There are toy stores and then there is something else entirely. I pretty much spent this past weekend in 압구정 (Apgujeong), so it was by accident that my boyfriend and I came across a really unique store.
Hansa is a store that specializes in handcrafted stuffed animals and with Christmas right around the corner, is also decked out with a festive holiday theme. Plushies plus Christmas? I was childishly overwhelmed to say the least. But, even if plushies aren’t your thing, I guarantee you will not be able to help yourself from being drawn into this adorable animal wonderland.
What I learned was that Hansa is an international toy company who strives to educate children to appreciate and value our wildlife and protect our co-existence together through these lifelike toys. I have to admit that the authenticity of these creations are really incredible. There’s such a wide variety of animals and they come in various sizes too! At first I though that the prices would be through the roof, seeing how they are collectables and each animal is hand made. I was pleasantly surprised though when I saw that some started from only ₩9,000.
The store itself was three floors and then a café in the basement. At first we were a little secretive with our photo taking because most stores don’t allow it, but the staff was incredibly friendly and encouraged us to take all the pictures we wanted. They even took some pictures for us. Although I really don’t need anymore stuffed animals I really fell in love with a cute little 고슴도치 or hedgehog. My boyfriend bought it for me, but before he did the clerk asked wether I wanted that one or a new one from the back. Once they got the new one they asked if I liked how it looked because they all look a little different, so if I didn’t like the face they would get me another one. They really wanted me to love my new furry friend and it was really sweet. Also, if you so choose, you can also purchase hand knitted Christmas outfits for your new pet. I got a cute little hat which he now shares with my puppy. It was the perfect warm and fuzzy experience for a chilly winter day.