Tag Archives: hallyu

Retail notes from Seoul: [Store Profile] Olive Young Lifestyle Experience Center in Myeong-dong

[EDIT 11/5/2018 – Following a major relaunch of the Olive Young store brand across Korea, and the opening of several new (and considerably larger) Olive Young outlets in Seoul, the Myeong-Dong Lifestyle Experience Center was completely remodelled in line with Olive Young’s new look. The store looks entirely different now, with a new interior design and a different brand portfolio; more style and less hallyu. You’re therefore about to take a step into the Olive Young chain’s retail history ; )]

On my very first evening in Myeung-dong area I was randomly walking along the streets, enjoying the very special Myeung-dong evening experience: crowds of shoppers pushing along the narrow streets, music blaring from every store and restaurant, sales staff standing outside the beauty stores announcing special offers to try and lure customers inside, food stalls everywhere, more crowds, more noise…..

Then I drifted past an Olive Young store, one of the many branches that Korea’s leading drugstore retailer operates in the central Seoul area. This particular outlet looked different though, so I drifted right back to check it out. The store was much bigger than the average Olive Young retail space; new, stylish and sophisticated-looking – and indeed, as it turned out this is a new Olive Young retail format. The “Lifestyle Experience Center”, opened in 2012, is an attractive beauty concept store with an integrated café area and a strong hallyu flavour.

Olive Young Myeung-dong (40)

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Retail notes from Seoul: Capital of beauty stores

Greetings from Seoul where I’m winding up my spring trip to Asia! I spent the last two weeks in Tokyo: enjoying the city, exploring different neighbourhoods and doing some article research (I am writing a retail profile on Japanese store chain Cosmekitchen for CBM Magazine). I also visited most of the major art and design museums and galleries in the greater Tokyo area. Unlike last year’s visit, my first 2015 trip to Tokyo was culture-oriented rather than retail-focused.

In Seoul, however, I am making up for this: my visit here is all about brands, cosmetics and retail! Although this is my first trip to Korea I already know a good bit about the Korean beauty market and I’m familiar with many of the big retail brands. Korean cosmetics are popular across Asia and brands like Holika Holika, Tony Moly, Innisfree, Nature Republic, Skin Food, Etude House and Missha have a significant presence in East Asia and most of the South East Asian countries. Several of these brands also have retail boutiques in the US, by the way. And with the Korean hallyu blazing its triumphant path across the world, K-Beauty is only going to grow in importance.

Myeung-dong (12) Continue reading

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