Standing tall in Gangnam—one of Seoul’s most exclusive neighborhoods—is the glass-encased structure that is the Park Hyatt. The hotel’s east-meets-west atmosphere was created by the Japanese design firm Super Potato, using elements of wood, stone, steel, and natural light to create a simple yet elegant space. The natural granite used to construct the bathroom in the Presidential Suite was flown in from China and Japan.
Korean antiques and works by local artists are displayed throughout each floor to help guests immerse themselves in Korean culture during their stay. The best part about the Park Hyatt is where water meets sky at the 24th-floor infinity pool. The hotel’s concierge recommends a swim at sunset, when the golden light melts away and the lights of the city take their place in Seoul’s skyline.
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The Gangnam neighborhood, made famous by Korean pop star Psy’s hit song “Gangnam Style,” is located just south of the Han River, but it’s easily accessible to all areas of Seoul via the nearby subway and bus lines. Known for its trendy cafés, upscale boutiques, and Korean celebrities meandering the lively, tree-lined streets, it’s a great base from which to explore the city. Shoppers will love the Park Hyatt’s proximity to the massive COEX Mall, the Garusogil shopping area, and Apgujeongdong—Seoul’s own version of Rodeo Drive. Or grab a moment of Zen at the nearby Bongeun-sa Temple—after all, you may need it while visiting a city of over 10 million people.
Need to Know
Rooms: 185 rooms, 38 suites. From $375. Check-in: 2 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options: There’s certainly no shortage of dining or drinking options at the Park Hyatt Seoul. Craving kimchi? The Lounge on the 24th floor serves traditional Korean fare alongside stunning views of the city below, while Cornerstone specializes in meats, seafood, and pasta. We love the Timber House, a restaurant and bar on the lower level that was built to look like a hanok (Korean traditional house). The nightly live jazz makes this an excellent place to grab an evening beverage—the bar is known for its prime selection of rare whiskeys from around the world. Spa and gym details: Perched on the hotel’s top floor, the Park Club Spa & Fitness Center affords a bird’s-eye view of Seoul while you get your cardio in. Cool down in the infinity pool as you watch the action unfold on the streets of Gangnam below. A steam room, a sauna, and spa services are also available.
Who’s it for: Design-savvy jet-setters who prefer a touch of exclusivity. Both business and leisure travelers rest their heads at the Park Hyatt when they’re in Korea’s capital. Our favorite rooms: All rooms are awash with natural light from the floor-to-ceiling windows; we are partial to the view of the Seoul World Trade Tower from the bathtub of the Park Deluxe King Room. But for true indulgence, book the Presidential Suite, complete with gas fireplace, custom-designed feather bed, and bathroom of naturally sculpted granite. Exploring Seoul may become just an afterthought. If traveling with tots: Park Hyatt Seoul treats little ones like royalty with its Very Important Baby program. Guests with children under the age of three score free swag like a teddy bear, T-shirt, and rubber duck upon arrival. And the hotel can arrange specially prepared baby food and babysitting services.