Starfield Suwon: Possibly the next hotspot around Seoul?
A more attractive Starfield COEX mall (the library included)
· 3 min read
For visitors to Seoul, the Starfield Library at COEX Mall is probably a place that you've added to your itinerary. Since its opening in 2017, the Starfield Library at COEX Mall had made its round around Instagram and social media platforms as one of the most Instagrammable libraries in Seoul.
Fast forward to January 2024, we will now see the opening of a second Starfield Library at Starfield Suwon, bigger, grander, and more Instagrammable than its predecessor at COEX Mall.
Starfield Suwon is located at Gyeonggi, at the outskirts of Seoul. Although Starfield Suwon might not be as accessible, it is likely going to be much more appealing to individuals in their 20s and 30s.
Aside from the trendy shops and cafes, here are some highlights of Starfield Suwon that you can look out for.
The Starfield Library Suwon is much grander and larger than the iconic Starfield Library COEX. Starfield Library Suwon spans over 3 floors (from the 4th to 7th floor), with a height of 22 meters in total. The tall walls of book shelves filled with books serve as a pleasing sight and great background for many Insta-worthy shots. We're pretty sure Starfield Library Suwon is going to start popping up everywhere on your social media feeds soon enough.
Vinyl Starfield Suwon
Vinyl Starfield Suwon, right next to the Starfield Library on the 7th floor, further extends the chill and laidback vibe. Choose from over 10,000 vinyl records, and have a cup of coffee while listening to tunes from your favourite LP.
London Bagel Museum
You probably don't need any further introduction to what is possibly the most popular bagel shop in Seoul. Since its opening at Anguk, the London Bagel Museum has attracted long — and we mean, very long — queues. A second branch was opened in Jamsil Lotte World Mall in 2023, and we thought (hoped) that it would have helped spread the queue out. Alas, the queues at both outlets remain long with easily a 2 hour wait. With Suwon being further out from Seoul, maybe - hopefully - the queues here will be more manageable?
Who doesn't love some grocery shopping? Head to the E-mart traders at B2 of the mall, and let yourself free. E-mart traders is a wholesale warehouse supermarket, similar to COSTCO — so prepare yourself for a huge range of items that you can buy in bulk. But, unlike COSTCO, you CAN go to E-mart Traders even without a membership. There are discounts for members though, so you might want to sign up for one anyway.
How to get to Starfield Suwon
You can get to Starfield Suwon by taking the Seoul Metro Line 1 to Hwaseo Station. It will take you about an hour to get to Starfield Suwon from Seoul Station.
Bonus content: Other notable libraries in Seoul
While the Starfield libraries might well be the most Instagrammable libraries in Seoul, there are actually a number of other libraries in Seoul have interior (or exterior) designs that are also worth checking out. If you are looking for a quiet place to work while in Seoul, why not consider visiting some of these libraries?
But remember - these places are fundamentally still libraries. And while they are really pretty and you might be tempted to take a lot of photos, be mindful of the surroundings and do not disturb others who might be studying or working.
1. Bookpark Lounge
Bookpark Lounge is a quiet and spacious lounge next to Blue Square, at Hangangjin Station. A fee will need to be paid to use the space — on weekdays, you can get an all-day pass and a drink for 9,900KRW. On weekends on holidays, the same price will only give you 2 hours in the lounge. While Bookpark Lounge is a pretty comfortable space, we do recommend that you check for events taking place at Blue Square before planning your visit; on days where there are concerts being held at Blue Square, the venue could get really crowded.
2. Cheongun Literature Library
The first traditional Hanok library in Jongno-gu, the Cheongun Literature Library exudes a very calm and serene atmosphere. The library is set at the foot of Inwangsan Mountain, and the traditional exterior falls perfectly against the natural beauty of the mountains, framing a picturesque and scenic view. The only thing about this library is that it isn't the most accessible without any subway stations in walking distance — though you could take a bus to get there!
3. Seoul Book Bogo
Seoul Book Bogo - also known as Seoul Book Repository - has more than 120,000 old, secondhand books gathered from old bookstores around the city. The space is a secondhand bookstore, library, and also a space for cultural programs. Its most iconic feature is its arched bookshelves that makes you look like you're walking through a tunnel of books. This unique bookshelf was even featured in popular Korean drama Hotel Del Luna. Seoul Book Bogo is located near Exit 1 of Jamsilnaru Station.