KTO lists mid-price hotels around country
An affordable hotel room with a good view and prompt service is a must for many a traveler.
“Benikea,” an abbreviation of “Best Night in Korea,” is a list of Korea Tourism Organization-affiliated hotels with branches in Seoul, Busan, the southern provinces of Jeolla and Gyeongsang, Jeju Island and more.
KTO introduced the budget hotel brand with the goal of linking independent travelers with reasonably priced hotels run by small and mid-tier companies here.
The service has been gaining popularity as Korea continues to struggle with a chronic shortage of mid-price lodging facilities not only in Seoul, but also in other major tourist destinations. The problem is expected to grow in the near future as the number of foreign tourists has been surging on the back of the growing popularity of Korean pop culture overseas.
The 45 Benikea-brand hotels were selected through strict monitoring of the service and quality of the accommodation. Benikea hotels rooms are priced at around $100 per night and the employees receive the same training to ensure uniform service at all hotels.
The KTO boasts that the Benikea hotels are conveniently located, some of them situated next to the beach, others beside hot springs, airports and downtown areas.
About 70 percent of Benikea users are local travelers with some 11,000 rooms reserved as of November, according to the KTO.
Reservations for the rooms can be made at www.benikea.com, which offers services in four languages ― Korean, English, Japanese and Chinese. The website, which first opened in September 2009, also offers reviews posted by guests.
The Dragon Valley Hotel located in Gangwon Province. (Korea Tourism Organization)
A deluxe twin room at the Jeju Crystal Hotel in Seoguipo. (Korea Tourism Organization)
Some of the most popular Benikea hotels include the Jeju Crystal Hotel in Seogwipo, Onyang Hot Spring Hotel, the Dragon Valley Hotel located in Gangwon Province, the Songjung Tourists’ Hotel in Busan and the Songdo Bridge Hotel.
The Jeju Crystal Hotel’s rooms are famous for their views of the snow-covered Mount Halla, while the Dragon Valley Hotel is a paradise for skiers and snowboarders for its proximity to ski slopes and other tourist destinations in Gangwon Province.
The Songjung Hotel and Hotel Press in Busan are popular with travelers who want to see the sunrise over Songjung Beach and enjoy a range of seafood at hundreds of restaurants along the seashore.
The Songdo Bridge Hotel, which opened its doors in 2009, has been popular with newly-weds and foreigners due to its close proximity to Incheon International Airport, located 15 minutes from the hotel.
By Shin Hae-in (email@example.com