Journal Korea 2024 ZoelieWho

Korea 2024 | Gangnam, Itaewon and Sinsadong

Sinsadong Shopping District

Address: 3 Dosan-daero 49-gil, Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Many shops open after 11am-1pm. 

Exploring the Sinsa shopping district was a delightful surprise for us. It exudes an upscale vibe and boasts a plethora of high-quality items. I would definitely suggest taking a leisurely stroll around this area, as it tends to be quieter compared to other bustling shopping districts. Plus, the selection of goods here is truly impressive. Creatrip pretty much captured everything we came across during our exploration.

Mood Collect Personal Style Consulting

Website & Instagram   |  AM 10 : 00 ~ PM 9 : 00
Address: 서울 서초구 강남대로37길 12-11 6층

To book their services, you’ll need to reach out to them through Instagram or WhatsApp. Keep in mind that payment is typically required when making the booking. This ensures that your spot is reserved and helps streamline the process for both you and the service provider.

Finding the location was a breeze, thanks to their clear instructions and guidance from Naver Map. Upon arrival, I was pleasantly surprised by the cleanliness and brightness of the place. The staff greeted me warmly, setting a welcoming tone for the session.

I opted for the personal color and skeletal analysis, which came at a price of USD 187.83, approximately RM898.06. I chose the service with English interpretation, which was already included in the pricing. Another staff member assisted with translation during the session. For those requiring Mandarin interpretation, there is an additional surcharge.

While I had some preliminary insights about myself, the analysis provided reassurance and uncovered new information. It was insightful to delve deeper into aspects I hadn’t previously considered.

The detailed report arrived about a week after the session, once I had returned to Malaysia. Although this wasn’t an issue for me, as many brands listed in the report are available locally, accessing specific product lines may pose a challenge if local stores lack variety.

Gangnam Shopping District

It seems like Gangnam’s shopping district has evolved over time. While it used to be synonymous with upscale aesthetic clinics and exclusive shops, it now feels more accessible to people from all walks of life. During our visit, we noticed a variety of events taking place, including the Netflix Parasyte promotional event. It’s interesting to see how the area has become more diverse and vibrant over the years.

Gatten Sushi Gangnam

AM 11 : 00 ~ PM 9 : 30
Address: 109 Teheran-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea

If you are visiting, you will need a local phone number and a Kakao Talk account to register yourself into the waiting line. It’s good to prepare this before leaving the airport.

Our first experience at Gatten Sushi in the Gangnam branch left us thoroughly impressed, particularly by the exceptional service provided by the staff. They went above and beyond to ensure we received the correct orders, even assisting with filling out the order forms in Korean. As for the food, we were pleased with the quality and taste. Standout dishes included the takoyaki and the mentaiko egg sushi, both of which were delightful. The minced tuna maki also impressed with its flavors. While the salmon slices could have been colder and the beef slices warmer, they were still enjoyable. A highlight was the refillable miso soup, allowing us to indulge to our heart’s content while serving ourselves. The total amount spent was ₩34,800 , which is approximately equivalent to RM128.76.

Kakao Friends Gangnam Flagship Store

+82 2-6494-1100    |    AM 10 : 30 ~ PM 10 : 00
Address: 429, Gangnam-daero, Seocho-gu, Seoul
서울특별시 서초구 강남대로 429

It was a bit disheartening to discover that the offerings at the Kakao Friends Gangnam Flagship Store were nearly identical to those at the Hongdae branch, lacking diversity or additional options. I had hoped to find a wider selection of phone accessories, more varieties of passport covers, and other unique items. Instead, the store seemed focused on promoting new characters, particularly Chunsik, the sweet potato enthusiast, while reducing the options available for Ryan. It felt like a missed opportunity for a flagship location to offer something truly distinct and innovative.

Line Friends Gangnam Flagship Store

+82 2-536-3232    |    AM 11 : 00 ~ PM 9 : 00
Address: 437 Gangnam-daero, Seocho-gu, Seoul, South Korea

It’s a shame to report that Line Friends is rather subdued in this district. The store mainly featured NewJeans items, lacking the vibrant variety I had hoped for. Moreover, the lighting in this branch felt harsh and unwelcoming, giving off a cold and distant atmosphere. With few items catching my eye, we didn’t linger long and made a swift exit.

Bongeunsa Temple

+82 2-3218-4800   |  AM 05 : 00 ~ PM 9 : 00
Address: 531 Bongeunsa-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, South Korea

It was my intention to visit Bongeunsa Temple around 4pm while there was still daylight, but our plans took a detour when we got caught up exploring the Lotte World Aquarium for longer than expected. By the time we made it to the temple, it was already 7pm, and the rain had started. The surroundings were shrouded in darkness, and everything seemed damp from the rain. With the weather and conditions not ideal, we decided not to venture into the praying area to avoid getting sand in our shoes and socks.

If you’re in search of spiritual items, there’s a shop conveniently located right next to the temple entrance. They offer a variety of bracelets, and if you notice the glass door to the counter is open, it means you’re welcome to browse through the items yourself. However, I found that many of the crystals’ qualities were not quite up to par. Still, I decided to make a purchase here because the items are within the temple grounds and may have been blessed, adding an extra layer of significance.


AM 10 : 30 ~ PM 10 : 00
Address: 513, Yeongdong-daero, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
서울특별시 강남구 영동대로 513

I was quite disappointed with Coex Mall—it felt rundown and lacked the charm I had hoped for. Upon returning to Malaysia, I discovered that many others shared similar sentiments, expressing that Coex Mall is no longer worth visiting. If you’re looking for a better experience, I’d suggest checking out the new Starfield Library instead.

Hoka, Shinsegae Gangnam Department Store

Website & Instagram   |  +82 2 2150 2408
AM 10 : 00 ~ PM 8 : 00
Address: 19-3, Banpo-dong, Seocho-gu, seoul, Piemonte, 13900, Korea

Shinsegae closes promptly at 8pm! We learned this the hard way when we arrived at 7:50pm, only to be hurried out by the Hoka manager. Returning the next day, we encountered the same manager, who wasn’t exactly pleasant, but we managed to purchase our new shoes. It was a bit of a surprise to find out later that Hoka is available in Malaysia too, though perhaps their marketing could use some improvement. Nonetheless, we were content with our purchase, especially since we got them at a slightly cheaper price (₩207,000, approximately RM765.9) and needed reliable shoes for exploring Seoul for the remaining days of our trip.

Itaewon District

It was my first time here, and I was surprised by the number of uphill streets. Opting for the shuttle bus (which requires payment), we found it to be quite aggressive as it navigated the steep roads, with stops every 1-2 minutes. Initially, we accidentally boarded the wrong bus and ended up at the Grand Hyatt Itaewon stop instead of our intended destination, Gangnam Station. Despite the detour, we couldn’t help but admire the grandeur of the hotel, though we were well aware of its corresponding price tag. Unfortunately, our time in this area was cut short as we had plans to visit Hyundai Pangyo, but I’m definitely keen to return and explore more after some further research.

Berry Berry Very Much

Instagram   |  AM 11 : 00 ~ PM 9 : 30
Address: 5 Hoenamu-ro 35-gil, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, South Korea

The ambience around the bus stop was truly inviting, especially with the vibrant flowers adorning the entrance. However, my peaceful moment with nature was interrupted by the inconsiderate actions of some individuals smoking right next to the beautiful bush—definitely not the most pleasant encounter.

Upon entering the café, I was greeted by a tempting array of treats and beverages. Deciding on a cheesecake, strawberry shortcake, strawberry milk, and an iced latte, I was excited to treat myself. While the cheesecake was a bit firmer than I preferred, the strawberry shortcake was a standout with its delicious flavor. The strawberry milk provided a decent fix for my craving. In total, I spent ₩30,700, which is approximately RM113.59.

Venturing upstairs, I discovered more seating options, albeit with steep stairs that required some caution. Nevertheless, every dining space was thoughtfully curated, making it a delightful spot to unwind and enjoy some delicious treats. Overall, Berry Berry Very Much is definitely a café worth visiting for a relaxing experience.

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