Advantages Clean and modern; useful location; parking available; free wi-fi; surroundings
Disadvantages Could be noisy when hostel is busy
While all my Slovenian friends are internet-savvy and are contactable by email, trying to conduct business online in Slovenia, particularly in the tourism sector, can be highly frustrating. Emails get bounced back, websites appear no longer available. When hotels do have websites you can only make enquiries, you can’t book directly online, and these automated enquiries seldom result in a response.
The process of investigating costs and availability was a long and drawn out one; after a couple of hours I could hardly focus on the screen. I emailed a couple of places directly and none of them replied. I risked one automatic enquiry form on a hotel website and one on the ‘I Feel Slovenia’ website, the official portal of the country’s tourist board, neither of which garnered a response (and several weeks later still have had no response). I tried Hostelbookers.com but the youth hostel in Brezice appeared to be more expensive than some of the hotels and, utterly frustrated with the hostel’s lack of response to a direct email, I reluctantly contacted them by telephone and reserved a room. No card details were required, a name was sufficient to seal the reservation.The hostel is known as MC-Brezice, the initials standing for ‘mladinski center’, which translates as ‘youth centre’. Most Slovenian towns of any reasonable size have a ‘mladinski center’ and facilities vary. Brezice’s is brand new and comprises a hostel with dorms and private rooms (some but not all en suite), a concert/film venue and a large café-bar with terrace. The whole complex stands just inside the entrance of the town park, opposite Brezice’s splendid castle. In spite of being a very picturesque town that should attract tourists, the tourist information centre on the main street closed down and visitors are now directed to the one at Catez (a nearby village which has outgrown its boundaries with the continuing development of Terme Catez, a large spa complex), or to the mini TIC in the foyer of the MC-Brezice hostel. Guests at the hostel therefore have at hand an excellent selection of maps and brochures relating to the local area, and to up to date information for local buses and trains.
The hostel has its own reception but we had followed the directions of a local resident and cut through the park, arriving at the café first rather than the hostel.
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