As Ettinger opens its new stand alone shop in South Korea, we asked our colleague, Yeon-Ho from Benex International in Seoul to tell us a little more about it.
Where is the Ettinger shop located?
In Avenuel adjacent to Lotte World Tower. At 555 meters in height, Lotte World Tower is the world’s fifth tallest building, from its glass observation deck you can look directly down between your feet at the major intersection half a kilometre below. It is home to the world’s fastest elevator, which can zoom visitors from bottom to top – 555 metres up – in just one minute! Although it is modern in form, it was inspired by the historic Korean arts of ceramics, porcelain, and calligraphy.
But this tower is known not only known for its stunning architecture, 42,000 windows and thrills, but for its nearby luxury shopping mall, Avenuel which is home to many of the most luxurious European brands. A perfect location for the first Ettinger stand-alone shop in Korea.
Can you tell us about the shop's design?
The shop is designed to reflect the Ettinger brand. It is uncluttered with clean lines, stylish but not flashy, elegant and luxurious. It has a very British feel with some interesting British artefacts and a product selection geared to the requirements of our esteemed and very discerning Korean customers.
Can you give us some insights into the most popular Ettinger products in Korea?
The traditional British Bridle Hide Collection has timeless appeal to our customers, with a wide range of wallets and card cases, and great accessories including key rings, pen cases and travel shoehorns. Smaller slim wallets are sought after by the younger generations using less cash.
Recently launched, the Capra Collection is increasingly in demand, especially the Marine Blue and Forest Green colours. We are very excited to be stocking for the new season, the beautiful Ettinger canvas and leather Piccadilly Tote Bags and Hurlingham Overnight Bags. A top favourite in South Korea is without doubt - the Ettinger glasses case!
I know colour symbolism is very important in Korea, Ettinger is known for its vibrant colour - how does this effect your product selection?
Korean colour symbolism has been influenced by both religious and thought systems, Yin and Yang, Buddhism, Confucianism, as well as the Five Elements. However, this traditional symbolism has changed recently due to both Western and International influence. Blue is the most liked colour in Korea. Black has evolved from rather dark origins into signifying both exclusivity and chic. Thus black, blue and the beautiful greens are my favourite product colour selection but all the Ettinger colours have a place in Korea.
Blue is the most liked colour in Korea. Black has evolved from rather dark origins into signifying both exclusivity and chic. Thus black, blue and the beautiful greens are my favourite product colour selection...
There was an exhibition of colour in Seoul in 2017, where The Director of the National Folk Museum of Korea Cheon Jingi said, “Many people use the phrase "white-clothed people" and believe that Koreans only love white, but it is not actually true.” I am pleased to say, I totally agree.
Ettinger has been bestowed the Royal Warrant by HRH Prince of Wales, is this British Royal seal of approval important in Korea?
This is very important indeed. I was amazed when I noticed that the Royal Warrant dates back as far as Henry II in 1155. The Royal Warrant provides reassurance to the Korean people of the quality, and the integrity of every Ettinger product. We will display The Royal Warrant with pride, prominently within our shop.
When you are not working promoting Ettinger and your other brands, what are your favourite pastimes?
I love to bicycle as far and as fast as I can and very much enjoy eating out. I of course like to spend time with my family.