Review of WanderStay Hostel: Houston, TX
Updated: Aug 20, 2019
Wanderstay is a new hostel that opened in August 2018. I learned about this hostel a few months ago and kept it on my radar as a must visit in Houston, especially when I found out that Wanderstay is the first (and to my knowledge, ONLY) black owned hostel in the United States.
The founder/owner, 33-year-old Deidre Mathis, has been featured on Forbes! Read more about her and how she opened her hostel here . You can also follow Deidre and keep up with her travels on Instagram.
All rooms have full size bunk beds, which was a surprise for me because I always imagined hostel beds to only be twin sized.
For my first night I stayed in the female dorm, which sleeps 8. I got stuck with a top bunk (lucky me) but the mattress was comfortable. All guests are provided with a towel, wash cloth, pillow, sheet and blanket. The female dorm also had an en-suite bathroom (not photographed).
On the second night I stayed in the 'Museum Room' (one of the private room options) for my friend and I to share. Unfortunately my friend wasn't able to make it to Houston, but it was still nice to have a room to myself for the day/night.
My flight from Philadelphia (PHL) was due to land in Houston (IAH) around midnight so I knew I'd have to do a late check-in. I initiated the late check-in process by emailing my reservation confirmation number as well as a picture of my ID. About an hour or two before my flight departed I received the door codes for the building. My first night's stay (after taxes/fees) was $37.70. I extended my stay for an additional night and moved to a private two-person room. The process was seamless, and the total cost for the second night was $98 ($49 per person).
All of the rooms and facilities were clean, virtually spotless. Throughout the day I saw staff cleaning and disinfecting the rooms, bathrooms and shared kitchen area. There are three codes given to all guests: a code to the front gate, a code to the door, and a code to the room. These codes are changed weekly. Lockers are provided in each room for a small cost (I didn't access them and I don't recall the exact price, but it was definitely under $10).
I appreciated the size of the hostel. Other guests were there during my stay but it was relatively quiet the entire time. My only interactions with others was in passing, which was perfectly fine with me.
Wanderstay is a 30 minute drive from the George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH). My Lyft ride was about $25. The hostel is walking distance to two of the restaurants I visited *Turkey Leg Hut and Green Seed Vegan; read my review of this black owned vegan restaurant!
When I called to inquire about late check-in I spoke with Anna; she was kind and patient as she explained the process and gave me instructions. During my stay I interacted with Shannon; she was so helpful! When I checked out she printed a map and showed me how to navigate the area so I could hit all of the places I wanted to visit. Shannon even took my picture.
This was my first hostel experience, and I'm so thankful I was fortunate to have that experience with Wanderstay. I look forward to staying here again as well as exploring other hostels (and writing reviews for you all).