Location:   The hotel is located in the Yeongdeungpo district, an area that is closest to the airport compared to other districts in Seoul.  Its location makes it a bit quicker to get to the airport via taxi (50 minutes) since you are cutting down on crosstown traffic.  Although the hotel is not in walking distance to any tourist sites and not considered in the city center, the subway is only a 5 minute walk from the hotel, and taxis are plenty to and from the hotel (and it doesn’t cost that much to get to the tourist sites via taxi). The hotel is also part of a brand new retail complex called Times Square, so the area is really busy during the day with shoppers, but at night, it was quiet with the streets somewhat deserted.

Check In:  The hotel sits above the shopping mall, so although there is a separate street level entrance, you’ll have to take an elevator to get to the lobby, and then another elevator to get to your room.  I checked in at Noon, and my room was ready.  There was never a line for service at the main desk or the concierge, and everyone was extremely friendly and always willing to assist with anything from calling to confirm our tours to providing directions.   The concierge was extremely informative and helpful, too.

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The yummy welcome gift for platinum members included a full sized bottled of wine and a fruit and cheese platter.

Marriott Rewards Benefits:   I received free Wi-Fi internet for the room, complimentary bottled water and access to the concierge lounge.  My welcome gift for platinum status was a full bottle of wine (not one of those airport bottles that you sometimes get) and a cheese platter.  It was sent up to my room immediately and hit the spot since I didn’t have time to grab lunch yet.

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The club lounge was fantastic with the various food offerings (both hot and cold), the open bar, the view, the ability to sit indoors or outside on a patio, and the wonderful staff.

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One evening, I got back from my DMZ tour rather late and was too tired to go out for dinner, so I just went upstairs to the lounge to see if there was still some time to grab a snack. When I arrived, the bar was already closed, and they were putting the food away.  However, the wonderful attendant approached me and asked if she could make me a platter, as they still had the food warming in the back.  She also made me a very nice chees plate, and offered me a glass of wine.  What wonderful service!   Throughout my stay, that service continued each night.   I was always approached and asked if I wanted my wine refilled, and if I wanted anything to eat. The lounge staff anticipated your needs and made sure you knew they were there to serve you. What an excellent staff at this concierge lounge.

seoul hotelCondition of Rooms and Hotel:   The hotel and the rooms were all very new, modern and trendy.   When I arrived, it was quite humid in Seoul for a late October day, and my room was very warm.   Three hours later, the room still did not cool off, and in fact, it had gotten warmer.  The hotel promptly sent an engineer to my room.  He did something to the air conditioner, and in no time, the room cooled off and remained comfortable the rest of the stay.

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A view of the city from the hotel’s concierge lounge.

Would I stay here again?   When I visited Seoul, this hotel was a Category 4 Marriott property making it a great deal.  However, it is now a Category 5 hotel.  Although I had a great stay, I would have to reconsider a future stay at this hotel primarily due to its location.   If it was still a Category 4 hotel, then I would deal with the location and just take taxis and the subway as I did with this stay.  But now as a Category 5 requiring more points for redemption or a higher nightly rate, I would have to reconsider a stay here if I found a hotel of equal quality within walking distance to the tourist sites or nightlife districts.   However, if you don’t mind not being within walking distances to such things, then by all means, stay at this hotel – you will have a fantastic stay, especially if you have access to the executive lounge.

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