What is the best way to travel to a new city?

You’re traveling the country looking for the ultimate place to stay which can show you how to experience the local culture. You are not sure if you want to stay in a hotel or have a more insider experience at a hostel from a local champion host who can show you the city.

Where do I stay at that can host me with a great experience and show me some fun local spots?

Oh, you’re are in just the right spot, friend!

That’s where we come in!

We are James Black and Bobby Dyer, cofounders of ITH Hostels. Ever since an early age, we have always had a passion for hosting and a love for travel but weren’t sure how we could combine the two.

After meeting each other while working at another hostel in San Diego, we knew we could help travelers with a better experience during their trip to San Diego. After over a year of searching on craigslist for a potential property, we found the perfect spot, and ITH Hostels was born!

We believe that traditional accommodations leave out the most important parts of your journey: the chance to open your mind and experience the world through another traveler’s eyes. 

Our sustainably driven communal lodging strives to educate each guest in the walk of life that we call hosteling. Open your mind by meeting world travelers and learning new cultural practices of how people live in their communities. Look beyond the hostels as a simple place of rest, and embrace the unique experience you’re about to be immersed in.  

Creating a global family, one traveler at a time.

ITH Hostels Founders


Our values

Sustainable Lodging
We all share this spaceship we call home. Our team puts environmental well-being at the top of priority list.
Breaking Cultural Barriers
Travel is about expanding your mind and releasing your misconceptions. We create fertile ground to do just that.
Unique Hosted Experience
Our guests are our family, and we treat them that way. Meals, laughs, and adventures shared together.

The ITH Hosts

James Headshot Fpo

James Black

CoFounder & CEO

Tiverton, Rhode Island

Bobby Headshot Test Fpo

Bobby Dyer

CoFounder & CMO

Tampa, Florida

David Gonzalez Ith Hostels

David Gonzalez

Managing Partner – Operations

Dominican Republic

Steven Best Ith Hostels

Steve Best

Managing Partner – HR & Operations

Melbourne, Australia

Our history

  • 2010
    Purchased Sailboat & Began Our Dream
  • 2012 - August
    Founded International Travelers House
  • 2012 - October
    Opened CoLive Residences
  • 2013 - August
    Opened Elysium Cabin
  • 2014 - April
    Opened Mountain Adventure Lodge
  • 2014 - July
    Opened Farm House
  • 2017 - March
    Opened Mudville Flats
  • 2017 - April
    Opened Beach Bungalow Surf Hostel
  • 2017 - November
    2017 Opened Captain's House

2010 Planning Begins

After hosting travelers for a few years and working at in the hostel industry, James and Bobby saw an opportunity to bring American Hostels to another level. We bought a sailboat to live on and save money while we began laying out the foundation.

2012 Founded International Travelers House

Our first location was the Adventure Hostel in Downtown San Diego in a small Victorian house. Our passion for hosting and the unique experiences we guided guests on provided on with early success and we never looked back.

2012 Opened CoLive Residences

After selling out on our 3rd day of operating the hostel, we realized that the travelers never wanted to leave. We had many guests looking for long term accommodation to learn english or just establish their roots in San Diego so we opened our CoLive Residences.

2013 Opened Elysium Cabin

As an Adventure Hostel, we wanted to showcase everything California had to offer. We purchased a cabin in Big Bear Lake and began shuttling guests between the beaches of San Diego and the mountains of Big Bear Lake.

2014 Opened Mountain Adventure Lodge

Our passion for the hosting guests in the mountain continued to grow, so we decided to open a hostel in Big Bear where we could entertain and host more travelers.

2014 Opened Farm House

With San Diego booming, we felt the need to provide our guests with a variety of lodging experiences. Our Farm House offered a large garden with chickens where travelers could stay at and enjoy a peaceful nights rest.

2017 Opened Mudville Flats

The Mudville Flats in Newport, Rhode Island was our first east coast project and included a fully operating restaurant and bar. The building was location on Cardines field and provided guests with a comfortable accommodation in the heart of Newport.

2017 Opened Beach Bungalow Surf Hostel

Our dream to operate a beach hostel came true when we took over the operations of the Beach Bungalow Hostel. Since the inception, we have been restoring an iconic hostel and creating the ultimate backpacker oceanfront surf hostel.

2017 Opened Captain's House

Growing demand in the Downtown San Diego market grabbed our attention and we created our Captain's House location at the Adventure Hostel. The building is fully renovated and offers a premium facilities for business travelers and backpackers.