One of the most delightful and simultaneously frustrating things about South Korea, is that you never know quite what to expect. When I heard that there was an abandoned hotel movie set on the island of Jeju, I was desperate to check it out. Along with three friends, we bundled into a minivan and set off in search of this rumour.
When we arrived, it was somewhat more than I had previously imagined. There were turrets and decorative lakes. From the outside, it looked like a working hotel.
There was even a swimming pool, although all the water had been drained out of it.
We walked around the outside, checking out the elaborate architecture and the decorative features. Whoever made this, had done a hell of a lot of work.
From every side, it looked like a real, functioning hotel.
Near the swimming pool was a fancy courtyard, allowing us to see into the hotel.
As chance would have it, someone had forgotten to lock the doors, so we let ourselves in. We were treated to a fully equipped hotel, as well as a few lighting editions used during filming.
There were fancy mirrors on the wall.
As well as less fancy, more tacky mirrors.
The dining room was ready to be dined at.
And there was a vaguely familiar barman offering us cocktails.
The movie makers hadn’t even bothered to remove props, such as telephones.
There was even a full bed and bedspread.
What do you do in an abandoned hotel movie set? Anything you want because nobody is watching.
What surprised me most about this place, is that everything had been left behind. Expensive props and furniture that could be reclaimed. A building of this size could also serve as a home (albeit very expensive to heat) for a great many people. However, this particular building was not built to be lived in and occasionally you find yourself opening a door onto a dead end.
This is just another little insight into the curious, but fascinating world of South Korea.
If you want to find it yourself, check out this map of abandoned place on Jeju-Do (Jeju Island).