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Hotel Waterloo & Backpackers (formerly Downtown Backpackers)

4.0 out of 5.0

Recent guest reviews

Lovely, on a cold and wet Wellington night, this was lovely to walk into. We booked a room with a private bathroom, The staff were friendly, the room warm and cosy, The bar relaxed with friendly staff and a good meal. A lovely night, older style accommodation with smoke stop doors and radiators in the room, but it had a welcoming, safe energy about it, and the room was clean comfy and warm. Thanks had a lovely stay.

During this visit, I stayed approx 14 days. Unlike previous times my budget only permitted a 4 bunk room. Still, it was great for this 60 year old to interact with a range of people (My age and younger, from Europe , Asia and NZ).

I have stayed here twice. It's a full-service hotel with 24 hr reception, a restaurant, pool room and bar. Rooms are clean, linens fresh. Huge, hardworking staff. Excellent shared accommodation options for budget travellers.There is a huge shared kitchen facility with boiling water on tap. Plus it's as close to the train station as you can be without sleeping there!

I stayed in Hotel Waterloo for three days and it was a good experience. The heaters and showers had no problems. I booked myself in a 20 bed Dorm and got a complimentary upgrade. They have a few pool tables and a bar with different offers everyday. The staff were polite and work hard to keep the place clean. I would happily return to this place if I'm in Wellington. Not only that, the location is great. I short walk to Courteney Place and the train station is a hop, skip and jump away. And thanks to the Front Office Manager, Cyrus. He was very accommodating and helped me get around the city. Thank you Cyrus.

One of few places left due to the rugby. The rooms were fine, lockers, charging points etc and we had an ensuite which was great. Had to pay a $50 deposit for the hairdryer, luggage storage wasn't free either. The shame was the atmosphere or lack of, because the site is so huge and it's a hotel/backpackers it's a bit of an antisocial environment. There are also what seem to be a number of individuals who are long term residents who live on site which adds to the strange vibe. The kitchen is huge but it's not very well equipped. Overall did the job but wouldn't stay again if looking for a hostel in Wellington.

A friend and I spent 4 nights in a twin room fri - monday. The facilities are rundown and old but what an awesome cheap place to stay in a fantastic location to Wellington. Opposite the train station and a block or 2 away from lampton quay, the hive, the waterfront etc. The backpackers has a full kitchen available, A restaurant and bar and has Another bar downstairs. The twin room was a set of single bunks, had a shared bathroom / shower between the next room with other people in it. The room had a chair, window, wardrobe, a sink and mirror, and was fairly roomy. Bedding is provided and the water is clean. Very simple but adequate for our needs Very cheap accomodation with open access via key back and forth from the building 24/7. The meals in the restaurant were cheap and tasty, Service is a little slow and they ran out of specific food types (i.e. Rice) but happily compensated with reducing the price. The butter chicken was interesting without rice but still tasted average. The full breakfast was yum. All meals are average $9-$26. The bar on the 1st floor, is friendly and has pool and an outdoor balcony. The bar and restaurant staff, reception and cleaners are very friendly and provide good local knowledge if asked. Noise is well muffled in the room, only heard the neighbors when they were in the bathroom. The rooms are warm and beds are comfortable. Lastly, there is a full kitchen with chillers, microwaves, sinks, dishes etc available for everyones use. Great place to stay when you want to catch up with Wellington and its sites

Excellent location directly opposite the railway station so easier for people coming off the long distance train and buses also quite close to the ferries.great staff there. Wicked restaurant and bar there. only a couple of downsides are the bunks in the dorm room is quite hard to get into and the showers are a bit stuffed up (you either get burnt or you freeze there's no in between

The only good thing about this hostel is the location. For those needing to take the train or bus the next morning worth a thought, all others look for sth. else. The room itself was ok concerning space and equipment, but extremely old fashioned. Bathroom was prob. From the beginning of last century, didn't dare to take a shower there.

Location, location, location, central to city hub. close to railway station, bus stations, cafes and Beehive. Mana Sleeper bus stop right outisde the door. I booked in by internet, easy. Check in was easy although the reception could of made more of an effort to be hospitanle, cost nothing to smile. $31 for a 4 bunk room with a shower and toilet. big common room, onsite cafe, bar and ganes room. Wifi was limited free bytes then have to buy more, slow as wifi. People very respectful. I'd probably get me a private room next time and pay a wee extra for privacy. Otherwise it was an OK place to hangout.

The Waterloo hotel/backpackers needs a lot of work indeed to come up to any acceptable level. I have stayed here for a week and found the staff at the front desk disgracefully unfriendly - even rude at times without any signs of proper training in customer service. Not a single smile from any of them nor friendly greeting and at times utter reluctance to be of help even in basic matters. The walls in the rooms throughout the building have peeling paint galore, and the entire building is in desperate need of some care and overall upgrading. The kitchen facilities for guests are not clean and hygienic and seem to be lacking in any proper systems to deal with the multiple deplorable dirtiness and uncleanliness problems. Possibly the only good feature of this establishment is it's location straight across the road from the railway station and Picton Ferry.

1 Bunny Street Wellington Cbd Wellington

Hotel highlights

  • Walking distance to Old Government Buildings and Beehive
  • Free WiFi in rooms and public areas
  • Onsite dining
  • Nightclub

Old Government Buildings is within a 5-minute walk of Hotel Waterloo & Backpackers (formerly Downtown Backpackers) while other popular sites like Beehive are within a 15-minute stroll. This 108-room, 4-star hostel has a restaurant along with conveniences like free in-room WiFi and a nightclub. Centrally located in Wellington, the hostel is also a short walk from St Paul's Cathedral and Old St Paul's.


You can enjoy a drink at the bar/lounge or visit the onsite restaurant for a bite to eat. For your convenience, breakfast is available for a fee.


Guests can expect to find free WiFi.

Property features

Guests of Hotel Waterloo & Backpackers (formerly Downtown Backpackers) enjoy features like a nightclub, free WiFi in public areas, and an arcade/game room. The front desk is staffed 24/7 to help with tours or tickets, and answer any questions about the accommodations. This hostel also has laundry facilities.

Room options

Double Ensuite

Full 1 | Sleeps 2

Standard Double Room, Private Bathroom

Full 1 | Sleeps 2

Bunk Style Twin Ensuite

Twin 1 | Sleeps 2

Single (Shared Bathroom)

Twin 1 | Sleeps 1

Reviews from Trip Advisor

Trip Advisor aggregated rating

54% of guests recommend this hotel

Total of 423 reviews