When you think of a hostel, what pops into your mind?
Probably the not-so-glamorous image of crowded communal dorms filled with flimsy, uncomfortable mattresses, shared bathrooms with showers that produce an inconsistent flow of (often ice cold) water, and perhaps a common area and a kitchen where you can cook your own meals.
When it comes to reputations, Lub d Patong in Phuket, Thailand runs counter to most of the pre-conceived notions that are typically associated with a hostel. In fact, its sleek and modern design make it feel more like a fresh, hip hotel that offers the option of shared dorms (along with a variety of private rooms), while still providing guests with the connected, social feel of a hostel.
It's the best of both worlds, really, in the sense that you get luxury and comfort at an extremely affordable price.
And while you can still maintain your privacy, it's easy to connect with other like-minded travelers through one of the hostel's fun activities, over happy hour at the bar, or in one of the many beanbag-filled common areas.
If you're visiting Phuket, here's why Lub d Patong takes the cake when it comes to accommodation:
If you're traveling on a shoestring and looking for an authentic hostel experience, Lub d offers both mixed and female-only dorms starting at just $14 per night. Each room has only four beds, and is outfitted with USB plug outlets, air conditioning, personal cubbies, and uncapped fast wifi. The female-only dorms are a great option for female travelers looking for a little added security, as they're located in their own section of the hostel and can only be accessed via key card.
The communal bathrooms are beautifully designed and boast hot-water showers with good water pressure. They've also been furnished with basic toiletries and hair dryers.
If your budget allows for a bit more of a splurge, Lub d Patong also offers a variety of private rooms that start at just $35 per night. Each Junior King and Junior Twin room is furnished with an en-suite bathroom and hot-water shower, air conditioning, a private balcony, an in-room safe, USB plug outlets, and ultra comfortable beds. The Deluxe King and Deluxe Twin rooms provide all of the perks of the Junior options, but are also equipped with a television, desk and refrigerator.
In short, you'll be extremely hard pressed to find any other hotel or hostel that can compete with Lub d in terms of sheer value for money.
Restaurant and Bar
While most hostels are lucky to have a communal kitchen, Lub d Patong boasts a fully functioning poolside restaurant and bar that serves both traditional Thai and international Western cuisine. The bar specializes in an endless variety of cocktails, mocktails, and fruit smoothies, each with its own "Lub d twist".
In terms of the menu, their burgers are an absolute feast (you can choose between a normal bun or a black, squid ink bun), and their pineapple fried rice is nothing short of a work of art (it's served in a carved out pineapple!). Other favorites include the prawn pad Thai, hokkien mee (a local Phuket dish), chicken quesadillas, Caesar salad and a variety of pizzas.
Breakfast is served all day in a DIY fashion, and you can choose between a Thai-style, American-style or health-conscious spread. Whatever option you choose, you won't start the day hungry, as the portion sizes are huge.
As for the cocktails, the Jaws and the Ladyboy come highly recommended, and if you're looking for something non-alcoholic, the lime mint soda is almost like a mojito, but lacks the same hangover inducing side effects. Or, you can always just grab a fruit smoothie and enjoy it in one of the hammocks next to the pool.
For those working as digital nomads, you probably know how difficult it can be to find a quality co-working space with good connectivity while on the road. Lub d Patong has partnered with Garage Society in this regard in order to create the best co-working space in Phuket's Patong beach area.
The space offers open-plan desks, informal creative corners (with couches and beanbag chairs), as well as a more private meeting room that's perfect for groups. Each area is equipped with universal plug outlets, fast wifi, printing and faxing services, as well as refreshments.
Daily one-time use can be purchased on a 2-hour ($4), half-day ($6) or full-day ($8.50) basis, and monthly membership options start at $80.
Other Awesome Features
Backpacker by STA Travel Desk
Lub d Patong has combined forces with Backpacker by STA to provide its guests with an incredible travel desk that can assist in recommending and booking a number of awesome day trips in and around Phuket.
Tip: if you book the Phang Nga Hong Starlight Canoe Trip, it will likely be one of the highlights of your entire time in Southeast Asia.
The team is also happy to help you plan other travels throughout Southeast Asia and they hold a wealth of knowledge and insight on the region.
Muay Thai Boxing Lessons
Believe it or not, Lub d Patong is equipped with its own professional-grade Muay Thai boxing ring and they work with a professional instructor who can provide lessons to guests and non-guests alike.
Whether you are a complete beginner or someone with experience who is looking to take their fighting to the next level, a Tiger Muay Thai session is the perfect way to work up a healthy sweat after all of the pad Thai and Chang beer.
Note: Lessons can be booked on a private or group basis. Private classes are currently $23 and group sessions are $12 per person.
Lub d is located in Phuket's Patong area and is a one-minute walk from the main beach, which offers a host of water-based activities such as swimming, jet skiing, and parasailing.
The hostel is also within walking distance of dozens of restaurants, in addition to the infamous bars and clubs of Bangla Road. Patong is notoriously well known for its nightlife, so if you're looking for a party, there's no better place to be.
So it's settled. Now you just need to plan your trip to Phuket and experience the magic of Lub d for yourself!
Travel tip shared by Jenna Becker for Travel Dudes.
This article was written in collaboration with Lub d Hostel. Travel Dudes maintains full editorial control of the content published on this site.