KBFD COLUMN by Jeff Chung
| KBFD 칼럼
K-pop has added a new dimension to the industry: theme parks. SM Town was the first company to do this in 2015 with its SM Town Coex Artium in Seoul, featuring six floors of interactive activities, shops selling celebrity merchandise, a cafe, photo studio, a hologram performance theater and more. Fans are able to immerse themselves in their favorite artists and experience a recording session complete with training, hair and makeup.
Jeju Island will be the new destination for K-pop fans. The 617-acre Jeju Shinhwa World will host hotels under the Marriott, Four Seasons and other brands, villas, a casino, an amusement theme park, a Lionsgate movie world, a water park, shopping, restaurants and YG Town.
YG Town and G-Dragon from Big Bang helped design the theme park for their fans, with outdoor concert venues and other entertainment activities. Parts of Jeju Shinhwa World are open with other sections expected to be completed by the end of the year.
The new family-oriented destination is expected to bring in tourists from neighboring countries such as Japan, China, Vietnam and the Philippines, as well as the United States.
Jeju Island was known best until now for its location filming and as an alternative honeymoon destination to Hawaii for Korean couples. The Jeju Food and Wine Festival, inspired by the Hawaii Food & Wine Festival, has been a regional culinary draw for its abundance of seafood and local pork.