Using a Guesthouse as Accommodation in Busan
First of all, this is our first time to ever try using a guesthouse as a form of accommodation in our trips. We are used to using hotels or inns whenever traveling. But since we wanted to save as much as we can on this trip, we have risked trying something new and enjoy the adventure of it. We have encountered this thru the help of the website www.airbnb.com (click on the site to get $20 voucher to start with your adventure), this website usually lists down different guesthouses, or guestrooms for rent, of course to a much much lower rate. Did I mention, really lower rate? Yes, I can’t stress it enough.
LOCATION. We saw a lot of listings for Busan, in different areas of the city too. But what we have finally chosen is the Green House Apartment located in Busanjin-gu, Busan, South Korea. It takes, 30 minutes from Gimhae Airport by Metro, and about 20 minutes if you avail of the extra charge of 10,000KRW (around 8.50USD / 400PHP) for the private car transfer. If you wish to take the Metro from the Airport, here is a instructional video created by the host and his kids.
HOST. It is owned by Dong Jung Kim, we call him DJ. He is a father to two daughters (9 and 7 yrs old), and lives with his wife too (who cooks good Korean food). DJ is such a wonderful host, very friendly and helpful. He went out of his way to sincerely help us in our trip, he even helped us go to the bank for a currency exchange (apparently, they give a better rate to local residents). He was one of the reasons why our trip to Busan was smooth and easy.
ROOM. First of all, the house is not actually a stand-alone house, but is a condominium unit found in the residential area of Busanjin-gu. Almost all the residences in the city of Busan are located in high-rise buildings, they call them apartment. But the apartment is really wide and spacious (a lot more than those that we know back in the Philippines). The apartment has 3 rooms, two of which are for rent. The one that was provided to us has a double-deck beds. The bathroom is located right outside the room, and it was exclusively for our own use only. The host and his family use their own bathroom. The room is really very vibrant and neat. I love the interior designing, very easy on the eye even if it is colorful. It has very charming wallpapers with quotes and drawings. Once you enter the room, you will really hear yourself say, woooow! Even if it was aloud or in your mind. One small thing though, the bed is not that soft. It isn’t hard either, it’s just not the usual soft bed you would expect. But it did not give me any backache, so it’s all good. They also have a hair dryer inside the room, since you wouldn’t want to go out with wet hair in that cold weather! Can you imagine your hair frozen?! Lol.
Note: Don’t forget to bring an adapter for your cellphone charger, you may get yours here.
BATHROOM. The bathroom has all the basic things you need except for your bath towel. They provide small towels though, but if you think that is not enough for you, I suggest you bring your own. The shower has hot and cold and works perfectly well. I love the soft feel and yet strong pressure of the water. They provide shampoo, conditioner and liquid soap(which we love, smells so good!). They also have toothpaste in there too!
KITCHEN and BREAKFAST. They have very small kitchen but complete, though we did not really try to cook there. Breakfast is provided. The first morning, we had cereals, bread and spreads and coffee. The second morning, we did not have it there since our tour was very early and breakfast is being served at 9AM (since the kids go to school at 8.30AM).
AMENITIES. Wifi was very fast and reliable. They also have washer and dryer at no additional cost. The host provided warming pads for us to deal with the very cold weather outside. The room is located at the 20th floor of the building, but there is an elevator button right inside the room, so you can already push the button before you even go out of the apartment. They have heated floors too, how cool is that?!
COST. And of course, saving the best for last. The charge for this amazing home-stay experience is only P728 (about 15USD) per person, per night. Amazing, I know. You’re welcome! *wink*
THE EXPERIENCE. Overall, we enjoyed the experience of being immersed to a real Korean culture encounter, by actually living with a Korean family, instead of living in the usual hotels. We really fully recommend using a guesthouse as your accommodation, especially when in Busan – a very interesting culture at a quaint city.
P.S. If interested with trying the airbnb experience, here is your $20 voucher to start your adventure.