Spas often invoke the idea of plush robes, soothing music, cucumber strawberry water... Well, the closest thing you'll get to that at a Korean Spa is water...from Arrowhead. This ain't no prissy girl's spa!
Once you make a reservation, you'll pay first at the front door and get handed a towel, key, and an obnoxiously colored outfit of a badly fitted tee and elastic shorts. You find your locker, drop off all your clothes and hit the shower before soaking in the various hot pools, steam rooms, and saunas.
|ISpa in Irvine. Most Korean Spas are located in nondescript business or industrial parks.|
The pools and saunas are no place to be shy. You'll see women of all ages and shapes in the buff, lounging without a care in the world. The first couple of times there, you'll hide behind posts, small towels, and even your hands, trying to overcome your shyness while maintaining NO EYE CONTACT with anyone. A couple more times and you'll walk around nekkid as a bluejay without a second thought. Trust me; it's not a big deal. ;)
You'll be called by your locker number by a Korean woman wearing a black lace bra and panties. Soooo less sexy than it sounds... You can't speak Korean? No biggie. They'll communicate with a variety of taps and one word instructions. "Turn. Side. Side. Back." After getting crazy amounts of dead skin scrubbed off, they'll have you rinse off and it'll be time for your hot oil massage. Don't let your modesty get you now. They push, pull, pound, and practically sit on you while giving you a firm, strong massage. I've often left my massage wondering if the massuese and I hit second base. Kidding!!! Sort of... ;)
After your scrub and massage, if you've got the time, visit the Jjimjjilbang, where you can get Korean dishes and nap in various treatment rooms.
|Well, this certainly isn't the Gucci Fall '12 line...|
|Fresh pressed watermelon juice|
|Kimbap - traditional roll with various vegetables, egg, or meat|
|Shaved ice with fresh fruit, frozen yogurt, and condensed milk|
|Chargrilled egg - smoky and delicious|
After some food, take a nap in one or all of the treatment rooms. It's supposed to be a quiet relaxing experience. Definitely not something you do with your rowdy friends...which I do all the time. Do you know how hard it is to stop giggling while getting shushed for laughing too much??? And there's no shame; plop right there on the floor and go for a snore.
|Getting comfy! heehee|
There are a variety of Korean spas throughout Los Angeles and Orange County. Find one that suits your needs, in terms of location and size. You'll end up loving it as much as I do!