Good Bye Lenin Hostel - Zakopane is referred to as a home by the staff and definitely feels like a home, albeit one with a few more house parties than average.
It's a bit difficult to get to since it's about a ten-minute minibus ride outside of town, but the directions from the hostel's brochure are very accurate and helpful. After being dropped off by the bus it's about a five-minute walk uphill to the hostel. There's parking available at the bottom of the hill. Although it's a bit away from town, it's very close to the national park entrance and a couple of ski slopes.
Rooms and Bathrooms
The dorms have fairly comfortable mattresses and in-room lockers for each bed. There are different dorms of various sizes and prices, some with ensuite bathrooms. There are two hall bathrooms, one on the ground floor and one upstairs. The bathrooms are all kept relatively clean, although the garbage could be emptied more often. The showers have plenty of hot water with good water pressure. In addition to heaters in every room, there are also heaters in the bathrooms.
The common spaces are the main draw to this hostel. The sitting/TV room has two large, comfortable, leather couches and two matching chairs, in addition to a foosball table and big-screen TV with DVD player. There's also a computer with free internet in the hallway (and somewhat spotty Wi-Fi throughout the hostel). The kitchen is well equipped, but rather small and quite busy when the hostel is full.
This hostel has a very social atmosphere. It's easy to meet other people as everyone typically spends the evenings in the TV room. Some nights it can get a bit wild with the parties continuing long into the morning. If you're looking for quiet sleep, don't stay in one of the dorms on the ground floor. There's no smoking inside the hostel. Breakfast is served every morning from 8 to 10 a.m. officially, but it's usually kept out until noon or so -- very fitting for the laid-back vibe at the hostel.
This is a great hostel for a combination of relaxing and partying. The location is a bit further away from the main hub of town, but it's easy to get around and is a bit more quiet than the main town would be. It's often a full hostel with lots of parties, so book in advance and bring your own booze since the convenience store down the street closes at 8 p.m.