Presenting Masha Vasilyeva and her mother Tamara Petrovna, homestay hosts on the Vasilyevsky Island, St. Petersburg.

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See my new
Saint Petersburg homestay from Masha & Tamara Petrovna

"Apartment Hostel" for $20 from one of Masha's friends


Masha's mother Tamara Petrovna. "Petrovna" is her patronymic, and you are expected to address your seniors by either name plus patronymic, or by adding "Tyotya" or "Dyadya" (aunt and uncle, accordingly) before their first name, often in diminutive form..  Name + patronymic is for the city and professional people while the aunt/uncle/babushka/dedushka form of address is more common to the country folk..



More pictures!!


From Uncle Pasha's Notice Board

I just returned from a two week excursion through St.Petersburg and Russia. I stayed in a well located part of the city called Vasiliyevsky island with Maria and her mother. The apartment was well kept and had an easy landmark to use to identify it from anywhere in the city (LenExpo). I would recommend their apartment to anyone over a hotel. Maria was well informative about the city and things to do. I will be more than happy to answer any questions future guest have of the my stay or the apartment through email. My stay was a memorable one due to my stay with her and her mother.

newyorkartist4 [at]
hotmail [dot] com


The kitchen also serves as the dining area.

The entrance hall.


What guest say about staying with Masha and her mom Tamara

Let me reproduce Masha's letter with minimal editing:


Hello Uncle Pasha!

My name is Maria (Masha) Vasilyeva, I am Asia's friend. We met 6 day ago at Asia's.

Let me tell you some words about me and my mother.

At present I live with my mother in a big 3 rooms apartment in the house  built in 1953 during Stalin period.  My friends call me Marussia or Masha. I and my mother are engaged in homestay during 9 years. We meet our guests from all over the word.  [What's the price? From what I know of the St. Petersburg market I recommend $25/person and perhaps $35/couple, perhaps even more if you throw city tours in an otherwise do your marketing right.. - Pasha]

I finished University of Culture and Art, and worked as a guide for 3 years (me and my friends from University will be glad to be your guide in exploring S-Petersburg's art and architecture, we are professionals), now I'm a manager in a tourist company.

I speak English and French, my mother communicates with guests very well using a dictionary and a phrase-book, and cooks wonderful breakfast. Now she is a housewife but before her retirement she was an art designer [which is a fancy Russian term for home decorator - pv].

Since my childhood I've been bringing up in creative surroundings that helped to form a special taste. I myself worked out the design of my own apartment.

I like travelling, get some impressions from life, meet new friends. I m interested in painting, I like impressionists and Spanish artists of the 17-18th century very much, which are widely represented in the Hermitage. In architecture I'm attracted to modern style, baroque, eclecticism. One can find all of these styles in architecture of Petersburg.

The apartment itself is situated on Vasiliyevsky island (historical centre of Petersburg of the 18th century.). One can reach the centre itself (the modern centre of the City), the Hermitage and Nevsky prospekt by public transit in 15 minutes. 

Of these 3 rooms, 2 rooms are available for rent. One of this is a special room for romantic couples. You can see the Finnish Gulf (Baltic sea) out of the window and a  beautiful sunset. Fresh air and silence are guaranteed. 

I like my apartment, my neighbourhood, and my city. Hope that my guests will enjoy their trip to St. Petersburg and their stay with us.

Please write to, or call to 322-38-38
. From Moscow you dial 8-812-322-3838, and from abroad +7-812-322-3838.


Address: [Removed to keep people from showing up without prior arrangement, and this will happen a couple of times a year if you leave your address out in the open. - Pasha]


More accommodation offers
from Masha's babushka friends

Tetya Luba
Telephone deleted on request
$20-25 per person or couple, Vasilyevsky Island.
Next door to a $100+ hotel (Pribaltiyskaya).
You can contact her by e-mail or telephone via Maria (see above).

Tetya Larisa
Telephone deleted on request
$20-25 per person or couple, Vasilyevsky Island
Speaks fluent French!!
Write her via her friend Maria (above). 


RAISA ALEXANDROVNA  ..Yet another one of Masha's babushka neighbours got seduced into availing her apartment to foreigners. Same building on Vasilyevsky by the Bay of Finland. One large room and kitchen. Asking for 40 Euros per night. Soviet-style interior (wallpaper with flowers, lots of rugs).  Telephone: 322-0755, Russian only, or call/write Masha at  / (+7-812) 322-38-38   


Please note that the babushkas above are NOT professionally into the hospitality business. Their "services" will be on the clumsy side. Please either pay $150 at least for a properly managed hotel room, or reduce your expectations. - pv



Fast response time! Only Roxana beat her by responding within an hour but hers is an entirely different luxury apartment corner of the market. I stayed with Masha's mother in July 2005 myself and found the whole arrangement OK. If not to say more. Misunderstanding with prices, when Tamara would give different figures than Maria, have been sorted out. Yes, as of October 2005 the prices are as indicated below, $25/person and $35/couple. As far as I'm concerned I will make this offer "recommended". No, this is not a "homestay with a soul" but tell me who will remain genuinely welcoming after years of dealing with travellers? I turned into a card-carrying misanthrope. Maria and her mother developed a plastic smile. Seems better than growling at guests and praising dictators who banned travel altogether into their faces they way I do, doesn't it? Keep things in perspective and if you are looking for cheap functional accommodation and don't mind something being just a tiny bit off in their air, go for it. Can't go wrong for $25/night. - Pasha

Attention vegetarian travellers: This host does have experience catering to vegetarian travellers. No, they will not shove sausage into your mouth saying that it is not meat and that unless you eat it vitamin deficiency is your only option in this life. Masha's place, from what I understand, is a few steps away from Chintamani, a good and cheap vegetarian cafe. 6th line of Vasilyevski Ostrov, building 15, tel. 8-812-325-2214.... More St. Petersburg vegetarian stuff More St. Petersburg vegetarian stuff  My "dacha", perhaps the only vegetarian establishment between Moscow and St. Petersburg: Dacha & Horses ~ Staritsa, Tver region ~ Vegetarian menu at Uncle Pasha's (Russian only for the moment but will soon be translated).. Added Jan. 28, 2007.


The living room. Please notice the computer. Yes, you can easily check e-mail from us. No need to battle the elements on your way to the nearest Internet cafe..




Even more pictures and stories!!


What guest say about staying with Masha and her mom Tamara


About Vasilyevsky Island





"Apartment Hostel" for $20 from one of Masha's friends




And last but not least, a fully equipped washroom. Yes, you are allowed and encouraged to use the washer.


More pictures!!


This page will not be updated.
See my new
Saint Petersburg homestay from Masha & Tamara Petrovna

And now this commercial from Uncle Pasha:

Horseback rides and trip in the hills over the Volga between Moscow and St. Petersburg. Little travelled and authentic.

No "foreigner" prices. Ruins and catacombs, rafting, free Russian conversation practice.

A complimentary bag of manure to every guest!!

Small town and villages between Moscow & St. Petersburg: Also the Golden Ring cities, Ryazan, and a few other places. The site is based on the author's own travels.