Tuesday, January 16, 2007

강남이 좋은 곳입니다

In Korea, Gangnam (江南) refers to the region south of the Han River (漢江). The Gangnam district (江南區), in particular, is a place meant for the affluent Koreans. Property prices are sky-high. Streets are flanked by up-market boutiques, shops and department stores. Apgujeong (狎鷗亭) is one of the most fashionable shopping spot in the Gangnam district. Of course, it is a place meant for those with deep pocket. I don't have deep pocket, so that more or less explain why I have not been to Apgujeong despite visiting Seoul on three occasions.

As I look up the city map of Seoul, I sort of realise why Gangnam district is such a sought-after place for business and home. Gangnam district is situated at the bend of the Han River and in "fengshui" study, this is supposedly to be an area that accumulates a lot of good "qi" (energy). Gangnam district, indisputably has one of the best "fengshui" along the Han River. Because of that, people who set up their home or business in this district are expected to enjoy the prosperity that comes along with the good "fengshui".

In China, Gangnam is pronounced as Jiang Nan (江南) and it refers to the region south of Chang Jiang (长江) or Yangtze River (扬子江). Jiang Nan, as I know it, is a region that has beautiful scenery that captivated the imagination of the Chinese people since time immemorial. The scenery was so beautiful that Jiang Nan was once described as a heaven on earth. But I doubt the region is still as beautiful as was described, primarily because of the rapid development and pollution in the region.

I cannot visualise the beauty of Jiang Nan's scenery until I visited Yi He Yuan (颐和园) in Beijing. I was told by the guide that Emperor Qianlong (乾隆) of the Qing Dynasty, being a filial son, built a "mini" Jiang Nan in Yi He Yuan when he knew that his mother missed the scenery and life of Jiang Nan after visiting it. Just look at the picture below to understand the beauty of Jiang Nan. I am not too sure how to describe its beauty but I would probably be inspired to recite a few poems if I am a poet.


  1. I must say you've posted a very interesting article here. I learned a lot here, and your final photo is no other than brilliant.
    Thanks for knowledgesharing.

    PS. Found your site by clicking "Next blog"

  2. Interesting analysis about the fengshui of Gangnam:) I've never thought about that, but it might be true in some way.
    But Gangnam means much more than just having one of the best fengshui along the Han River. I've searched for some articles but they are all in Korean. Here just a brief explanation -> http://kin.naver.com/db/detail.php?d1id=6&dir_id=6&eid=LMxhjtP8RfwqnCleEdjkjgUQcs6HzVrT&qb=sK2zssC6IL/WILrOwNogtb+z18DOsKE=

    I once wrote something about the socio-economic meaning of Gangnam -> http://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=27126913&postID=115080469695128039
    Not enough, of course, but probably you can find out some more facts.
    Btw, I don't like Gangnam very much. I prefer to stay in Gangbuk.

  3. Hello Toraa, thanks for dropping by. I am glad to know that you have learnt something here but do take my information with a pinch of salt. I am just blogging so I don't do thorough research on the things I write.

    Hi Song, thanks for the links. Now I have better understanding of Gangnam.

  4. 我喜歡那乾隆的故事。