If you are an avid Korean drama fan, you have probably seen a Korean bathing house, also known as jjimjilbang. It’s usually portrayed as the place where one stays overnight at when running away from home. While there are many jjimjilbangs in Korea that are exactly like those in the dramas (I have stayed in one), Spa Land is your a typical one.
Spa Land in Shinsegae Centum City, Busan is a luxurious jjimjilbang. They charge a higher entrance fee than normal bathing houses but the nice interior and facilities justify the price! Here’s a review of our experience chilling and melting our fatigue away at Spa Land, Busan.
Spa Land, Busan Entrance Price
The entrance fee to Spa Land in Busan for adults on weekdays is 15,000 KRW and 18,000 KRW on weekends. Students are charged 12,000 and 15,000 KRW for weekdays and weekends respectively. One thing to note is that each ticket only allows you to use the facilities for four hours!
If you would like to stay there for more than four hours, you can spend a minimum of 10,000 KRW inside for food, drinks or snacks and you can stay for two more hours without additional charges. Alternatively, you can also choose to pay 3,000 KRW for each additional hour you stay inside.
If you are looking to spend less, you can come and check-in before 9am or after 8pm to enjoy discounted entrance fees. As long as you purchase your entrance tickets before or after the cut off time, you can enjoy the four hours entrance for just 10,000 KRW on weekdays and 13,000 KRW on weekends! Please note that unlike the normal jjimjilbangs, Spa Land is only open from 6am to 12am with the last entry at 10.30pm daily.
Spa Land, Busan Review
We decided to make use of the discounted fare and arrived before 9am on a Sunday. After paying the 13,000 KRW entrance fee at the reception area, we went up to the second entrance where we had to deposit our shoe in the locker. The shoe locker also acts as a token that we can use to ‘record’ the purchase amount of our snack and food inside. The staff at the shoe locker entrance area also gave us our jjimjilbang ‘uniform’ – the quality of the clothes is way better compared to other jjimjilbangs I have been too.
Since we arrived early in the morning, we were quite hungry and decided to have breakfast right after changing our attire. The food area at level 2 did not have many choices so I got the haemul dwenjang jjigae (seafood soybean paste soup) and some of my other friends got the miyukguk (seaweed soup).
The dishes on their breakfast menu cost around 8,000 to 11,000 KRW so it’s not that hard to spend at least 10,000 KRW inside for the additional two hours of usage. The food was served in the usual Korean style with rice and some banchan (side dishes). Everything tasted pretty decent too!
After satisfying our bellies, we wanted to allow our stomach to digest all the food we had so instead of heading straight to the sauna, we went to the feet bath area. It’s an outdoor space at the mix gender area with varying temperature pools to relieve tension on the feet.
We then tried all the 15, or maybe more, themed sauna rooms, starting from the least hot to the hottest with some cold room breaks in between.
From the charcoal room, Roman sauna, yellow brick sauna, salt room to the ice-cold room, we spent at least 1.5 hours sweating away here.
There were also plenty of resting area outside the sauna rooms if you need a break from the extreme heat or cold rooms. If you want to catch a quick nap, head to the dedicated quiet resting room where no kids are allowed to enter and rest on the luxurious sofas there. There’s also a small television on each seat if you need some entertainment.
We also bought some snacks to make sure we reached the minimum spending for 6-hours usage. Tried to crack the hard boil eggs like what we see in K-dramas but it was a disaster. I think you need to have a very hard head to do that :’).
After a good sweat, we went to the gender-segregated area, where the lockers were, for a good soak. No pictures were allowed in the locker & bathing zone as everyone had to be completely naked to soak in the baths.
There were around 10 different soaking pools with varying temperature and type of water. Some of the pools had bicarbonate water in it. The sensation of soaking in soda water was quite unique, make sure you try! Also, only in the women’s area, there are outdoor pools where you can enjoy Korea’s four seasons while soaking. (photo taken from Spa Land’s official photos as no photos were allowed here too)
Right next to the bathing pools was also the shower area. Unlike most other jjimjilbangs, soap, shampoo, toothpaste, and scrubbing towels were provided at Spa Land. The best part is, these bathing items were branded! The body lotion at the vanity area was also branded. Truly a luxury bathing experience! I highly recommend trying this pace out if you are visiting Busan.