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I-hostels connect travellers through art and culture


									I-hostels connect travellers through art and culture

If you are a creative traveller who is interested in art and culture, don’t waste precious time.
Go to , book your bed and enjoy all what an i-Hostel can give you.
Hostels aren’t just places to sleep anymore. They are spaces where you can find culture, art
and travel information. You can play music in Berlin, paint graffiti in London, join a dance
session in Bruges or take part in art exhibitions, or poetry slams and readings.
All of these activities are an i-Hostels initiative, the first cooperation of art and culture
between independent hostels in Europe.

An innovative travel website
«Before i-Hostels, the traveller lost so much time searching for the best places to sleep» states Guy
Verlinde, one of the founders of the network. At we make it easy for you. Here, you’ll
find the best information about your destination and at the same time you can book your bed with the
booking engine, that guarantees the best price on the internet. Only one hostel in each city is designated
as an i-Hostel, so you won’t lose time surfing the different websites anymore. The site offers the best
hostel in each city and user-friendly information on the artistic and cultural life of every city and town as
you surf through different categories such as: Getting There, Getting Around, City Info, Shopping, Food,
Drink, Chill Out and Health or Xplore, Art, Music, Theatre, Dance, Film, Text & Books and Events. See
what’s happening on the weblog and in chat rooms, take part in competitions or download information
about art, music and movies. Customised inside information gives you detailed information about the
best record shops, book shops or dance schools in the area.

Connect independent hostels
i-Hostels is radically changing the way people think about hostels. The concept, developed by Koen
Demeulemeester and Guy Verlinde, who, in 2006, began to organize graffiti workshops and courses for
youth workers in a Ghent youth hostel. All projects received positive feedback by the travellers and the
locals. After the successful projects, Koen and Guy developed the idea to start a cooperation between
different, but equally-minded hostels in Europe. «There were many small hostels who wanted to do extra
projects», says Verlinde, «but they just didn’t find the time to develop them. Being in the i-Hostels
network will allow them the space and time to actually get it started.»

i-Hostels are hostels with their own style and identity, but are bound together by their distinctions. The
goal is to cooperate and connect travellers to a city’s artistic and cultural life, thereby providing travellers
with the opportunity to be creative and meet others who think the same. i-Hostels are meeting points
where people can hang out and share their travel experiences. They’re also places where you can find
exhibitions, performances, lectures, cooking sessions, space for painting, or writing.

Young creative travellers
The i-Hostels network focuses on the open-minded traveller who is interested in art and culture and is
looking for creative and new experiences, travelling for its multicultural experience. The i-Hostels network
provides users the best starting point for their city of interest, by connecting them to the best hostel in
cities such as Amsterdam, Bruges, Rome, Barcelona, London, Budapest and Berlin.

Art Projects
The Sleep Well Hostel in Brussels, for example, has its own rehearsal rooms where bands or dance
groups can practice during their stay in Belgium. The Equity Point Hostels in Madrid and Barcelona have
their own department to develop art projects. The Poets Hostels in Lisbon and Porto give young writers
all the necessary tools and the good atmosphere to open their poetic skills. The Sir Toby’s Hostel in
Prague, shows new Czech films every week. The Lybeer Travellers Hostel in Bruges organises activities
for the guests weekly, such as “Lasagna” or “Flemish night”, dance evenings and “Create your own art”
project, initiated by Emel Ince, a Turkish girl that works for i-Hostels. «We try to invite people to put
their impressions of the city into creative work, so we provide a table with some materials, such as
drawing paper, pencils, paint, markers, scissors, etc. Then we exhibit the best artworks and display them
on the web», says Emel.

More activities are coming in the next months. On Mondays in February there will be live music at the
Odyssee hostel in Berlin; Lybeer Travellers Hostel in Bruges will organise different exhibitions of pictures;
and artist Bransha will arrange an exhibition of her paintings at the Ruthensteiner Hostel in Vienna.
Thes are only a few things of what i-Hostels offer to the creative traveller. Stay tuned for more
information and events happening soon at an i-Hostel near you.
Come to Europe and design a hostel Room
On the 1st of May 2008,, launched the “i-Decorate” contest, sending young artists, of 18
years and over, all over Europe. We want to give you, as an artist, the chance to make art abroad and
thus expanding your artistic horizons! Send us your ideas or images of your work and maybe you can
travel Europe and bring your artwork alive in one of the i-Hostels. For more information, check www.i-

After registration, you will be added to a participants list, which you can find on
Once you are on that list, the i-Hostels can select you and invite you to decorate one or more of their
rooms. All practical agreements will be made between you and the hostel. Moreover, our contest
guarantees you free accommodation, food and drinks and a refund of the necessary art materials.
Depending on the hostel, a refund of travel expenses and artist fee might be granted.

This is your chance to travel Europe and celebrate your passion for art!

Interview with graffiti painter Waf
Waf is a Graffiti Painter from Belgium. Starting as young street kid, spraying at night, nowadays he
developed his talent into art.

Waf, what does graffiti mean to you?
“Actually if graffiti didn’t exist, I wouldn’t be Waf. Graffiti is my life. When I’m sad or happy for
something, I need to paint. Graffiti is the way to express myself and to externalize my feelings.”

What is for you the connection between travelling and arts?
“I think that if you don’t travel you don’t see the world and your vision will always be superficial.
Travelling is really important to open your mind and to get inspiration to create your own art. In my case
I like to travel a lot, because then I have the opportunity to meet people and to know about different
cultures. This is essential for me to find new ways of painting my graffiti.”

You are going to paint some rooms in the i-Hostel Piccadilly Backpackers in London?
“Yes, I will go there to paint some rooms. It is a great opportunity for me to show my creations to other
travellers. I will go first for 4-5 days. But maybe I’m going to stay a little longer, because I will do also
the stairways. It’s a very a big project and I’m really enthusiastic about it.

What are you going to paint in London?
“I really don’t know. I don’t like to say what I’m going to paint before I have seen the place. First, I want
to see the rooms to get my vibrations and feelings, and then I can decide. As I said before, graffiti is a
way to express myself, I need to feel something to paint. I can’t tell you now what that place will
communicate me. I have to go there to find inspiration.”

What is for you the connection between graffiti and hip hop? “Actually I like classical music and
not hip hop. But yes, there’s a connection. Hip hop comes from the street and also graffiti is from the
street. So this is why they are bounded to each other, but they aren’t the same thing. The first graffiti in
Holland came from the punk, so it was not involved by hip hop. People usually think they are the same
thing. When there is a graffiti jam, for example, they put hip hop music on. This is because the
organizators of the jam think it has to be hip hop, but it is just a habit.”
More information on Waf: and
Some of the upcoming i-Hostels activities:
Period                 Activity                   Hostel                 City
08-04-01 (launched)    i-Decorate: a chance for   All the i-Hostels      Europe
                       artists to travel in
                       Europe and celebrate
                       their passion for art!
08-04-01 (launched)    Band exchange              Sleep Well             Brussels
08-05-09               Triban Tribal -            Nosda Hostel           Cardiff
                       The Triban Tribal DJs
                       play an eclectic worldy
                       mix of Dub Reggae,
                       Beats and Global

08-05-09               4th edition of Poetry   Room Hostel               Rotterdam
                       Slam Jam With young
                       talented Rotterdam Slam
                       Poets and upcoming
                       band "Ming's pretty
08-05-31               Palo Santo – Munich's      Easy Palace            Munich
                       Long Night of Music

08-05                  Expo: Julio Costa's        Gothic point           Barcelona
08-05-28               Concert: Luiz Ode,         Centric Point          Barcelona
                       Brazilian music,
Untill 1st of July     Exhibition of Bransha's    Ruthensteiner Hostel   Vienna
08-06-01               Vespa Tour                 Hostel of the Sun      Naples
08-07-02               Cardiff Castle open air    Nosda Hostel           Cardiff
Autumn 2008            The Literary Bohemian -    Krumlov House          Cesky Krumlov
                       online literary magazine
                       designed for restless

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