Hotel del Luna, the popular K-drama starring IU and Yeo Jin-Goo, has concluded. Leading up to its finale, viewers wondered if Jang Man-Wol (IU) would choose to move on into the afterlife with her past love Go Chung-Myung (Lee Do-Hyun) or stay with her newfound love, the manager of her hotel Goo Chan-Seong (Jin-Goo).
In the end, Jang Man-Wol chose Goo Chan-Seong but it would be a bittersweet moment for the two. As prophesized throughout the series, Chan-Seong would be the one to send off Man-Wol to the afterlife. Not only does he fulfill this prophecy, but he also sends off the rest of the Hotel del Luna staff too.
Though the ending is what viewers expected, there is one part at the very end that might be confusing for some. For those who were confused, it shall be explained what is going on and how it ties into the entire plot.
Goo Chan-Seong sends everyone to Heaven
Throughout Hotel del Luna, it has been foreshadowed Goo Chan-Seong would be the one to send off Jang Man-Wol into the afterlife. What was unknown, until we see it in the end, is how would Man-Wol go? Would she turn into dust just like vengeful spirits or would she be sent to Heaven?
In traditional and typical K-drama fashion, Hotel del Luna ended on a happy note as Goo Chan-Seong sent off Jang Man-Wol to Heaven. However, Chan-Seong was able to do more than just send Man-Wol off as he helped resolve the issues of each Hotel del Luna staff member and send them off too.
Overall, it was a great resolution for the Man-Wol era of the hotel for the dead (in general, the hotel is known simply as a hotel or inn for the dead. The current owner usually gives it a unique name in which Man-Wol called it Hotel del Luna).
What is going on in the ending?
After Goo Chan-Seong sends off Jang Man-Wol and the Hotel del Luna staff, we get a kind of epilogue divided up into three parts. The first part is what initially happens right after Man-Wol and the Hotel del Luna staff are sent off.
Chan-Seong prepares to move to New York City. He then has a farewell meal with Kim Yoo-Na (Kang Mi-Na) and we find out she has taken the medicine to remove the ability to see ghosts so she can live a normal life. We also learn that Yoo-Na will pursue a hotelier degree, the same one Chan-Seong has.
Next, we cut to a scene in which Goo Chan-Seong is starring at the tiger painting contemplating about dreams. While contemplating, he turns to his right and sees God Mago give one of her flowers to a ghost. This means he did not take the medicine to remove the ability to see ghosts. Take this into account as this is very important for the ending.
The next scene is the second part of the epilogue. It opens up with the three Hotel del Luna employees doing miscellaneous activities in a park followed by Goo Chan-Seong reading a book on a bench.
Suddenly, Jang Man-Wol walks up to him, recognizing him and saying she wanted to get to him as quick as possible so he wouldn’t wait too long. This is the part of the epilogue that confused many viewers as some thought it was Chan-Seong dreaming how things would be or Man-Wol turned around on the bridge to meet him again. From what is discerned and known, this is actually something that happens in K-drama finales a lot: a time jump.
First off, the Hotel del Luna staff members are living their new lives. This is just a happenstance moment all three are close to each other. They don’t remember who they are because when they crossed the bridge of the afterlife, their memories of that life were erased probably so they can start a clean slate in the new lives they are living.
As for Jang Man-Wol, she too is living her new life. The question is, why does she remember Goo Chan-Seong in her new life. As we know, her tree is representative of her life and the flowers are her memories. Both disappeared when she crossed the bridge. However, there is one flower still alive and it is inside Chan-Seong.
This is probably why Jang Man-Wol turned around for a moment on the bridge and smiled because she remembered her life and memories even after crossing the bridge thanks to Goo Chan-Seong keeping them safe inside of him. Ergo, when she returned to her next life, she already was in love with Chan-Seong. All she has to do is wait until she is old enough to see him again.
The final question to ask is if the events in which Goo Chan-Seong and Jang Man-Wol are reunited are in the future, why hasn’t Chan-Seong aged? This is where the fact that he can still see ghosts is suddenly important.
We assume that the third part of the epilogue is the new owner of the Inn/Hotel of the Dead after Jang Man-Wol. However, that can’t be assumed as God Mago never said the new owner replaced Man-Wol.
We don’t even have an actual time this event happens. And to throw viewers off from trying to figure out what is going on, the new owner is the acting return of one of the most popular Korean actors in Hallyu, Kim Soo Hyun (Moon Embracing the Sun [with Yeo Jin-Goo] and Producers [with IU]).
The thing is, the new owner played by Kim Soo-Hyun is actually replacing the owner of the hotel after Jang Man-Wol. It can only be one person: Goo Chan-Seong. Why would he still have the ability to see ghosts unless he is a part of Hotel del Luna still? And this also fits the fact that he still looks young during Man-Wol’s second life.
Just to be clear, the ending of Hotel del Luna is up to the viewer to decide what is going on. By all accounts, Goo Chan-Seong could simply be dreaming about how he will see Jang Man-Wol again. Whatever the intention of the ending might be, as long as viewers enjoyed Hotel del Luna, that is what matters the most.
Hotel del Luna previously aired on the Total Variety Network (tvN) and its time slot will be occupied by the third part of Arthdal Chronicles. For international viewers, Hotel del Luna can be viewed in its entirety for free on Rakuten Viki.