Korea’s entertainment industry has been rattled by recent scandals involving alleged drug use by several high-profile figures
G-Dragon’s arrest on October 25 for alleged violations of the Drug Control Act has placed him in the spotlight, making him the latest celebrity to be investigated for drug use, following Lee Sun Kyun and Yoo Ah In.
These entertainment establishments, which have been frequently visited by these male stars, have drawn significant attention. The question arises: What exactly are these places?
Referred to as “Mini Burning Sun,” these venues are not just ordinary nightclubs. Instead, they belong to a unique category within the entertainment industry. Two key terms come into play: “Tenpro” and “Ilpro.”
“Tenpro” is a term that signifies the top 10% of upscale adult entertainment establishments. According to insiders, a night out at a Tenpro can quickly add up, with tips alone reaching 700,000 to 900,000 South Korean won (approximately $630 to $810), and a night of enjoying a few bottles of alcohol can set you back 3 to 4 million won.
Then there’s “Ilpro,” representing the upper echelon of the entertainment scene, reserved for the top 1% of customers. These venues cater to famous athletes, celebrities, and high-profile individuals in the business world.
However, these terms aren’t commonly used in everyday conversation, but rather within specific contexts, especially when women inquire about potential jobs at such establishments to determine their status.
In practice, the classification of Tenpro or Ilpro doesn’t matter much. What sets these venues apart is how the female managers oversee each room and their relationships with customers. Different rooms within the same establishment may cater to different clientele, meaning experiences can vary widely.
Price differentials are significant, with basic rooms at Tenpro costing around 2 to 3 million won, while Ilpro rooms can charge between 8 to 10 million won. Costs increase depending on the type of alcohol consumed and whether customers hire hostesses.
The distinction between these establishments is not solely based on their level but rather on the specific management approach of the female managers. Influential clients, such as celebrities, athletes, and business figures, receive customized services and pricing as VIP customers.
Recently, venues similar to the one frequented by G-Dragon and Lee Sun Kyun, known as establishment G, have been on the rise in the Gangnam area. These venues often follow the Tenpro model but position themselves as Ilpro, offering a more exclusive experience.
Critically, these establishments are known for offering an air of exclusivity and privacy. They are closed-off worlds where unique services and experiences can be arranged, including drug use and prostitution. Clients have discreet ways of requesting specific services, ensuring that events behind closed doors remain hidden.
The arrest of a female manager connected to G revealed a secret world of VIP customers, which includes celebrities, athletes, and business figures. The events occurring within these rooms remain largely shrouded in mystery.
As the police continue their investigations, the public is left with intrigue surrounding these “Mini Burning Sun”.