Shinsegae Department Store — Main Branch [신세계백화점 본점]

My First First Love (2019); Fight For My Way (2017); Legend of the Blue Sea (2016-17); Goblin (2016-17); Pinocchio (2014-15); My Princess (2011); Boys Over Flowers (2009)


Seo Do-hyun (Jung Jin-young) and Han Song-yi (Jung Chae-yeon) pass by the main building while on a date in episode 9 of My First First Love/Because It’s My First Love (첫사랑은 처음이라서) (Netflix, 2019).

In Fight For My Way/Third-Rate My Way (쌈 마이웨이) (KBS2, 2017), Choi Ae-ra (Kim Ji-won) works here as an employee. In episode 1 we see her with a former high school rival in Trinity Garden café, Shinsegae’s rooftop garden café – with a Jeff Koons sculpture in the background.

In Legend of the Blue Sea (푸른 바다의 전설) (SBS, 2016-17), Sim Chung (Gianna Jun) and Heo Joon-jae (Lee Min-ho) go shopping here – in company of Jo Nam-doo (Lee Hee-joon) in episode 9. They fake a rich real estate mogul and his fiancée from Dubai – part of the trio’s next scam. In episode 11, Chung comes back here to get a refund for the clothes bought previously, takes a tour on the in-store chairoplane [located in the Shinsegae Duty Free Shop [신세계면세점 명동점 현장] in the new building] and meets Joo-Jae’s half brother when she gets out of the store on the street below the store’s wings (well, it’s not a real coincidence).
[Sidenote: The meta here is nice that Jun-pyo’s reincarnation, Joon-jae, comes back to ‘his’ store as a con artist, and how in both shows, the store belongs to his family.]

While Park Hae-young (Song Seung-heon) meets up with Oh Yoon-joo (Park Ye-jin) at the Trinity Garden café, Shinsegae’s rooftop garden café, in episode 5 of My Princess (마이 프린세스) (MBC, 2011), Lee-Sul (Kim Tae-hee) goes shopping at this department store and the both meet later in an quite embarrassing moment for him.

This department store is part of the Shinhwa group in Boys Over Flowers (꽃보다 남자) (KBS2, 2009), and is where Goo Jun-pyo (Lee Min-ho) and Geum Jan-di (Goo Hye-sun) go shopping.


This is where the kiss between Ki Ha-myeong (Lee Jong-suk) and Choi In-ha (Park Shin-hye) happened in episode 8 of Pinocchio (2014-15).

Fountain in front of the Old Wing

In winter, the fountain right outside the old wing of Shinsegae Department Store is lighted up. In episode 9 of Goblin/Guardian: The Lonely and Great God (쓸쓸하고 찬란하神 – 도깨비) (tvN, 2016-17), the Grim Reaper (Lee Dong-wook) and Sunny (Yoo In-na) walk pass it and it builds the background of their conversation when they come to a stop in front of the Bank of Korea Money Museum [한국은행 화폐박물관] – which is situated right opposite of Shinsegae. In episode 12, both of them meet right in front of the fountain.

Legend of the Blue Sea‘s Sim Chung and Joon-jae also stops in front of the fountain in episode 11 and 12. It is here that Joon-jae tells Sim Chung to wait a little for him (he wants to get the little octopus for her) but is arrested by the police before he can get back to her.

* * *

Shinsegae Department Store — Main Branch [신세계백화점 본점] is the main store of South Korean department store franchise Shinsegae, with its name literally translating to ‘New World’. Opened in 1930, this main branch is the oldest department store in South Korea. During the Japanese occupation it started out as a branch of Japanese department store franchise Mitsukoshi until it was taken over by the late founder of Samsung, Lee Byung-chull, in 1945 (which included also a name-change to ‘Donghwa Department Store’). It was again renamed in 1963 and carries its present name ‘Shinsegae’ since then (after it has been used as a post exchange by the American army for a couple of years). Now, it is run by Lee Byung-chull’s daughter Lee Myung-hee, but independent of Samsung Group from which it departed in the 1990s. The new building opened in 2005 and the old (or main) building has undergone remodeling in 2007.

This main branch of Shinsegae is located in Seoul’s neighborhood Myeong-dong [명동] in the Jung District [Jung-gu/중구]; a few steps away from State Tower Namsan [스테이트 타워 남산].

Address of Main Building [본점 본관]
63 Sogong-ro, Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울특별시  중구 소공로 63
(충무로1가 52-5)
Geolocation: 37.560999, 126.981093

Address of fountain
3 Chungmuro 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
서울특별시  중구 충무로1가 3
Geolocation: 37.561433, 126.981029
Geolocation outside store seen in Fight For My Way: 37.560886, 126.981506
Geolocation of Bank of Korea Money Museum: 37.561986, 126.980643

Address of street between the two buildings
Namdaemunsijang-gil Street
Geolocation: 37.560640, 126.981045

Getting here
Hoehyeon Station [회현역], Seoul Subway Line 4, Exit 7
(4 min. walk)

— submitted by Marion KDL
— Photos taken by © Mich KDL, May 2018
My First First Love added by Mich KDL

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