Sex is Still On Sale Near the Incheon International Airport

Massage parlors in Unseo Incheon Seoul

Looking up reveals a world hidden in plain view.

Years ago when this website was still in its infancy I published an article on the sale of sexual services in the immediate vicinity of Seoul South Korea’s Incheon International Airport. In the years that have passed since that piece was put online many people have left comments. More than a few seem to question or otherwise challenge my findings.

As explained many times this website is only intended for entertainment. I don’t recommend that anyone do anything. I simply report on what I know. At times I may be wrong. When I am I don’t mind that readers point it out. In fact I welcome that sort of input which helps me expand my knowledge on the global industry. Although I do have extensive knowledge on the seedy happenings in many cities around the world I cannot be everywhere at all times.

When I first reported on the adult entertainment in Unseo I was passing on accurate information to the best of my knowledge. Things change with time and they change even more in the adult entertainment industry than they do in most other aspects of life. Because of that I thought it might be possible that the kinds of places I reported about near the airport had closed up shop especially since reports of people unable to location such facilities seem to have grown with time. For that reason I decided to do a more recent investigation this year. What I found is that there are the same amount of adult oriented massage parlors operating in the area now as there were before, if not more.

I am unable to report on every single adult related business in the area at the moment. Even if I had the extensive amount of time and resources required to check out every business club, karaoke room and massage parlor in the area I would probably apply it elsewhere. I prefer to keep things interesting by covering a wide variety of areas and subjects. Besides some places are difficult to cover in any real depth. So rather than try to figure out what goes down in every bar and club around I will instead cover a handful of massage parlors in an effort to show that my previous reporting was indeed accurate.

Of course this is all unfixed. Anything could change from one minute to the next. A place could close tomorrow or change its mode of operation. One guy could be denied a service that is extended to most others on the basis on any number of circumstances. There’s a reason the phrase “your mileage may vary” is so often used when people talk about the commercial sex industry.

Cool Massage which is not be confused with the similarly named Cool massage parlor in Gangnam is located in a pedestrian courtyard just outside of the Unseo train station the AREX train line. This line connects directly to the airport which is only two stops away. Cool is located on the fifth floor. Customers walk inside to a small lobby and pay for their sessions which run 180,000 Won ($162 USD). This includes a full service massage and a table shower from a women in her thirties or forties who can speak basic English. These women tend to be fairly attractive for their age and skilled in their work.

King Massage is another Korean massage place located on the road leading straight out of the local train station. It is boldly advertised and signs on all four sides of the building can be seen from blocks away. Like most of the other massage facilities in the area King advertises in English and Korean. This is one sign that it is foreigner friendly. Another is that everything in this part of Korea seems to be. King has much nicer facilities than Cool Massage. The lobby is clean and open and looks a lot like a real spa would. I would wonder if any couples or families would wander in if the place wasn’t tucked away up a flight of stairs. Standard full service sessions including table showers are available for the usual price. They tend to be nothing out of the ordinary. The women are standard for the area too.

I published a full review of Sun Massage a while back. Located about a block from King on the same street it is a little closer to the train station. The place basically operates like the others around. The lobby is nicer than the lobby at Cool but the rooms are no better. They serve their purpose and are definitely superior to the quarters of questionable structural integrity used by some places in countries like Cambodia and Thailand but they are nothing pretty. While I doubt that anyone visits a place like Sun for the rooms it does help to note things like this when painting a picture of the local scene. There is always a variance among staff and services but a lot of the women at Sun seem to lean toward the mechanical and can be real clock watchers. A full service session runs 150,000 Won ($135 USD). Foreign customers are accepted but rushed through a short table shower and romp session that can end in well under thirty minutes. The women look no better or worse than those at the two places mentioned above.

There are at least three other massage parlors operating in the area including the Thai Massage place located just outside of the train station that I reported on in my first article on the area. Since Thai massage parlors in South Korea usually don’t offer any special services that can be ignored for statistically purposes. Still, that means that there are at least five places like this total operating in a very small area. It’s likely that there are even more massage parlors that I have missed. As stated I did not set out to do a full investigation. I was simply interested in checking my previous work.

Some of the massage parlors in the area have signs saying that are open 24 hours. Most seem to be even if they don’t. Being open isn’t the same as operating at full capacity however. A lot of the places go dormant in the early morning hours and there are moments when guys can even wander in to lobbies without seeing a single person. I guess everyone has to sleep and off hours with few visitors would seem to be the most opportune time to get some shuteye.

I don’t have much else to say on the subject though I do find it puzzling that some people seem to be unable to locate all of these very public shops. I cannot chalk that up to an inability to read Korean. While the Korean word massage (마사지) is easy enough to recognize even for those who do not understand the language it is not necessary to know it since plenty of places have signs in English (and Japanese and Chinese) too. I can’t really chalk it up to anything. It’s simply tough to miss big glowing signs saying “massage.”

I guess this will remain one of life’s great mysteries.

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