The Perfect Place to Stay in Seoul – IP Seoul Boutique Hotel
Written by Jaillan Yehia
For a city of 22 million people, 10 million cars and seemingly a million coffee shops (plus a million and one Gangnam Style souvenirs) Seoul is pretty short on boutique hotels – but Seoul’s original boutique hotel, the IP, is just what you need for a short stop in the city.
IP Boutique Hotel was the South Korean capital’s first foray into the boutique hotel market and it was into its modern and colourful folds that I was welcomed on my recent short trip to the city.
I made IP my Seoul boutique hotel of choice because I wanted somewhere stylish, welcoming and painless to reach after my 11 hour flight on BA’s new direct service from London Heathrow to Incheon, and IP did just what I expected and needed it to do – all 100% stress-free.
Near the stop for one of Incheon’s fleet of airport buses on Walker Hill in the city’s most international district, Itaewon, it’s easy to spot the colourful high rise building you’re headed to even through a fog of jet lag.
Once inside the hotel has everything the weary international traveller needs from comfy plush crisp white linen-covered beds, to free and impeccably reliable wi-fi, an ipad docking station, standard fridge/kettle combo and great views of the city.
Staff are happy to write destinations in Korean on little cards for you to show to taxi drivers, but for your first night you need stumble no further than Itaewon’s well-known International Restaurant Street which has an exhaustive selection of exotic foreign restaurants and bars at which to eat or drink. This probably isn’t the place for the most authentic Korean flavours, but the hotel is sandwiched between the Pakistani and Philippine Embassies after all.
Come morning there’s an impressive breakfast buffet ranging from Korean to European options which you can take at a window overlooking the busy thoroughfare outside. Watch Seoul life pass as you drink your coffee – served in the hotel’s own refined china collection to set you up for your day of serious Seoul searching.
I loved the illustrations over the beds, and the fact that the all the technology worked perfectly first time – not always the case, but hey we are in Korea after all.
The area also makes an easy introduction to the city; part neon-infused Seoul street scene, part ex-pat paradise, it is easy to navigate and is stuffed with shopping possibilities by day and comes alive by night.
There were facilities I’d rather have seen on site than an aesthetics clinic – in fact there are no real bells and whistles here like a pool or spa and the rooms are city-compact – but for a short break in Seoul this doesn’t pose a huge problem, as the city has more than enough to keep you going 24/7 outside the confines of the hotel.
British Airways have recently opened a route between London Heathrow and Seoul’s Incheon Airport. You can also fly to Seoul from London with Korean Airlines and Asiana.
SavoirThere was a guest of IP Boutique Hotel, Seoul
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