The Best New Retail in Seoul – March 2024

Seoul is becoming one of the most interesting locations for innovative retail experiences.

There is no one dominant theme this month, as stores fuse different types of retail with each other – some looking to the past with nostalgia and brand history or Korean design, and others looking to the future and providing immersive technology.

We’ve found a camera company selling clothing, a perfume store opening a café, and AI generated ice cream flavours.

Here are our top picks for the best new retail in Seoul in March.


Image credit: AXIS-Y

AXIS-Y, Gangnam

K-beauty skincare brand AXIS-Y has launched its latest flagship in Cheongdam.

The store is located alongside the company headquarters in a chic grey building. The space is decorated in neutral tones with soft lighting throughout, providing a relaxed atmosphere for beauty fans to explore the brand’s range of products.

AXIS-Y sees the space as more than a retail store. It’s a place for community and connection. The building includes a café, where the brand envisages events and parties being held.


Image credit: Palace

Palace, Apgujeoung

UK skateboarding brand Palace has launched its largest store and flagship in Seoul.

The exterior of the building is very unassuming, with only the logo standing out against plain cream walls. The interior contains some nods to traditional Korean design, with carved wooden walls painted in green. The brand’s collection of skateboards is displayed across a mirror that curves around the walls, and the floor contains a P-shaped display screen to artistically showcase the brand’s logo.

The first floor functions as a gallery area with a display showing the brand’s current campaigns, a giant stone logo broken into pieces to form benches, and a large bulldog statue.


Kodak Apparel, Seongsu

Retro nostalgia is the theme of the latest Kodak Apparel store in Seoul.

Kodak has developed a clothing range of relaxed retro wear, such as light blue jeans and college sweaters, some with the brand’s yellow and red signature colours. The new store is bright yellow and styled as an old-fashioned corner shop, with a large clock on the exterior and a painting of a roll of Kodak film.

The store contains a sound zone for visitors to listen to a soundtrack curated by Poclanos, which has been chosen to fit with the clothing and aesthetic. There is also a display of photography to browse. Additionally, customers have access to an exclusive custom goods area where they can personalise their t-shirts and bags with stickers.


Baskin-Robbins, Gangnam

Baskin-Robbins has launched a special workshop-style store in its existing headquarters.

The workshop functions as a test space where the brand can see how customers react to new flavours and, if they prove popular, roll them out across other stores. The store will therefore offer customers the opportunity to be the first to try out new flavours, exclusive to that location. There are also plans to introduce a Doctor character, to provide customers with a tour of the lab, alongside providing information about products and personalised flavour recommendations.

A new flavour will be launched each month, with those introduced so far including combinations like Green Tea Earl Grey and unusual choices like Wasabi. Baskin-Robbins analysed customer data from its reward scheme, Happy Point, to find out more about flavour preferences. It has combined this research with a new recipe component built with ChatGPT that suggests new flavours.


Image credit: Apple

Apple, Hongdae

Apple has located its new store in a neighbourhood with a university, aimed at the student community.

The store takes sustainability seriously; it is carbon neutral and uses plant-based materials, such as bio-terrazzo and fabrics, and renewable energy. Customers visiting the store can get help with their devices and learn about new features and software.

Apple held a number of sessions as part of its Bring on College with Apple series, aimed at helping students with their studies. The sessions included using Apple features to create presentations, documents, spreadsheets and lecture notes. There are also sessions aimed at the wider community, such as Today at Apple with Beenzino, a hip-hop performer, who launched his new single Train exclusively on Apple Music.


Image credit: Acqua Di Parma/LVMH

Acqua Di Parma, Sincheon

Perfume brand Acqua Di Parma has launched a new café in the Lotte World Tower.

The space, called Yellow Café, combines Italian and Korean aesthetics, and was designed by Dorothée Meilichzon. The store is inspired by the design of monuments and its own bottle shape, with curved arches along the fixtures and fittings, with the bright yellow interior reflective of the Memphis movement.

The kitchen area houses all the brand’s perfume bottles and products, alongside crockery, while a large white stone table contains diffusers and testers. Customers can relax at a range of brightly coloured yellow, white and blue tables.

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