DAVE Red Athens Review – 3 Star Hotel from £26 a night

DAVE Red Athens Hotel

Location: Athens, Greece
Star rating: 3 star
Average cost for cheapest room: £26 – £41

Before I crack on with my DAVE Red Athens Hotel review, I do have to point out that I took all these photos before checking out so the sloppily made bed is my own doing, not that of the hotel staff!

How much did I pay?

I booked 3 nights between 30th Dec 2021 and 2nd Jan 2022. I went for the ‘Urban + Balcony’ room which cost £141, which worked out to £47 a night.

This is the top tier of rooms – after ‘Urban’, ‘Foxy’ and ‘Foxy+’ – and the only one with outside space.

I utilised the ‘Winter Offer’ deal which gave me 20% off, a free room upgrade to a higher room category, early check in from 11am, late check out until 1pm and a welcome drink. I also had free cancellation up to 24 hours prior to arrival.

Why did I book it?

I wanted something aesthetically pleasing that wasn’t going to break the bank.

I’m also a bit obsessed with this recent increase of ‘cheap but chic’ hotels in major cities (here’s some from London) and so wanted to check it out.

It’s also away from the main tourist area which I find often offers good value and I like to see what’s going on in those areas too.

Checking in

The reception is open 24 hours a day and we were warmly greeted when we arrived.

We paid for our room – and also a city tax of €1,50 a night – and were offered some warm popcorn which was a nice touch.

We weren’t offered our welcome drink but we also didn’t ask as after a few gins on the plane and arriving after 10pm, we were ready for bed!

The room

We were in room 905 which was unsurprisingly on the 9th floor which we were super happy about as we hoped we’d have a decent view! 

The only downside is having to wait for the lift which is TINY, very slow and has a maximum capacity of four – though during Covid this is household only. 

Room Size

At 15m2, we knew the room would be small when we booked so no surprises there.

As we stepped inside our room, a decent sized bathroom (considering the size of the room!) with a walk in shower was to the left. Inside the room, there were some coat hooks, a large mirror, a desk with a chair, a fridge, a safe, a coffee station and a ledge with a record player. Above that, a rail with 2 hangers.

This is an official image but I thought it showed what was in the room well

Then, there was the bed with bedside tables (with plugs next to the bed), a phone to call reception, a TV and a balcony at the front.

All in all, a nice space.

However, due to a total lack of storage, we did find that we were constantly stepping over our open suitcases. This is definitely a hand luggage only kind of hotel.

Decor and furnishings

It’s very warehouse chic with the red LED giving off some serious X-rated nightclub vibes but if you’re like me and find that all a bit too much, there’s plenty of other lighting that give it a warm, ambient glow.

They also had a vinyl player with two records – ours were Ace of Base and Chris de Burgh (yes I did blast out Lady in Red) – which was a really fun touch. I didn’t expect that for the price.

Bed

You get a Queen size bed with 2 huge pillows and a couple of smaller ones. The mattress was fairly firm which isn’t my preference, but it felt new and the bedding was fresh and clean so no complains from me.

TV

There’s a large 43” flat screen TV above the bed which again, I was surprised to see (often these cheap but chic places forgo the TV!) and it had a good range of channels including BBC World News and MTV. There wasn’t an option to use Apple TV or ChromeCast and it reminded me once again to always travel with an HDMI cable!

Tea and coffee

Strike me surprised for the third time but I was delighted to see a Nespresso machine with four coffee pods. A nice touch! We also discovered a coffee machine on the first floor which we have no idea if we were allowed to use, but did if we wanted something like a cappuccino or a latte.

Extras

There was a security deposit box – though no batteries in it (I’m sure they would have sorted if we asked).

There was also a fridge with two beers in (priced at €5 each) which we used to chill our supermarket bought drinks – winner, winner.

Finally, there were two free bottles of water waiting for us when we arrived.

There’s nothing better in life than a free hotel upgrade, right? Well, this template is going to up your chances. Honestly – it’s worked for me and hundreds of others!

Air conditioning

There is aircon which both cools and heats and worked well!

Wifi

The Wifi is free and you connect with a password given to you on arrival. We forgot to do a speed test (sorry!) but we were able to stream episodes of Ted Lasso with zero issues.

Balcony and view

The balcony had a small table and two chairs, and whilst we didn’t end up using it, it was nice to have a big screen window that helped give the room the illusion of more space. Without it, I think I could have felt quite claustrophobic.

As we were in the corner room, we had a great view down into Downtown Athens and up to Mount Lycabettus (which we thought was the acropolis for at least 2 days… PLEASE DON’T, WE ARE ASHAMED).

Bathroom

Fitting in with the warehouse feel, the bathroom has frosted glass so I hope you’re comfortable with whoever you’re sharing with – it’s not a huge sound barrier!

I also found the floors quite slippy so be careful and whilst black toilets fit the aesthetic well, I find them a bizarre colour choice when it comes to actually using them…

WHAT? TMI?!? Ha ha ha.

However, I was impressed with the use of space for such a small room and happy to see an overhead shower. The pressure wasn’t amazing, but it was fine and they had shampoo, conditioner, body wash and hand soap on offer.

They also had waffle bathrobes which were really soft to wear and perfect for lounging after a shower!

Other rooms on offer

The hotel also offers:

  • Urban
  • Foxy
  • Foxy+

Whilst these were cheaper, some didn’t have obvious windows but if that’s not important to you, you could get a real bargain.

Also, on looking at some of the photos on Booking.com I saw this room which they’ve listed as an Executive Suite for £99 a night.

I DIDN’T SEE THAT OPTION!

Hotel facilities

The hotel is a 3 star and therefore don’t expect your full business centre, gym and spa.

However, there is a bar on the ground floor that offers trendy burgers and a space on the first floor where breakfast is served in the morning, but otherwise you’re free to chill out in.

The rooftop terrace wasn’t fully officially open when we visited but the door was open and so we snuck on up to reign in the new year – it was a great spot to see all the fireworks erupting across the city!

There’s sun loungers up here and a hot tub. It’s a good addition to have, especially for how cheap the hotel is, though in its current state it felt a little sparse – though this may well be because it’s not fully opened yet.

Breakfast

Breakfast is available on the first floor every day at the cost of €8 each but we didn’t go for, especially as there’s an incredibly authentic Greek yoghurt place next door.

This was only €4!

Greek yoghurt, honey and nuts for €4 at Stani next door

Customer service

The people on reception were always warm and friendly (and spoke good English) but twice when I tried to check about our late check out, they weren’t aware of the Winter Offer I’d booked under.

We also didn’t get a free room upgrade which at the time was because I thought we had the best room anyway but now I’ve seen the larger room on offer, I wish I’d brought it up! Though the truth is it was probably booked up.

Anyway, the point is, be ready to show the details of your offer if you’ve booked one and ask for the suitable upgrades. I’m sure they’ll be able to help you out.

Location

The hotel is located in Downtown Athens in an area called Omonia which isn’t the normal go to for tourists but there’s plenty to explore. It’s a real mix of cultures and if you want an authentic slice of Athens, you’re much more likely to see it here than over in Plaka.

However, after dark, the road where the hotel is located is less trodden and the cut through we used during the day becomes scattered with blokes taking a piss.

VERY CHIC.

James and I felt more than fine walking back to our hotel at all times of the night however, if I was on my own I may choose to stay somewhere a bit more central (GODDAM BEING A WOMAN).

Having said all of this, the hotel is directly opposite a police station (we even saw their officers in the hotel bar) and so you’re probably quite safe in that area!

Getting around

You are a 2 minute walk from Omonia metro stop which will take you all around the city.

Getting there from the airport, we got the Line 3 metro to Syntagma and then took the metro 2 stops up on Line 2.

However, we didn’t use the metro again since you’re only a 15 minute walk to Psiri (an area that we LOVED!) and not much further from everything else – Athens is a very walkable capital!

Kokkion with its amazing cakes and ice cream was just a 10 minute walk away!

Checking out

We ended up checking out early – at around 9am – as we were due to be out past our 1pm late check out. We left our bags with reception and were given tags to get them back. I like having this as an option but was a little unnerved that they just left the bags behind the desk rather than in a room somewhere. 

Of course, our stuff was still there when we got back so happy days, but if you’re a worrier like me then you might want to take your valuables with you.

Standard check out is at 12pm.

Is it family friendly?

Not having kids, I am not the best placed to cover this but in general, there wasn’t anything that screamed that you couldn’t have children stay there though it does feel like it’s more geared towards adults in their twenties/thirties.

The balconies and roof terrace had the necessary barriers but perhaps that may put you off if you had young ones. That and it seems that none of the rooms have baths, which I know is often a reason to not book a place!

I did hear that there is a club in the basement – though Covid times may see that this keeps closed – and so maybe you’d want to avoid that.

However, the hotel does welcome children and accommodation and breakfast are free for 1 child up to 12 year old sharing their parents’ room.

Is it accessible?

There’s a tiny ramp up into the hotel but otherwise, nothing else screamed that it was accessible.

There is a lift but – like many lifts in Greek hotels – it is TINY and I think it would struggle to fit a wheelchair.

The hotel says… Ah, the hotel says it’s a ‘non accessible hotel‘ which is a shame.

Would I recommend it to a friend?

Yes! I thought it was a great base for a good price

What's the best way to book?

I booked direct as there was an offer on but often the offers will be available on third parties too, so it’s worth checking them as well – especially if you’re a Genius member with Booking.com or are collecting free night stays with Hotels.com!

Did that help?

I really hope so! I know how tough it can be to whittle down where to stay when you’re exploring a new city.

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