Saturday, March 30, 2013

Vesta Spa & Fitness Review (Busan, South Korea)

(Credits: Tripadvisor)

Vesta Spa Busan (
View from the lounge area

Vesta Spa Busan (
Entrance to one of sauna rooms

This is a typical Korean sauna, the real local experience. My friends, who are local Koreans living in Busan, brought us to this place. It has an amazing view of the beach and the sunset. I think the best time to head there is during the winter and in the evening while catching the sunset. They also have an outdoor pool section, where you could soak in the hot water while enjoying the cool breeze and even the snow.

Date of visit: March 2013

1509-6 Jung-dong, Haeundae-gu, Busan, South Korea

Official website
Tripadvisor Reviews

Yongpyong Resort Dragon Valley Hotel Review


The rooms were large with comfy beds and the hotel was located just behind the ski lifts. It's about a minute's walk from the hotel lobby to the ski lifts.

Double room (Credits:

Twin room (Credits:

Entrance (Credits:

Hotel Lobby (Credits:


There wasn't anything to do around our hotel at night as almost everything was closed around 6pm. So there's definitely no after-ski or places to chill during the night. It is a very different atmosphere from what you would expect from Europe. Maybe it's because we were there during off peak. The night skiing is only available during the weekends.


It was tricky getting to the hotel from Seoul as the website to reserve the shuttle bus tickets were in Korean and you needed to buy using a Korean credit card. Fortunately we had a Korean friend who helped us buy the tickets. The hotel staff recommended us to buy the tickets online, but there were also some people who bought the tickets directly on the bus. There were no designated bus stop at the Lotte Mart (Jamsil) for the shuttle buses, but the buses generally arrived early so you could spot them and the buses we took were purple in colour. (More details regarding transportation here: Yongpyong Resort Website) You can book your bus tickets through Grace Travel.


Date of stay: March 2013

Hotel details:
130, Yongsan-ri, Daegwalnyeong-myon, Gangwon-do, Pyeongchang, Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea

Official website
Agoda listing
Tripadvisor review

Friday, March 1, 2013

Show Tel Review (Seoul)

We stayed here only because we needed just a cheap 1 night stay to catch the early bus to Yongpyong in the morning from Lotte World. It's more of a love motel and it was about 10-15 min walk to Lotte World (Jamsil). The staff didn't really speak english and our doors couldn't be locked, but he assured us that he could monitor our room from his CCTV when we went out in the day. At night, you could lock it with the door chains inside. The bed was hard to sleep on. We weren't expecting anything fancy for the price we paid.

The best part of this stay was that we had an AMAZING garlic bread that we bought from a bakery in Lotte World Shopping Center. :)

In short, it's cheap and reasonable (for the price) for a one night stay.

Show Tel (
(Credits: Agoda)

Date of stay: Feb 2013

5-13, Olympic-ro, 34-gil, Songpa-gu, Jamsil / Songpa, Seoul, South Korea

Agoda listing
Tripadvisor listing

Elysee Motel Busan Review

For a first time visitor, the place might look sleazy or haunted. The place is quite dimly lit and it looks really shady. You might also find it tricky to locate the entrance as you enter via the carpark.

The owners sent us a prior email before arriving to give us directions to the motel. Upon arriving, they gave us an introduction of shopping, food and sightseeing locations around the area coupled with print-outs of the maps and descriptions.

Although the place looks rather old and worn out, the couple running the place were extremely helpful and friendly, giving a warm homely feel to the place. They readily helped us with any information we needed and also helped searched for the information if they didn't know the answer to it. There was a jacuzzi, shower area, computer and a huge flat screen tv in the room.

The location was quite good as you could walk to get to the shopping and food areas that are nearby.

Apart from the looks of this place, I would actually give them a double thumbs up for their impeccable service and value-for-money.

Update 27 May 2015:
From their photos, I think they had some renovations and they look significantly better now, especially the rooms. Triple thumbs up now!

Elysee Motel (
(Credits: Agoda)

Date of stay: Jan 2013

22 Daecheong-ro 126beon-gil Jung-gu, Jung-gu / KTX Busan Station, Busan, South Korea 600-023

Agoda listing
Tripadvisor listing