I was already interested in Dongdaemun Design Plaza, designed by Zaha Hadid, because of the first episode of Korea's Next Top Model Cycle 5 (never say advertising doesn't work!) but it really went for gold in attempting to make an impression.
I know words like 'the future of design' should be exclusively reserved for tourist information pamphlets but it really is quite a unique set of structures that brings to mind a very sci-fi impression of the future. The free flow of spaces, smooth lines, light bouncing off curving metallic surfaces on a large scale and masses of white inside reminded me of a spaceship; one that houses everything from curated art exhibitions to local design fairs. Futuristic clean lines, geometric metallics and light wood accents also happens to tick all of my personal design boxes so the photo-taking was pretty much nonstop as soon as we got off the train station.
Add a lovely Audrey Hepburn exhibition with a range of presentation methods - from video to mannequins with her outfits to screens embedded in long plinths to a makeshift house with her living room paintings and outfits and then top it off with my first experience of freshly falling slow upon exiting, Dongdaemun Design Plaza really left me impressed. Definitely a must-visit in my book, for anyone who appreciates beautiful architecture and design spaces.
And plus, shopping centres that open until 5AM are right next door. Off you go.