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Kim Ha Neul Has A Real-Life 'Noona Romance' With A Non-Celebrity

BY Adrienne Stanley | Sep 24, 2015 10:38 AM EDT

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On September 24, Kim Ha Neul confirmed that she was in a relationship with a younger businessman. 

Her agency, SM Culture + Contents (SM C+C) issued a statement addressing the relationship between the 37-year-old actress and her non-celebrity boyfriend.  

A report published by the Korean outlet, Yonhap News, highlighted the official statement of the agency. "It's true that Kim Ha Neul is dating a businessman, who is one year younger [than her]," said a spokesperson for SM C+C, in a quote provided to Yonhap News. "They have been dating for about a year, after they were introduced by a friend." 

Dispatch provided pictorial evidence of the relationship through photos that depicted the star with her non-celebrity boyfriend. According to the report, they were spotted on an outing where they had chicken soup with their parents. 

Kim is the latest Korean celebrity to confirm their romantic involvement with a younger man. In Korean dramas, relationships between an older woman and younger man are referred to as "noona romances." Once a taboo, due to the likelihood that families for both parties would oppose marriage, real-life "noona romances" are on a rise. 

According to an August 2015 report published by The Chosun Ilbo, first marriages involving older women and younger men increased to 15.8 percent in 2014. While it too soon to know if marriage is in the future for Kim and her boyfriend, these statistics hint at a promising future for the couple. 

Kim is a model-turned-actress who gained notoriety for her roles in romantic comedies like "My Tutor Friend" and "My Girlfriend Is An Agent." Her Korean drama roles include "Piano" and the 2012 series, "A Gentleman's Dignity." In 2015, she turned her sights back to film roles with projects like "Making Family" and "Female Teacher." 

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