A lot of my friends may be more Korean than I am. Don’t judge! I’m learning more about my roots oh so very slowly though. Anyways. My friend Daniel who is not Korean or of Asian decent heard about a Korean bath house in Irvine/Tustin area called I Spa. Right across from The District. I didn’t even know there was one so close to me! He heard about it from another Korean friend of his. None of my Korean friends told me about it! But I guess they assumed I would know.
So Daniel invited me to go but I didn’t want to spend $25+. The major problem was that I couldn’t let Daniel be more Korean than me. He was already ahead of the game by the fact he knew about this Korean bath house before me! Also, I couldn’t let him go to a Korean place by himself especially if he has a Korean friend, me! After much contemplation, I decided to go.
I tried to talk to the employees at the front desk in Korean but it didn’t last for a minute. They ended up speaking to me in English. That’s beside the point of my post here. So, we paid $25 for the basic use of the facility. This fee allows you to use all the sauna rooms that are opened to everyone. They gave us clothes to change into and a locker.
Korean bath houses are known for their various sauna rooms, jacuzzis, showers, and the scrubbing. The scrubbing was an additional $30 and had to be reserved ahead of time. We were definitely not going to spend $30 more since we were already paying $25.
But anyone who is new to this experience needs to try the scrubbing. There’s a scrubber person who will scrub all the dirt on your skin like your ashy elbows and knees. They’ll scrub your whole body until you turn pink. It may be a little painful and awkward but it’s all worth it at the end. Your whole body will be as smooth as a baby’s butt!
Daniel and I tried all 4 different sauna rooms and the ice room. Of course in the sauna rooms, we were sweating by doing nothing. You just lie down in the room and relax. In general you’re not suppose to talk much since other people are relaxing. But, Daniel and I probably talked a little too loud that people left the room once we came in. It was actually pretty funny.
Outside the saunas, there’s a resting area where people just lie down on the heated floor and watch Korean drama. Some people knocked out in the resting area. Hence the purpose of that area. There, we saw a good amount of non-Koreans there. I was surprised that a lot of non-Koreans were aware of this spa!
I hope to go again since it was fun and relaxing. But it probably won’t happen anytime soon since this is pretty costly. I’m not ready to drop another $25 to relax in hot rooms for 2-3 hours.
Before I left the spa, I asked the front desk person in Korean if he had a paper of the prices for the spa. I actually only said the word paper in Korean since I didn’t know how to say brochure and the rest I said in Konglish. The front desk person started looking around for paper, I guess. He was having a hard time looking for whatever I asked for. Then I said in Korean, “I want to give my mom the paper.” After I mentioned my mom, he understood and was able to find a brochure of the spa in seconds. Going into the spa, I failed at speaking in Korean. Leaving the spa, I failed again. Again, that is beside the point of this post! I just thought it was necessary to share with you my experience there.
Thanks Daniel for letting me know about this! I have to say that we are almost even at who’s more Korean. It’s getting close!