Creating a Neighborhood Hotel —
RYSE Makes Its Mark on Hongdae

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Script & Narration by Eugene Kan
Audio by Elphick Wo
Photography by Chris da Canha

Script & Narration by Eugene Kan
Audio by Elphick Wo
Photography by Chris da Canha

In the face of the sharing economy, the modern idea of a hotel has largely been upended and put on the defensive. When on-demand rental places offer a plethora of choices in prime neighborhoods and with potentially more competitive prices, it pushes hoteliers to reimagine what role they should play as fosterers of hospitality and community.

RYSE is a modern hotel concept borne out of Jason Schlabach and Leo Moon’s vision. Together, the two have drawn from their wealth of different cultural and business experience to create globally-unique and locally-relevant experiences. Several cultural pillars are well-represented within the confines of RYSE, ranging from world-class cuisine by San Francisco’s Tartine and David Thompson’s Long Chim, and local fashion retail heavyweight WORKSOUT.

Where the previous generation of hotels lacked the agility to become an integrated part of the community, Jason and Leo’s recognition of this limitation has become crucial to conceptualizing how the hotel should operate. The result is RYSE is able to amalgamate international art, music, food, and fashion into one cohesive experience.

Travel will continue to be an increasingly bigger part of our lives and with it, we’re honored to be part of RYSE’s mark on not only Hongdae in Seoul, but South Korea as a whole.

The problem with hotels is that it's hard to adapt quickly. Fashion, design change so fast. When people's taste change, can hotels change their "hardware" that quickly?

— Leo Moon, on the difficulty for hotels to keep pace with trends

I disagree with doing something local to make it relevant. It used to be interesting and it can be but, it's become an easy answer for everything: Source it locally, call it local, it's like "green washing" [...] That's still not building a connection to a community.

— Jason Schlabach, on balancing international and local relevance

Every single department has been pushing the unconventional, fighting the way to do it the RYSE way. I can't tell you exactly what that it is but usually it involves the hard and different way.

— Jason Schalbach

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