When in Seoul, what better way to fully experience what the country has to offer than to visit a celebrity owned eatery – Not only can you taste some of Seoul’s best cuisines, if you’re lucky enough, you may even get to see the person of your dreams (your favorite celebrity, of course!). What a feast for your stomach and eyes!
Celebrities are known to always make an appearance at their shops so keep your eyes and wallets opened and hope that the fangirl/boy god is by your side because here are 4 eateries opened by Korean celebrities that you should definitely visit on your next trip to Seoul!
1. Roof And 루프앤드 – Shinhwa Min-woo and Actor Oh Dae-hwan
Located in the glitzy upcoming streets of Hannam-dong, this new café is the place to go to for your afternoon
teatime chocolate fix. Roof And is a chocolate and croissant specialty shop so remember to try their signature drinks, the Nama Choco Latte (₩6,500) and Iced Awa Chocolate (₩6,500), and pair it with a piece of their famous buttery and flaky croissants (5 for ₩6,500)!
Jointly opened in May 2018 by veteran idol Lee Min-woo of Shinhwa and actor Oh Dae-hwan, everything in this brand-new café screams minimalistic and aesthetic – From their pastel interiors all the way to their Instagram-worthy drinks.
But well, if you’re an unlucky one like me, this is still a swell place to hang out, people-watch or spend your lazy afternoon. And their desserts are worth the calories too so who am I to complain? Both celebrity owners drop by the shop often so keep your eyes peeled, who knows, the cashier that you meet there might actually be someone familiar.
Roof And is opened every day from 11 am to 9:30 pm, except for Fridays and Saturdays where they close at 10:30 pm.
Address: 66, Hannam-daero 27gil, Yongsan-gu, Seoul (서울특별시용산구한남대로27길66). It’s a 4 minutes walk from Hangangjin station (한강진역) exit 3.
2. Arcade Bar Seoul 지능계발 – H.O.T Jang Woo-hyuk
In this very unassuming building lies a hidden gem owned by another veteran idol, Jang Woo-hyuk from H.O.T. Walk away without a second glance towards it and you’ll miss the hidden café and arcade located behind the façade of a laundromat/computer repair shop.
Filled with knickknacks from all around the world, from both the past and the present, this hotspot is a retro-themed arcade café that is ready to satisfy the inner nerd within you.
Not only do they sell intricate Rainbow Lattes (₩6,000), cafegoers can spend the afternoon playing old-school games (Think Puzzle Bobble and Donkey Kong!) at a flat rate of ₩500 for a round or have a sip of any of their unique Handcrafted Beers (prices start from ₩6,500).
Further immerse yourself in the nostalgias of the yesteryear when you receive the buzzer for your drink as it continuously plays classic videos from the past. Talk about a literal blast from the past!
Arcade Bar Seoul is opened from Tuesday to Sunday, 12 pm to 11:30 pm, with the exception of Friday and Saturday where they will open till 12 am.
Address: 82 Mangwon-ro 2-gil Mapo-gu Seoul (서울특별시마포구망원로2길82).
Note: This cafe is opened to those above 18 (Korean age) only. It’s a 11 minutes walk from Mangwon station (망원역) exit 2.
3. Xiao Zhan 샤오짠 – Henry Lau
Some might say that going to a Chinese restaurant in Korea is absurd but listen. This is owned by former Super Junior-M member, Henry! After proving his cooking prowess on MasterChef Celebrity Korea, this talented superstar is ready to cook up a storm at his latest venture, Xiao Zhan.
Known for being a great cook, you can be assured that the dishes here are all of good quality. The restaurant serves various Taiwanese-Chinese favorites like Lu Rou Fan (₩5,500), Xiao Long Bao (₩4,500), and Mapo Tofu (₩5,500), so if you’re ever craving for some Chinese food, this is the place you should visit!
Apart from serving wallet-friendly and authentic cuisine, the restaurant’s interior is also filled with many Chinese ornaments, further bringing the atmosphere up a notch. This hot place draws a huge crowd whenever it opens, so remember to come prepared with your mind opened and body ready for
battle to queue.
Xiao Zhan is opened every day from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm, and from 4:30 pm to 9 pm.
Address: 1st floor, 23-3 Seolleung-ro 157-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul (서울강남구선릉로157길23-3 1층). It’s a 6 minutes walk from Apgujeong Rodeo station (압구정로데오역) exit 5.
4. Gino’s NY Pizza 지노스피자 – Dok2
This is the famous pizza chain that turned Rapper Dok2 from loyal customer to outlet owner. Gino’s NY Pizza is touted by many as one of the best places to get authentic American pizza in Seoul.
Located in the upscale neighborhoods of Apgujeong, this place has seen both foreigners and locals often coming back for seconds, celebrities included! To name a few, NU’EST Aron, BTOB Peniel, Jay Park, SEVENTEEN Mingyu are all big fans of this place.
With dough so fragrant and with cheese that stretches as long as the Nile River, it’s easy to see why this joint is a celebrity favorite! Their extensive pizza and sides menu is also another highlight of its own, so try out the Creamy Parmesan Garlic Wings (₩10,000), Home-style Italian Lasagna (₩18,000) or Brooklyn’s Best (from ₩26,000) when you’re there!
And for all the Dok2 fans out there, there is a special Dok2 Set Menu (₩42,000) available for you too so don’t forget to try that out as well!
Gino’s NY Pizza is opened every day from 11:30 am to 10 pm, except on Mondays. Not including Saturdays and Sundays, their daily break time is from 3 pm to 5 pm.
Address: 15 Seolleung-ro 155-gil, Gangnam-gu, Seoul (서울강남구선릉로155길15). It’s a 5 minutes walk from Apgujeong Rodeo station (압구정로데오역) exit 5.