Time Traveling to Retro Seoul of Chicago Typewriter
See & Do Tours
Chicago Typewriter is a romantic drama based on three Korean writers who have been reincarnated from the 1930’s to the present day. The three characters, in 2017, are a heavily depressed bestselling author Han Se-joo (played by Yoo Ah-in), his genius ghostwriter Yoo Jin-oh (played by Go Kyung-pyo) and lastly Han’s avid anti-fan Jeon Seol (played by Im Soo-jung). The plot begins to take place as the three come together, along with a haunted typewriter, to create a novel. The drama goes back and forth in time, revealing scenes of retro Seoul. Here is a list of locations where the drama was filmed and where visitors can experience Seoul back in the 1930’s.
SEOUL SEOUL 3080 – Hannam-dong Book Park – Ikseon-dong – Seodaemun Prison History Museum
Seoul during the 1930’s (Korea’s colonial period) was called Gyeongseong and it was when and where Han Se-joo lived in his previous life. He always comes out properly dressed with his loosely tailored chemise and suit, put together with fashionable items of the era such as suspenders and glasses. Yoo Jin-oh on the other hand, is dressed in the “modern boy” style of the period complete with his classic fedoras. The 1930’s in Korea was a time when foreign ideas and styles began penetrating the local culture, with young adults being the first to adapt to the new trends. These trendsetters used to meet on the streets of Jongo, an area still very much alive with a completely different vibe today. Same goes with Myeongdong, the hotspot of the 1980’s. Once filled with hand-painted film posters and billboards, DJ booths and red phone booths, it remains to be a fast-paced shopping mecca for locals and tourists alike these days. The area where the 1930’s Jongno and 1980’s Myeongdong are recreated today is in fact found on the other side of the river, inside of Lotte World Mall - a new landmark of the Jamsil area. At SEOUL SEOUL 3080, located on the 5th and 6th floor of the mall, visitors will be able to see old trolley cars, antique posters and newspapers and a rickshaw that were used back in the day. 60-year old restaurants such as Sariwon and Odengsikdang have set up stall in the area. Reenactments of 1930’s and 1980’s street scenes are held during weekends.
Address : 5,6F Lotte World Mall, 300 Olympic-ro, Songpa-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-2-3213-5000
Website : http://www.lwt.co.kr/main/main.do
Hours : 10:30-24:00
Address : 294 Itaewon-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-2-6367-2018
Website : http://www.bookpark.com/
Hours : 10:00-22:00 Closed on Chuseok, Lunar New Year’s Day
Han Se-joo, Yoo Jin-oh and Jeon Seol all frequent the Jongno district, which was the political, financial and cultural center in the 1930’s. The area is also home to Ikseon-dong, Korea’s first designated hanok village that began to form during the late 1920’s and early 1930’s. Recently, the clusters of hanok in the neighborhood have been going through some creative renovations, making Ikseon-dong a hotspot among the locals and tourists alike. Of the many establishments that exists in the area, Chanyangjip is one boasting Ikseon-dong’s antique charms. Founded in 1965, the restaurant serves up seafood noodle soup and steamed pork dumplings. With its affordable and quality menu, Chanyangjip has been featured in Michelin Guide’s 2017 Bib Gourmand list. For a more contemporary vibe within the historic neighborhood, Ale-dang is the place to visit. Housed in a 100-year-old hanok revamped in a minimalistic yet retro style, the beer pub offers a large selection of locally-brewed craft beer all year-round. The open garden located in the center of the pub is a great place to hang out especially during the warmer seasons.
Address : 5 Donhwamun-ro 11da-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-2-743-1384
Hours : 10:00-21:00, closed Sundays
홈페이지 : http://chanyangjip.modoo.at/
Address : 33-9 Supyo-ro 28-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-70-7766-3133
Hours : 12:00-23:00 Closed on Chuseok, Lunar New Year’s Day
The three writers of Chicago Typewriter lived through the Korean colonial period. Witnessing and suffering the brutalities of Imperial Japan, Han, Yoo and Jeon write many pieces that promote Korea’s independence. As recorded in history, such acts by independence activists became a subject of prolonged torture and imprisonment. Seodaemun Prison located within Seodaemun Independence Park was formerly one of the prisons at which the Japanese soldiers tortured and executed the leaders and followers of the Korean Independence Movement. In 1998, it was converted into a museum to commemorate those who fought for the country’s independence. At Seodaemun Prison History Museum, visitors can grasp the incredible amount of torment that the captivated had to endure. A tour of the prison includes the women’s prison where the independence leaders including Yoo Kwan-soon were held captive, while the isolated cells, torture devices and iron shackles that were left behind tell horrid stories of their own. Tours are available in Korean, Japanese and English.
Address : 251 Tongil-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul
Phone : +82-2-360-8586
Hours : Mar ~ Oct : 09:30 ~ 18:00, Nov ~ Feb : 09:30 ~ 17:00 / Closed on Every Monday, Chuseok, Lunar New Year’s Day
※ Please note that this article was published in May, 2017 and the information is subject to change at any time.