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“Unique boutique hotel in Samsung-dong” 3 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, South Korea   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #112 of 393 Hotels in Seoul
Hong Kong, China
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
“Unique boutique hotel in Samsung-dong”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2013

I stayed here for two nights with a couple of friends for a short trip to Seoul. I was in Seoul two weeks ago and stayed at a different boutique hotel in the Yeoksam area and it was obvious that I was making comparison.

Hotel the Designer was a very unique hotel in that all the rooms have their own design and none of the rooms would be the same. They offer quite different styles from more contemporary to more chic. We booked ourselves in a suite and the rooms were not too spacious but understandable in hotels for big cities. We had a queen size bed and a twin bed that could sleep the 3 of us comfortably. All the rooms have free WiFi which is a good thing.

We were offered to choose from 3 different rooms when we checked in by looking at pictures on their iPad. My word of advice here is probably ask if you could go look at the rooms in person. We chose one that looked quite cool in the photos but turned out the room was way too dark and lights are quite dim.

We didn't use much of their facilities but we saw that there were complimentary bike rentals at the hotel for guests to use which is quite thoughtful. There is also a small coffee shop just next to the lobby with a small outside area that is quite relaxing but there aren't much to see as the hotel entrance is in an small alley facing parking entrance of nearby buildings.

The hotel is located in between Samsung Station and Seolleung Station. Walking to either station would take about 10-15 minutes. If you are looking to do a lot of local travelling on the metro then you would have to take this into account. On our way to the hotel from the airport there are basically two choices for airport bus. 6006 for the cheaper airport bus where you get off at the COEX and walk about 20 minutes to the hotel or 6704 for the KAL limousine and get off at the ibis Gangnam hotel and walk for 10 minutes.

There aren't a lot of restaurant choices nearby the hotel. There are a few Korean restaurants around the block but are only mediocre in my opinion. My last stay in Seoul I had much better restaurants choices just minutes away from the hotel. The prices for a night is relatively cheap but you could have gotten yourself a slightly better location for slightly more.

All in all the hotel is good but my criticism for it is its location.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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55 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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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
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English first
San Francisco, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2013

I was in Room 902. Since they are all different, maybe the other are better. Be sure to check your room, or you might get stuck in mine. The place was packed, so I was stuck with it.

Lots to like: Good location, friendly staff, speedy Internet. Near a UNESCO heritage site which is not to be missed.

But:

Hyper-annoying issue 1: My room had no window. Let me explain: The single window (perhaps 8 square feet) had a mirror on the room side. So there was no way to get fresh air or natural light without opening the window and letting in the noise of Seoul. I felt like I was in a cell.

Annoying issue 2: There is no place to put soap or a towel in the bathroom. And the shower wand cannot be put at any place above the waist. Essentially, you took a navy shower here.

Annoying issue 3: They have a small screen on the wall that could not be turned off. It's about 3 inches only, but rotates through pictures, so when you try to sleep the light is constantly changing. I kept hitting the button to turn it off but it kept coming on.

Annoying issue 4: Good luck trying to get the TV to work. The place is loaded with foreigners, but everything is in Korean. Just a booklet to help us would let us use the unit.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Cincinnati, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2013

The Hotel the Designers is a boutique hotel conveniently located in Seoul near the very large Co-Ex Center. The hotel is distinguished by the fact that each of the rooms was styled by a different designer. Most are clever and well-appointed. BUT the rooms are tiny - not surprising for big city accommodations. However, even for a city, my room was uncomfortably small (for one person), offering nowhere to open a suitcase, much less sit and work. The large, round jacuzzi style tub was in the room, adjacent (as in butting up against) the (very comfortable) bed. And the toilet was in the shower, which actually makes some sense.

The staff was pleasant and very accommodating. It's around the corner from the best dumpling place I've ever experienced. But the hotel itself has no restaurant or (and this is the worst part) bar. I believe the staff had to scurry outside somewhere to find me a bottle of wine to share with my colleagues as we were packing for the journey home. I will say that the tub made a comfortable spot to sit in our pajamas and drink the wine.

So a nice place to stay - on a quiet side street - but not the most fabulous place I've been. I'd still recommend it. But I probably won't go back.

Room Tip: If there is more than one of you, upgrade to a larger room!
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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, 1 week ago
Google Translation
고객님, 성의 있는 리뷰 감사드립니다.
저희 호텔에 숙박하시는 동안, 즐겁고 편안한 휴식이 되셨길 바랍니다.
소중한 리뷰 감사드리며, 앞으로도 항상 최선을 다하는 호텔 더 디자이너스가 되도록 하겠습니다.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maurepas, France
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2013

This hotel is very well situated in Seoul
It is located in a nice part of the town, with many commercial centers and galleries
There are also many little shops in little streets
And together it is easy to find palces where having dinner for low prices
I have loved being in this hotel which is very luxuous
All the staff of the hotel is so kind too !

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
호텔더디자이너스, 매니저 at Hotel The Designers Samseong, responded to this review, 2 weeks ago
Google Translation
고객님, 성의 있는 리뷰 감사드립니다.
저희 호텔에 숙박하시는 동안, 즐겁고 편안한 휴식이 되셨길 바랍니다,
다음 번에도 기회가 되신다면, 저희 호텔을 찾아주셨으면 좋겠습니다.
항상 최상의 서비스를 제공하기 위해 노력하는 호텔 더 디자이너스가 되겠습니다.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2013

Had a chance to stay there for 3 nights. Hotel was very near drinking pubs which gave out photo cards of scantily dressed women. I was quite worried and receptionist whether it was red light district- she said it wasn't. During wee hours, you can hear breaking of glass bottles from inside the room.

There were no shuttle services to subway station, which was in between Samseong and Seolleong station.

Rooms were small, had trouble openning my luggage. Good, only because of its novelty of boutique hotel. Ventilation of the room was poor, time to time there is some sewage smell. Could be due to high humidity in the room by having a Jacuzzi in the room.

Overall, i won't be going back to stay, as it's not value for money.

  • Stayed August 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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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
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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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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Additional Information about Hotel The Designers Samseong

Address: 9, Teheran-ro 79-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Location: South Korea > Seoul
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #112 of 393 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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