In September 2008 we stayed 4 nights in the Halvat Guesthouse, which we actually found on the Sarajevo page of VT member sabsi.
Halvat Guesthouse is a family run bed and breakfast accomodation with 5 rooms. We contacted the owner by e-mail and received quite quickly a booking confirmation. Our large double room with private bath cost about 133 KM per night.
The excellent breakfast was served downstairs and consisted of a bit of everything, from cereals and fruits to yoghurt and bread. At breakfast we got in contact with Reif Larsen, the American author of "The Selected Works of T. S. Spivet", who was doing researches for his new book.
As on our last day we had to catch the early morning train to Mostar, we even got provided a take away breakfast.
Directions: The Halvat Guesthouse is located at the eastern end of the historic old town (Bascarsija). So almost everything can be reached within an easy walk from here. The nearest tram stop "Bascarsija" can be found just down the road from the guesthouse.
This was a VT tip, and a big success. Situated 100m from the start of the Ottoman part of the old town, the location could not be better.
I was given a huge family room all to myself – cost €45.90 per night (breakfast included). Breakfast was substantial and delicious. Just right to start a day of pounding the tourist trail.
Room is air conditioned and has cable TV. No wifi, but you can get dial up for 6km per hour.
The owner (or rather her husband, I think) picked me up at the airport for €11 extra, and that was a good move. Apart from saving me the hassle of dealing with local taxi drivers, Mumo pointed out all the local landmarks as he drove into town.
Mini markets, post office, burek, kebab & coffee shops all on the doorstep.
Highly recommended if you prefer a guesthouse set up to a full service hotel. Well done to Mumo, Valida & Neira for making me so welcome and comfortable!
Unique Quality: The welcome!
Directions: Just north of "pigeon" square.
...and a great breakfast too - with only 5 rooms and a real concern that all their guests are made welcome in true Bosnian style, the Halvat really did live up to its website promise. Our room was tucked away at the top of the house, spotlessly clean, Ikea cheerful with satellite television and a well-stocked bookshelf . Comfortably large (the largest in the house I think - with a double and a single bed) with an perfectly adequate bathroom it was all more than acceptable for the price we were paying. A welcoming coffee in the lower ground floor sitting room as we chatted about finding our way around the city, got us off to a good start and then it was a 2 minute walk down the hill to put us right in the very heart of Bašèaršija, the city's old Ottoman quarter. If the proximity to the centre was appreciated then it was even better at the end of the day when the uphill walk home was as short - those Sarajevan hills are steep!
Breakfast - a substantial offering of fruit, yoghurt, breads and spreads, eggs if we wanted them - was served in the sitting room. Even our 6am departure for the train station on our last day found owner Mumo waiting for us with an offering of freshly brewed coffee and cake and a snack for the train.
Free email access was available at the computer tucked under the stairs.
The prompt and friendly response to my initial enquiries - always a good sign - was matched by the reception on our arrival and the warmth of the hospitality during our stay. I'd certainly stay here again.
Unique Quality: As well as the proximity to the city centre - and Sarajevo is a very easy city to walk around - the Halvat is ideally placed for using public transport. Several different trams stop at the bottom of the hill where there is also a taxi rank should you want to go further afield. There's also a post office close by - handy for those postcard stamps - and local food shops for snacks, water, etc.
We were there in lovely autumn weather - no need for either aircondtioning or heating really. The heating's a given in a city that was home to a winter Olympics. Some reviewers on other sites have noted the absence of air-conditioning being a problem on hot summer nights. Not any more - the fitting of brand new airconditioning units had been completed the day before we arrived.
Directions: Just 2 minutes walk up the hill from the heart of the Old Town
Try Guesthouse Halvat http://www.halvat.com.ba/contacts.html
We stayed there recently and it is perfect for experiencing the City. The accomodation is modern. The location is right beside the city centre (old) and the welcome and service is just as good as you could expect anywhere.
Directions: Right beside the old city, near the Tram station.
Guesthouse Halvat is located in the best possible place - a few minute's walk to the old town and market area Bascarcija. The guesthouse is clean and modern, our room was a hotel level double room with own balcony.
The personnell came to the airport to pick us up against a very small extra fee. They were hearty smiling people. Alwasy there if you wanted to ask e.g. about the city and its sight or needed a map.
Breakfast was included in the price and served downstairs the main building where it was very cosy.
Unique Quality: Own balcony even if not a beach resort but in the middle of a capital city; that was nice.
Overall experience and the friendliness of the staff.
The staff organized tours on request, too (we did not take any, we rented a car).
Good and extensive breakfast (not just a roll/croissant and black coffee).
Directions: Just around the corner from Bascarcija area; see location on their website
We found this place on the internet and as there were few reviews of places in Sarajevo, and frankly we didn't have the budget for the Holiday Inn, we plumped for this one.
It was a fantastic choice. The owners obviously have a taste for the mediterranean and France in particular perhaps and were really friendly.
It's perhaps not the cheapest place in the city, but I'm glad we went for a safe bet that turned into a great bet!
Unique Quality: We stayed in a lovely large room in the attic, with it's own bathroom, tv etc. It was stylishly decorated and comfy. If I remember rightly it was also air-conditioned which was a god-send in the June heat of 2003.
The breakfast was nice and set us up for each days jaunt through town. Also, free access to the internet was very useful.
The location is great, just up the road in the old town. Some of the views over Sarajevo were fantastic from here.
Directions: In the Bascarsija district (Old Town). Follow the road that leads to the cemetry.
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