Thursday, April 10, 2008

Changwon Starbucks has Smoking Lounge

Changwon city, South Korea, is a rapidly growing city. It sits about 50 minutes west of Busan by bus, and it's one of the only properly planned cities in the country. Canberra, Australia, apparently, was used as a template for the city.

The population is still rather small, but it's attracting jobs and development like few other municipalities. What that happens, the chains come flocking.

This is a picture from the inside of the city's first Starbucks. It's massive. The one thing that I found to be different about this particular shop was the fact that it is the first Starbucks I've seen with my own eyes that has a smoking room in it. I have no idea why Starbucks felt compelled to do that as the Korean citizenry is quite amenable to the idea that smoking should be done outside.

Starbucks outlets in Japan, by all accounts a much more tobacco-friendly nation, have ashtray-equipped tables outside their outlets.

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