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“I really wanted to like the hotel but fell short” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel The Designers Samseong

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Hotel The Designers Samseong
3.5 of 5 Boutique Hotel   |   9, Teheran-ro 79-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul 135-877, South Korea   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #119 of 399 Hotels in Seoul
3.5 of 5 stars 55 Reviews
Bellevue, Washington, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“I really wanted to like the hotel but fell short”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2013

I stayed here for 5 days for conference at Coex. I read all the good reviews and decided that this will fit my bill perfectly since fancy exterior, restaurants in hotel, and other extras were not important to me. I was open-minded but also had high expectation. However, the hotel was disappointing overall. I paid extra to get the larger suite. First the good. Price was about 1/3 to 1/2 of Intercontinental Hotel at Coex. Location was mixed bag since front door was in the alley, but it was easy walking distance to Coex and I enjoyed the walks. Hotel had free bicycle for guest use which I made good use with biking path to Han River close-by. Staff was relatively friendly and helpful. Room was indeed interior designed and had character. Room was large and bed was comfortable. Bath tub was large and I made good use of it. Room had 120 volt US outlet for my laptop and charger. Now the bad. The biggest gripe that I had was the odor in the bathroom. It smelled like Seoul subway station bathroom. I mentioned the odor to the staff every day for 3 consecutive days and odor remained same, and I eventually gave up. My request to change room was declined with explanation that the hotel was full with conference. It soured my entire stay at the hotel. Second problem with the hotel is the lack of window. I initially didn't think it was problem, but eventually claustrophobia and gloominess set in after couple of days. I tried the breakfast on the first day, and I didn't think it was worth the 15,000 won it cost. I tried to really like the hotel, but the bad especially the bathroom odor made the overall stay unpleasant, and I don't think I would recommend this hotel to others.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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55 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    16
    6
    1
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Russian first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2013 via mobile

I am now in Room 711. My friends and I hate this hotel and will not stay here again.

The only good thing is the location. The rest is absolutely crap. Don't be fooled by the somewhat fancy exterior and nicely decorated rooms. When you walk into the lobby, you'd be greeted with a scent that smells like toilet detergent. When you get to your floor, you'll smell this overpowering pungent scent. Both smells made us sick.

The level of cleanliness is bad. We accidentally spilled some coke on one of the beds and realised the next day that the hotel staff just made the beds without changing the sheets - coz the stains were still there. As for the floor, i'm not even sure it's cleaned - I spotted a few strands of hairs in one corner on my 3rd night here and it was very very obvious the corner had no contact with a cleaning device for sometime... I don't even want to think about the bathroom and toilet .... oh, and overall, the room is dusty.

Bathroom design is flawed. We had to put our shampoo and shower gel on the floor because there was no tray or ledge where we could put the stuff. How stupid is that?!

The staff were unhelpful too. It was raining like mad this evening and we asked the staff to get a taxi for us. The answer was "cannot call" (in Korean). What the hell is that?! I've never heard of a hotel that refuses to get a cab for a guest!

My friends and I have, collectively, come to Seoul at least 100 times in the last 7 years. We have stayed at quite a number of hotels esp in the Gangnam area and we have rarely, if ever, sworn off a hotel almost immediately. We picked Hotel The Designers because it was a relatively new hotel but it has been a disappointing experience.

Never again.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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The Hague, The Netherlands
Top Contributor
144 reviews 144 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2013

Seoul is a big city and I chose this hotel because it its within walking distance of COEX Congress and trade centre. When you arrive with the metro (exit Samseong) it may be a bit hard to find the first time, because it its in a small street. So don't forget to take name and address, preferably in Korean, with you. The rooms are small, hardly place for a suitcase, but it has airco, mini fridge with complimentary water and sparkling drinks but no alcohol. The hotel bar doesn't sell alcohol and is not open at night. The breakfast is half Asian and half European, not very fancy. The beds are good but some might find the mattress a bit too hard. My room had a combined bathtub and shower without curtain, a toilet with all kinds of futuristic extras like automatic flush. The shampoo etc. was hidden behind the mirror. All rooms are no smoking, so it surprised me to find not only a water cooker in the cupboard, but an ashtray and matches too. Despite some of the negatives, I would not hesitate to book this hotel again, just because it its so different from the well known hotel chains.

Room Tip: The suites are bigger, but some have a bathtub in the bedroom. Visit the website for pictures of the...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

This is such a little gem in the heart of Gangnum. Service is excellent and rooms are great. What must be mentioned is the toilet technology!! Only in a techno crazy country such as Korea could you find something akin to a smart toilet - will leave the rest for you to explore!!

Room Tip: If you want one of the designer rooms, make sure to mention that in your booking. The cost is sligh...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2013

Booked a deluxe room which was like a box with a small window covered by mirrored glass making the room very dark. Paint work scuffed and on check in quite dusty.Good bathroom and comfortable beds. 2 days later, I changed to a suite which was much better although still dark. Nice staff and central location.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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santiago
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2013

This hotel looks brand new, with lots of tech details in the room.
Check in and out was easy.
Bedroom was small but OK for a couple. There was a laptop in the room with internet conection. The air conditioning system was on the ceiling. I didnt use it by night, but guess this might be an issue because it has a bright blue light when its on.
The bathroom had an open shower and it was rather messy because water was all over the place.
Safe box and electric kettle in the room. Bring your own coffee.
The location is ideal for COEX, but very far away from the touristic areas of Seoul. Subway can take between 40-50 minutes, easy ride.
Locating the hotel is rather tricky so follow this instructions:
- in the Incheon airport take the Kal Limousine (bus) 6704
- get off in the Ibis Ambassador stop. Stand looking towards the Ibis Ambassador (on the other side of the street). Walk towards your right till you get to a big street. Keep straight and cross. On the other side cross towards the left.
- On the other side walk towards the right one block and turn left (yes its a samll street)
- Walk one block and turn right and there you are
Ladies, very hard to get make up on becuase of the dim light.
Overall, I would not stay here again if my travel is for tourism.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
호텔더디자이너스, 매니저 at Hotel The Designers Samseong, responded to this review, November 19, 2014
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Portland, Oregon, USA
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 6, 2013

For a two star hotel, I would rate this an 11/10. It is incredibly convenient to the convention center, clean and provided wifi that worked fast and consistently. I spent a week in their Polaroid Suite, one of their larger suites. They nailed the details of design from the bathroom to bedroom. The staff were always pleasant and helpful, glad to teach me a few words in Korean. I prefer value hotels over five star, expensive service that drains your wallet with your every activity in the hotel. Hotel the Designers has value and class.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel The Designers Samseong

Address: 9, Teheran-ro 79-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul 135-877, South Korea
Location: South Korea > Seoul
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #119 of 399 Hotels in Seoul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel The Designers Samseong 3.5*
Number of rooms: 90
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