In this report, we’ll check into a mid-range Seoul hotel that offers clean, contemporary accommodations in a very central location.
Welcome to Hotel Manu.
IMPORTANT!: This review does not reflect any changes to hotel facilities, check-in procedures, operating hours etc. that may have been introduced after my January 2020 stay due to the ongoing global health emergency.
Hotel name : Hotel Manu (호텔마누)
Link : Official Site
Address : 19, Toegye-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Date of stay : 27-28 January 2020 (1 night)
Room type : Standard Twin
Room rate : KRW 83,600
Hotel Manu is located in Jung-gu, which is about as central as you can get in Seoul (“Jung-gu” literally means “Central District”).
Of course, in a city as vast as this, it’s impossible to find a location that’s “central” for all purposes. Any address will be close to some attractions but far from others. That said, I always base myself in Jung-gu or neighbouring Jongno-gu whenever I visit Seoul, since (A) they’re chock-a-block with the sort of landmarks I’m interested in and (B) they’re both laced with metro lines.
There’s good access to public transport in this corner of the city, with Seoul Station (KORAIL / AREX / Subway Line 1 / Subway Line 4) to the west and Hoehyeon Station (Subway Line 4) to the east. Both are within an easy walk of the hotel by way of Seoullo 7017: a former elevated roadway converted into a pedestrian-only linear park.
Needless to say, there’s no universal definition of what constitutes an “easy walk”. It’s important to stress that even though Hotel Manu is close, by my standards, to the two stations mentioned earlier, it’s not exactly right next to one or the other. Travellers who need to stay in the immediate vicinity of a metro station might have to look elsewhere.
A footbridge connects Hotel Manu’s lobby entrance – on the building’s second floor – directly to Seoullo 7017.
There’s also a street-level entrance on the east side of the building. Note that the hotel lobby is one floor above, so you’ll need to take the lift up to access the reception desk.
Staying at the hotel
The hotel lobby is contiguous with SEOULISTA, a café/pub/restaurant that occupies the building’s first two floors. (You can see part of the dining area in the background of the first image below.)
After checking in, I boarded one of the lifts and moved up to my assigned floor.
I booked a twin room even though I was travelling solo. One bed for sleeping, the other for spreading luggage out on as I repack ahead of my homeward flight. 🙂
In any event, Hotel Manu doesn’t have single rooms; the smallest on offer are doubles.
The bedside table is fitted with a telephone and a control panel for the room lights. Slide-out surfaces on either side provide additional space for small articles.
The spacious desk is fitted with the usual conveniences: mirror, lamp, flat-screen TV, power outlets, and a small refrigerator (empty save for two complimentary bottles of water). There’s also a beverage set consisting of a hot water kettle, cups, metal stirrers, and sachets of tea and coffee.
The control panel for the air conditioner is mounted on the wall, next to an emergency torch.
The ensuite bathroom is fitted with a smart toilet and a glass-walled shower stall.
There’s a spacious closet in the entrance hall, just outside the bathroom. A concealed door built into one side (behind the robe in the following picture) allows one to access the closet’s contents from within the bathroom – i.e., without having to step into the hall.
If you need to have any clothes laundered, you’ll find empty bags and laundry forms in one of the closet drawers.
That’s pretty much it for the room interiors.
Now let’s take a peek through the window and see what the view is like.
Next to the window, you’ll see a device commonly found in Korean hotel rooms: an emergency escape harness.
I can’t be bothered to explain … so I’ll let this YouTube video (not mine!) do the explaining for me. 🙂
I stayed only one night at the hotel, and left very early the following morning. This didn’t give me much of an opportunity to try out the hotel’s various facilities.
The official website mentions a gym and a spa, but I’m not certain if the information provided there (especially re: hours/services) has been updated to reflect changes due to the ongoing global health emergency.
A clean, modern, well-equipped facility, with good access to public transport. The immediate neighbourhood isn’t particularly interesting, but a walk or short subway ride is all it takes to reach many of central Seoul’s key tourist attractions and shopping districts.
Overall, I was satisfied with my stay at Hotel Manu and will be happy to book a room there again if the location suits my future travel plans.