Hygenie complaints at a Napier hostel have sparked a debate about whether it is unacceptable, or simply a part of the budget accommodation experience.

Several people who have stayed at the Criterion Art Deco Backpackers, housed in one of the Napier's heritage buildings, have posted on social media in recent weeks about their disgust at how grubby it is.

Rooms at the Criterion range from $29 a night to stay in a triple/quad dorm, to $116 for a family room.

One visitor, Linda Ingham from Australia, who stayed in the hostel for three days, said the state of the place put a dampener on the rest of her weekend visiting her friend.

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She told Hawke's Bay Today she had spoken to residents who had issues with bed bugs, in multiple different rooms.

She had also seen mould in the shower and dirt all through the extractor fan. When she arrived the curtains in her room was not hung properly and the kitchen was filthy, she said.

She paid roughly $270 for three nights in the hostel.

The fridge/freezer at the Criterion Art Deco Backpackers. Photo / Supplied
The fridge/freezer at the Criterion Art Deco Backpackers. Photo / Supplied

Another person who stayed at the hostel posted on Facebook saying the management should have communicated with people checking in about the bed bug problem so they could decide whether to stay or not.

Acting Manager of the hostel Pretty Sini said she would be happy to give a refund to anyone who had bed bugs, but had only been asked by one woman, who Sini said did not have any proof of bites, so had been refused.

She said the hostel's kitchen was cleaned four times a day, but given it is a communal kitchen where any of the guests are allowed to cook in, it was impossible to keep it perfectly clean all the time.

She said they were in the process of closing down the hostel, with plans to turn it into a hotel rather than a backpackers.

Sini said she has only been in charge of the place for two weeks.

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Another resident at the hostel, who did not want to be named, said he did not have a issue with the cleanliness of the place.

The top of one of the showers at the Criterion Art Deco Backpackers. Photo / Supplied
The top of one of the showers at the Criterion Art Deco Backpackers. Photo / Supplied

He said it was a hostel, so people were not paying a lot of money to stay there and therefore shouldn't expect five-star service.

Hawke's Bay Today paid a random visit to the hostel on Wednesday and found the kitchen was in a clean state.

A spokesperson for Napier City Council confirmed it had received a complaint about the hostel.

The hostel at the centre of a debate about hygiene. Photo / Paul Taylor
The hostel at the centre of a debate about hygiene. Photo / Paul Taylor

"Our Environmental Health team has acted on the complaint and visited the premises as part of our responsibilities under the Health Act 1956."

"NCC is working with the owner to ensure they understand the requirements under the Act and will follow up with further visits to ensure there is no health risk to the public."