Heritage cafe opens in century-old Seoul house

A heritage cafe has been built into the hereditary foundations of a century-old South Korean courtyard house (hanok) in Seoul.

J Hidden House cafe opened its doors in the fashion and shopping mecca of Dongdaemun this month, following Seoul’s continued efforts to develop as a trend-setting, global tourist destination. Situated within a spacious 300sqm secluded enclave housing a zen-bamboo garden, the venue blends traditional and modern design and is one of the largest hanoks open to the public today within the traditional inner district of the Chosen dynasty’s (1392–1897) capital, Hanseong – modern Seoul.

J. Hidden House 1

J. Hidden House 2

From a bespoke eight-metre wet bar set in Italian terrazzo tile, J Hidden House offers curated coffees, teas and refreshments, as well as a tailored menu of bakeries and spirits cultivated by Korean food and beverage companies.

J Hidden House’s proprietor Grace Jun said Seoul has become a destination for the world to visit and Korea’s rich culture has so much to offer.

J. Hidden House 3


“This establishment is a fusion of our country’s traditional heritage and dynamic modernisation by coupling a cutting-edge modernity within the protected, mindful walls of a ‘hidden’ hanok that was built before the Korean war and has stood the test of time. Our aim is to provide locals and tourists from around the world with a location and a curated food and beverage offering on calibre with any destination cafe in the world, while offering what is uniquely and proudly Korean.”

Located in an exclusive “hidden” but immediately accessible location in downtown Seoul, the destination offers a vision of an earlier and more tranquil age despite being centrally situated in Dongdaemun, one of city’s busiest commercial districts and a major tourist destination for shopping and historical sightseeing.

According to the Korea Tourism Organization, visitors to Korea in the first half of this year increased by 6.9 per cent year on year to 7.22 million. When excluding Chinese visitors, the number of tourists increased 12.2 per cent year on year to 5.05 million people, the largest-ever recorded number of inbound tourists to date.


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