Legless in America: The San Francisco Downtown Hostel

What a great looking hostel!

The San Francisco Downtown Hostel
312 Mason Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

The big thing you need to mention about San Francisco is that it is hilly. Once you get over that fact, you’ll realise that most of the buildings are pretty accessible. If you can get there.

The San Francisco Downtown Hostel is very San Fran. The staff will invite you on walking ukelele tours and they are very much about hostel involvement. Just smile, ignore them and indulge in the free bagels. It’s a lovely hostel in a very handy location in the middle of the city so it’s easy to plan your day from there.

What has it got?

Rooms: They have a couple of American Disability Act certified rooms which are spacious. The beds are bunk beds and you are given the bottom bunk.

Bathrooms: The bathroom was massive. However, they had no handrails and the shower was actually a bath. They provided a stool to put in when you are showering but it was a little dodgy. Keep your wits about you here.

Doors:  The doors are quite heavy and I needed a hand with them a couple of times.

Stairs: The entrance is flat and they have a lift that goes to all floors. Give yourself some time with this lift as it is quite temperamental and you can only press the button for one floor at a time. We lost half a day in here.

Helpfulness of Staff: I didn’t require much help from them but it is San Fran and they will probably sell their liver in order to help you.

Parking: There is street parking available.

Rating: 8/10
Why did it lose points? It is a very nice hostel and we got what we needed from it; a bed and a free breakfast. The fact that the wheelchair room didn’t come with any actual handrails or a specific wheelchair shower was a bit of an issue and would be a bigger problem for other people in wheelchairs. The lift was an almighty pain in the hole but they have posters everywhere apologising for that. 

About the author

Louise Bruton

Reviewing Dublin, step by step, in terms of wheelchair accessibility. Freelance journalist and pop culture enthusiast.

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