Introducing Danish ’hygge’ in Bangkok

When trying to introduce the Danish phenomenon ‘hygge’ to people who are somewhat unfamiliar with it, bringing in some elements of ‘hygge’ might be a good help. Cosy interior, comfy stools, books everywhere, coffee and cake were surrounding the many people who showed up at the launch of the ‘Little Book of Hygge – the Danish way to live well’ on Sunday 11 June 2017.

Thinkspace B2S at Central Festival Eastville welcomed Uffe Wolffhechel, Ambassador of Denmark to Thailand, to talk about ‘hygge’ and what the phenomenon means to him.

“Hygge is about finding a little space of time where you just appreciate the people around you, away from the hurries and worries of everyday life,” he said. “It can be just sitting down with your family, drinking coffee with your colleague by the coffeemaker, preparing a meal together.”

After his speech about his idea of ‘hygge’ the Ambassador joined Patcharin Pattanabunpaiboon, executive editor at Thailand Creative and Design Center, and Jiraporn Wiwa, life style writer at Dichan Magazine, for a talk about implementing ‘hygge’ in Thai everyday life.

A big question from the Thai’s were whether Denmark being a welfare state and being so good at ‘hygge’ were somehow interlinked, stating that Danes maybe have more time for it. However, the Ambassador did not believe it the case, saying ‘hygge’ is for everyone, and something you can always find time for, no matter what else is going on.

“It is not a matter of material wealth, it is more of a mind frame,” he said.

From left; Jiraporn Wiwa, Patcharin Pattanabunpaiboon and Uffe Wolffhechel.

Patcharin Pattanabunpaiboon and Jiraporn Wiwa agreed that it could actually be very simple to ‘hygge’. Wiva said that was one of the things that was the most eye opening for her.

“I was impressed that you can find ‘hygge’ even when everything is busy and rough,” she said.

“It is about time management. Find that small time or space for ‘hygge.’ Remind yourself that it is important to find time for happiness and fun, even when life is busy and stressful,” said Pattanabunpaiboon.

23-year-old Tarn with her friends.

23-year-old Tarn attended the book launch with a group of friends. She did not know about the concept of ‘hygge’ before, but feels very inspired about the idea of finding a space in her day, that can help her relax.

“I think it is important to ‘hygge’ because we have so many things to do. When my head gets all bombed, finding time for ‘hygge’ can make me feel better,” says Tarn.

Man and Fern at the book launch.

Two others who were at the launch were Man and Fern, who both thought that ‘hygge’ was about simple life, and finding ways to be happy in a simple way.

“I like the idea of ‘hygge’ simply being spending time with my family while we are all doing our thing,” said Fern.

“Playing a game, is for me, the best thing. And drinking a cup of coffee in the morning. I feel so calm,” said Man on what ‘hygge’ could be for him.

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