This Is Not Your Typical Dog Friendly Hostel

This special blog post is sponsored by The Heinsman Guest House located in Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA. We received free accommodations in exchange for an honest review of their establishment. However, all opinions, negative and positive, are our own.

In over ten years of traveling, I admit it…we have never stayed at a hostel with our dogs. I was under the impression that hostels were dirty, not private and overwhelming for introverts like myself. When you have two large dogs as well, I also thought that they would not be welcome at hostels. So I was surprised to find a dog friendly and beautiful hostel right in Chattanooga, Tennessee called The Heinsman Guest House.

“The Heinsman Guest House, affectionately called “Heiney House”, boasts a beautifully refinished hostelry built in 1902. During Prohibition times, the home was used as a secret “Good Time” house where guests would sneak a drink (or two!). Still now, we love to host a good time for our guests through a unique stay with big adventures”, The Heinsman Guest House website states.

Located in the bustle of the center of the city, guests can easily access sites such as Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium, Bessi Smith Cultural Center, Miller Plaza Pavilion, or the local watering hole, The Bitter Alibi, all within a half-mile or less.

The first night of our arrival, I walked right over the the Bitter Alibi and got take out.  It was awesome! They even had vegan options for us.

I looked online at the rooms and scrolled through endless pictures and whatever I could find about the place online. That being said, I still had my doubts that a hostel would work for us. I was totally wrong.

After a long day of driving from Tampa, Florida, we arrived at The Heinsmans Guest House late in the evening. But beforehand, we were sent instructions on where to park and it was easy, breezy. The parking lot in fact was just a few steps away from the front door. This made it easy to carry in our luggage and our dog beds. We brought Brickle and Fruitycake inside the room and then unloaded the few groceries we had into the community fridge. There is also a fridge in each room, and a television for when you aren’t out and about exploring Chattanooga.
You have your choice of room configurations. With two big dogs, I think that I would choose a bigger room on our next visit. Multiple bathrooms are found on every floor, and the shared guest kitchen and separate laundry room are easily accessed on the first floor.  Each room is outfitted for 1-4 guests. Some rooms have an additional sink space.

One of the great things about hostels is the affordability factor. Since we are in-between homes right now, we are on the road full-time and staying at what dog friendly spots we can find. Airbnb’s are great too, but expensive. Cleaning fees and strict rules sometimes present a problem. I loved The Heinsman Guest House for its laid back vibe and safe entrance with codes for entering and a separate code for your room in addition to its affordable nightly rate.

If you are in introvert like me, you may panic when you hear “shared spaces”. It was actually doable, even for me! There was a large living area with a TV, big table and huge couches. There was hardly anyone ever using it, so we had it to ourselves. It was hard not to let the dogs on the furniture, so I brought my own blanket to lay on the chair for Fruitycake to sit in as respect.

If you have never stayed at a hostel with your dog, this is a great introduction. However, The Heinsman Guest House sets the bar very high. Don’t expect all hostels to be this friendly, clean or private. But do expect that hostels are typically more affordable and nicer to us dog people than hotels.

Here are Brickle and Fruitycake’s favorite things about The Heinsman Guest House:

Welcoming to dogs of any size or breed.

Friendly hosts that smile when they see dogs and even say hello!

Comfortable accommodations with a fridge in each room for the snacks. All the snacks.

Being able to walk right from your room to dog friendly spots in Chattanooga to explore the town.

A laundry room for the persons to keep their clothes clean so that don’t smell too bad.

Private showers for the persons to also keep the smell down in the plush surroundings of the guest house.

A front porch for person watching and seeing the sunsets each night.

Would we recommend The Heinmans Guest House to our followers and readers, friends and family? Without question. You may be used to one way of traveling like we were in the RV or in hotels or Airbnb’s. But for a weekend, see what the bark is all about at The Heinsman Guest House. And tell them 2 Traveling Dogs sent you!

The Heinsman Guest House
821 Houston Street
Chattanooga, TN 37403
(423) 822-8484