Leave it to the Korean Tourism Bureau to make lemonade out of lemons. The country was saddled with a major tourism blemish two months ago when a sudden outbreak of the contagious disease MERS unexpectedly hit. The outbreak was contained and this week the nation’s heath authorities officially declared the MERS crisis over, and what better way to open the doors for visitors than with a brand spanking new tourism campaign featuring Hallyu star Lee Min Ho.
I find the selection of Lee Min Ho as the face of South Korean tourism a perfect choice, he’s basically in the same spot Bae Yong Joon was in a decade ago, wildly popular overseas which makes him better suited to lure tourists than shilling for the domestic audience. I wish the first pictures from the campaign showed more of South Korea’s beautiful and fun sights rather than focusing on Lee Min Ho, but then again, maybe the subtext is that visitors to Korea has an chance of bumping into Lee Min Ho?