Last week, Therme Bucharest, hosted a distinctive cultural event – "Korean Days @ Therme." The seven-day festival, which ran from 15th to 21st August 2023, offered a comprehensive exploration of South Korean art, culture and gastronomy and was the largest event of its kind in Romania.
A collaboration between Therme Bucharest and the municipal authorities of Mungyeong, a city in South Korea, the event shone a spotlight on a range of Korean experiences. The collaboration underscores a burgeoning cross-cultural partnership between Therme Bucharest and the South Korean city of Mungyeong.
The event included talks from famous Korean names including Jeong Kwan, a renowned figure celebrated for her distinctive fusion of philosophy and culinary prowess, particularly in the realm of monastic gastronomy. Also in attendance was Misan Kim Sun Sik, a distinguished master of pottery originating in Korea and designated "Intangible Cultural Heritage."
Throughout the festival, Therme Bucharest's visitors enjoyed the opportunity to indulge in various elements of South Korean culture. The event delivered a multi-sensory experience that included immersive showcases of traditional ceramic art, engaging tea ceremonies, and revitalising sauna rituals infused with South Korean aromatic herbs. Culinary enthusiasts were treated to an array of South Korean delicacies crafted by visiting chefs including a tasting of drinks made with the Omija fruit also known as the "fruit with 5 flavours.”
Central to the festival was the celebration of South Korean gastronomy, renowned for its intricate preparation techniques, diverse ingredients and harmonious flavours. The festival's culinary offerings include traditional dishes such as Bibimbap, Bulgogi, Japchae, LA Galbi BBQ, and Kimchi Jeon, a crispy and savoury pancake.
Expert in Korean monastic gastronomy, Jeong Kwan, giving a talk on the fusion of philosophy and food.
Across the week, guests were treated to sauna sessions inspired by traditional Korean bathing culture with medicinal and aromatic herbs brought especially from South Korea which transported guests to the picturesque Korean hills.
For the first time in Romania, Therme guests were able to attend Korean tea ceremony sessions accompanied by a demonstration of ceramic art. The Korean tea ceremony is a complex ritual, full of symbolism and tradition.
"Korean Days @ Therme" also extended to cultural engagement. Guests were given the chance to partake in K-pop dance sessions with a performance from K-Pop dance troupe "Eunoia", workshops for both children and adults including fan painting and Korean calligraphy, and the exclusive K-Beauty Cosmetic Treatment featuring premium Korean products.
Misan Kim Sun Sik delighting guests with a demonstration of the art of Korean ceramics.