So, not only does the Four Seasons hotel in Seoul have stellar accommodations, but they also have great restaurants, too! In addition to the Executive Lounge, I also enjoyed lunch and dinner at Boccalino and Kioku restaurants, respectively. I’ll talk about all three in this post!
**Also, I distorted the faces of other customers for privacy purposes, so don’t freak out if the pictures look a little strange.** ANYWAY…
The Executive Lounge
So, I talked about my first impression of the lounge’s service in my last post, but I didn’t really talk about the lounge itself. Not only did I want to keep the first post short, but since most of my time in the lounge was spent eating and drinking I figured it was more fitting to write my thoughts here.
So, first and foremost: the Executive Lounge is beautiful.
There are two distinct sections to it: the first is this open plan replete with floor-to-ceiling windows, a marble-covered bar area, and really nice, really comfortable chairs
that The Skincare Guru thought looked like purses when we FaceTimed. The second section has the feel of a den, with mauve carpeting, loveseats and sparkling amethyst stalactites.
The den side of the lounge has a view of the Grand Palace (Gyeongbokgung), but only one table has it, so if that’s the view you desire while you gorge on happy hour treats then you’d better be sitting there before happy hour starts.
So far, I’ve had the pleasure (or not) of spending time in three hotel executive lounges in Seoul so far: The Shilla’s, The Conrad’s and The Four Season’s. Out of the three, this one is the best. It takes the best features of the two — The Conrad’s stellar customer service and The Shilla’s luxurious atmosphere and upscale lounge dining — and combines them to make for one hell of an executive lounge experience. The staff were personable and incredibly accommodating, even when the lounge was super busy; when Children’s Day arrived, the families (all with young kids!! Why are these lil’ children here??) rolled into the lounge in droves, but the staff took it all in stride. If you don’t get a club room, you can spend a cool $100 per adult per day to have access…
Oh, yeah, and there was lots of food and alcohol.
On my first night at the hotel, I decided to pop into Kioku at the last minute to have dinner. As it was still a weekday (Wednesday), the restaurant was nearly empty come 7pm. Because I was alone, I was seated at the sushi bar.
At the start I was given a complimentary refresher drink of which the contents escape me. Then I ordered a Jeju Cooler, an even more refreshing drink that somehow mixed sake and soju in a way that reminded me of the Everclear Hawaiian Punch drinks of college, but of course much classier: t was a deceptively tasty, fruity drink that snuck up on me later, when I least expected it (but oh well).
Then my sushi chef (yes, I was so alone at the bar that I had a personal sushi chef) asked me what I wanted to eat. Since I wasn’t hungry, I just had yellowtail and sea bream sashimi and crunchy crab tempura maki rolls. Then he went to work.
In no time at all he presented me with my food, and I dug in. The sashimi practically melted in my mouth; I liked the yellowtail so much that I ordered another portion. The maki rolls were tasty, too, and had an interesting crunch to them that didn’t turn me off.
My experience at Kioku was really pleasant. Since I wasn’t very hungry at the time, I didn’t get the chance to taste everything that the restaurant had to offer. I’ll make it a point to go again when I’m really hungry so that I can make an even more informed decision on the food.
When Star and I visited Bar Boccalino, we missed out on a chance to eat at the restaurant because we arrived too late. I made sure not to miss the chance again, I booked time during the lunch rush to eat there. Boccalino’s interior complements Bar Boccalino’s speakeasy feel: extensive marble and gilded details provide a classic, early 20th century feel, but the restaurant is quite contemporary.
I was actually hungry this time, so as soon as I was seated I ordered what my food. As I waited, I munched on some warm ciabatta bread that, when paired with oil, vinaigrette and pickled garlic, was delicious.
The first dish out was the spinach and ricotta gnocchi with basil pesto, fresh tomatoes and topped with garlic chips and parmesan cheese shavings. It, too, was delicious: the garlic chips added both a bite and a crunch to an otherwise soft texture, and the flavors went together so well.
After that, I had the four cheese pizza, and it was also great. The fact that the pizza had scamorza — one of my favorite cheeses — as a cheese was awesome, and the other three (gorgonzola, mozzarella, and taleggio) meshed well with it.
There was also a really nice salad bar which I somehow missed.
All I can say is that Boccalino was great, from the food to the service. I’ve already gushed about this place to a few of my girlfriends so that we can make a dinner date here.
So, on top of my awesome stay at the hotel, the food and drinks made my experience even better! Some places I didn’t get to go to, namely Charles H. bar, Yu Yuan (the Chinese restaurant), and Maru (which is pictured below). But I will be back to experience them all!
My next post will discuss the other facets of the hotel I got to enjoy, namely the spa and the pool, so stay tuned!
Note: This was not a comped stay; I stayed here on my own dime and wrote this blog post for pleasure.