Our hostel offers guests a unique tranquil experience while being in an easily accessible downtown location. We have private rooms, dorm spaces and a tree house as options to meet guests comfort needs, also fruit trees and a zen pond! Namaste
The Zen Hostel is a small, friendly, family-style location. We offer a meditation room, library, and a peaceful courtyard with a zen pond surrounded by native and fruiting plants. You are invited to make yourself at home here!
In addition to your sleeping area, you will have access to three shared kitchens, a meditation room, outdoor areas, and a washer and dryer on premises. Wifi is provided. Check in and out at your convenience.
Interaction with Guests
It is up to the guest (you!) to decide how much communal interaction you desire during your stay. Some guests join in our group meditations, daily meetings and shared meals. We also encourage guests to plug into the community by doing a chore of their choosing. Others come here for a chance to relax in privacy, and enjoy the time to themselves.
We love our neighborhood! We are located in the very heart of Gainesville, Florida's friendliest city. We are located just around the corner from an organic food co-op, an independent theatre, and a variety of bookstores, restaurants, cafes, parks, and unique local businesses.
We are conveniently located near Gainesville's public transit center. If you need a ride from the airport, we offer pick-up services with a kind donation of half the price of a taxi.
Very nice hostel. We didn't get a chance to spend as much time there as we would have liked because we were attending a wedding that night and got back late. Carie made us feel very welcome when we arrived and showed us our room. They offer meditation every day and a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The hostel is located in a great neighborhood and close to down town. A great place and I would recommend staying there to anyone visiting Gainesville.
Everyone was very welcoming. A wonderful place for world travelers. The tree house net was excellent and didn't even get one mosquito bite. If you are visiting Gainsville to get drunk with your friends downtown. This is probably a great location for you since its close to downtown. But if you are a light sleeper, maybe the tree house is not the best room in the hostel since you can hear the downtown area (duh no walls).
The outside shower was awesome(there are also inside showers)! Parking was easy. And there is a kitchen you can use.
From the moment I arrived, I knew that I would be welcomed and respected by the toby and the other guests. If you are comfortable engaging others with an open mind you will no doubt leave here feeling enlightened. The community feel is a great way to understand everybody has an important role. The property is in a great location, walking distance to many shops. I felt safe and would definitely stay here again.
The Gainesville Zen Hostel was warm and welcoming for the large group of participants I brought. The staff was super helpful before arriving and during our stay. The location is great and only a few minutes walk away from Downtown Gainesville. Overall, our stay was great.
Accommodated me on short notice, which was great. And got up when I got in super late to show me where I was sleeping. I was sharing a room, which was fine. One frustration was the kitchen was right next to my bed separated only by a curtain. One of the people staying there decided they needed the loudest breakfast in history at 7am. So I was up quite a bit earlier than I had intended considering the late arrival.
My extended family stayed here -- 12 people in all. The Zen Hostel was perfect in some ways. The kids loved staying in the tree house, everyone had a bed, there were many private spaces and communal spaces, there were kitchens for cooking (vegetarian) and it was close to a food co-op, cafe, and restaurants. The other residents were very pleasant and interesting. It was perfect if you were looking for a communal living experience for a large group.
But if you were looking for something closer to a hotel experience, then you would not be happy here. While the sheets and towels were clean, the rooms and bathrooms were generally not as clean as most hotels. The kitchens were not very well equipped and were shared with other guests. The rooms could not be locked, so security depends on the other guests.
The ethic of the Zen Hostel is a unique gift and service-based community. I enjoyed my stay there and would book it again. However, my 78 year-old mother left early to go stay at a nearby friend's house because she preferred a more traditional experience. It's not for everyone, but perfect for some.
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