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Modal Awarded Hostelworld’s 2021 HOSCAR for Extraordinary Inclusive Hostel

Modal Coffee & Hostel Received International Recognition as the Winner for’s 19th Annual HOSCAR Awards

After only 9 months of operations, Modal, Greenville’s First and only hostel, was awarded a 2021 HOSCAR Award by Hostelworld, the largest hostel OTA (online travel agency). Modal was the only hostel nominated for 2 categories: Extraordinary New Hostel and Extraordinary Inclusive Hostel and was crowned WINNER for Extraordinary Inclusive Hostel on 4.26.21.

For 19 years, the HOSCARs (Hostelworld Customer Annual Ratings) have acknowledged hostels from all four corners of the globe with the highest customer reviews and ratings. This year, with the world in lockdown and travel put on hold, the awards have been restructured to recognize the incredible work hostels have been doing in their communities, and to support the industry, during the global pandemic. 

Representing the USA, Modal Hostel was crowned most EXTRAORDINARY Inclusive Hostel by a panel of expert travel judges and more than 20,000 votes by hostel travelers all around the world.   

After conceiving the Modal concept and embracing his identity, owner & manager, Joe Hindman, recognized a promising yet challenging opportunity of creating a safe place for the LGBTQIA+ community as they travel through his traditionally conservative and non-inclusive city. It became a pillar of the concept to ensure individuals of all faiths, skin color, sexual orientation, and ethnicities were treated with respect and hosted with dignity.

Hindman proactively highlights the property’s inclusivity policies and promotes diversity of all kinds in his space by employing members of the LGBTQIA+ family and hosting neighborhood pop-up markets to support the growing arts & entrepreneur communities. He works with local Pride organizations to cultivate safe events while promoting directly to the members of the queer traveling community that, “Modal has a safe place for the LGBTQIA+ traveler in the South.” During October 2020, Modal hosted a socially distanced drag event for over 150 attendees. In February, the hostel hosted a Pride & Love retreat led by a local life coach and President of the UpstatePride organization. Since opening, Modal has hosted dozens of travelers who identify as queer, non-binary, trans, gay, lesbian, or other – many of whom have expressed sincere gratitude for the inclusivity demonstrated throughout the property.

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Modal won the HOSCARs 2021 Award for EXTRAORDINARY Inclusive Hostel for the intentionality and proactivity in engaging with both local individuals from marginalized communities and working faithfully at creating space for all travelers to feel safe regardless of their differences. Modal has purposefully elevated the hostel experience while maintaining a casual, comfortable, accepting, and safe environment for all of its guests.

Modal boasts 5 guest rooms – 3 dormitory-style shared rooms and 2 private suites, allowing a maximum of 23 guests for overnight accommodations. Together, Joe Hindman and investor, David Stone, have created a truly unique lodging option for the Southeastern United States, complete with an in-house art gallery and public coffee shop serving local craft coffee, pastries, beer & wine. This new concept rests in an underdeveloped area of south downtown where Hindman and Stone hope to bring new vibrancy through intentional community events and business growth. In the first 9 months of operations, the property has hosted over 350 overnight guests from all over the United States as well as Australia, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico and the Czech Republic.

Hostelworld Group, the global hostel-focused online booking platform, inspires passionate travelers to meet The World, and come back with life-changing stories to tell. Hostelworld has more than 13 million reviews across over 17,000 hostels in more than 179 countries, making their brand the leading online hub for social travel. Their website operates in 19 different languages and their mobile app is in 13 languages. 

Nominated alongside Modal included 34 properties from all over the world in countries such as India, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, and the Philippines. In fact, Modal was one of only two hostels nominated from the United States, the other being Ember Hostel in Denver, CO.

“We’re truly fortunate and excited to be showcased among some amazing properties within the global hostel community and shocked we have won this coveted award”  – Joe Hindman

All HOSCAR entries were reviewed in March 2021 by Hostelworld’s panel of judges, including industry professionals from Google and World Nomads along with bloggers such as The Broke Backpacker. The judges have shortlisted 5 hostels for each award, narrowing down to 35 finalists in total.