Old Town Hostel.
A great hostel with a perfect location five minutes
walk from the train or bus stations and just inside Riga's Old Town. The five storey hostel has a range of 6 bed and 12 bed mixed dorms as well as a private room. Prices depend on the time of year but start at about $10 for the 12 bed dorm and range up to $32 per person for the private double room. Each dorm room has its own bathroom and showers as well as small, code-operated lockers for valuables. There is a fully-equipped kitchen in the basement as well as a sauna, and the pub on the ground floor is one of the cheapest in the Old Town. The only drawback is that it can be quite a trek up the spiral staircase if your bed is on the top floor. The single computer (at the very top of the stairs) is inadequate for servicing a hostel of this size but there is free WiFi if you bring your laptop. The staff is quite friendly for the most part.
Address: Valnu St, #43 (entrance through the bar). Tel: +(371) 722-3406. Website: www.rigaoldtownhostel.lv.
Friendly Fun Franks.
This had to be checked out since it took out HostelWorld's best hostel award for 2005 (as voted by customers), which is impressive seeing as Riga isn't one of the world's big tourist destinations. Why it won this award is not immediately apparent, though. Probably the complimentary beer on arrival goes a long way towards winning the hearts of backpackers. The staff is also very attentive and helpful. Jointly Australian, British and Latvian owned, Friendly Fun Franks is located in the Old Town on the banks of the Daugava River. There are no large signs on the building so keep your eye out for the little map of Australia with a koala on it next to the entrance. Friendly Fun Franks has a whole variety of mixed dorms, some of which have river views, from 4-bed up to 14-bed and one 10-bed female dorm. Prices start at $12 and head up the scale to $20 or more. There are seven computers for internet access and a damn nice bar with a view of the Daugava. A lively place, sleeping here could be a problem.
Address: Novembra Krastmala, #29. Tel: +(371) 599-0612. Website: www.franks.lv.
Welcome Inn Bed and Brekfast.
It's only a small bed and breakfast so bookings might be a problem but the rooms are quite nice and if you're after this sort of accommodation in Riga then you don't have too many choices. The Junior Suite has a full bathroom, kitchenette and cable TV and costs 55 Euros ($70) per night. The deluxe suite is the same but has two rooms, DSL internet and a bunch of extra furniture. It costs 65 Euros ($83) night. There is an extra 10 Euro per night charge to have a third person in any of the rooms. Contradicting its name somewhat, breakfast actually comes for an extra charge. Welcome Inn is affiliated with Mystic Cafe, a match-making service that hooks men up with Eastern European women. Their office is in the B&B. But if that's not your thing, don't let it put you off. It's quite a nice place. The staff speak passable English but it's better to use Russian.
Address: Vecpilsetas St, #3/2. Tel: +(371) 721-2669. Website: www.mysticcafe.com/bednbreakfast.htm.
Hotel Konventa Seta.
Although the rooms are of a similar quality
to any standard 3 star hotel, the Konventa Seta distinguishes itself by being housed in a complex of old medieval buildings on the grounds of an old monastery. Indeed, part of the 13th Century Old Town wall is built into the hotel complex. There are 141 rooms across nine 14th-16th Century buildings, including 81 standard rooms and 60 suites. A standard room costs 90 Euros or 95 Euros ($115 or $121) for single or double occupancy, while junior suites go for 100/110 Euros ($128/$140) and suites are 120/135 Euros ($153/$172). Prices include buffet breakfast. There are numerous bars, clubs, shops and restaurants in the grounds of the former monastery, which is one of Riga's major sightseeing destinations. The hotel's restaurant "Raibais Balodis" is well renowned. Good service and facilities, Konventa Seta is a great choice for people who want to be in the thick of the Old Town atmosphere. There are also decent conference facilities for businessmen. Be warned, though, if you want to stay on a weekend in the summer season you will need to book months in advance.
Address: Kaleju St, #9/11. Tel. +(371) 708-7506. Website: www.konventa.lv.
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