I took the train to Dongdaemun the other day on a mission: to finally, hopefully, find a laptop backpack I liked. See, Dongdaemun is yet another popular shopping area here in Seoul. In addition to the Doota mall, the Migliore and Hello apM buildings, and the Lotte Fitin mall, it’s also home to the Pyeonghwa Market — one of the oldest wholesale markets in the country — and the Gwangjang Market, another longstanding market known for its silks and traditional Korean clothing.
Dongdaemun is situated just south of the Cheonggyecheon Stream (remember the Lantern Festival? this stream runs for several miles). When you exit the subway station, you surface right at the Dongdaemun Design Plaza and Park and are immediately drawn to the eye-capturing structure that marks this arts and culture facility, designed by a British architect and apparently just completed in 2013. A must-see if you’re ever in Seoul. I unfortunately didn’t go inside the complex. I ran out of time! Too busy shopping for my backpack….
Which brings me to the shopping experience. The Doota and Lotte Fitin mall buildings are each eight floors or so of high-end shopping (surprise, surprise!). Unlike the other malls I’ve visited in Seoul so far, however, these are clearly tailored for fashionistas. The clothing designs range from classic, to funky, to flat-out stunning looks you might see on the runway. That goes for the shoes, sunglasses, handbags (oh my goodness, beautiful bags) and other accessories they sell as well. Of course, good taste is usually not cheap, so…. I’ll just let you imagine what the price tags were like.