Thursday, December 30, 2010

Seoul Lovely

Jean & I went on a much needed break for 5 days.  Christmas in 2 places!  We left December 25 and went to Seoul to experience the food, the culture, the people, the cold and went to visit some of our suppliers too.  Can't wait to release our next collection. In the meantime, the posts in the coming days will be Korea filled.  We loved Seoul and we can't wait to go back.  Here's what we've been doing for the past few days.

After arriving from the airport, we took the 615 Bus to Seoul and left our things in the hotel.  1st stop, Doota Mall in Dongdaemun.  The shops in Dongdaemun night market are open till 5am!  How i wish we can have a mall like this in the Philippines.  It mostly sells korean fashion.  

We went home at 2 am and then for Day 2, we started our Seoul tour by visiting Gyeongbukdong, where we visited the palace and learned about korean history.  Gyeongbukdong is easily accessible by train and is open even on Sundays.

After some history, we went to Insadong to get some korean art scene.  We love the place as it has a lot of quaint restaurants, niche shops, cafes and art galleries.

 A photo from one of the art galleries.

This Ssamzigil market in Insadong is my favorite place.  It kind of reminds me of Cubao X and The Collective in Malugay from the Philippines.

Real koreans posing for my shot.   I never had the chance to ask why they do the peace sign though.  If you know the reason, please enlighten me.

Between the Pages, is one of the most sought after cafes in the market, we will show you more pics in the next posts.  I am sooo approving of the artsy feel, net the expensive coffee.

Pls don't mind what i'm wearing, i'm dying of the cold.  But Cheers to  20011!  Greetings from Jean and myself.

One thing we noticed about koreans is that they love 1.  coffee shops 2.  notes and love letters  3.  wishes for hopeful future.  Everywhere we go, there seems to be a spot where people can just write down anything they like.  

Souvenir shops along Insadong.

Korean Craft

For the past 5 days, there was never a day that we didn't visit Myeongdong.  We love shopping in Myeaongdong.  Lots of things to see.  It kind of reminds us of the busy Hong Kong shopping streets of Tsim Sha Tsui and Central.  Check out not-so-happy Garfield spotted on Myeongdong.

 Koreans are really so sentimental, some even offer free hugs to warm the cold winter days. 

 Myeongdong is heaven for us.  Not to mention all the BB cream and gazillions of the beauty products we bought. Everywhere you look, there are endless choices of skin care products that made us go crazy.  In the next posts, we will show you what we bought because it merits a separate post.

Street food in Myeongdong, they have lots of ways in cooking hotdogs.  i liked the classic one wrapped in bacon.

Day 3, we went to a ski resort via a tour but we requested to have the tour just by ourselves so we can maximize our time.  The tour cost is roughly about 105,000 Won or ($USD 105)  per person but already includes hotel pick up and drop off and a visit to Winter Sonata's (popular Korean TV series) Nami Island.  Gear Rental normally costs 30,000 Won or ($30 USD)  and basic ski lesson costs 50,000 won  or ($50USD).  These charges are on top of the tour cost.

In our case we opted to rent brand new gears with tags.  We were the fist user so it cost us 60,000 won ($USD 60)  and decided to not take a lesson but have a personal guide to watch us during our ski adventure which cost us 25,000 Won ($USD25) per person.

We do not like the fat suit.  I am not fat.  I am just big boned. haha

This is how we looked like after we managed to complete skiing in the beginners'  slope.

Tired but happy for our first ski experience. Koreanovela look.

Gears can be rented in ski resorts but we rented ours in a private ski shop. 

On our way to Nami Island.

Welcome to Nami Island! 

See the frozen falls.

More senti notes from 2010.

Hopeful notes to 2011

 SoJu tree, still with notes.

Winter Sonata

Photo Exhibit by Unicef

artworks along the island walkway

Day 4 and Day 5:  We met with various suppliers for our 2011 collection. But we managed to take photos on the streets.  K-POP fever!

The park in front of our hotel.  It was snowing heavily on Days 4-5.  But the cold was manageable!

snow covered streets and park of Seoul

Dinner at Itaewon. Itaewon has modern pubs and multicultural food choices.  Foreigners are always here. No wonder the Korean BBQ in this area is double the price.

Subway artwork

Last stop:  Co-Ex Mall.  Co-ex is the biggest underground mall in Korea.  We also visited the Hyundai Department Store.  It is like their version of Rustan's Department Store only with more high end brands selection.

Merry Christmas and a Happy new year from Jean & Rosz!  Do visit Seoul.  To me it is underrated.  Seoul is lovely and so are Koreans!