From Rio to PyeongChang: Comparing Brazil and Korea

Different cultures, different challenges…
The process of managing events in different countries requires a considerable degree of versatility as the demands constantly differ wherever we go. Khaya’s operations manager in Rio, Mayara Sperotto, shares some interesting comparisons and insights regarding these two host countries.
Korea’s capital city, Seoul, is bustling with activity all day and night.
Buildings go up quicker
One of the greatest challenges in Rio was dealing with construction as most of the venues were completed at the very last minute. In Korea, this hasn’t been an issue at all as roads, highways, train lines and buildings materialize in a matter of months.

Decisions take longer
In contrast to their fast-paced engineering approach, the Koreans tend to be slower when it comes to making decisions. In Brazil you could go into a meeting and end with a result, but in Korea, negotiations can take months.

Tranquil neighborhood in Pyeongchang.
Compared with the bustling city life of Rio, PyeongChang is in a rural area, 180 km away from Seoul. This small mountainous village is known for its altitude which averages 700m, in fact, one of its slogans reads; “Happy700 Pyeongchang – the city of nature, health, longevity.”
However, despite its friendly inhabitants, the town has no previous experience in receiving foreigners. The locals are also not used to rushing things so it will be interesting to see how they cope with thousands of people arriving from all around the world arriving!

Applying the Korean custom of removing your shoes before entering a home.

Bathrooms and beds
It was surprising to discover that many of the apartments don’t contain any furniture.
The Khaya team is now in the process of organizing furniture solutions for our international guests. No doubt this will include buying hundreds of beds, cupboards and other furnishings!
In Brazil, the size of the beds was an issue, but in Korea the beds are bigger, usually a Queen size. Even single beds are bigger, with an average of 100 x 200 cm.
The famous Korean bathroom can be a challenge for foreigners. It features a spout that comes out of a basin without a curtain or shower wall, resulting in a very wet bathroom!

Our team will be faced with an interesting challenge to ensure that these apartments are acceptable to European visitors.

Winter outside, warm inside
It might be well below zero during the Games, but guests can be sure that they will be warm inside the apartments. Most Korean accommodation has very efficient under-floor heating, so you can enjoy 25 degrees inside – while snow is falling outside!
There are certainly some interesting differences between these two countries. But Khaya is ready to meet our clients’ expectations within the local characteristics of this amazing country.
Contact Khaya‘s team in Korea for more information: korea@khaya.global

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