By Jessie YeungCNN
The journey to the very best restaurant in South Korea begins with a whale show.
The ethereal 123F Lounge is positioned on the highest ground of Lotte World Tower in Seoul, 555 meters (about 1,820 toes) above the bottom. The tower is the tallest constructing within the nation and the fifth tallest constructing on the earth, in line with its official website.
Nevertheless it seems that attending to the restaurant is not as straightforward as getting out and in of an elevator; it’s fairly an expertise that may simply take as much as an hour.
After buying an entrance ticket (27,000 KRW (roughly $20) for adults and 24,000 KRW ($18) for youngsters), guests enter a ready room, awash in blue mild as whales swim by way of a large display screen on the roof.
A number of completely different rooms comply with, some with skilled picture alternatives, others showcasing the constructing supplies that make up the tower, earlier than a bewildering collection of whale-themed areas.
There are two lengthy corridors: one lit in darkish blue as whales swim previous you on wall shows, the opposite with LED ceiling panels that rotate by way of colourful mosaic patterns, in stark distinction to the white whale images. and black on the wall. Vaguely whale-sounding calls add to the underwater vibe. One other room has pretend clouds suspended within the air and whales painted on the wall, showing in mid-flight.
(I later discovered that that is all a part of a brief exhibition celebrating the work of whale photographer Jang Nam-won.)
Upon exiting, guests are led to take a seat in a darkened room as a video performs, ostensibly an inventive depiction of the historical past of Seoul and the Lotte World Tower, earlier than the display screen splits into two big panels, slowly rising like a curtain to disclose the beautiful views of Seoul by way of floor-to-ceiling home windows.
The observatory spans a number of flooring, with big home windows that permit for a 360-degree panoramic view of the metropolis. One can see the long-lasting N Seoul Tower perched on Namsan Mountain, bridges spanning the river, parks and sports activities stadiums, and even the rides on the close by Lotte World theme park.
Every ground gives completely different points of interest, like small cafes on the 119th and 122nd flooring. There’s the Sky Deck on the 118th ground, with a glass ground that permits you to see 1,568 toes (478 meters) between your footwear and the road far beneath. . There’s the Sky Terrace on the a hundred and twentieth ground, an open-air balcony with an ideal view of the winding Han River.
After the suitable quantity of ooh-ing and aah-ing, you lastly attain the corridor on the 123rd ground.
The restaurant is spacious and welcoming, with snug chairs and lamps at every desk. Home windows type a full wall and lengthen to the excessive ceiling to flood the house with heat mild at sundown. A free viewer means that you can zoom in on the panorama.
The menu is costly by Korean requirements: $28 for a beef stew, $19 for tomato spaghetti, and $18 for a Caesar salad, however we took our time, watching the solar dip beneath the horizon, briefly tinting the sky. of an intense orange.
The restaurant additionally gives pizza, sandwiches, steak, and appetizers, together with a number of cheeses.
The view was simply as dazzling in the dead of night, town like a grid of sunshine stretching out earlier than us.
Though the 123F Lounge is an ideal spot for a romantic dinner or particular date, there have been additionally households with kids and teams of younger grownup associates once we visited. The ballroom can be rented for particular occasions equivalent to wedding ceremony receptions and product launches.
The Lotte World Tower is positioned within the Jamsil neighborhood of the Songpa-gu district, in southeastern Seoul. It’s open all week, though the schedule will depend on the day, and it may be accessed by metro, bus or non-public automobile.
The CNN Wire
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