Minutes away from downtown Seoul, Myeongdong and Itaewon districts on top of Mount Namsan, the stately Grand Hyatt Seoul has been a fixture of the capital city’s landscape for over four and a half decades. An urban retreat that is perfect whether you are travelling solo or with family, for business or leisure, this Grand Dame of Seoul hospitality has everything to offer in a trip to its city
Seoul is slated to be the next host of the 50 Best Restaurants 2024 awards come March. As a capital city and backdrop to many mesmerising TV shows that put South Korea and K-pop culture on the global map, Seoul isn’t short of its own F&B representation which – alongside a thriving K-beauty and cosmetic industry – has lured many foreign tourists to its shores.
In addition, the South Korean government recently announced the greenlighting of its Digital Nomad visa which allows foreigners to remote work in South Korea (for a foreign company) for up to a year.
It would seem that the popularity train for Seoul is yet to slow down in 2024. If you are looking to visit the city during one of the most festive times of the year in Asia, the seollal or the Lunar New Year which is happening on February 10 in 2024 – one of our recommendations for staying would be the Grand Hyatt Seoul.
This grand hotel consists of 616 guest rooms that include 54 suites. All feature floor-to-ceiling windows, modern decor and a splendid panoramic view of the Seoul skyline and the Han River in the distance. If you were here during the 2024 New Year countdown, count yourself lucky with some of the best views of the city and its celebrations.
Grand Hyatt Seoul is an 18-acre property that owes its unique views from its perch on Mount Namsan – it is only an hour’s drive away from Incheon International Airport. From its establishment, Itaewon with its many boutiques and cafes, and historic Gwanghwamun district in which stands Gyeongbokgung Palace, is only a stone’s throw away by car. (Don’t attempt going between places on foot unless it is to visit some smaller F&B establishments downhill from its location – even then, it is quite a workout!)
Though it may seem as if you have arrived at one of the casino hotels in Macau, once inside, the Grand Hyatt Seoul is decorated in a classy, modern style, and exude intricate Korean charm in its details.
If you stay in one of its Grand Executive Suites, you will find yourself in a space you are happy to go back to after a day of shopping or business meetings. A spacious walk-in closet right by the front door allows you to stow away and organise your luggage neatly before walking into the separate living room. The bedroom is separated by a wall with a built-in television and two sliding doors on opposite ends of the TV set, ensuring privacy if needed. A generous en-suite bathroom with a tub and separate shower and toilet is part of the makeup of the room.
If you find yourself spending more time in the common facilities such as the lobby lounge or best known as The Gallery, you are in for a treat. Floor-to-ceiling windows of a different magnitude showcase the sweeping Seoul cityscape and if you come at the right time of the day, a live band of musicians set a classy mood for visitors the moment they step into the building (daily from 1:30 PM to 4:15 PM and Tuesday – Sunday from 7:00 PM to 10:45 PM). Until February 29, it is serving up a special promo of Strawberry Sérénade Afternoon Tea.
On the topic of meals, the Grand Hyatt Seoul provides a feast for guests who don’t want to venture out of the property to look for some nourishment. The hotel boasts ten dining and entertainment venues. Their Japanese restaurant Kauri, especially, is an intimate affair with counter seats where you can see master sushi chefs put their masterpieces together, or you can opt to be seated by the windows with a view of downtown Seoul in the distance. Fresh and artfully displayed, Kauri redefines fine dining as an artful endeavour, and there is the option for a customised experience too.
From intimate to elaborate feasting, their outdoor pool area hosted its Poolside Barbeque during warmer weather times on Wednesday – Sunday from 7:00 PM to 9:30 PM. Its range of offerings is as sumptuous as you can imagine, from seafood to meats of all kinds. An elaborate salad bar is also nicely presented for the vegetarians among us.
Their spa comes with a gym and pool, and perhaps the city’s biggest 24-hour fitness complex, Club Olympus, with indoor and outdoor pools, squash and tennis courts. There is even an outdoor ice rink depending on the season. If you get the option, get your reservation with clubhouse privileges where you can enjoy your breakfast in tranquillity with ample options.
In short, at Grand Hyatt Seoul you get the best of many worlds – an hour away from the international airport and minutes away from the hottest districts – with the plushest of facilities and accommodations. For such a large-scale operation, it doesn’t lack in personable care from the hotel staff. The experience at this five-star hospitality giant should yield another star for its meticulousness and international standards.
Also see: ‘Revenge travel’ continues in 2024