Tuesday, Oct. 07, 2008

5. Itaewon

Every foreigner who comes to Seoul gravitates to this gritty expat-friendly neighborhood near the main U.S. Army base. Itaewon is choc-a-block with bars, clubs, restaurants and shops selling everything from reproduction Korean furniture and tailored suits to jewelry and Korean pottery. One of the best clubs in the city, Club Volume, is here, in the basement of the Crown Hotel; it reputedly recruits some of the world's best DJs. To get to it, take subway line 6 to the Naksapyeong station; the club will be about 500 meters, or a third of mile, down the hill on the lefthand side. It doesn't open until 9 p.m., so get dinner at the light and airy Kate's Kitchen beforehand, which has a delicious sirloin steak with truffle-infused potatoes. Next door, the French wine bar and bistro, Le Saint Ex, is also a good value and popular with the Sunday brunch crowd.