Apple Garosugil - Apple's first Korean store

Apple Garosugil, 08:52AM, January 27, 2018

Apple's very first retail store in Korea, "Apple Garosugil" was slated to officially open on 10:00AM, January 27, 2018, after nearly two years of leaked rumours and construction. Being an Apple fan, I had to take a peek, and so I took a high-speed train to Seoul from Naju early in the morning.

I arrived about 70 minutes before the opening, but the lines were already long - I was about 170m away from the store entrance when I lined up. With the temperature below 10 degrees celsius, me and everyone else were bracing freezing winds. As 10AM approached, length of the line had more than doubled, reflecting the great interest.

Waiting to enter the store, 10:11AM

About ten minutes after the opening, I was able to come up to the front of the store. Little did I know I had to wait 40 minutes more to actually enter. Still, everything was orderly, if a bit crowded. It was certainly worth the wait if you're into Apple stuff. Enjoy the photos of the store that follows.
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Fukuoka again (2/2): Garden, buildings, and the final return

With about 100 minutes left to walk around Fukuoka, I decided to visit the Fukuoka City Botanical Garden next to the zoo, then work my way back to the port by the shortest route through Tenjin. At this point, I could almost walk around Fukuoka without a map and not get lost.

Next to the zoo entrance are the long, steep steps to the Fukuoka City Botanical Garden, which made me wonder how I'm supposed to bring kids there in the future


At the end of the steps you still have to walk some more, but it looks like the hill does offer some nice picnic spots for the locals
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Fukuoka again (1/2): Apple Store pickup & walk in the park

Mere 4 days after I dropped off my 1st generation Apple Watch at the Fukuoka Tenjin Apple Store, I was told by an e-mail that the repaired device was now in the store for pickup. The mail also said that I should come visit in one week unless I give the store a call to reschedule. Looking at the travel options to Fukuoka, it seemed to be better to make the trip sooner rather than later both in terms of cost and availability because of the various holidays in May and June. So I booked a single-day round trip for that weekend, returning to Fukuoka just one week since I left.

Busan subway line 1 was test operating the Dadaepo Beach extension that was supposed to officially open the in a few days when I rode it on April 15


I was to ride the 8AM Beetle hydrofoil service operated by JR Kyushu to go from Busan to Fukuoka this time with a US$79 round-trip ticket thanks to promotional pricing, but the check-in desk didn't open until 6:50AM and I didn't have much time between ticketing and boarding
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Fukuoka on foot (4/4): Museum, udon, and the way home

Considering the check-in time at the Hakata Port, I now had less than three hours' time for sightseeing, including transit time. It was still more than enough for me to visit a museum, take a train back to Fukuoka, have lunch, and walk back to the port.

Kyushu National Museum, opened in 2005 as the first of its kind in Japan in more than a century, is spacious, modern, and easy to get around


The 4th floor of the museum houses the permanent exhibits, which has an extensive collection of historical items in the Kyushu region with the focus in the cultural exchanges with nearby countries like Korea and China
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Fukuoka on foot (3/4): Capsule hotel and shrines

After a walking around Fukuoka for so long during the day, me and my feet needed some rest. Because this trip was originally about visiting the Apple Store and coming back, I wanted to minimize the extra costs and a capsule hotel seemed to be a good fit. So I reserved a bed at one of such hotels, Well Cabin Nakasu, which nominally cost JPY 3,800 for the weekend stay. I applied some discounts via online reservation site, so it cost me less than that. I never stayed in this kind of hotel before, but it didn't take very long to get used to it.

Well Cabin Nakasu is on the 7th and 8th floor of the J-Park building at the exit 2 of the Nakasukawabata Station


Your clothes and important belongings go into the locker much like a public bathhouse because there's no space or lock for them with the capsule bed
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