The Stanford Hotel is in a business district of Seoul, specifically located near the DMC, or Digital Media City, where the major broadcasters are congregating in bespoke new buildings. As such it is convenient for people (like me) working with broadcasters, but a sterile zone for tourists - it could be a media park in any part of the world - and thus not recommended for a holiday stay. There are plenty of hotels downtown, including some fun boutique hotels at reasonable prices.
The Stanford is just too far away. It has a shuttle bus running to the subway station, but it is hardly instant, and is never waiting at the subway to bring residents back to the hotel (note, there is a taxi rank in the gas station beside one of the subway exits). The walk is about 25 minutes one-way, and along a dreary road beside a railway line.
The rooms are OK, hardly 4-star and above, but clean. Several colleagues had problems with the air-conditioning, and there is no minibar. As of May 2014, there is a massive development going on opposite, with 24-hour building, which is tiresome if your room faces it. Theoretically, there are sound-meters on the hoardings, to limit noise levels, but in practice it requires to know the acceptability limit, see it has been exceeded, and then ring up to complain, which is hardly ideal.
The restaurant buffet is fine, mostly Western, but limited, and remained the same selection throughout our visit.
The bar is in the basement, and lacks any atmosphere - it was largely empty during our visit. The wifi is free but slow, which is frustrating to the business user. The shop is very small and for small items you've forgotten only (toiletries, milk etc.).
Essentially, the hotel lacks any competition in the immediate area - I suspect that the moment a decent international hotel chain opens its doors in the DMC, the Stanford will either raise its game considerably, or disappear.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Stanford Hotel Seoul opened in the Digital Media City of Sangam-dong, Seoul on October 28,2011.Stanford Hotel Seoul is located in the Digital Media City, the center of IT and entertainment. It is conveniently located within 30 minites from the center of Seoul, KINTEX, Yeouido, Gimpo Airport, and Incheon International Airport. Stanford Hotel Seoul is a 12-story business hotel with 239 rooms and suites, state of the art banquet halls for any occasion from corporate meetings to weddings, sigmature restaurants and bars, and a fitness center that occupies an entire floor. ... more less
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