/Updated with new post on visiting Cube Cafe + Cofioca, as well as clearer directions to JYP Entertainment. See here! Also, I am aware that SM now has a new building, but I can’t help you guys with that since I’ve never been to it, however there’s a great guide here! Hope you guys still enjoy reading my experiences though!
Back to finishing up my Seoul posts! I still have quite a number of places to cover and it’s nearing a month since I’ve gotten back…so I’m hoping to finish everything by the end of this month. Eep.
So one of the days, or rather, over two different days, we went in search of Seoul’s famous entertainment companies – namely SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment and YG Entertainment. And I actually think there’s nothing much you can do when you go to these places except…take photos so I wouldn’t suggest it if you have plenty of other things on your to-do list! I think two weeks gave us a pretty good amount of time to do whatever we wanted, but we still didn’t visit every single place we wanted to, so prioritise!
I won’t be writing my own guide on how to get there since there are plenty of good ones online, but a rough guide will be at the bottom of this entry.
SM and JYP are within walking distances of each other after you get off at Cheongdam station (Some people get off at Apgujeong station if they are only planning to visit SM because it is apparently closer).
FYI, I got out at exit 9 for Cheongdam Station and headed to SM first, then backtracked and walked to JYP. There are two possible exits you can use if you only plan to go to JYP, and I’m guessing either are fine.
Exit 9 of Cheongdam Station is closer to JYP than to SM.
Cube Entertainment (Home to Beast, 4 Minute, G.NA etc) is located within walking distances of SM & JYP too, but we didn’t visit the place.
Random well-dressed guard/one of those guys waiting to open the door for you while judging your bought-in-Dongdaemun-at-half-price outfit if you decide to step in.
Oh look! Someplace we could actually afford to eat at.
Gangnam is a really expensive area – and you can tell by all the high-end luxury brands around the place. Although I can’t afford to buy anything, I LOVE how all the buildings looked! This is how a luxury street should look like, right? Tall buildings with huge signs showing off their brand name – and lots of well-dressed people.
When we first got there, it was once again…freezing. The cold was not the problem, it was the friggin wind and we desperately wanted to find somewhere to hide again. We entered this same restaurant twice because we were also looking for something to eat (the only thing that have an abudence of in the area are coffee places) but I think they needed a reservation. Grr.
We ended up at some small eatery opened by some ahjumma and ate really nice, warm cheese ramen. :’) It was our cheapest meal too, 15,000 won altogether – about S$16 ++
I followed the video instructions mentioned above for SM, and I think they were the most clear-cut instructions ever. They’re really easy to follow – just involves a lot of walking straight and looking out for the landmarks/signs mentioned. SM is also located by the side of the road so it’s very noticeable.
Not SM but I love how the trees looked! Bare because of cold weather but still pretty.
And here we are at SM’s building!
We stayed for a grand total of about three minutes before running off. Although they recently got that big, sparkly sign up, there’s seriously nothing else you can do in front of the building since it’s right beside the road and there are a ton of cars going by…and everyone knows what you are there for so…
Also, SM Academy, is a seperate building and school where people can actually sign up for music/performing arts courses and if you are good enough, take part in SM Auditions. That was how SHINee’s Onew and SNSD’s Taeyeon were discovered. :’)
After we left, we headed in the wrong direction to look for JYP and when we turned back we actually saw other Singaporeans taking photos outside SM too haha.
We had a bit of trouble looking for JYP, but one thing is for sure:
If you are going there from SM, face the building, turn to your right, and then walk back down to the huge cross-junction and then turn left and walk. Rest of the directions above!
We eventually found our way there after a nice lady overheard Mel and I talking about us getting lost (while seeking refuge in an office building’s toilet pfft) and told us how to get there! She also asked if we were Singaporean, because she recognised us from our accents.
“My friends from Singapore all sound like that too!” She chirped.
I preferred how JYP looks over SM almost immediately because you can really tell it’s an artiste-managing company just by looking at the building! Can you spot your favourite acts? And JYP has his own huge artiste spot right on top of everyone else’s hehe. There are actually still blank spaces unoccupied by posters of current artistes too. Soon to be taken up by JB and Jr.?
Keith going to work on a typical day. I’m sorry this picture looks so constipated. I think I was spamming shots.
Mel and Keith actually strolled into the carpark area where there is an office. I don’t really know what they found though. Maybe they took pictures with vans that might have potentially ferried their opparsssss/hyungsss.
There is also a pretty neat wall by the side of the carpark where fans leave their messages to JYP artistes. And just like what everyone says, there’s a Dunkin Donuts right opposite the building! It’s seriously very strategically placed, directly on the other side of the tiny road seperating them. Lots of fangirls sitting inside just waiting to see someone famous!
Think they were all eyeing us, annoyed that we were running around and taking photos.
And just had to say this, I bought a hot Starbucks mocha when we stopped at the office building previously and by the time I got to JYP (five minutes later) it was ice cold. -.-
On another day, we trekked to YG after getting our hair done – explains nice hair in this part of the entry – and this was relatively easy to find too. Just follow directions listed above! You’ll find the walk to YG a bit quiet, especially since you have to go down this alley (go in the day, it’s easier), but the building itself is impossible to miss.
Mel was crazily excited because well, she’s that little step closer to TOP right! Hehe.
YG is located in a very, very quiet area but you can see how huge and amazing the building looks. There were about 3-4 fangirls sitting by the curb when we went there – and were still there went we left. I’ve read accounts of fans actually approaching people going in/out of the building and begging them to pass their gifts to Big Bang/2NE1 and sometimes succeed if the person is nice enough.
She’s even wearing her Blackjack (Official 2NE1 fanclub) hoodie!
I leave you with Keith looking like the next YG star himself.
P/S Updated Myeongdong entry with noraebang experience!
Gangnam-gu Ahpgujung-2dong 521
Get off at: Cheongdam Station, Line 7, exit 9/Apgujeong, Line 3, exit 1
Directions to SM from Cheongdam Station via here
Directions to SM from Apgujeong via here
Seoul, Gangnam-gu, Cheongdam-dong, 123-50, JYP Entertainment
Get off at: Cheongdam Station, Line 7, exit 9/13
Directions to JYP from exit 9 via here.
Directions to JYP from exit 13 via here.
Seoul, Mapo-gu, Hapjeong-dong, 397-5, YG Entertainment
Get off at: Hapjeong Station, Line 6, exit 8
Directions to YG via here.
A lot of the links are from the same page except SM and JYP, because they have two ways of getting there.