Okay, let's wrap my Korea story today!
I stayed in 3 different hostels during my trip: Residence EO in Myeongdong (Seoul), The New Day Hostel in Haeunde (Busan), and Yoo's Family Guesthouse in Anguk (Seoul) for Hanok stay experience. I delighted for their service, location, room, and facilities. Totally recommended!
1. Residence EO (https://www.residenceeo.com/)
After a week struggled to find a quite cheap but nice hostel around Myeongdong (those ones with good reviews had fully booked T.T), my brother found Residence EO website. Did a little research on trip advisor and several hostel websites (note: it's an important thing to do), we decided to book the twin room. We made a reservation via e-mail, then filled the reservation form on its website.
The facilities in the room are no joke. Comfortable beds, cable TV, clothes cabinet, air conditioner, floor heater, refrigerator, microwave, mini kitchen (with sink, two cups, and cabinet), drum washing machine (yes, in your room!) and also an ensuite bathroom with shower and toiletries. The rate for twin room is 77.000 won/night (incl. tax). Payment made in cash upon my arrival.
We arrived around 10 am at Myeongdong Station, the map said that I just have to walk around 5 mins from exit #2. Surprisingly, the alley for exit #2 was under renovation, so climbed out the stairs of exit #3 (please be aware you'll find many stairs, without escalator, in Seoul subway station) with my heavy luggage. Thanks God I travelled with my big brother, so he helped me out ^^. It's cold outside with a light raindrops and we lost our way for a minute (send my gratitude to the local boy that helped us found the right path) but we finally managed to find Residence EO! It's true, just 5 mins away :)
map from the web
Mr. Lee (the owner) is a very nice & kind person. After made a payment & dropped our luggage, he said that our room wasn't ready yet. He gave us an advice to grab a meal first at Myeongdong then back around 2 pm (check-in time). So me and my brother were waiting outside while discussing where we have to go to grab our lunch. Just a few minutes later, Mr. Lee opened his door again and welcomed us in, he said that he managed to cleaned up our room early! Mr. Lee, manse! :D
Residence EO doesn't have chairs or sofa on its lobby, just a receptionist desk and shoes locker. The staffs (a young korean woman on morning shift and a foreign man -i don't know where he's come from- on night shift) are very warm and friendly. They always tried to fulfill our needs and answered our questions, also gave suggestions once in a while. I'm sorry for forgetting both of your names >.<
A light breakfast is available from 8 am to 10 am. You can make your own toast with jam and a choice of coffee or tea. One PC is also available at the dining room. During breakfast, I always opened up my map and asked Mr. Lee or his staffs questions about the location of places I wanted to visit that day.
There are some convenience stores and restaurants around this hostel. If you want to go to Namsan Tower, the cable car station is located near the hostel, about 10 mins walk. Unbeatable location! Oh I almost forgot, don't you worry about the internet connection. Wifi available on each floor and you can use it in your room.
I stayed for 5 nights in Residence EO and definitely want to go back on my next visit to Seoul :)
Score: 9 out of 10 (I just can't stand the stairs, esp. when I have to carry my luggage to the 3rd floor T.T and there's no elevator)
2. The New Day Hostel (http://hostelthenewday.com/)I don't know how to express my fav things about this hostel! Tooooooo many!!! So here's the list:
- Super great location! Several footsteps away from Haeunde Station exit #1, probably just 30 seconds away. Convenience store, shopping mall, restaurants are around the hostel. 10 mins walk to Haeunde beach!
- Super friendly staffs! Good english, warm smile, give their best to cater our needs. Don't hesitate to ask them for any Busan things, they'll be gladly to tell the story.
- Clean and simple rooms! The hostel was just opened for a few months when I arrived (last summer I think, but correct me if I'm wrong), so the furniture and everything still on a very good condition. I stayed on their twin rooms with an ensuite bathroom. They only have an ensuite bathroom in twin room. Clothes hanger, mini cabinet, TV cable, air conditioner, floor heater, and wifi are available in the room.
- A spacious lobby with chairs and magazines, a modern kitchen to make your breakfast (toast, eggs, coffee and tea are available during breakfast time)
- And the last one is my most favorite place in this hostel, they have a very big common room on the 7th floor of the building (the hostel located on the 5th floor) and A ROOFTOP GARDEN! A VERY VERY BEAUTIFUL ONE! I always eat my breakfast at this common room while downloaded some movies (the internet connection speed on this area is unbelievably fast!) and prepared my itinerary for the day. Washing room, drying room, toilets, books, PC, board game, even guitar and piano are available in this common room.
I love this map!
where to go today? :)
pretty pretty pretty
a view from the top
I stayed for 2 nights in this hostel. 10% deposit payment was needed when I booked the room (using credit card), the rest were paid by cash when I arrived. This hostel also have single rooms, family rooms (for 3/4 people), and dorm rooms (6/8/10 beds).
The rate for twin room with ensuite bathroom is 60.000 won/night on weekdays, 70.000 won/night on weekend, and 100.000 won/night during peak season.
There's another reason to visit Busan in the future beside its beautiful Haeunde beach: to stay at this hostel again! :)
Score: 10 out of 10 ^^
3. Yoo's Family Hanok Guest House (http://www.yoosfamily.com/eng/sub08/a1.html)
Hanok stay experience! It's on my to do list during my trip to Korea. There are lots of Hanok guest houses around Anguk. After doing some research (once again I warned you.. it's important! haha), I dedided to book a room at Yoo's Family Guest House. Yoo's Family have 2 branches in Anguk, Byeolhadang and Yeorumjip. I booked a room for two people at Byeolhadang branch (the newest one).
The rate for Room of Wealth is 70.000 won/night. Cash payment is expected upon arrival.
We moved from Residence EO hostel in Myeongdong to Yoo's Family Guest House on Sunday afternoon. Our taxi driver helped us to locate the guest house. He called the guest house (what a kind ahjussi :D) and the staff agreed to pick us up at the main road across Changdeok Palace.
welcome to yoo's family!
please mind our messy room ;p
The room is quite small. There's a cabinet, clothes hanger, and two sets of korean traditional bed. Air conditioner, floor heater (ondol), and wifi are available in the room. There's no ensuite bathroom on this hostel. They have 2 shared bathrooms and one of them is located next to our room, so it's not a problem at all :)
Like any other guest house or hostel, light breakfast of toast, coffee, and tea are available in the dining room.
Me and my brother were dying to taste a bowl of jjangmyeon since our first day arrived in Seoul, but we couldn't found a chinese restaurant easily (we always end up eating korean foods). In the end, we ordered two sets of jjangmyeon and had our lunch at the guest house (with Yoo's Family staff helped of course ^^). It felt like homeeeeeeee....
Score: 9 out of 10 (the room is too small to stay for too long, but I think most of korean tradional room aren't that big).
대한민국... 보고시퍼써... T.T