Seoul’s Gangnam district is probably familiar to a few — well, over two and a half billion if Psy’s YouTube watches are anything to go by. In the last few years though its premier club, Octagon, has been gaining its own international reputation too, bringing big-room thrills to its subterranean lair underneath the New Hilltop Hotel.
Once a three-story basement karaoke lounge bar, probably plying its trade to drunken business men staying in the rooms above, these days it’s a Funktion-One fitted rave cave that plays host to the area’s young, well-heeled clientele. Taking its musical lead from the US mainstream, the polished, industrial minimalism of the main room, based on its founders' experiences of rave-era warehouse parties, though now surrounded by a VIP balcony and private rooms, mainly plays host to EDM.
So expect big builds, drops and bass lines presided over by everyone from Dadda Life and Andrew Rayel to Fedde Le Grand and DVBBS, who have all visited in the last year. It’s not just about the big name guests though, the club nurturing an ever-growing roster of residents, their family of talent including AK, Beejay, Daishi Dance, Pascal and many more.
In a sign of how tastes may be changing, the UK’s Nic Fanciulli was another recent visitor, and the club’s smaller, more intimate second room, which like much of the furniture and fitting is octagon shaped, serves up deeper house styles. If you need anything else serving up, the club restaurant can whip up anything from lobsters to the finest steak. And once you've washed that down with a bottle of champagne, you can strip off and dive into the club's indoor pool. Now that really is Gangnam style.