Rolando's Backpackers

Photos

+15

Description

The Hostelz.com Review

Rolando’s Backpacker proudly claims on its sign that it was the first backpackers’ dorm in Havana ten years ago. You can be sure that things are well organized here; whatever you may want as a backpacker, Rolando’s will be able to sort it for you.

The Location

Located among a group of backpacker hostels, just a fifteen-minute walk from the center, it is well situated in a local Cuban neighbourhood, with local eateries and bars within a five-minute walk.

Rooms and Bathrooms

There are three dorms here of five or six beds and all have small lockers for backpackers’ belongings. You will need your own padlock for these, though. The mattresses are ok and the bunks are of the sturdy wooden type, with ladders for the top bunks. There is a handful of power points scattered around the dorms, though not conveniently so for all the beds. A couple of the dorms are en suite, but some of the sinks were blocked when we stayed and the showers didn’t work properly. There is only cold water here, too. The dorms have a wall-mounted fan and air conditioning.

Common Spaces

There is a sitting room with a dining table and chairs and a couple of sofas, plus two rocking chairs on the landing just before you enter the sitting room. There is also a flat-screen TV. The sitting room leads into the kitchen, but this is off limits to guests, as the hostel provides a meal service at extra cost. In fact, no food from outside is allowed in the hostel. Guests can put drinks in the fridge, however.

Summary

This is quite a professionally presented hostel as you would expect with the length of time it has been open. The Rolando’s Backpacker logo is prominent all over the hostel, but there is a lack of detail in the care of the place though, which is disappointing. Blocked sinks, leaky or faulty showers, and strict rules on the bringing in of food don’t suggest a relaxed backpacker vibe.

The owner is very knowledgeable about Havana and Cuba, and onward transport can be booked here. The prices for this service are, however, more than all the other hostels in this area, so check before booking. There is a Wi-Fi hot spot a ten-minute walk away in the nearest local park, where you can also buy the internet card you need to access it at a kiosk in the corner of the park.

Rolando’s is ok, but we think it needs a little more attention to detail and a more "tranquilo" attitude.
by Londonroad
Hostelz.com Staff Reviewer
2018-12-03
Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
Outside of Building
Hostel Sign
Reception
Inside Balcony
Rocking chairs
Sitting Room
Sitting Room Dining Table
5-Bed En Suite Dorm - Room 2
Dorm Lockers
+4

Map

(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "Rolando's Backpackers" at San Miguel No. 567 1er Piso) e / Belascoaín (Padre Varela) y Gervasio.)

Location/Contact

Address
San Miguel No. 567 1er Piso) e / Belascoaín (Padre Varela) y Gervasio, Havana, La Habana, Cuba
Coordinates
23.133140, -82.369780 (accuracy not guaranteed)
Location
Website
www.facebook.com/Rolandos-Backpacker-295756977200270/?rf=832502210178685
Telephone
+53 (0) 7879 9045
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How is Rolando's Backpackers rated on other websites?

  Cleanliness Location Atmosphere Overall
Hostelworld
(2 ratings)
90%
80%
90%
87%
HostelBookers
(126 ratings)
93%
94%
96%
94%
HostelsClub
(225 ratings)
91%
87%
92%
91%
Gomio
(3 ratings)
95%
90%
90%
94%
Hostels.com
No reviews yet.
Average
92%
89%
93%
92%

Hostelz.com Guest Reviews

 
Fantastic
amazing, enrique is the best, so welcoming and friendly. They speak limited English, so some Spanish would be useful. Absolutely loved it.
Jodie
Age 22, UK
2018-06-04
 
Great people, but now my flat in London is infested with bedbugs
I loved Rolando's -- great place to meet people as a lone traveler. Met some wonderful people and fun place to stay. Food is good too. But my flat in London is infested with bedbugs. I'm covered in rashes and bites. It is now going to cost me £100 to get my room fumigated.
Anonymous
Age 26, British
2017-12-04
 
Amazing staff, great location, great price
Whether or not Rolando's is the best option for your Havana accommodation isn't even a question. The real question is if you can book a bed while there is still space! This hostel is a little slice of backpacking heaven in Havana, far back enough from the street that you can sleep, but close enough to everything that you won't be needing any cabs (Speaking of cabs, the staff will be happy to help you organise transport all over the island). You will find here all the hostel standards like a simple bed in a six person room and simple bathroom. But what makes the place so special is the staff. The people working here are unbelievably helpful and invested in ensuring you enjoy your stay in Cuba. The hostel is scrubbed clean every day, and the little rooftop bar serves some of the best mojitos in Havana (made with frozen bottled water for ice!) and the lovely ladies in the kitchen will make you the only nutritious meal I was able to find in my month in Havana. I stayed in this Hostel for nearly a full month, and left feeling more like family than a guest. I would recommend to anyone and everyone to try and stay at this hostel during their time in Havana. Even if there is no space, the amazing staff will set you up in a local Casa Particular (think Air BnB) nearby, so you can still come and enjoy the rooftop bar, and the company of other travelers.
Lewis
Age 23, Australia
2016-12-31
 
Pretty good
The place was very nice for cuban standards. The owners have many connections through Cuba, which can be very helpful for backpackers.
Anonymous
Age 23, Romania
2016-12-18
 
Great Hostel in Havana
Rolando's is a great place to meet people or start your trip in Cuba. Enrique is very helpful at getting you set up and can point you to nearby hostels if Rolando's is full.
Anonymous
Age 23, Australian
2016-12-16
 
Would recommend to anyone
Decent location in Havana Centro with really helpful staff. The accommodation is super comfy and the whole hostel is really clean. Great for meeting people if you're backpacking alone.
Hannah
Age 23, UK
2016-09-16
 
Probably the best place in Habana to meet people
I spent four nights and it was adorable, the place is perfect to meet others travelers to have some beer or share a transport for some other place. The room was all time clean, it is the same for the bathroom, spacious, bed was comfortable, air was always turned on in a nice temperature. Breakfast good enough as the meals in the night. Enrique and the others give them best for your stay. There is Cadeca close and in a good position to get Malecon and Habana Vieja.
Crazyclown
Age 29, Brazilian
2016-09-10
 
Awesome hostel
Amazingly helpful and friendly staff. Great hostel. They will help you organise anything and if you need a bed but they're all out they will sort something out for you. Best in Havana!
Daniel
Age 34, Australian
2016-09-04

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