The AE Parthenon Hostel  » Hotels  »
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318 S. Halsted St, Chicago (Greektown), IL
  • While I did not experience the misfortune of staying there myself, I did get firsthand feedback, and a tour of the place via a friend of mine who stayed there recently
  • But I did not consider her appearance to be professional
  • I have never stayed in a hostel, and after seeing what my friend was living in, I decided I never will, no matter how much money I might save

    • by Citygal226
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      The AE Parthenon is advertised as a hostel (budget accommodation) that is near the center of Chicago - walking distance to the Amtrak station and most downtown Chicago attractions. All of that is a stretch of the imagination! The location IS a 10 minute walk to the Amtrak train station and the Sears Tower, both of which are on the outskirts of the central downtown area. The Parthenon itself, is kind of a DUMP! It should be called “The Spartan”. While I did not experience the misfortune of staying there myself, I did get firsthand feedback, and a tour of the place via a friend of mine who stayed there recently. He was thoroughly disappointed. And after he showed me his room and the accommodations of the place, I was mortified.

      For starters, this hostel does not have its own entrance. To check in, you enter through the Parthenon


      restaurant, find your way to the Bar, and ask for the manager. Eventually, a gruff, older man appears to verify your reservation and your credit card/payment information. That done, a casually-dressed “hostess” appears with keys, to show you to your room. For my friend’s visit, the hostess was wearing shorts and a polo shirt. She was very pleasant and friendly. But I did not consider her appearance to be professional.

      Once the “check-in” was completed, the hostess and my friend left to go to his room. They went out the front door of the restaurant. There was no internal path/route from the bar/restaurant. The next day, my friend informed me that his room was on the second floor of the building, and that there was no elevator. He had to drag his suitcase up 2 flights of stairs to get to his room! And he had a HUGE ...


      • suitcase! But that was just the beginning.

        The next day, my friend gave me a tour of his accommodations at the Parthenon Hostel. “Spartan” is an understatement! I’ve seen walk-in closets that were larger than his room. No air conditioning just a free-standing fan; a twin bed, a 4-drawer chest, a 2-drawer nightstand; a tiny closet with no door. No clock, no phone, no TV, no lamps just a ceiling light fixture controlled by a switch near the door. Not even a spare chair to sit on or unpack a bag on. No amenities like Kleenex or a coffeemaker in the room. Not even a paper cup. The toilets, wash/shower rooms were further down the hall and they were all unisex. One room off the main hallway for toilets and washbasins, another room off the main hallway for shower stalls. I have never

        stayed in a hostel, and after seeing what my friend was living in, I decided I never will, no matter how much money I might save!

        The saving grace of this hostel was that it was clean, in a fairly safe neighborhood, a 5-minute walk to a CTA transit station to O’Hare airport, and it’s on a major street with convenience stores and restaurants. Its only other saving grace was the price about $50.00 per night including a 15% hotel tax. My friend balked about the exorbitant tax. I could only point out to him as we explored and took advantage of all the freebies that Chicago has to offer that those taxes (probably) pay for all that free stuff: Trolley transportation to all downtown attractions, exhibits and tours available from our Cultural Center, concerts and events in Millennium and Grant Park.




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