Welcome to Between the Sheets! No, this isn’t a NC-17 addition of The Nerdventurists, but rather where we’ll be reviewing hostels, guesthouses, B&Bs, hotels, and corners of airports where we’ve stayed.
I’m a big fan of hostels, they’ve rarely done me wrong, and most of the time they’re super charming. I think a lot of my positive hostel experience has to do with the fact I keep to the smaller ones; I avoid hostel chains and mega hostels with hundreds of dorms. While I don’t mind going out or having a bender every once in awhile, I avoid party hostels as well because in general, you’re not going to have a good night’s sleep ever at one of those.
When we were looking for a hostel in Seoul, we were overwhelmed with choices. There’s a gazillion. Originally we were looking to do couchsurfing, but when no one got back to us, I started my hostel search. It wasn’t hard to decide on Come Inn Guesthouse to be honest.
- The reviews were phenomenal and spoke of the friendliness of the staff, the cleanliness of the hostel, and the laid back vibe.
- They have lots of commendations and awards to their name (they’ve just won Tripadvisors’s Travellers’ Choice for the second year in a row, congrats!)
- They were located in Hongdae, the area of Seoul I wanted to stay. It’s trendy, it’s got lots going on, and it’s fun.
The first night we stayed there was actually after our far too long journey from Ulan Ude to Seoul via Beijing. We were exhausted and were running late thanks to having to wait for a bus to take us into the city. With no data on my phone and unable to connect to the bountiful wifi in Seoul because I was numnuts in the brain, I had to find the hostel the old fashion way… written directions (DUN DUN DUNNNNNNN).
The good news is, it was fine! The directions Come Inn emails you with are perfect and while you may be looking around like a lost duck on a white water rapids trip a few times because of all the bright lights and food stands about, you’ll get there. Because we were arriving late, Come Inn checked in with us to make sure they knew when we’d be in, which I really appreciated. Using my map reading skillz (with a z, yeah, dem skillz… god I’m so white), we saw the gleaming white sign down the alleyway specified and quickly hobbled over with our backpacks and weary minds.
Bobby is the sweetest man in the world and he immediately made us feel welcome, was shocked to hear we’d just drove 10,000 miles, and quickly showed us the showers and our beds. We stayed in the 8 person dorm (as seen above) and it was a great deal. The room had air conditioning and we were so happy to have real beds that were comfortable. Winning!
We stayed over night because we were heading to Busan in the morning where we’d be staying with friends of Sora’s. In the morning however, Bobby gave us a suggestion on where to eat (WHICH WAS AMAZING) , and after that we were Busan bound. BUT WAIT… we came back to Seoul a week later and immediately booked the full time at Come Inn. Bobby was surprised to see us again (doubly so as when we arrived we couldn’t find him and so chilled in the common room for a few minutes before he came downstairs with a “Woah!” Surprise, the crazy American roadtrippers are back!). Same rooms as before, just as good.
Sora and I had foolishly decided to start a new KDrama in Busan and were thoroughly addicted, so we spent our evenings in the common room watching it with headphones, much to the amusement of other hostelers who couldn’t quite understand why we didn’t want to go clubbing. Once you’ve taken a hit of the KDrama drug it’s hard to quit, that’s all I’m saying.
There’s a full kitchen at the hostel with free breakfast until 10AM. We made good use of the kitchen with our “midnight noodles”, a habit we’d picked up and still do might I add. The showers were clean and had soap, shampoo, and conditioner available. You could rent towels, locks, and all sorts of things from the front desk, and everyone was just so lovely. Ask Bobby for anything and he’ll help. The other guests were also friendly and fun, minus the one dude who abandoned one of the other girls in a club (but it’s OK she ended up being adopted by a Gangnam socialite for the evening and getting the rockstar treatment. Hostel gossip!). There was even another Mongol Rallier there! It’s a funny world.
In short, if you’re in Seoul, stay at Come Inn. It’s incredibly friendly, priced well, cozy, and just plain wonderful.
Location: 3F, 358-91, Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul (directions)
Rates: From ₩16,000 (8 person dorm) to ₩75,000 (private triple)