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Conrad Hilton Seoul

highlights - 3/10

For urban Conrad Seoul, LRF looked to the abundance of green mountains surrounding Korea’s most populous city. The gingko tree, a revered plant with a long history of medicinal and culinary tradition in the country, became a motif throughout the hotel in a myriad of themes and variations. It can be seen as an etching as it follows a dramatic five level high spiral staircase upwards. Its leaves are suspended as a lit mobile above the lobby and fan upwards from a fireplace within Flame, the lobby lounge. A gingko branch becomes the chandelier fixture in the hotel’s two ballrooms. It is etched into the feature wall behind the indoor swimming pool. It is found on artwork behind the headboard in guestrooms. The benefits of gingko can even be seen in its restaurants’ menu. Further nods to Korean culture can be seen in the lobby’s timber arches, which allude to Korean gates. Guestrooms are generous and well-appointed, with warm timber surfaces for desks and cabinets; bathrooms are decked out with black granite vanity countertops for double sinks. Elegant linear wall sconces in guestrooms are simplified versions of the ones found throughout the public areas. The prevailing ambience is tasteful and subtle, with stylised touches of nature to calm and soothe the senses.