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Gangnam District

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Title: Gangnam District  
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Gangnam District

Autonomous District
강남구 · 江南區
A street scene at Gangnam District
A street scene at Gangnam District
Location of Gangnam-gu in Seoul
Location of Gangnam-gu in Seoul
Country  South Korea
Region Sudogwon
Special City Seoul
Administrative dong 26
 • Mayor Shin Yeon-hee
 • Total 39.55 km2 (15.27 sq mi)
Population (2010)[1]
 • Total 527,641
 • Density 13,000/km2 (35,000/sq mi)
Time zone Korea Standard Time (UTC+9)
Website .kr.gogangnam

The Gangnam District (Hangul강남구; hanja江南區; RRGangnam-gu) is one of the 25 gu (local government districts) which make up the city of Seoul, South Korea. Gangnam literally means "South of the (Han) River".

As of the 2010 census, Gangnam District had a population of 527,641,[1] making it the 4th most populated district in Seoul. Gangnam District is the third largest district in Seoul, with an area of 39.5 km2 (15.3 sq mi).


  • Administration 1
    • Divisions 1.1
  • Economy 2
    • Economic development 2.1
  • Education 3
  • Attractions 4
  • Transportation 5
  • Festivals 6
  • Popular culture 7
  • Sister cities 8
  • See also 9
  • References 10
  • External links 11


Gangnam is one of three gu that make up the Greater Gangnam Area along with neighboring Seocho District and Songpa District. Combined, these three gu cover approximately 120 km2 (46 sq mi) of land and had a population of 1,567,881 as of 2010, making up 20% of the area and 15% of the population of Seoul.

The Gangnam District office has designated two smoke-free zones within the district. The section of Gangnam Boulevard between exit No.2 of Gangnam Station of Seoul Subway Line 2 and exit No.5 of Sinnonhyeon Station of Line 9. The second being the 836-meter (914-yard) section of sidewalk along Yeongdong Boulevard from exit No.5 of Samseong Station on Line 2, outside COEX Convention & Exhibition Center and ASEM Tower of the COEX complex.[2]


Administrative divisions

Gangnam District is composed of 26 dong (neighborhoods)


Both the Greater Gangnam Area and Gangnam itself are widely known for its heavily concentrated wealth and high standard of living, which has been compared to cities such as Beverly Hills, California.[3] The most significant indicator is its extremely expensive real estate. Seoul as a whole is already known for its expensive house prices and as of 2011, its average apartment costs approximately US$5,500 per m2, but the average price in Gangnam is almost twice as high, roughly US$10,000 per m2, which is 3.5 times the nationwide average.[4] As for land value, the mere 40 km2 land of Gangnam district rivals with the entire land value of the city of Busan, the second largest city in South Korea. Combined with the neighboring districts of Seocho and Songpa, Greater Gangnam Area account for almost 10% of land value of the entire country.[5]

While Seoul's traditional business centers such as Central District, Jongno District, Yongsan District and Yeongdeungpo District still maintain their leading roles, Gangnam and its neighboring districts have fast become the new core across all areas of business over the last few decades. KOSPI 200 companies based in Gangnam district include KEPCO, GS Group, Hyundai Department Store Group, HITEJinro, Hansol, Hankook Tire, GLOVIS and Korea Zinc Corporation. Besides, POSCO also operates POSCO Center in Teheran Valley, and KT&G operates Kosmo Tower. Other notable companies based in Gangnam include Dongbu Fire Insurance, Young Poong Group, T'way Airlines and Hankook P&G. Gangnam is also home to many IT and other internet-related companies including NC Soft and Pandora TV, and is also one of strong hubs of the country's financial and banking sectors. Many international companies also operate key offices in Gangnam, including Google, IBM, Toyota, and AMI.

Since January 2012, the area is also home to FNC Entertainment, who moved into their own company offices in Cheongdam-dong, separate from their parent company in Mnet Media Building in neighbouring Apgujeong-dong.[6] As well as other entertainment companies such as SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment, Cube Entertainment, Pledis Entertainment, LOEN Entertainment,[7] DSP Media, Core Contents Media, Nega Network, C-JeS Entertainment, WM Entertainment, NH Media, J. Tune Entertainment, TOP Media, Happy Face Entertainment, Good Entertainment, Dream Tea Entertainment, Polaris Entertainment, Jellyfish Entertainment, DR Music and Stardom Entertainment.

Economic development

Until the early 1980s Gangnam and its neighboring areas had remained the least developed in Seoul, but a prodigious development over the last 30 years has earned it a reputation of being one of the most affluent, dynamic, and influential areas in both Seoul and South Korea as a whole.[8]

In addition, the COEX Convention & Exhibition Center in Gangnam recently hosted several international conferences such as the 2010 G-20 summit and the 2012 Nuclear Security Summit.[9][10]


South Korea is known for its high standard of education and intense competition for university entrance, and Gangnam is considered as the national capital of education, which is one of the decisive factors to make Gangnam the most attractive destination in South Korea. In 2010, roughly 6% of the successful candidates to Seoul National University, which is considered as the best university in South Korea, were from Gangnam district, while Gangnam's population makes up only 1% of the country's population.[11][12] In 2008, 22.7 out of 1,000 students in Gangnam district went abroad to study, while the nation's average ratio in the same time frame was only 3.6 per 1,000 students.[13] Following the substantial raising of the profile of the Gangnam district internationally, the area has become a popular destination for international students seeking Korean language lessons, marking the rise of Korea as a 'study tourism' destination. Both long-standing locally owned schools such as the Seoul Korean Academy, and more recent foreign-owned entities such as Lexis Korea report a significant increase in interest in the location.


The important business district around Teheranno (Tehran Street) runs east-west from Gangnam Station to Samseong Station and the COEX Convention & Exhibition Center-Korean World Trade Center complex. Several popular shopping and entertainment areas are located in Gangnam District, including Apgujeong, the COEX Mall and the area around Gangnam Station and Garosugil.

Cheongdam-dong is notable as an upmarket shopping area, with stores of global and local luxury brands, such as MCM Haus flagship store;[14] Vera Wang's third global and first Asian flagship store 'Vera Wang Bridal Korea';[15] as well as French jeweler Cartier's Cartier Maison, located on Apgujeong-ro, which is the largest in Korea and at the time of opening, in 2008, the seventh largest in the world.[16]

The area has a large concentration of vegetarian and other upscale restaurants that serve Korean cuisine with a modern twist, namely on the main street from Bongeun Temple to Park Hyatt Hotel in Samseong-dong.[17]


Gangnam District is served by Seoul Subway Line 2, Seoul Subway Line 3, Seoul Subway Line 7, Seoul Subway Line 9, Bundang Line and the Shinbundang Line.

(Seongdong-gu) ← Apgujeongrodeo – Gangnam-gu OfficeSeonjeongreungSeolleungHantiDogokGuryongGaepo-dongDaemosanSuseo → (Songpa-gu)
(Songpa-gu) ← SamseongSeolleungYeoksamGangnam → (Seocho-gu)
(Seongdong-gu) ← ApgujeongSinsa → (Seocho-gu) ← MaebongDogokDaechiHangnyeoulDaecheongIrwonSuseo – (Songpa-gu)
(Seocho-gu) ← Gangnam
(Gwangjin-gu) ← CheongdamGangnam-gu OfficeHak-dongNonhyeon → (Seocho-gu)
(Seocho-gu) ← Sinnonhyeon


There are several festivals held in Gangnam District.

  • International Peace Marathon Festival in October
  • Gangnam Fashion Festival in October
  • Sports Festival for residents in Gangnam Distinct in May
  • Daemosan Festival

Following the United States Forces Korea. In 2009 they were awarded a 'special prize' by the US Army for promoting cultural exchanges with American troops.[20][21][22]

Popular culture

  • Several subway stations in Gangnam and nearby areas were used as filming locations for the 2012 Hollywood film The Bourne Legacy, the fourth installment in the Bourne film series.[24]
  • The 2012 K-pop song "Gangnam Style" by South Korean entertainer Psy was inspired by, and its music video was shot in, the Gangnam District.[25] The song and video's popularity increased international awareness of the district. In the music video, Psy can be seen dancing on top of the ASEM Tower with the Trade Tower in the background. The two buildings are part of World Trade Center Seoul (WTC Seoul), also known as COEX.[26]

Sister cities

See also


  1. ^ a b Korean Statistical Information Service (Korean) > Population and Household > Census Result (2010) > Population by Administrative district, Sex and Age / Alien by Administrative district and Sex. Retrieved 2010-06-02.
  2. ^ Kwon, Sang-soo (12 September 2012). "City designates area by COEX as smoke-free". Joongang Daily. Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  3. ^ Cha, Frances (17 August 2012). "Interview: PSY on 'Gangnam Style,' posers and that hysterical little boy". CNN Travel. Retrieved 2012-09-22. I've heard it said that Gangnam is the Beverly Hills of Korea. But I would say that Gangnam is the capital of Seoul, which, of course, is the capital of Korea. 
  4. ^ 강남아파트 1채 팔면 보성군에서 25채 산다. inews24 (in Korean). 23 March 2011. Retrieved 2012-09-05. 
  5. ^ 서울시 강남구 땅값, 부산시 전체와 비슷. Chosun Ilbo (in Korean). July 2011. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  6. ^ Kim, Ji-soo (22 February 2012). "Carving out niche with pop rock bands". Korea Times. Retrieved 9 March 2013. 
  7. ^ Contact Us - LOEN Entertainment. LOEN Entertainment.
  8. ^ "Gangnam has ‘Style’ and so much more". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 5 December 2012. 
  9. ^ Cho Jin-seo. "Seoul unveils G20 summit's symbol," Korea Times (ROK). 8 July 2010; retrieved 10 Nov 2010.
  10. ^ "Seoul Nuclear Security Summit Gets Underway Monday" Chosun Ilbo. 26 March 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-26
  11. ^ "The number of SNU entrants in 2010, sorted by regions". Prime Economy (in Korean). 4 February 2010. Retrieved 26 September 2012. 
  12. ^ "The number of SNU entrants from Seoul in 2010, sorted by districts". Yonhap News (in Korean). 3 February 2010. Retrieved 26 September 2012. 
  13. ^ 지역 간 유학률 격차 커져 … 강남구 1000명당 23명 최고. Yonhap News (in Korean). 20 October 2010. Retrieved 26 September 2012. 
  14. ^ "MCM Haus Flagship store". CNN Travel. 1 June 2011. Retrieved 10 April 2013. 
  15. ^ Lee, Rachel (29 June 2012). "Vera Wang opens 1st Asia flagship in Seoul". Korea Times. Retrieved 16 December 2012. 
  16. ^ Garcia, Cathy Rose A. (28 September 2008). "Cartier Opens Flagship Store in Cheongdam". Korea Times. Retrieved 9 March 2013. 
  17. ^ Cho Jae-eun; Chang Hae-won; Choung Hyuk-min (3 August 2011). "Feast of food in a concrete jungle". Joongang Daily. Retrieved 27 January 2013. 
  18. ^ Rogers, Simon (25 October 2012). "Gangnam Style: how Seoul's most exclusive neighbourhood went global".  
  19. ^ Rachel Sang-hee Han; Frances Cha (17 December 2012). "13 things you've got to do in Seoul".  
  20. ^ "Gangnam-gu Promotes Further Exchanges with USFK". Gangnam-gu. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  21. ^ Fisher, Max. "Gangnam Nationalism: Why Psy’s anti-American rap shouldn’t surprise you". The Washington Post. Retrieved 8 December 2012. 
  22. ^ "American troops participate in Gangnam Marathon". The Official Homepage of the United States Army. Retrieved 28 December 2012. 
  23. ^ "Beautiful Days". Korean TV Drama. Korea Tourism Organization. Retrieved 1 June 2012. 
  24. ^ Bourne Legacy' Puts Seoul on Hollywood Radar"'". Chosun Ilbo. 28 June 2012. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  25. ^ Gangnam Style' Goes Viral"'". 5 September 2012. Retrieved 5 September 2012. 
  26. ^ "There is no gangnam district in Gangnam style music video". MK News (in Korean). 12 September 2012. 
  27. ^ Ho, Stewart (10 August 2012). ?"Cheongdamdong Alice"Will Moon Geun Young Make Her Small Screen Comeback Through . enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 16 December 2012. 
  28. ^ Park, Jin-hai (7 May 2013). "Psy showcases Korean fashion: 10 Corso Como Seoul offers fashion and culture in new Gangnam style". Korea Times. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  29. ^ "Riverside California Office of the Mayor". Retrieved 2012-10-09. 

External links

  • Gangnam-gu website
  • Gangnam-gu > Tourism / Culture > Maps (Gangnam-gu maps)
  • (Korean) Map, status quo and origin of dong names of Ganganam-gu
  • "Tour The Ritzy Seoul District That Inspired Viral Hit 'Gangnam Style'", photoessay at, 20 September 2012
  • Gangnam Street Videoclip

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