Texas Village in Gangdong-gu

Scroll down to content

Another red-light district bites the dust in Seoul. This soon-to-be-demolished neighborhood/sex market is the first place I took Harrow urban exploring. It’s pretty hard to thoroughly explore a condemned area and take photos when you also have to take care of a pup. On this second (mostly likely final) visit to the site, I was exploring solo and had the luxury of the entire place to myself.

High-rise apartments loom over the abandoned neighborhood.

On this day, which happened to be a Sunday, it was harder to access this neighborhood. Sandwiched between a construction zone and a block of businesses that survived demolition, opportunities for obvious access points here are fleeting. Construction workers are out and about at work on the apartments next door, and there is a constant stream of people walking from the main road to get to the adjacent park.

Despite these challenges, after circling the perimeter a few times, I took a chance down a nondescript alley between two jutaeks, finding a relatively easy way in without needing to hop a fence or wall. Persistence pays off.

I remember seeing this motif in another house in the same area last time I visited

There were not a lot of open buildings on my first visit to this neighborhood, but in the weeks that had passed, everything was pretty much available to explore, including this church:

Besides the apparent glass boxed establishments, you could tell this was a red-light district by the high density of inns and hotels in such a small area. On my first visit, they were inaccessible but are now wide open for viewing.

Finally, the main reason that brought me back to this place was the glass box brothels. Each establishment had seemly endless staircases leading to unlimited amounts of rooms for privacy. It was easy peasy getting inside after the workers smashed the windows and pried open the doors. I noted that one brothel had underground rooms; I declined to venture down there. In another brother, each room came equipped with a free-standing shower stall inside the room. I got the idea by the third bordello and didn’t need to go inside another.

Feeling my curiosity satisfied, I headed back to the subway station, crossing another must-see location off my list.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: