Seoul is such a sprawling metropolis that choosing a clean AND affordable place to stay that isn’t a dormitory can feel like a herculean task. On a last-minute trip to Seoul, we were just in that very predicament. A good place to start is a list of recommended accommodations from the Korea Tourism Organization, proudly carrying the “Good Stay” badge of certification.
One of these accredited lodgings is Hotel Maui, which although doesn’t bring a taste of Hawaii into downtown Seoul, it does provide a cozy getaway from the hustle of bustle of the city. Just one subway stop from Dongdaemun, the very heart of Seoul city, it matches prime location with fresh digs while running surprisingly reasonable discounted prices for it all. Book through Agoda, Booking.com or AirBnB for slashed prices on all of their rooms, be it Standard Twin, Standard Double or Standard Triple.
Hotel & Facilities
Hotel Maui impresses from the outside by combining wood, metal and glass to create a modernistic tower. A “Good Stay” certification sign perches prominently at the entrance. Breeze into the lobby and you’ll be met with bright hues of white with wooden accents and cutesy details, including Christmas decorations for our visit. A small assortment of tourist brochures are available at the door as well as the front desk, where hotel staff awaited us with smiles and polite bows. They greeted us and answered our questions in English, making the check-in process quick and painless. An elevator was ready to whisk us up to our 3rd floor room. Water coolers were conveniently located on every floor, which was perfect for re-hydrating after long night out and a few too many beers. One especially noteworthy detail was that the information signs throughout the hotel were all in English, Korean, Chinese and Japanese, reaching out to the majority of tourists who visit Korea.
After foot pounding it through Seoul’s endless subway transfers, opening the door to our floor-heated room felt like a soothing hug for our feet. Our ‘standard double’ was spic and span from top to bottom and gleamed of fresh ivory paint. Though it might be a cozier fit for some, it provided all the space you could need for a weekend in Seoul, complete with a queen size bed, mini-fridge, table, large mirror and enough space to do yoga for one. The bedding was clean and cushy, while the mattress was quite firm and great for your back. Though people used to cushier beds might find themselves wishing for a mattress topper.
If there’s one thing that’s important to us when it comes to lodging, it’s that we MUST have a decent bathroom. Luckily, Hotel Maui did not disappoint, as everything sparkled and was squeaky clean. Unlike our old apartment in Busan, the shower here was steaming hot and powerful, with big bottles of shampoo, conditioner and body wash conveniently stocked. Although, the small towels left us reminiscing of the massive body-hugging cotton towels from bigger hotels.
It’s conveniently located a 6 minute or 400 meter walk from exit 3 of Dongmyo Station (동묘앞역) via line 1 and line 6, or 300 meters from bus stops served by several bus routes. The surrounding area offers countless local restaurants and cafes to fill up on Korean delicacies. The real star is the Dongmyo Flea Market, a weekend pop up that offers everything from vintage clothes to snowboards to old records, and makes for a fantastic place for deals & people watching.
Impressions & Contact
With rooms at Hotel Maui on massive discount for the forseeable future and starting at 39,000 KRW, it’s a steal and a half considering the location, high standards for cleanliness and multi-lingual service. Looks like the Korea Tourism Organization was bang on to recommend Hotel Maui as a “Good Stay” option in Seoul!
호텔 마우이 (Hotel Maui)
14 Jong-ro 66ga-gil, Sungin 2(i)-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Phone number: 010-5738-8010