the staff. Ozan, the manager, must have an eye for good people, because every single member of the World House team is a bloody winner. There’s not a dud in the lot.
On top of all these things, the standard signs of a good hostel are all there. The showers are hot and private, the dorms are sparkly clean, the air conditioning works like a charm and the WiFi is HD YouTube quality. The joint also has Japanese robo-toilets which I found to be epic.
World House is about as true a hostel allrounder as I’ve seen in my travels. It just does everything well – there’s no area in which to mark it down. I’d love to say that the fan creaked, the shower leaked or the staff freaked, but I’d be lying. It’s the sort of hostel that you walk out of feeling wholesome, like you’re a better person because of the stay. That all sounds a bit wanky, but it’s God’s honest truth.