An audience of about 4,500 went wild with enthusiasm when the South Korean pop superstar Rain appeared at the Cotai Arena of the Venetian Hotel in Macau at 9 p.m. on June 27. And in the special seats was the 14-year-old son of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il's eldest son Jong-nam.
A middle school student with close-cropped hair in a white T-shirt, he had come with five South Korean friends from schools in Macau and Hong Kong. The six seats cost 10,800 pataca (about W1.76 million).
A South Korean resident said Kim Jong-nam bought all the tickets and told his son to invite his friends. "I was stunned to see a grandson of Kim Jong-il's cheer and sing along with a South Korean pop star's latest songs," he said.
South Korean residents in Macau say Kim Jong-nam (38), his second wife identified as Jang (35), and their teenage son has several South Korean friends in Macau, and until recently they were often seen in a district where South Korean restaurants are clustered.
But Kim Jong-nam has kept a low profile since his youngest brother Jong-un (26) was chosen as his father's heir apparent around May.
A source in Macau last Friday said, "He left for Bangkok last week after he found Japanese and South Korean reporters pitching camp at his favorite casinos and restaurants. He'll stay in Thailand for the time being."