Wandering the streets of Dresden is always a good idea. Martin and Michael from Lollis Homestay will be the perfect hosts when you are there.
How did you decide to open a hostel?
After staying in many hostels and enjoying this very special open, social, international atmosphere, after getting to know this unique “backpacker spirit” I decided that running my own hostel would be the thing I want to do. I couldn’t travel forever, but by running a hostel in my town, I can still be part of that amazing community.
What is the biggest challenge you are facing in running/managing your hostel?
Staying organised. It’s not that one big challenge, it is this vast number of extra tasks every day, from lost keys, special booking arrangements, new laws to follow, managing staff, replying to ratings, statistics, accounting, purchases, maintenance, etc, etc, etc. It’s that everlasting balancing act between what can be delegated to someone, what is the matter for the boss, between trust and control, laissez-faire and nitpicking.
What makes your hostel unique?
Our rooms are artistically designed and set up each differently, some powerfully pictorial, like our Trabi room, giants room or religions room. We invest a lot to get our guests away from their electronic devices for a good social atmosphere. We offer activities for almost every day, like free dinner, pub crawl, BBQ, and a fun German language course. It’s big effort but really helps to provide a memorable travel experience for our guests.
What is the one thing that your guests like the most in your hostel?
Hard to tell, this will be different from guest to guest and their particular expectations. It might be getting a free bicycle for the one, our laundry service done by us for the other, many like the lively area where we are located. In general, most like the uncomplicated, personal approach and friendliness of our staff.
What makes your destination/city a place everyone should visit?
Dresden is one of the masterpieces of historical baroque downtown, and it has a lively trendy neighbourhood (where our hostel is located). Dresden is known for arts and culture, it’s beautifully located in the Elbe river valley, surrounded by forest, castles, a famous national park with bizarre sandstone rocks.
What is the best time of the year to visit you?
All year round. But honestly, more fun in the summer when the days are long, with the sunshine and when city life happens outside on the streets. But in the winter the cultural offers, like parties and concerts are much better.
What would you recommend to your guests as a must see/must do in your city?
Get the USE-IT map of Dresden. It’s’ a printed map, made by young locals, not commercial, free, and up-to-date with lots of tips where to go and what to see. And then just follow all the dots from 1 to 74, from our famous baroque palaces to a small local pub.