Seoul Nightlife Guide (Gangnam)

rsz_seoul_gangnam_nightlife_guide

*This post was last updated on March 15th, 2016*

I’ve been living and raging in Seoul since August 2013, when I moved here to teach English.  I’ve literally gone clubbing in Gangnam almost every weekend, and I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun it is!  So, I’ve decided to write this complete guide to the nightlife in Gangnam, to share with you my favorite clubs and tell you what to expect when you come.  Over the years, I’ve done my best to keep this post updated with the best content about partying in Seoul — so I hope you enjoy!.  

I’m going to start off this post by saying the nightlife in Seoul is the best in world.

Seriously guys, I’ve partied in over 70 countries and 150 cities, and nothing comes even close to the insanity levels of Seoul.  I’ve been to almost every club in Las Vegas, and the insane clubs of Barcelona, Stockholm, Berlin, and Bangkok. They have nothing compared to Seoul.  You must come here to experience it for yourself. 

Maybe you’ve already read the several other blog posts that I’ve written about the incredible nightlife in Seoul, but here is one more that further proves my point that Seoul is the #1 Party City in the World.

Screen Shot 2014-10-13 at 4.32.05 PMPerhaps the #1 reason why the nightlife in Seoul is so special is because Koreans love to get drunk.

Every year, South Korea tops the charts for the highest consumption of alcohol per person in the world.  In fact, Koreans drink more than twice the amount as Russians, with an average of 13.7 shots of liquor per person per week (2014). 

Get your hands on a green bottle of soju for $1.50USD (1,500 won).  Similar to sake in Japan, soju is a Korean rice liquor that is heavily consumed during social gatherings, restaurants and in every convenient store in Korea.  In fact, over 62 million cases of soju are sold every single year.  It only contains 20% alcohol content, but be careful because the hangovers are usually miserable… 

The next thing to learn about Koreans and their contagious energy is their love for electronic dance music (EDM).  Seoul frequently attracts many big name DJs and EDM music festivals.  I’ve seen Tiesto, Avicii, Above & Beyond, Fedde Le Grand, Steve Angello, Kaskade, Madeon and dozens more perform at clubs, and I’ve attended festivals such as Ultra Korea, Sensation White, Global Gathering, and World DJ Festival.

I get such a kick out of the way that Koreans dance to EDM.  It’s hilarious! Their style involves moving their shoulders up-and-down in a rhythmic motion, bobbing their heads like a chicken and uncontrollably pumping their fists in the air.

Want to know what it looks like?  Check out my video of “How Koreans Dance!” I took every video from my iPhone over the last year in various clubs around Seoul.

But if clubbing is not your thing, then don’t worry.  Check out these other popular nightlife districts of Seoul: 

Itaewon– Itaewon is the foreigner district of Seoul, but it’s also trending for young to middle-aged Koreans. Here, you will find several bars (some fancy, some casual), as well as various night clubs and pubs. The healthy mix of foreigners and locals gives Itaewon a unique feel that’s always full of energy.

For the best places to party, see my Ultimate Guide to the Nightlife in Itaewon, and find the best hotels in Itaewon on this link

Hongdae– This is the ultimate hipster area of Seoul. Go here to see young Korean trends and fashion at its finest. Hongdae is like a college campus, because there are several big universities around the area. Everything in Hongdae is cheap, and there are more bars and clubs than I can count. It’s always crowded, and the street vendors/local restaurants stay open 24 hours.

Find and book your hotel in Hongdae right here.

Sincheon– Sincheon is nearly an extension of Hongdae. It’s just one metro stop away, and this area also has a college feel to it. There is a main strip lined up with bars and clubs that are cheap and fun. It’s always a good idea to start the night in Sincheon, and then head over to Hongdae (or vice versa).

Find and book your hotel in Sincheon right here.

Apgujeong– This area is another trendy nightlife hub, that’s located next to Gangnam. Rodeo drive is where all the craziness happens, with some of the priciest clubs and deluxe hotels in Seoul. If you’re not on a strict budget, then go to Apgujeong for dinner and drinks before heading out to Gangnam (but seriously prepare your wallet).  

Find and book your hotel in Apgujeong right here.

Gangnam– Gangnam is the main district for Seoul’s luxurious and posh nightclubs that are multi-leveled with massive dance floors and top-notch sound systems.  Gangnam is compared to the “Beverly Hills” of Seoul with its wealth and fashion. Basically, this is where all of the celebrities and rich folks hang out and spend ridiculous amounts of money, but it’s also trending for young 20-somethings who want to party all night.  If you want to do some serious clubbing in Seoul, then definitely go to Gangnam! 

Find and book your hotel in Gangnam right here.  I highly recommend checking out The Palace Hotel (Book Online Now) if you want a nice place to stay nearby all the clubs! The price is $130/night and it’s in a cozy area within walking distance from most clubs (or a short taxi ride).

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*The rest of this post will talk specifically about the clubbing scene in Gangnam*

Clubbing in Gangnam isn’t cheap… Cover charges are typically from $20-$40 USD (depending on the event) and drinks are NOT cheap either.  Expect to pay no less than $10USD for any shot/beer/mixed drink inside a club.

However, if you want to save money on drinks, then just go to the club early and get a wristband so you can enter & exit whenever you wish.  Then, go to a cheap convenient store down ths street and drink soju for $1 per bottle!

Or, if you are more adventurous like me, then you can buy a plastic flask of soju and bring it inside the club in your pocket.  Then, go to the bar and order a sprite or coke and spike your flask inside the bathroom. I do this all the time and it’s never been an issue — I’ve also never been patted down when entering a club.

The minimum age for entering the clubs is 18 (the bouncers recently became strict with checking IDs) — and there is a maximum age of 35 (but not strictly enforced).  If you are under 18 and still want to club, then just borrow anyone’s ID, or use your fake ID, and it’ll work just fine.

If you are going out clubbing with a large group of people, then it’s definitely worth getting a table with bottle service.   You will pay a little more money, but the epic overall experience is worth it.  It’s also a good idea to get pretty drunk BEFORE you go, otherwise you will basically light your money on fire inside the club.

Unlike clubbing in Las Vegas or Western Europe, the dress code in Seoul is not strictly enforced in Seoul.  Well, you can dress up as much as you want if that’s your thing, but you don’t have to. I typically wear a V-neck with black jeans and Nike gym shoes.  Just don’t wear shorts or flip flops because you will get denied entrance.

Clubs these days are becoming more strict on checking IDs, so make sure to bring your ID with you.  You don’t need a passport, just any ID with your birthday on it.  If you are under 18, then get a fake ID that says you’re older — otherwise you will be denied entrance.

Screen Shot 2014-10-14 at 3.38.46 PMLastly, don’t show up to a club until at least midnight, or else you will awkwardly be the only one inside. Clubs stay open until the last person walks out (usually 7-9AM).  I have stumbled home from a club at 10AM before.

For the remainder of this post, I will share with you my top 8 favorite clubs in Gangnam with detailed descriptions. Everything you will read is from my own personal experiences over the last 2 years raging in Seoul. I’ve been to each of these clubs several times. 

Don’t hesitate to contact me for any more advice about partying in Seoul, and book your hotel in Seoul on Agoda.com for the cheapest prices!

Oppa Gangnam Style! 

*Best Clubs in Gangnam (in order with my favorite being #1)

#1. Octagon

Octagon is hands down my favorite club in Seoul.

Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 6.15.02 PM

This club is currently the 6th best club in the world by DJ Mag. It has everything you can possibly imagine a club to have and more.

The first floor of Octagon spreads out from the DJ stage to the VIP tables and the bar in the back.   The upper level is only accessible for VIP tables, and there is a nice balcony that looks over the entire club.  The DJ stage is gigantic and it has one of the best LED TV monitors I’ve ever seen, with the lights and the sound both coordinating together.  I feel like I am raging in the year 2020 every time I go to Octagon.

There are frequently big-name international DJs that play here on weekends.  I have seen Laidback Luke, Deniz Koyu, Fedde Le Grand, and Dash Berlin perform at this club, as well as several famous Korean DJs.  All of the music is EDM.  No matter which night you go, you will definitely hear all of your favorite electronic music tunes mixed together.  It is impossible not to dance and have fun!

If you only have one night to rage in Seoul, then I highly recommend spending it at Octagon!

Address:
152 Newhilltop Hotel, B1-2, Nonhyun-dong, Gangnam-gu
Or show this to the taxi driver–> 
서울 강남구 논현동 152-3번지

#2. Answer

Club Answer is the upcoming place for the young, sexy, and crazy Seoulites to rage until the sun rises. 

Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 6.17.39 PM
This club has dominated the electro-house scene in Seoul for the past few years.  

Club Answer is a three-story club has a giant stage on the first floor, VIP tables on the second floor with a sweet overlooking balcony, and private rooms on the third floor.  Huge names such as Deadmau5, Benny Benassi, and Paul Van Dyke have played shows here in recent years.

Club Answer is known to attract the most beautiful, well-dressed Koreans out there.  So, make sure that you dress appropriate or you will instantly be denied entrance into the door.

The interior is luxurious, with its leather white seating, chandeliers, and marbled floor that will make you feel like you are the richest person in Korea. The powerful sound system inside Answer is one of the best in Seoul.  My Korean friends even refer to this club as “the place to get down.” 

Go see for yourself how these sexy people get down!

Address:
125-16 Cheongdam-dongm Gangnam-gu

#3. Syndrome

Syndrome opened up in November 2013 and has been the talk of the city every weekend since.  Their motto “representing a new culture of Electronica in Seoul.” 

Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 6.18.52 PM

Syndrome’s goal is to change the way that people look and think about dance music.  And whatever they’re doing, it’s working.

All I can say is that this place is absolutely insane.  It is, without question, one of the biggest and most epic clubs in Seoul.  There is even a swimming pool inside!  The main DJ stage is all the way in the front, with a long dance floor that stretches the length of the club.  The only issue with this club is the location of the main bar, which is in the back of the club.  So, if you are on the dance floor, it will take a few minutes push your way to the back bar for a drink. 

There is a sweet upstairs level with VIP tables and a giant balcony overlooking the club.  There must be 2,000 people that can fit inside this place, and it stays packed until sunrise.  It’s definitely a great place to party all night and experience Seoul’s culture at its finest. 

Address:
Inside the Sunshine Hotel: 587-1 Sinsa-dong, Seoul, Korea 135-892

#4. Ellui

Ellui is absolutely massive.  It’s not only the biggest club in Seoul, but it claims to be the largest nightclub in Asia. 

Just take a look at this photo!

Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 6.21.03 PM

 

Ellui recently opened up in 2011 and has dominated the clubbing scene as one of the major hotspots for electronic music lovers.   Nearly every weekend features an international or a top-notch Korean act that gets the party going all night long.

The club features multiple levels with dance floors that becomes crazier as the night progresses into early morning.  At some point during the night, the staff will stand on top of the bar and pour shots of vodka unto everyone’s mouth.  The high-energy crowd is mostly mid-20s to 30s and the vibe is cool-but-casual.  The dance floor has huge bouncing balls and the light show/blasting speaker combination is mesmerizing.

Ellui is so big that you can probably expect to get lost at some point into a sea of Koreans (not always a bad thing!)  I just remember constantly being shocked by how epic and amazing this club was.  You will never want to leave Ellui from the second you walk in the door. The last time I was there, I left the club at 6AM and it was still packed with people.

I mean, just look at that photo.  It doesn’t get more epic than that! 

Address:
129 Cheongdam-dong Gangnam-gu

#5. Base

Located in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Club Base (formerly Club Eden) is the most luxurious and high-class club in Seoul.

Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 6.23.14 PM

As you can imagine what a club is like in the Ritz, this place is extremely posh and has some of the most attractive people who dress to impress.  The interior resembles an 18th century ballroom, with crazy fancy decoration on the walls and ceilings.  Now, try to picture that with big-ass speakers that blast house music, and it feels like you are raving in a time machine to the future.   The sound system is on par with the best and there are neon flashing lights coming from every possible direction.  It is just too cool.

The only problem with Base is that the music has little variation.  It’s the same pulsing beat for 5 hours, and you won’t recognize any songs.  But, the amazing scene and eye-candy makes me itch to get back there every Friday night.

Address:
602 Yeoksam-dong, Gangnam-gu

#6. Mass

Club Mass is the go-to spot for late, late night partying.   It says open 365 days a year, and goes until 9 or 10AM in the morning (I am not exaggerating).

Screen Shot 2014-03-27 at 10.11.46 PM

Mass describes itself as the “Premier electronic house music club in Seoul.” The interior is huge, with a central stage and a massive dance floor that is packed with thousands of people.  The music is electro-house and it stays bumping until the last person walks out the door in the early morning.  I recommend going to Mass after you are done hopping around other clubs and bars in the area.  This place doesn’t hit peak hours until 3-6AM, so don’t ever worry about getting there too late.

Seriously, I walked out the door at 9:30AM one Sunday morning.

The crowd is young and beautiful.  You’ll see the girls wearing extra high heels, short dresses and make-up, and the guys wearing button downs, slacks and nice shoes.  It’s an easy place to pick up girls/guys. 

If you are the type that can rage until breakfast, then Mass is your place!

Address:
Soecho-gu seocho-dong 1306-8 Daedong BD, Seoul, Korea

#7. The A Hall 

The A Hall attracts the biggest name DJs in Korea and is well-known as an after hours club in Seoul.

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 5.34.48 PM

This club was recently renovated from its previous self when it was known as Club Heaven.  And much like club Mass, this club really goes until 7AM on any given weekend.

The A Hall, without question, recruits the biggest DJ names in the EDM scene.  I don’t know how they pull in all of these names, because the club itself is very small. Over the last 2 years, I’ve seen Kaskade, Ali & Fila, Laidback Luke, Bingo Players, Fatboy Slim, and Ferry Corsten play shows at The A Hall.

I put it last on this list simply because I hate the tiny layout of the club, and I always feel like I am getting pushed by sweaty Koreans who are uncontrollably drunk.   But that being said, I always go here to see some of my favorite DJs perform.

This club is also popular amongst Korean celebrities, and there is a lot of plastic (as we like to call it) inside the club.  If you catch a not-so-crowded night at The A Hall, then you might just be blown away. Although I would tell you to go to Octagon, Ellui, or Syndrome before this club.

Where to Stay in Seoul?

A lot of people ask me which are the best hotels to stay in Seoul, so I have compiled this list of quality places that I’ve either stayed at myself or found online.  For a more comprehensive list of hotels in Seoul, check out Agoda.com for the best rates!

1) For Budget Travelers – SP Guesthouse (Book Online Now)
*rates – $10/night for a 4 bed dormitory

SP Guesthouse is my favorite hostel in Seoul, and it’s located conveniently in the Itaewon district.  I know the owners very well, and they are very friendly and welcoming.  The people and vibes inside this hostel are exactly what you need!

2) For Mid-Price – Vella Suite Myeongdong (Book Online Now)
*rates – $70/night for a standard twin room

Vella Suite is probably the best value for your money in Seoul.  It’s located right in the center of Myeongdong — Seoul’s famous shopping district.  Myeongdong is in central Seoul, and it’s easily accessible by metro, taxi or bus.  This hotel offers clean rooms, a friendly staff, and more restaurants/bars then you can imagine just outside the front door!

3) For Luxury – Lotte Hotel Seoul (Book Online Now)
*rates – $218/night for a deluxe double room

The impressive Lotte Hotel in Seoul is also located in the bustling shopping district of Myeongdong.  It has a great gym, spa, food court and everything imaginable that you could want in a hotel.  There is a large foodcourt below the hotel that is easily accessible and offers great Korean food.  The rooms are clean, with a large shower and comfortable beds.  Don’t miss out on the great views of the city and Namsan Tower!

Thanks for reading!  Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions about the nightlife in Seoul or travel in Korea in general! 

Give Back 🙂
I spent countless hours time writing this blog post, and making sure that the information stays up to date.  One way that you can give back is to book your hotel in Seoul on this link.  It’s an affiliate link, meaning that I make a small commission on each sale made at no additional cost to you.  The money that I make will go directly into making this website better.  Thank you!

Photo credits:
Octagon – https://www.facebook.com/cluboctagon
Answer – http://www.mydestination.com/seoul
Syndrome – http://www.clubinkorea.com/
The A – https://www.facebook.com/clubthea

194 thoughts on “Seoul Nightlife Guide (Gangnam)

  1. Hi,

    I was wondering if you have any recommendations for restaurants in Gangnam by club Octagon? I am planning to go in Sept for a Bachelorette party and wanted recs of fun/good places to eat that open late before we go clubbing. Also for a group of 6 girls, do you think we should get bottle service or just wait in line? Do the clubs get crazy long lines like in Vegas? What’s the best time to go? And finally, we are all over the age of 30, do you think it will be a problem to get into the clubs?

    Thanks!

  2. Crazy party nights man. I am just sharing some info here, for those interested I went on tour with a local agency onedaykorea to see the best night view of Seoul city, and it was great. I visited Seoul before but not during the night, but now i am glad i did. Seoul at night gives off a totally different vibe. I highly recommend that you spent one night observing few nice places of Seoul. And after you can follow up in some clubs 😉

  3. Yo Drew, nice post! These clubs seem to be open thursday-saturday. Are there clubs open monday-wednesday too or should I look for bars for those days instead?

  4. Hey thank you so much for this article i’ve always been wondering what koreans wear when they go clubbing.
    Is there any entrance fee? How much are they?

  5. I’ll be in Korea this summer attending Yonsei University, and for the majority of my trip I’ll be 18, and won’t be turning 19 till late in the trip. I’d still like to experience the club life throughout my trip, can I get into a club if I’m 18, or do I have to be 19 (aka 20 in Korea)? Or does it depend on the club, which is the case for some clubs in Europe?

  6. Hey mate, love your work. Where can I go to pick up chicks Tuesday Wednesday Thursday? I’m white obviously ;-). Jono

  7. Hey Drew Thanks for the tips it’s making this trip to Seoul a lot easier i will be attending Ultra this June. I know it ends early at 12 and would like some advice on something to do afterwards. Also do they charge at the clubs if you attend ultra? And till what time do they stop serving alcohol? Thanks a lot!!!

  8. Hey Drew! I’m planning to go to Korean next summer, do you think it is necessary to take a language course in Yonsei Uni? I’ve done some research and the credit can be transferred to my current uni. My concern is that if I go to Korea but can’t speak their language, I can’t enjoy their culture in-depth. Do you think English can work in Korea w/t well? Thanks

    1. Hey Olivia ! It’s necessary only if you want to learn Korean – you don’t really have to to experience the culture and make friends. I hope you have a great time in Korea!!

  9. Awesome post Drew, very helpful indeed!
    I will be coming to Seoul from 24-28 staying in Gangnam and wanted your advice on which would be the club/bar to go to each night? Do they all get busy even in weekdays? Which one would be the best option for 27th as its a weekend?
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hey man, id recommend to try out Bound at wednesdays and then go to Arena Club just around the corner from thursdays-sundays. Place’s are great. You might wanna get a table, since it get’s crowded no matter what, specially from fridays-sundays.

    2. Wonderful! Most are busy on weekdays — Club Mass is the craziest club to visit during the week. Weekends are obviously better. Enjoy!

    1. Hello everyone. Anyone going to party tomorrow and willing to take me along. I am here until Wed and would like to go out but not alone. And don’t worry I fun to go out with!

    2. Hey Drew! Love the Tips!
      Its my birthday this Saturday so me and my girls want to go partying. I like all kinds of music but mostly hip-hop. Where would you recommend? (preferably gagnam area) We are getting a VIP table so the price shouldn’t be extremely high 😉
      Thanks!

      1. Thanks DEB! It’s also my bday this weekend!! There aren’t many hip hop clubs in Gangnam — if you want hip hop, then go to Move Bar in Itaewon. Have fun!

  10. Hey Drew, awesome review!
    I’m going to Seoul with my friend next month. I’m an asian female who is in early 40s and R&B and hip hop club goer in Tokyo and my friend is a black male who is in early 30s. How strict is the age limit for foreigners?
    If the age limit is not strict, we would love to experience Octagon or Ellui during the stay but heard Ellui has been closed. Is it true?

  11. Hey Drew,
    I’m staying at gangnam for a few days. What’s the best place for going out on Tuesday, wenedesday and Thursday? Tell me about.

    Thanks so much for your answer. See youuu

  12. Hi Drew,

    Great blog. Been to Seoul once back in 2011 to visit my friend. Same friend is getting married there this year and big group of us traveling for it. Any suggestions of absolute musts for a stag party or best venues?

  13. Hi Drew, love your blog! Where would you recommend staying for a lively night life in gangnam? A friend of mine stayed at Grammos and said it was pretty dead at night time – I’m thinking O Cloud Hotel? Is that close to the lively nightlife and clubs?? Thursday-Saturday (and hoping to hit an RNB nightclub)- I hear NB is good for that, and I also LOVE to hear BigBang songs in the club =) Any advice would be appreciated!

  14. Thanks for this great information! Is it easy to hop between the clubs, or are they too spread apart? I will be in Seoul for two nights this month and we’re trying to plan out our evenings. Are there any specific hotels near the club areas that are good to crash at afterwards?

  15. Is there any club that actually plays Techno (underground music) not commercial stuff, not top 100, something like Berlin let’s say.

    1. Club Vurt at Hapjeong in the Hongdae area plays underground Berlin-style techno. It gets going late, and there is no sign outside (it is to the left of Cuzco restaurant and downstairs). Whether house or retro-disco, both floors at B-One play interesting and high quality non-commercial music, but the door staff can be selective.

      And by the way – to the author, Drew: this is precisely what makes Seoul NOT the “number one party city” in the world. Compared to elsewhere, the music and DJs are generic and awful, and the crowds leave a lot to be desired (see your own description of how locals dance). In truly great party city, you can party with both the originators who made the scene and the trendsetters who are currently shaping it. Seoul’s scene, on the other hand, is entirely paint-by-numbers and very milquetoast and poseur-ish.

      No chemicals, either – not that I partake, but the grittily egalitarian collectivism that chemicals inspire is definitely missing.

      1. Hi Alex,

        Thanks for your comment and recommendations for the club in Hongdae — that sounds awesome.

        I am not ONLY referring to the music genre in Seoul, and to be honest, it sucks. It’s very repetitive and it’s horrible electronic music. But the overall energy and madness of Seoul is incomparable to any place I’ve been on earth.

  16. Hi Drew, great review! I will have a long stopover in Korea (coming from the Philippines, going to the US) and would like to stop by one of these clubs. I didn’t plan on booking a hotel so I may have a backpack on me – would any of the clubs let me in? Or would you recommend I book a hotel so I can change into nicer clothes and leave my carry-on? Also, any recommendations for dress code for men and women? I was thinking Mass, Octagan or NB. We drift more towards hip hop or top 40.

    1. Thank you!! All of the clubs have lockers for your stuff, so you can easily put them inside while you party!! Dress code is laid back, just pants and any shirt/shoes work. Enjoy!

      Drew

  17. Nice review Drew! This is my second time in Seoul and I agree with most of your post. I am partying solo in Seoul until Feb 23 and its been great so far. Met some really nice Korean girls and went on a few dates already just after 2 nights of clubbing! If anyone here want to be wingmen let me know. I prefer the hongdae scene especially NB2 (hip hop) BUT will also be going to octagon and mass. Send me an email sk8redhotstar at hotmail.com or txt/kakao (010-6884-7984)

  18. hey! this is amazing. do you mind if I share this article with my friends? I am trying to make my friends come visit to Seoul and this article would be so helpful!!!!

  19. Hey, just wondering if you knew what the dress code for girls in somewhere like octagon is like? Could I wear trainers like I do in London/Berlin? Thanks

  20. Hi drew.. I am travelling to Korea this year near April, will stay near about Seoul . please advice if is there any good night club to to enjoy. I heard, few night clubs in Korea allow only Koreans. I am Indian, and going first time to Korea. Please suggest.

  21. Hey Drew! Me and a friend are planning to go to Seoul later this year. What clubs/bars do you recommend most for dancing? We absolutely love dancing but aren’t into the whole getting a table/standing around talking and no dancing vibe lol! Booringg. Any that have a good rave? 🙂

    1. Hey Alex, I’m in Seoul the exact same days too, I’m staying in gangnam and partying in hongdae/gangnam everyday. If you want to be wingmen let me know!

    2. Nice review Drew! This is my second time in Seoul and I agree with most of your post. I am partying solo in Seoul until Feb 23 and its been great so far. Met some really nice Korean girls and went on a few dates already just after 2 nights of clubbing! If anyone here want to be wingmen let me know. I prefer the hongdae scene especially NB2 (hip hop) BUT will also be going to octagon and mass. Send me an email sk8redhotstar at hotmail.com or txt/kakao (010-6884-7984)

  22. I will be there around the end of January. I will stay at Hotel Artnouveau. This is my first time trip to korea. I want some friends to spend together my night life at Gangnam.

  23. Hi Drew!

    This is an amazingly helpful post! Me and a group of friends have an overnight layover in Seoul on a Monday. Do you know if any of the clubs you listed above are open then? Any recommendations? We’re looking to party but it seems like most of the mega clubs are closed on Mondays, and we might have to settle for drinks at a bar.

  24. Hey Drew. I’m not exactly new to the clubbing scene in Seoul and have been to a number of them – but definitely not as knowledgable as you are ?. Anyways, friends and I are going to Seoul for New Year celebration soon and I’ve been tasked to find out the best party in town. A little bit of research gave me Octagon as the best place – I’ve been with this crowd as well to Octagon before so not exactly new. Do you have any tips for NYE party and do you think I should try to get a table already by now? Cheers man.

      1. I am worried about Octagon on NYE because Omnia is mixing and probably going to play trance all night, which may or may not be your vibe. Drew, I have heard that Club Answer has become really quite against foreigners given the problems they have had with military men. My friends and I are looking into NYE as well and I was wondering why you ranked Syndrome over Ellui. I am looking for a big place with a little space to dance (which is why I am thinking the bigger places might be good) and a good mix of music.

  25. Hi, just wondering how much i have to spend in order to get a table in Club Syndrome or Club Octagon? and how much is 1 bottle at these clubs?

  26. Hi Drew,

    Me and my fella gal friends are planning to Seoul for my fren’s hens night around Sept 2016. Any recommendation where we can have fun clubbing and allowing the bride to be to enjoy her memorable party?

  27. Hey, I’m looking to see if Seoul can really outdo Vegas. I’m here until Nov 8th. Tell me when and where and I’ll be there.

      1. I see you are back in Seoul. The city missed you brotha. Not sure if the after-club “Arena” existed when you were here, but check it out. They start around 3-4am and end around noon. But they are predominantly vip service. It gets pretty wild. Be physically and mentally prepared though.

        P.s. Let me know when you come back to the states or come to the great state of Ohio… God I miss Seoul so much.

        Your fellow Seoul partier,

        Larry

        1. Haha bro, wish you were here and we can rage together like old times! I think I’m gonna hit up Boom Bar tonight, I am in Itaewon at the moment. Hope all is well back in Ohio!

          Drwe

  28. This is so true! I”ve been in korea since 2 months now, as an exchange student, but never experienced Gangnam. Only visited hongdae and itaewon but reading this it is clearly where me and my buddy”s going next week.
    Thankyou!

    1. Hey, I heard Octagon is huge, but I perfer Hongdae because there more different genre of music at different club that’s there. Well, I hope you like it and South Korea has an amazing nightlife.

  29. Hey Drew! I’ve been to Seoul a number of times and been to some of the super clubs you mentioned. My best experiences have been at Octagon and Ellui. I went to Syndrome twice and both times, I was either too drunk from a previous club or we went on a Sunday (yeah, why?) so didn’t impress me too much. Friends and I are heading to Seoul again right after Christmas – any idea on where would be best to ring in the new year? Cheers buddy!

    1. They can get pretty long, usually after 11:30PM. I would recommend to go at 10:30 so there will be no line.. Then you will get a stamp on your wrist so you can leave to get drunk, and then go back around 1 when the party is getting started! Have fun

  30. Hi amazing information. I have been teaching in Korea for 1 year and 5 months or so. I love Seoul and your post is so detailed. Any information on hip hop clubs in Gangnam? I want to go there for my birthday, but I don’t do EDM lol and all the clubs you mentioned play that. I know Itaewon and Hongdae have hip hop clubs but I have exhausted those places

    1. Hey! COol that you’re teaching in Korea– I loved it! Gangnam is 100% EDM haha, the only hip hop clubs are in Itaewon and HOngdae. I’m heading back to Seoul for all of November – maybe we can meet up!
      Drew

    2. Not sure about Gangnam hiphop clubs, but check out Boombar at Itaewon. Drew and I went there a few times. VIP service is a lot cheaper but it is a lot smaller than EDM clubs. Used to be one of my favorite spots in Itaewon.

  31. Awesome information. Ill be in Seoul from November 20 to 26 to celebrate my bday. I heard there is a age cut off to get in the clubs? I had a friend travel last year and went to Octagon. She just turned 33 and and she wasnt allowed in. Luckily we had a friend who had VIP bottle service who came out to get her. Thats one of the reasons why she went. Does this go for all clubs? Also do you have any recommendations on lounges? Thanks ♡

    1. Awesome place to spend your birthday! There is no age limit, I went clubbing with my friends who are 40 at octagon. But the lounges are typically better with an older crowd, so look into B-ONE in Itaewon! Have a good time 🙂

  32. Thank you so much for mentioning Global Gathering. I am visiting Korea to see my girlfriend and always wanted to take her to a music event after I attended edc earlier this year. So stoked to take her to her first event and it will be my first in korea. Great info!

  33. Hi Drew,
    I’ll be going to Seoul for the first time in April on a solo trip. Planning on staying in the myeongdong district but want to check out some local bars and at least one of the clubs you mentioned in Gangnam. Is it pretty safe for a young female to go alone at night into the wee hours of the morning or easy to get a cab around there, or would you recommend staying in areas like itaewon or Gangnam district closer to the night scene? Thanks!

    1. Hi Megan! If you’re heading to a club on the 29th or 30th April feel free to hit me up 🙂 I’m going with a group of friends but they’re not so keen on clubbing. Female, 22 yo here!

      1. Hey – I really wish I can join you but won’t be in Korea during that time. But I’ll give you some good recommendations if you send me an email!

      2. Hey Avy , when will you be in korea until? Me and my friends are heading to korea in apr too and we want to club but we don’t want to go alone bcs the more the merrier haha

  34. Hy I’ll be in korea around end of November this yr for an kpop concert, I do miss korea. This is my 2nd time to go korea. My last trip was in early June, anf I went to the answer it was freaking awesome. I’m planning on going to the clubs for this trip again n probably going alone don’t know if my friends want to go. Any clubs to recommend? Myb I could go clubbing with you. N btw what to wear? Since I heard it’s cold during that time.

    1. Hi Candy! I’ll be in Korea from Nov 1- Nov 25.. When will you be there? Maybe I will leave before you arrive. In any event, I recommend checking out OCtagon and Ellui! Have fun 🙂

  35. Hey Drew! This is great help:) It’s been almost 2 years since I’ve been to Korea and I’m totally looking forward to my visit this year end. Do you have any recommendations for clubs in Hongdae?

  36. Hi Drew,

    I love your blog. Im in Korea from now to end of August. If you visit Seoul , I’d love to party together.

  37. Thanks for compiling all this info Drew. Really helps people poking around looking for things to do while in Seoul.

    2 questions.

    1. I am a huge beer fan and came across By Nicky, would you recommend this place or any others to grab some Korean brews?

    2. You’ve steered a lot of people to Octagon and Ellui, are they vastly superior?? Any others you’d go back to if had to pick a couple more?

    Cheers Drew.

    1. Hey Andres, glad you found my post useful!

      1. Yes, that is a good place. You can also head over to Itaewon to find some delicious micro brews and craft veers .

      2. Yes, they really are the two best clubs! Syndrome and B-One are other good ones.

      Enjoy!

      Drew

  38. Hey Drew great article! I’m in Korea this week and it just so happens Ultra is this weekend. You know of any good afterparties, ultra related parties? Are any clubs hosting events?

    1. Hey Joe – that’s awesome! I couldn’t be more jealous. I went to UMF Seoul last year and it was amazing. The clubs with the after parties are (usually) Octagon, Ellui and Syndrome.

      Have fun!

      1. Re: Clubbing after UMF, do they give more leeway on the dress code at these places on UMF weekend?

        Just wondering if I should tell my friends going to UMF they should bring a change of clothes or what.

        1. Yes absolutely ! I went clubbing in all of my rave gear and they didn’t care at all! Enjoy brotha, and please let me know how it goes!

  39. Hi Drew! I found your site trying to figure out if Octagon is a good place to go on a Thursday night. I’m throwing a bachelorette party for a friend in Seoul (without ever having been there) and am looking for a good place to go dancing in Gangnam. The Octagon website says the “club” section is only open Friday-Saturday. Any idea if this is true??

    1. Hey Marissa! Yes Octagon would be a perfect place to go! But just a warning – it gets CRAZY in there. Up to the same level like Vegas nightclubs… And that is definitely not true, because I’ve been there on Tuesday and Thursday nights several times.

      Have fun, and let me know if you have any more questions!

  40. Going to be in Seoul in June on a layover. Planning on partying all night then going back to the airport to catch my flight haha where do you suggest going to on a Tuesday night. Going to be with 2 girls. We’re all in our mid-upper 20s

  41. Hey just wondering if you know the price of the table in club Ellui?
    I know its 660000krw for octagon on a fri night but i cant find the price online for Ellui?
    And which club do you think I should get a table? Octagon or Ellui ( or any other recommendation)
    And what bottle do they normally serve?

    1. im not the blogger, but i can answer this. octagon is the club you should get a table, and ellui these days have much cheaper prices. its basically crowded with kids these days. ellui prices would be like 300,000krw for two bottles. for bottles, you get to choose drinks from a variety but you have to order atleast one champagne(moet usually). the usual 660,000krw table goes with one bottle of vodka(grey goose, ciroc etc) and one champagne.

  42. Hi Drew!

    I was wondering where to party this coming Sunday 3rd May. It’s a Sunday night and I’m only in Seoul for a few days… where would the hippest coolest sexiest place be?

    Thanks!

    Sean

    1. Any club in Gangnam or Itaewon! I would say Octagon or Ellui – but it might not be crowded on a Sunday night. If the clubs aren’t good, then go bar hopping in Itaewon.

      Cheers from Chicago!

      Drew

  43. Hey everyone. I will be on Business this week in Seoul. Anyone going to party where I can join??? Just boring going alone

    See ya!

    1. Hey John! I wish I was there to party with you! Although you should have no problem meeting some people (both Foreigners and Koreans) to party with in Seoul! Start by going to Itaewon 🙂

  44. Hey Drew,

    I´m 18 years old but looking like someone in his mid 20s, do you think this will be a problem at the door ? Are they control the passports for the age ?

    P.S. Your blog is great 🙂

    1. Max – you should be fine, although they are checking IDs now at the big clubs. I think it may only be 18 to get in tho? Worst case, just borrow any foreigner’s ID and they will let you in. It’s not very strict.

      Have fun in my favorite city in the world! Cheers from the Taj Mahal (literally)
      Drew

  45. Hey Drew, I found your blog through googling for clubs in Gangnam, are you still in Seoul?? My friend and I are visiting this summer and would love some advice on where to go!

    1. Hey Annie – I am in India at the moment, but I wish I was in Seoul! When are you going? Email me and I can help you with anything you need 🙂

  46. Hi Drew,

    Thanks for the writeup. It’s extremely helpful. Mind sharing which weekday will be good for clubbing? Do they have a ladies night concept in Seoul?
    Also, how liberal are Koreans towards ONS? Any particular club that is recommended to pickup gals?

    1. No prob, Alex! Thursdays are the best weekday to go clubbing, but honestly any day there is a party. Ladies night depends on a specific event for a club, so you will have to check. Itaewon is the best area to pick up Korean girls, beacuse all of the English speaking and outgoing ones go there. Have fun and good luck 😉

  47. I will be there Sun night and will be there until Thu just wondering is any clubs open Sun or during the week?

  48. Thanks for sharing your clubbing experiences! I was wondering how strict are they with for i.d.? If I end up forgetting to bring my i.d. would I be denied entry? Also what forms of i.d. are acceptable?

    Thanks

    1. No problem!! They do check IDs now (they didn’t in the recent past).. Just bring any ID that shows your bday and you will be fine. No need for a passport. Have fun!

  49. Hey man, great article. I’ve literally just moved to Korea, and this has all been really helpful. Only thing is, I won’t be living in Seoul, I’ll be closer to Busan. I’ll just travel up to Seoul to see a DJ I want to see; question is, is there anywhere online where it lists all of the upcoming events/djs so I can quickly check when a good one is coming up?

    Back in the UK I’d use resident advisor, but when I checked it their section on Korean nightlife was not much help.

    Also, are there any clubs that play other kinds of house or techno music rather than up front EDM? I guess you’d call it deep house.

    Thanks in advance, and keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks James! Busan is a great place to be, and the nightlife is REALLY fun around Hae-Un-Dae beach. You will love it in the summer. Umm to answer your question, there isn’t really a website to check. I usually just check the FB pages of the major clubs around Seoul who recruit big-name DJs (Octagon, The A, Ellui, Syndrome). Just check them every week or two and they will have flyers promoting which DJs will be playing.

      For deep house, check out Venue, B1 and Cake Shop in Itaewon! Those are the best. In Gangnam, it’s all EDM. Have fun in Korea man!

  50. Hey Drew,

    I actually found your reviews more informational than most. I’m from the states and I’ve been partying for awhile since 1997ish.

    I really miss the older techno,
    They usually had clubs or raves dedicated to trance, techno, house, drum n bass,… etc. (edm)
    now they just seem to call it electro.

    As im mainly going for the music, could you tell me abit more about what music they play in korea?
    Any places or monthly nights when they play drum n bass?
    …or funky house? : D

    thanks man

    1. Hi Won,

      In Korea they play mainstream electro house mixed with really fast tempo beats. I haven’t really heard drum n bass around here. There are some underground clubs that play funky house. Are you planning a trip here? Let me know when and I can hook you up!

      Drew

  51. Headed over in just a week,….for business….but should have a bit of free time on my hands!
    Would any of these be appropriate for middle-aged folks in their 30s and 40s? Or are there different clubs for the older crowd?

    1. Thanks for the comment! The crowd is typically 20-30 years old, but I’ve seen older people from time to time. It will be perfectly normal for you to go, and I highly recommend it! If you have a group of people, pitch in for a table and bottle service and it will definitely be worth it. Let me know if you have any other questions, and have fun!

  52. Man, I’m korean living in US/canada for past 14 years.
    i finally got to go to korea for first time past june.
    i miss the food and atmosphere so much. i think about it EVERYDAY.
    im definitely gonna go party next year when i go in july/august.
    thanks for the info!
    enjoy your rest of time in korea!

  53. Dude sounds awesome I’m currently planning on going to Korea for new years. Any hotels in Gangnam you recommend that aren’t crazy through the roof with the pricing or do you even recommend that area at that time or should I look elsewhere? Help me out brotha!

    1. Hey man, thanks for the comment! You’re going to love Korea. I wouldn’t recommend staying in Gangnam.. Like you said, the hotels are out the roof. You should stay in Itaewon, another fun nightlife district, and it’s very close to Gangnam. Email me and I can tell you a lot more info man!

  54. Thanks for insight into this! I’m a korean who grew up in the states and have never been clubbing in Korea lol. There aren’t any hip hop clubs? ;-/

    1. No problem! Yes there are plenty of hip hop clubs, but they are mostly in Hongdae and Sincheon- not Gangnam. I am currently writing nightlife guides for these areas as we speak 🙂

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