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Scent of mugwort fills Andaz Seoul

Hyatt’s luxury lifestyle hotel brand curates youthful lifestyle inspired by ‘glocalization’

Global hotel chain Hyatt’s luxury lifestyle hotel brand Andaz opened its first property, Andaz Seoul Gangnam, in Apgujeong-dong, southern Seoul, Friday.

According to the hotel, Andaz, meaning “personal style” in Hindi, hopes to overcome the stereotypes of a luxury hotel and respect the individuality of each guest and service staff member. 

Andaz Seoul Gangnam (Hyatt)
Andaz Seoul Gangnam (Hyatt)

The living room in a suite at Andaz Seoul Gangnam (Hyatt)
The living room in a suite at Andaz Seoul Gangnam (Hyatt)

The 241-room hotel is Andaz’s 21st in the world and its fourth in Asia -- the others are in Tokyo, Shanghai and Singapore. The hotel boasts five restaurants in addition to its wellness facilities and event halls.

Situated next to Apgujeong Station, the hotel is not far from department stores, galleries and fine dining restaurants in the Cheongdam-dong, Garosugil and Gangnam Station areas.

“For me, luxury is not about having the most expensive chandelier. It is about service, understanding the needs of our guests,” general manager Juan Mercandante said at a press event Monday. “It is a pleasure to present Andaz to the vibrant, exciting town of Gangnam.”

He further explained that the hotel embraces “glocalization,” the practice of offering products or services that comply with global standards while strongly reflecting the local market.

In line with the concept, the guest rooms, including 25 suites, are decorated with ornaments inspired by jogakbo, or traditional Korean quilts.

The hotel’s common areas are scented with mugwort, a scent created by local cosmetics brand Tamburins.

Andaz Seoul Gangnam also has a unique approach to its restaurants, which offer a range of cuisines.

Jogakbo Long House features appetizers and wine, Jogakbo Middle House serves premium grilled dishes with local produce and Jogakbo South House offers diverse oven-cooked dishes.

The hotel also houses trendy food and beverages businesses at its property that are not directly operated by the hotel.

“There is a lot of potential (for hotels in Korea) due to the fact that (the number of) visitors are increasing by 4 to 5 percent every year,” Mercandante said, adding that the global hotel franchise had no immediate plans to open another property in Seoul.

“For Andaz Seoul Gangnam, the customer target is different from that of Park Hyatt Seoul. Guests at Andaz search for more local experiences,” said Moon In-young, assistant director of marketing communications. “Grand Hyatt hotels are the same at any cities, countries. But Andaz is different according to where you are at.”

By Im Eun-byel (