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Itaewon

Our Commune: Putting the Community Back in Gyeongnidan

The neighborhood of Gyeongnidan, which is nestled not far from the bustling main strip of Itaewon, was once a peaceful residential neighborhood inhabited mostly by international expats and elderly Koreans. Over the past few years, however, it has been popularized by food bloggers and television programs, transforming into an overcrowded commercialized district of lifeless cafes and restaurants established with priorities placed on the wallets of their proprietors rather than serving a community.

 
While the gentrification of Gyeongnidan does have its upsides, any traces of the neighborhood it once was have seemingly all but vanished. Long term residents of the area are disheartened by this, longing for a relaxing space they can come together, without having to wait in preposterously long lines. While such a place might only seem like the stuff of dreams these days, the newly opened Our Commune, located on the main road just next to the GS25 (previously 7-11), is the answer to residents’ hopes.


Guilty Pleasure: Authentic Southern-Style Comfort Food in Itaewon

Something about the cold weather really puts a damper on my mood. So, what do I do when I've got the winter blues? I eat! And while I've managed to find comfort in certain Korean foods over the years, nothing really puts a smile on my face like the fatty goodness that is Southern food. Fortunately enough for me, there's been a renaissance of Seoul's international food scene over the past year, with a growing focus on Southern-style barbecue and comfort food. Yet, no one seems to have hit the nail on the head quite as well as Guilty Pleasure.



Take Out Drawing: A Cafe that Inspires

I've been working on a few big writing projects recently (more news on that to come soon) and as such, I've been seeking quiet cafes with an ambiance to inspire. While there are plenty coffee shops throughout this city, so many of them are too loud, with their crowds and looping K-pop playlists, too dark or too sterile for my taste, at least for when working.

The exception, however, is Takeout Drawing, a cafe chain that fuses design, imagination, and caffeine. With its distressed concrete walls, abundance of windows (which are kept open in nice weather), and minimal decor, Take Out Drawing resembles an architect's studio more than a coffeehouse.

Sometimes it can be hard to find a good sandwich in Korea....











Sometimes it can be hard to find a good sandwich in Korea. Admittedly, in Itaewon, Seoul it’s a lot easier. One of the places I like to visit there is Rye Post.


Where to Buy English Books in Korea

Winter is coming in Korea and it’s a great time to snuggle up with a few new books. This past January I made a goal to read 35 books in 2014, and I can finally see the finish line! I’ve read 26 books so far, so that leaves 9 more to go in under 2 months. That’s a lot of reading, so I decided to order some new books to motivate me to reach my goal.

I ordered them from What the Book, the popular used book store in the Itaewon neighborhood of Seoul. Many of you have probably heard of or visited the store, but you may not know that you can also order books from their online store and have them delivered to you anywhere in Korea! Even if you’re looking for a specific book they don’t have, What the Book can order it for you online and send it to you.


A Taste of Home at Two Broz Burgers

Seoul has most certainly come a long way in the past few years in terms of serving up tasty international cuisine. Burger aficionados, in particular, no longer have to suffer their way through bites of patties smothered in mystery sauce or trek across the capital in search of the real deal. There are a number of burger joints in Seoul nowadays, but perhaps the biggest concentration is in the multicultural district of Itaewon. Here, diners have endless options, but for those craving a no-nonsense, unpretentious burger before a night out on the town or a quick bite during lunch, Two Broz is a great option.

Itaewon Festival

Every day is a festival in Seoul. There are festivals for a particular flower when it blooms, festivals for the seasons, for foreigners, and many many more! Festivals are also celebrated to introduce the people to a particular area / museum / monument that has been recently open to public. Pretty good tactics!

Wolhyang – Itaewon (월향 3호점)

 

Name: Wolhyang (월향)

Location: Itaewon


Creatures of the Night: Itaewon Edition

Tourists, travel bloggers, K-Pop enthusiasts and all you lovely people of the Internet: This is Fred Colton, intrepid armchair anthropologist, reporting live from the main drag of Seoul’s famed Itaewon district at 11:45 on a Saturday night.

I’m en route to tonight’s hotspot of choice (more on that in a moment), making a casual traverse along a low, curving canyon of bars with names such as Geckos and SinBin and clubs with names like Cake Shop and Pet Sounds. This region is bracketed from the west by both a mosque and the notorious Hooker Hill, while a US Army Garrison rests down the slope to the east. Some off-duty soldiers hustle past me in a tight pack, trying to get back on base before curfew. Hmm, now wait a tick. These gentlemen don’t look like Muslims leaving prayer time. I’d give you two guesses as to where they just left, but you’re only gonna need one.


Cargo 127: Craft Beer and Pub Grub Perfection in Itaewon

One of the biggest culinary trends to hit South Korea over the past couple years is that of craft beer.  Subsequently, microbreweries and small gastropubs have been mushrooming throughout Seoul, particularly in the neighborhoods of Itaewon, Gyeongnidan and Haebangchon.

Each of these watering holes offers up their own specialties, all of which are nice alternatives of tasteless Cass, watery OB and the rest of Korea's substandard brews.  One of the best places to get in on the craft action is Cargo 127 in the heart of Itaewon.

The Maoul Bus*

I walked up and down the street looking for the bus stop on the opposite side of the street. Where I was going was only four stops away in that direction, but I soon realised that the bus only went in the opposite direction, which left me a good fifteen stops away. I bit the […]

Another Queer Weekend

I'm a little late with this (I need to post things about the weekend by Thursday morning for it to be ready for the Korean weekend?!?) but thought I'd post some info about gay parties tonight, Saturday, October 5th in Seoul. G2 Club is having a party tonight. It is Tong's Night! (Tong as in fatty 통?)

Another Queer Weekend!

This weekend is quite queer. And, like always, comment if I'm missing any events.

Uniq, where do you even come up with these taglines? This Friday, touch some c***. Or get my butt in the real dark?

The new Club Action in Itaewon has a party Saturday night. This looks like Korean music from the 80s and 90s.

New Clubs in Itaewon: Gray and Action

Ivancity has had promos for these two clubs ever since I've left Korea. Has anyone been?

Another Queer Weekend

Not just another queer weekend, but another queer party opening up! This one is called 'Gray', and opens on Saturday in Itaewon.

They are across from the fire station in Itaewon. As this map kind of shows...

Another Queer Weekend

If you want to check out a new place this weekend, you can head to Around in the Jongno area.
The bar boasts 'Worldwide Fun'. Whatever that means. They had their grand opening yesterday. Here is a map to Around (right out of Jongno 3 Ga exit 7 in the basement). Actually, I'm not positive it is a bar...

Color Me Rad Korea!

At the weekend we took part in a Color Me Rad run in Seoul. It was a lot of fun! The event was held in Seoul Olympic Sports Complex. As it was extremely busy there was not a chance to run, it was more of a fun walk but this was okay with me. At various points of the course colour tunnels were set up. The first colour was orange, then pink, blue and yellow. As you walked through a group of volunteers threw coloured powder all over you!  The atmosphere of the event was fantastic. Everybody was having a lot of fun and were very happy to be covered in so much colour! To participate in the race the sign up fee was 35,000 won. This included a t-shirt and a pair of sunglasses. There were also a lot of freebies to be had at the end of the race. Everybody got their own colour powder pouch(s), wet wipes and vitamin water(s).  It was a very messy experience but I am glad we did it!


Another Queer Weekend

Friday night is 'Family Party' at Circuit and 'Touch My Body' at Uniq.

New Queer Party? Vogue at Cakeshop

Cakeshop in Itaewon is launching a new party called Vogue. Here is the party's concept from their Facebook page:

Bar: Moon Night


I've been to Moon Night in Itaewon quite a lot, yet have yet to write a post, which is a shame because it is a fine establishment. What it is especially great for are the frequent drag shows. During pride, there were some pretty great Korean and waygook queens.

Another Queer Weekend

Of course, the LGBT Film Festival is going on all weekend. But if you are looking to grab a drink instead of see a film that shouldn't be a problem.

If you want to try something new, head to LOVO and get a free drink. As I haven't been yet, I can't promise anything, but the interior looks nice.

KQCF: A Queer Weekend

Since it is pride, a lot of parties are happening this weekend. Especially on Saturday. Three parties are happening in Hongdae. The official After Party is at Factory Underground. KQCF's website is down at the moment, but I'll include more info when I can access the website.

The lesbian club Labris also has a official after party as you can see in this poster. (Which is quite a beautiful poster, huh?) Has anyone seen a poster for the Labris party?

Another Queer Weekend

This weekend looks pretty gay. Tonight is the opening of G2 Lounge, which is opening in what used to be Monster (where the last Gation party was hosted). I guess that means Monster is closed? I really liked Monster, but maybe G2 Lounge will be nice?

Another Queer Weekend

It is already Thursday! What are you going to get up to this weekend? There are two special things I want to point out...

Saturday night, there is a screening of Girl Princes. If you are free on Saturday, definitely see the documentary.

Another Queer Weekend

Another Tuesday where I'm posting about weekend activities... ㅋ ㅋ

Apparently, Circuit is open on Thursdays. The entrance is free, but I'm not sure how busy it'd be.

Another Gay Weekend 3/22~3/25

If you are looking to party this weekend, you have a couple of choices.

Friday night, Circuit is having another Animal party. Honestly, it pretty much looks like the same old Circuit stuff.

Another Long Weekend-Seoul Trip

We got another long weekend on the March 1st as it was a national holiday. This holiday is known as Independence Day or the Samil Movement, it was one of the earliest public displays of Korean resistance during the occupation of the Korean Empire by Japan. Yippeeee for national holidays!

We decided to go to Seoul for two nights. David, myself, Amanda and Brandon have been on a strict healthy eating and exercise regime since the 1st January and Friday the 28th  February was officially the LAST day! So  it was inevitable that Seoul was going to be a junk food and alcohol fest!!!

For this weekend we decided to stay in a hostel in Hong-dae called Pencil Second. All four of us stayed in one room, which was an apartment style dorm. It cost 17,000 won per person per night.


Shiny Antiques

Shiny scooters at Itaewon
Shiny Scooters found at Itaewon

Thursday Challenge- Shiny antiques spotted at Itaewon Festival.

Meeting 6 – MowMow (마우마우) Photo Gallery

MowMow came highly recommended as the new place to be for makgeolli in Itaewon. It boasted some top shelf, fresh makgeolli but our Mamas & Papas weren’t overly impressed by the food variety. Nonetheless, it is a great space for an after-work kettle!


Christmas Weekend Events in Queer Seoul

Happy Holidays! All sorts of things will be happening for a gay Christmas in Seoul. Christmas is a holiday with your lover in Korea, so its alright to go out and get smashed at the club. And Seoul has given you some choices.
Want some bear action? GQ Bar in Jongno has a bunch of events. 15,000 won for all you can drink cocktails on Friday (But just for an hour? Way to encourage binge drinking). On Saturday, you can be the queen of games, including Bingo and Anipang (really?). On Christmas Eve, there will also be a Romantic Christmas bingo game with various prizes.

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