Most English teachers in SK live in what are widely known as ‘one-rooms’. It’s difficult to actually give them the term ‘apartment’ since they are very very small. They usually consist of a kitchen, a bathroom, a bedroom and a utility room. When your employers are paying for your housing (as is often the case here) you have little say in the type of place you get – so it’s a risk we all take.
In my case I think I got pretty lucky. I’m quite pleased with my apartment and have been able to make it into a little home. It’s not somewhere I’d live forever, but for now it will certainly do. Here’s a sneaky peek into a modern Korean one-room.
After stepping into the apartment there’s a small area where you can take off your shoes and place them in the cupboard on the left. It’s highly frowned upon to wear outdoor shoes inside in Korea. As for my kitchen, I’m standing in my bathroom whilst taking this photo, so this is literally as big as it gets. I’ve got 2 gas hobs and a decent amount of cupboard space for one person.
When it comes to the bathroom some might be put off with the absence of a shower cubicle, but I’ve really taken to it! I find it really convenient to use. You can’t see them in the photo, but above the toilet there are some shelves and a small cupboard – again, perfect for one person.
Each area of the apartment is sectioned off with Korean style glass panel doors that slide open. My apartment has a large wallpaper mural of a cottage on one side – I thought it very strange at first and wanted to cover it up, but now I appreciate how it gives the room a splash of colour. The room consists of a bed that’s slightly smaller than a double, a table and two chairs, a small bedside cupboard and a built in wardrobe which isn’t visible in these pictures. As you can see I’ve put up photos of my friends, family and travels to give the place some familiarity. The flowery wallpaper with butterflies wouldn’t have been my first choice but lets face it, it could be a lot worse. I think it’s fortunate that a woman is living here!
And finally, drum roll….the utility room. Here’s where I wash and hang up my laundry. On the other side of the room is a fridge/freezer that sadly I couldn’t fit it in the photo since this room is so tiny.
So that’s it! A typical Korean one-room apartment. Overall I feel pretty lucky to have been given an apartment that’s in good condition. What do you think? Could you live here?
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