BUSAN, South Korea – Amidst the swarm of side-by-side coffee franchises, varied other spots to dine and drink along Gwangal-li Beach, the Paris Café could easily be missed by the passerby. Located next to the Hotel Homers, it has a way of blending in if you aren’t looking for it. But look for it you should.
The split level Paris Cafe offers coffee on the first floor with outdoor seating if you want to brave the cold. The highlight of the place is upstairs, where you can sit along a wide breadth of windows staring out at Gwangan’s Diamond Bridge.
With brick décor and dim lighting in the evening, the bar offers a relaxed alternative to many of the louder and more crowded bars around town. Dart boards and pool tables are nowhere to be seen, but there are instruments set up near the stairs. Shouting won’t be necessary to hear a friend, nor are the same dozen songs likely to be played several times throughout the night. Instead, the soft music and relaxed atmosphere present a great place to have an actual conversation.
The first floor also has a good size patio for sitting outside on a warm night.
Though a tad pricey for some, The Paris Café does offer a fair selection of wine and liquor by the bottle; unfortunately they do not offer wine by the glass and shots seem to be out of the question as well. The selection of beers is decent, with several good foreign and domestic beers available either on tap or in the bottle. For any non-drinkers, the selection of non-alcoholic drinks is more than enough to make sure that anyone can find something to suit their fancy.
There is a decent selection of food including various pasta dishes. If the view is not your thing you can pick the green or the red rooms in the back which can accommodate a dinner party of eight amidst thee cool lighting that climbs the walls around you.
The Red Room
I was impressed with the service. Rather than shouting for the bartender’s or the server’s attention or bumping elbows with a crowd at the bar, the friendly staff can be expected to rush over quickly and bring your drink without much wait.
In short, if you are looking for a reprieve from a crazy night out on the town or a great place to impress your date then this your spot. The atmosphere and general feel of the place make it a great place to relax with friends.
To get there: You can walk from the Gwangan subway station in about 15 minutes, but in this cold, who wants that? Best to just hop in a taxi and say "Hotel Homers." It's right on the beach, next to the Hagen Dazs Ice cream.