La Jornada – Little Seoul lives and grows among the swings of the Zona Rosa

Camouflaged between the swing of the Zona Rosa is “little Seoul”. Restaurants, cafeterias, candy shops, a clinic and a bakery are frequented by the Korean community, which has decided to stay and live in the Juárez district, the least populated of the 33 that make up the Cuauhtémoc demarcation.

In the late 1990s, when Polanco was not yet one of the most important hotel areas in the capital, a wave of Korean investors decided to establish their residence in the Juárez neighborhood.

“At the turn of the century there were more than 6,000 Koreans out of the 28,000 inhabitants of the Juárez district,” recalled the head of the Mexican Liaison Office in Strasbourg, José Alfonso Suárez del Real.

In Hamburg, Prague, London, Biarritz and the streets of Oxford are the places frequented by the Korean community; Some of its members are not missing on Sunday mornings for the religious celebration which takes place in an old building on Warsaw Street, after its enclosure was closed more than two years ago due to the health emergency.

The former government secretary commented that between Florencia and Niza streets, Chapultepec avenue and even the Paseo de la Reforma side there are about 82 people, of which at least 60 are of Korean origin; however, there remains the black figure of the apartments that can be rented up to one night in AirBnB mode.

Banana milk, black or red bean bread with cream, soup, and seven-vegetable rice are the most popular foods at one of the local restaurants in this community.

Dilan, a young Mexican resident of Azcapotzalco who works in the restaurant located on Calle Londres, said it is also known as the “Korean neighborhood”.

Germán Nam, who runs the La Casa Coreana restaurant, said he was selling textiles in 1997 but decided to stay and live in the Zona Rosa, where he said the community has about 10,000 people.

As part of his thanks in Mexico City, where he says he found a good place to grow, once a year he offers Korean food for only 10 pesos, when the cost exceeds 200.