Monday, April 26, 2010

Seoul Plaza Hotel joins the renovation frenzy

From May 3rd, the Seoul Plaza Hotel will be closed for renovations. It should reopen 6 month later, about 10 days before the G20 Summit (November 2010). Will remain open for business during the renovation : the Grand Ballroom banquet and wedding facilities, the spa and fitness, and the hotel's restaurants with a direct access from the outside.

The 34 year old hotel will change its white dress for a metal-bronze look, and a new positioning as a "European boutique hotel". The number of guest rooms will be cut from 445 down to 400 to accomodate more suites. The Westin Chosun and Hotel Shilla have also been recently improved, but this one moves after the downturn, a clear sign of optimism from hospitality businesses in Korea. Tourism and logistics infrastructures are among the sectors where Foreign Direct Investment is booming, and Seoul keeps gaining momentum as a major touristic as well as business / convention destination.

On the other side of Seoul Plaza, another landmark is undergoing a total relooking : the new Seoul City Hall just completed its basement levels, so the big wave should start bulging anytime soon*. Meanwhile, you can visit the small exhibition about that major (indeed) project, including images from the propositions that were turned down**.

While I'm at it : Sejongno and Taepyeongno will soon be called "Sejongdaero" or Sejong Avenue. I guess it doesn't change anything as far as the "dongs" are concerned but for the road itself, it means one single name between Gwanghwamun and Sungnyemun, and its confirmation as the spine of downtown Seoul.

Seoul Village 2010

* I can't help but see a tsunami there (see "
Business for the Environment Global Summit 2010 in Seoul")
** Today, the square was not really festive, hosting a ceremony to mourn Cheonan victims

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