S Korean celebrities get a taste of Penang

GEORGE TOWN - Even the South Korean wave could not fight the charms of Penang with actress Kang Bo-bae and two members of the popular South Korean girl group T-ara coming here to sample local delights.

Known affectionately as Hyomin and Eunjung among the six-member group, the duo along with Kang arrived on their maiden visit here for a four-day break until tomorrow.

They arrived here on Saturday after a three-day promotional tour for a cosmetic line in Brunei.

"We heard a lot of good things about the Pearl of the Orient," said Hyomin.

"We had the chance to try out stir fry noodle (char kuey teow) and oysters fried with egg (oyster omelette).

"We are looking forward to trying out ice flakes dessert (ais kacang). We have tasted the gula Melaka ice cream and it was good," Hyomin, speaking through a translator, said during a visit to the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion in Lebuh Leith yesterday.

T-ara, with a three-million fan base on Facebook, visited Malaysia five times since their 2009 debut. Eunjung, who also spoke Korean, said they were keen to visit the heritage sites here.

The two celebrities said they were heartened by the constant support from Malaysian fans.

Kang, who will star in a South Korean sitcom soon, was also charmed by the taste of Tiger beer, which she tried on the night of her arrival.

Their band management company MBK Co Ltd accompanied the trio.

The company's cosmetic division president Lee Jae-kang said the halal certified cosmetic line McSSY was expected to be rolled out in Brunei next year.

"Our company's entertainment division is an industry leader in K-wave, K-pop and K-drama," he said.

"We hope to create a synergistic relationship with the cosmetic division through their endorsement of cosmetic products.

"As we are here for a short break, we will also take this opportunity to carry out our feasibility study on cosmetic distribution business here," he said, adding that they were on a lookout for a joint-venture agreement in Malaysia.