A Decade Late for Coffee Prince’s Sanmotoongi Cafe
I can’t remember a time when I got so engrossed with a Korean drama. While everyone talks about K-dramas that invaded the world (hmmm… a little bit of exag here!), I have nothing to contribute. I can’t even say the actors’ names without checking the net. And I can’t put a face and a name together. Not even the names of the actors and actresses in the movie “The Taste of Money” where my eldest son had a small part. Oh well, at least I can associate the name Lee Min Ho’s with the right face. But I don’t think he is the hottest right now. K-drama fans have moved on to the actor in “Descendants of the Sun”.
So when some friends and I went to explore the Baeksasil Valley at the Boam-dong area, we found a gem of a place called Sanmotoongi (산모퉁이). Turned out, this cafe was used as one of the location for the 2007 Korean drama “Coffee Prince”. Thus, the signage at the entrance:
I thought it was used as a cafe in the “Coffee Prince”. Curiosity got the better of me and I watched episodes of this Korean drama. The bike was a big presence in the drama and this quaint location wasn’t a coffee shop. It was used as a house of one of the actors.
And there’s the added charm of the yellow car.
Aside from its facade, you won’t miss Sanmotoongi because of this charming yellow car. And on a clear day (it was a little bit foggy when we were there), I could easily imagine the majestic backdrop that is Bukhansan and the Seoul City Wall that serves as one of the trails going up to its peak. How lucky could the owner get if this is a house instead of a cafe. One will be spoiled with the beauty of nature around. And how!
There was no way we could miss this window and its Autumn leaves:
I played Juliet, why not! The window is just too romantic to let it pass.
This staircase leads to more coffee tables (used as a spacious lawn in the drama):
Again, I am amazed at how these location places are being turned into touristy spots. I just love the way Koreans maximize a place’s potential. Sanmotoongi maintains its connection with the (almost) decade-old drama. In my case, I had to watch the drama because of this newly-discovered cafe. Whichever case it is, Korea wins!
Sharing a few interesting things at the cafe:
Each of us got coffee and to our surprise, we paid for a very expensive cup. Americano costs 7,000-won. Others had their lattes and cappuccinos. I didn’t check the exact price but they are definitely a thousand or two more expensive than mine. Oh well, we enjoyed the view and the ambiance so think along that line when you visit the cafe. Just take lots of photos and it’s gonna be worth more than what you paid for your coffee.
I’m not so good with directions, especially when I was an eager follower that day of our Baeksasil adventure (Sanmotoongi was more of a side trip) but here’s one I copied from the internet:
Address : 97-5 Buam-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Location : Seoul-si > All Area
[Subway] Line 3 at Gyeongbokgung station, exit 3.
Take bus # 7022, 7212 or 1020 and get off at Buam-dong Jumin Center.
If this doesn’t help, the internet is full of resources.
If you have already visited, how was your visit and what’s your favourite corner there?