Ladies' Special Korea Tour, Day 3: Lotte L7 Hotel, Aromind, K-Style Hub, Tongin Market, Innisfree Flagship Store, Myeongdong, Pojangmacha

Here's the 2nd installment of my Korea Ladies' Special tour posts! As I mentioned in my first entry, a few media peeps, bloggers and vloggers were given a different kind of tour last month that is fit for queens (taray)! On our 1st and 2nd day, we went to Everland Resort, Cebu Hwaseong Fortress, Cebu Pacific's Seoul office, Palsaek Samgyeopsal & Dongdaemun Design Plaza. Our 3rd and 4th day was mainly centered around Seoul! Here are photos from Day 3 of our Ladies' Special tour...

Mossimo jacket, Thrifted sweater, Ever New skirt, Optisense eyewear, Topshop boots

The night before, we checked-in our home for 2 days in Seoul, Lotte L7 Myeongdong Hotel located in the heart of the city! It is a lifestyle hotel that is both trendy and cozy. The interiors are super instagram worthy, the rooms are superb and the service is amazing. I love how it's super close to some of the major shopping destinations, including Lotte Duty-free Shops, Lotte Department Store, and tourist attractions, including Gyeongbokgung Palace and Namsan Mountain. It is just a a minute walk to Myeongdong shopping street and there's a huge Daiso (as in 8 floors!) just across. Major amenities include the rooftop bar on the 21st floor, the foot spa, the lounge & bar on the 3rd floor for parties and gatherings, and the sophisticated suites, superior rooms, and standard rooms.


 Time to check-in!

 It's like a modern art gallery. So chic!

Cute neon sign!

OMG the lobby is so pretty

I want those chairs hehe

Here's our room!

 Glass shower 

 High tech toilet and open basin! Fresh towels and toiletries were also provided. Favorite ko their shampoo! 

 Twin beds!

 Mini bar and closet

Their Standard Twin room is priced at 119,000 krw or P5,500 a night! Not bad:)

Book here: 

 Woke up early the next day because we had an early call time and we wanted to avail their breakfast buffet. 

 Breakfast is served at Villa de Charlotte. I forgot which floor. hehe.

 They serve European and local dishes!

 salad bar, bread and fruits section

My plate on the right, Ana's on the left. :) So good!!!

Prices in KRW:
Breakfast Buffet : Adult 27,500 / Child 17,000
Lunch Buffet : Adult 25,000 / Child 17,500
Dinner Buffet : Adult 36,900 / Child 25,900

1st Stop: DIY Perfume Workshop at AROMIND

This easily became one of my favorite activities during our whole trip! I never thought that perfume making could be so much fun. It was my first time and I thought it's just gonna be quick and boring, but it turned out to be super interactive and also a nice activity for self discovery. 

Aromind is located at Bukchon Hanok Village inside a traditional Korean house! 

Upon entry, we were asked to choose our seats so we could start with the perfume making process.

We were handed a tiny weighing scale, bottled alcohol, beaker and a sheet of paper where we would write down our chosen scents and also their percentage and ratio.

In summary, we were asked to choose only 3 scents which we would use to make our perfumes! It was really hard because all of them smells so nice. Huhu.

The workshop was conducted by Aromind's founder, Ms. Lina! Favorite ko na sha. She was super nice, patient and supportive. 

Lina dipped paper strips into each bottle and passed it around so we could all smell and experience each one.

My scent strips with labels and my "feelings" chart

Choosing my top 3 among all 30+ scents was not easy feat. We were encouraged to listen to our senses so we'd be able to find the perfect one for each of us. We had to smell all 30+ scents, write down our "feelings" or thoughts upon smelling them and then label the strips accordingly (if they're Base, Top or Middle scent) so it would be easier to finalize our choices. It was super fun and exciting, especially for a first-timer like me.

 Here are my feelings for each scent! May amoy lamay, kalachuchi, freedom, 1st crush mo nung nagdadalaga, Tito na mapera, etc. Haha!

I feel like an expert. I could do this all day. Haha! In fairness super sineryoso ko sha! 

Finally, after thorough deliberation and evaluation, finally chose my Top 3 "notes"!!! One for each category--Base, Top & Middle. 

I've always loved spa like scents and green tea, so mejo magkakaamoy these 3. Earl Gray for my Base, Citrus Green Tea for Top and Spring Flower for my Middle note. Fresh, sweet and clean!

Serious mode din si Ana

When we were done with our selections, Lina went around and told us the percentage and ratio when we mix our 3 chosen scents. 

For ex. 40% Earl Gray, 35% Green Tea & 25% Spring Flower. She will also tell you how many drops per scent. We had to mix all of them in the beaker and then it also has specific grams per scent. 

We were also asked to choose our preferred perfume bottle! Chose the small one with the black cover. :)

After mixing them all in a beaker and adding alcohol in the mixture, we were given glass funnels to be able to transfer them into our bottles!

TADA!!! We were joking while we were making our perfumes and I decided to name mine, Simply Breath. Wahahah!

Happy kids! We created our own 50ml perfumes and we also had a tester. :)

Book your own session for just 60,000 won! Worth it!

Thank you Lina and Aromind for having us!!!

Address: 19-7, Bukchon-ro 5-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul 
To get to AROMIND, walk for around 7 minutes from Anguk Station Exit 2.
Email: aromind@aromind.co.kr

2nd Stop: Andong Jjimdak 
Located in Myeongdong

This restaurant specializes in braised chicken with soy sauce. So delicious!!!

Tastes like adobo but sweeter. Love the sauce and the glass noodles. Loved it! Perfect with kimchi and a glass of soda!

3rd Stop: K-Style Hub at the Korea Tourism Organization Office

Here's a place in Seoul that not many of you know. K-Style Hub, located inside the Korea Tourism Organization or KTO Seoul office, is a one-stop complex that has information to meet all tourists' needs! Best part? It's free!!! The hub is spread out over four levels-- the Tourist Information Center on the 2nd floor, Korean Food "Hansik" Exhibition on the 3rd floor, Experience Halls on the 4th floor, and the Cultural Product Hall on the 5th floor. It's a nice way to experience and learn more about South Korea and it's all in one place! See below for detailed list!

We hoarded brochures! This is where I got my Goblin tour brochure which I used in planning my K-drama tour a few days after. Super useful! :)

For help with tours, just go over this desk!

Exhibition Hall Information 
[Tourist Information Center (TIC)]
- Location: K-Style Hub 2F
- Language assistance: Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese
- Main facilities: Information desk, medical tourism marketing zone, muslim prayer room, Virtual Reality experience zone, Hallyu experience facility (K-STAR ZONE), etc.

[Korean Food Exhibition Hall]
- Location: K-Style Hub 3F
- Exhibition information: Seasonal Divisions & Customs / Science of Fermentation & Storage / Wisdom of Korean Foods

[Korean Food Experience Hall]
- Location: K-Style Hub 4F
- Language assistance: Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese
- Main facilities: Festive Corner, Learning Place (Cooking class, cultural convergence class, Korean food culture DIY class)

[Cultural Product Hall]
- Location: K-Style Hub 5F
- Compsition: Premium cultural product exhibition zone, venture company exhibition zone, tourism venture PR zone, tourism souvenir promotion zone, hanbok experience zone, experience event zone

Saw the Pyeongchang Olympics mascots again! Hihi.

Touch screen tourist map! Complete with visuals!

Guests could rest and just chill here

Hallyu experience zone! OMG may pawelcome pa ni oppa Song Joong Ki. 

Nikki and Raiza taking souvenir pics with 2NE1, Psy, Rainbow and Bigbang

Shempre avail din kami ni Ana! With our new friends Dara & CL. 

Andito ka lang pala oppa Lee Min Ho!

My new squad bwahaha. Shempre sa gitna ako ni Taeyang and G-Dragon! 

Also visited the Medical Tourism Information Center!

We tried out their Tea Therapy!

We were asked to take a short quiz (questions were mostly about our lifestyle and body type) to know which specific tea would be best for us.

My result!!! Pasok sa banga except sa heavyset. Hehe.

You could also purchase tea here!

After taking the quiz, the girl handed me na my personalized tea! So good.

Tea party with Anna Cay and Anagon!

Aside from medicinal tea therapy, you could also do a facial analysis, stress level check and overall body checkup inside! No need for reservations. This is the perfect chance to learn more about your body and health!

Lovely displays about Korean traditions

Hanbok display

On the 5th floor, tourists or guests could also avail the free hanbok fitting experience! If you're in a group, don't worry, because they have a diverse selection and they have many designs to choose from. Hanboks could be rented for an hour. You could wear it outside, just leave your passport or any ID as deposit. :) The experience is available on a first-come, first-served basis. To avail, just get a Hanbok coupon from the reception desk on the 3rd floor exhibition hall. Groups of ten people or more can call (+82-2-729-9433 / English, Chinese) to make a reservation in advance.

Hanbok rental rules

Hanboks for rent! They also have a nice backdrop on the side where you could take photos.

Aside from the Hanbok experience, they also have a VR area and a DIY Mother of Pearl Korean strap magnet or keychain workshop! The group was divided into 2, some of us tried on hanboks and the rest joined the keychain making activity. 

First, we had to choose the keychain or magnet we want. 

We were given an English instruction manual

Chose the round keychain

They could accommodate up to 20+ people

And then, time to glue the mother of pearl (looks like capiz but parang paper) on top of the keychain

DIY keychain making tools!

Same as the hanbok experience, you also need to get a coupon from the 3rd floor to be able to join! :)

Traditional Korean food

On the 3rd floor is the Korean Culinary Culture Exhibition Hall

So I am a pig noh? Haha

super nice the hallway!

"The long hallway is decorated in a way to allow visitors to feel an authentic traditional Korean atmosphere. A total of 24 windows with bars can be found, and each window exhibits a section on Korea’s seasonal food."

"Beyond the entrance, visitors may also find a variety of Korean grains and seasonings, as well as a performance of video projections displaying on the top of various onggi (Korean pottery); the famous Korean folk song “Arirang” plays in the background. This performance was an exhibition held at the Milano EXPO in Italy and was given high praises for displaying the beauty of Korea’s traditional music and food." 

Water bowl

Different grains!

Different salts

Nuts and spices

Jars used to store food

You could open the drawers and you'd see different ingredients for cooking traditional Korean food

Aside from the exhibit, guests could also have a taste and learn how to cook Korean food at the Korean Food Learning Center! For this activity, advanced reservation is required and program fees are applicable. I would love to try that next time!!

Thank you KTO for touring us around!

K-Style Hub

 Address: KTO Seoul Office 2F-5F, 40, Cheonggyecheon-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul
 Directions: Jonggak Station (Seoul Subway Line 1), Exit 5. Walk approx. 4min. / Euljiro 1(il)-ga Station (Seoul Subway Line 2), Exit 2. Walk approx. 5min. / Gwanghwamun Station (Seoul Subway Line 5), Exit 5. Walk approx. 8min.

Operating hours: 
2F (Tourist Information Center): 09:00-20:00
3F (Korean Food Exhibition Hall): 10:00-20:00
4F (Korean Food Experience Hall): 10:00-20:00
5F (Cultural Product Hall): 10:00-20:00

For Inquiries:
• 1330 Travel Hotline: +82-2-1330
(Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese)
• For more info: +82-2-729-9457
(2F, 3F, 5F, group reservation)
+82-2-6053-7177~79 (Korean Food Exhibition Hall)

Cheonggyecheon stream

4th Stop: Tongin Market

Tongin Market is a 76-year old traditional market near the Gyeongbokgung Palace. It was established in June 1941, as a public market for Japanese residents near the Hyoja-dong neighborhood during the Japanese occupation. After the war, it was converted into a regular market consisting of 70 stalls. But what makes it different from other markets is its Dosirak or Lunchbox cafe! Customers are given a "lunchbox" or a tray and they can buy snacks or food in the market using gold coins/tokens. Such a cool and fun experience! Please note that not all stalls accept tokens. 

My tray and my tokens! 

traditional korean snacks

korean pancake

Bought 2 chicken skewers for 2 gold coins

Also bought 2 sticks of fried mozzarella cheese and 1 string cheese! So good!!!

For 10 gold tokens I was able to buy this much! I was so full I was not able to finish my food. Haha! Also bought cola slurpee for 1 gold coin!

OMG Kimchi galore

Address: 18, Jahamun-ro 15-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul
서울특별시 종로구 자하문로15길 18 (통인동)
 Phone: +82-2-722-0911
Operations: 11:00 ~ 17:00 (Tokens at the Dosirak Café only sold until 16:00)
Website: tonginmarket.co.kr

5th Stop: Innisfree Flagship Store, Myeongdong

In Korea, you would see beauty shops & cafes EVERYWHERE. As in 7-11 levels na you'd see one in every corner. It's because Koreans love beauty as much as they love coffee! If you're someone who love both, then Innisfree's Flagship Store in Myeongdong is the perfect spot for you! 

nailpolish rack!

Innisfree is one of the most popular cosmetic and skincare brands in Korea (and the world). All products were created using unharmful & natural ingredients. The brand strongly believes in preserving the balance of nature hence the eco-friendly products and the nature themed cafe! :)

Their best sellers


Different styles for your cushion powder! So cute!

Eye contouring sticks

Hair makeup! NEED!

A whole wall of different palettes. Drools.

My favorite corner-- skin care and their Green tea line! Got obsessed with it after I tried out a sample I bought online. I'm currently using their Green Tea seed serum and I'm super happy with it.

I love lip tint or cheek tints and I love these!

When you're done shopping or you just want to relax for a bit before shopping again, you can go upstairs and chill at their Green Cafe!!!

Love the interiors! So calm and relaxing.

Their food and drinks are too pretty to consume! Huhu.

Mimi checking out their display and products for sale

There's a VR corner too where you could virtually interact with their endorser, boy group Wanna One!

Love this table!!!

Ana and I saw this corner and got curious

They are actually DIY cardboard speakers!!! 

And they're free!!! Chose this design. :)

Super cute wall display

Address: 15, Myeongdong-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul
서울특별시 중구 명동길 15 (명동1가)

6th Stop: Myeongdong

Myeong-dong is one of the most popular shopping district in Seoul frequented by tourists. The two main streets meet in the center of the block with one beginning from Myeong-dong Subway Station (Seoul Subway Line No. 4) and the other from Lotte Department Store at Euljiro. Many brand name shops and department stores line the streets and alleys. Common products for sale include clothes, shoes, and accessories. Unlike Namdaemun or Dongdaemun, many designer brands are sold in Myeong-dong. In addition, several major department stores have branches here, including Lotte Department Store, Shinsegae Department Store, Myeong-dong Migliore, Noon Square and M Plaza.

 This is the best place to try Seoul's famous street food!

 Lots of street vendors selling items from coats, socks, souvenir items, fruits, etc! Bought a coat for just 30,000 won!

 Tried this cabbage pancake with beef! So good! Mejo pricey lang for 6,500 won

 Grilled lobster

 There are also lots of money changers in the area! Don't exchange your money at the airport, mas maganda rates dito:)

Another money changer in one of the alleys 

 saw lots of cute boutiques too

Hallyu souvenir shop!

Cosmetics are a bit cheaper in Seoul! 

Their most famous street food is the Tteokbokki or Korean rice cakes bathing in a sweet red chili sauce and their fish cake! Mejo na-addict ako sa fish cake! hehe

So much food, so little time haha

7th Stop: Pojangmacha!

Ana and I agreed to at least try and experience eating and drinking in a Pojangmacha! Luckily, while I was exploring Myeongdong, I came across this alley (na may madaming poging pulis haha) that has one set up! OMG kinilig talaga ako. One of our K-drama dreams finally came true. Haha. 


 Menu pa!

 We ordered  a bottle of soju and kimchi with tofu. The mussel soup is free. Power! The tofu dish was 15,000 won and I forgot na how much the soju.

 It was too malansa for me but I still tried it. Okay naman! It was also the first time I truly appreciated soju! Bagay kasi talaga sha inumin pag malamig! Sarap.

 Bonus pa the oppa waiter!!! There he is at the back! OMG our kilig. Dagdag mo pa the cute policemen who often pass by the tent. Hahaha. #teamlandi

 Will do this again next time!:)

We immediately dozed off when we got home because of the soju (sobrang swabe in fair haha). It was a long day but it was amazing and fruitful! Will be posting my last Ladies' Special Tour entry tomorrow. And then will post my solo Korea travel na! Watch out for that! :) As always, I love you all and thanks for reading!:)

*Special thanks to Cebu Pacific Air , JG Summit  ,Korea Tourism Organization and Stratworks for taking care of us and for this wonderful opportunity.

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