Hostels and living in St. Petersburg
Trip Start Jul 03, 2011
9Trip End Jul 20, 2011
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Where I stayed
Marsel house hostel
Families offer you a guest room but otherwise facilities are shared. One man staying in a host family said that the children often come to the toilet at the same time with him, which is kind of funny. He also told that once when he got home on one Saturday night, mother had taken smaller children to their "datsa" (summer cottage) and meanwhile the teenage daughter had arranged a party at home in St. Petersburg. So the house was full of teenagers and music. So be prepared if you choose to stay in the host family
As I wrote earlier, I started by staying at Marsel House hostel. The hostel was very nice and clean and there were no other people staying in my room, though my room was a female dormitory for six. I suppose July is not high season yet. The hostel keepers were very nice, and I could use my Russian there, too. :) The location is also good if you are taking a course in Smolny. The address is 47 Suvorovskiy prospect. There is also wireless internet in the hostel, and it was OK, except during one night when there were some problems with it. However, this was soon fixed.
Finding your way there: The door is not very easy to notice but you'll find the right address by reading house numbers. When you find the right number you go in from a big door with huge windows and there is another door which is usually locked. There is also a small sign stating "Marselhh 17". This 17 is the doorbell code and you'll get in by using it. They open throughout the night but it was a little bit embarrassing to wake them up during the night. That was actually the only inconvenience. Plus hostel is located on the top floor and there is no lift. But otherwise I can recommend the place.
Oh, and if you are not used to it, be prepared that there are mosquitos in here
I'll add some pictures of the Marsel house hostel here, and I'll also add some pictures of Smolny. Marsel house hostel is in between Smolny and Nevskii prospekt, so you can easily walk to university or Nevsky. There are also many busses and trolleibusses running on Suvorovskiy. I liked especially trolleybus number 5, which runs on Suvorovskiy and then continues on Nevskiy.
After staying in a hostel for a week I left because I found out that there is a free room in the shared flat even closer to Smolny. So I'm now staying at Novogorovskiy. I have two Finnish roommates who are working for the Finnish Consulate in St. Petersburg. The Consulate is huge and employs hundreds of people. Many Russians are applying for visas to visit Finland! Finland seems to be in fashion. Actually, I need to write more about that in my next update.