Friday, January 27, 2012

Jan 20; The Dragon Spa Part 1: jjimjilbang

Day 12
A few of us headed over to the Yongsan Dragon Hill Spa, a traditional jjimjilbang, to spend the evening there and then leave the following morning. Oh man, what an experience this was.  
Jjimjilbangs provide you with a very different spa experience. Like the usual types where you can get your nails did, go in for a massage, and sit in a sauna. At a jjimjilbang, you have the option of public baths and sleeping rooms. Actually, the reason people go to jjimjilbangs is for the public, naked baths.

But before heading out, we had dinner at this restaurant called Cobaco where some K-drama was filmed.
Udon = 3500 won
Dragon Hill Spa

celebrities have been here
There was an assortment of rooms with different temperatures, layouts, and themes. Here are the ones I went into to (listed in the order of my preference):
Crystal Shining Salt Room (my personal favourite) – It was at a perfect temperature (49 degrees Celsius) and there were these shiny stones on the ground to make your skin feel pretty.
I tried to take photos with my phone, but it doesn't give an accurate depiction of what the room actually is like unfortunately...
view of the outside from the inside
Ice Room (Seok Bing Go) – it was a cold room, and it was my second favourite.
Meditative Exercise room of yellow soil pyramid – not bad, the temperature was nice. It had an Ancient Egypt theme. 
There was just one room I didn’t go into because it was literally a human kiln. I started sweating after just opening the door.
After that, we went to the outside pool to sit for while…still clothed.
Aaand after that, we thought it was time for the moment we had been nervously anticipating. We had to try out the bath....The naked ones. Once in the locker rooms, we tried to find different ways of covering our body with the two little towels that were provided. With barely enough to cover, we made a run for it…in nothing but our birthday suits.
(NOTE: You MUST shower before going in the public baths)

There were 7 different indoor baths and three outdoors baths, all with different temperatures. The coldest indoor tub was 18 degrees Celsius, the warm tub was 34, and 45 for the hottest one. I really liked the salt water bath and skin therapy bath. My skin did feel really good after taking a dip in those two!
When I was sitting in the sea salt tub, an ahjumma(older lady) approached me and said “you want back scrub?” I was very confused, and answered with a very Korean “eh?” She then pointed at the bath scrub station. Once I finally understood what she was trying to say, I smiled and said “aniyo” (which means no in Korean) as politely as I could. So to translate this situation, this older Korean lady asked if I wanted a back scrub because if she scrubbed my back, I would have to return the favour and help scrub her back. Ya no, nobody is touching my back.
After spending about an hour and a half in the different tubs, we headed down to find the others, but first dippin dots!
Our matching pyjamas!
(not gonna lie, our skin looks pretty good here)
And we found the others!
"Colgate smile"
Random computer room which you have to pay for if you use it.
At 1am, Kristie and I ventured out to find a place to sleep in. We were originally planning to sleep in the only women’s aroma room. Unfortunately, it was PACKED and there was a lady even sleeping on the outside of the narrow hallway. We looked in the other sleeping room and that was just as packed as well. So we ended up finding some empty space in the main lounge-ish area. 
Kristie trying to sleep on the floor surrounded by a sea of Koreans
My sleep on the heated hardwood floor was short lived as I woke up one hour later. I decided to venture off to find the others to keep me company on what I expected to be a sleepless night. Not long after I found them, I started dozing off. Despite the discomfort, I felt really relaxed.

Tip: Be careful of your surroundings. People appear and disappear throughout the night and what might be not there last night might be there in the morning. (I accidentally grazed some person’s nose with my foot.)

1 comment:

  1. LOL you grazed someone's nose with your foot, NICE angel. This whole spa experience sounds funny and exciting!