Explore the breathtaking Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan at Druk Asia’s Travel Fair at ION Orchard Mall, bringing you a glimpse of one of the world’s most beautiful and untouched destinations.

Uncover its rich culture through this immersive exhibition – from incredible landscape photography providing a visual feast, to witnessing the intricate, ancient art of Bhutanese loom weaving with live demonstrations and a showcase of its fabrics, to photo booths where you can don the national dress of Bhutan – the gho and kira, and have your picture taken, as well as buy Bhutanese food and handicrafts, there is certainly something for everyone!

Visit www.drukasia.com for the full schedule of activities and exhibits. Discover exclusive travel package deals at the travel fair, and stand to win all-expense paid trips to Bhutan when you shop at ION!

Handloom Demonstrations By A Royal Weaver

Observe the Bhutanese traditional art-form of loom weaving with demonstrations by Ms. Tshomo, a Royal Weaver, whose works included the Kitshothara Kira and Shinglo Gho for the Royal wedding of His Majesty the King Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck and Her Majesty the Queen Jetsun Pema.

Witness the intricacy, incredible detail and skill that goes into the creation of fabric to make traditional Bhutanese attire: The Kira, which is worn by women and the Gho that is for the men.

Like most women in her country, Tshomo has been weaving since she was nine years old. Weaving is a specialised skill that all Bhutanese women are encouraged to learn as children. In most homes, one will find a wooden frame on which mothers teach their daughters to weave dream designs in fabulously-coloured threads.

Garments Fit For A King

On display at the Discover Breathtaking Bhutan Travel Fair at ION Orchard, are a collection of traditional Bhutanese costumes; the Bhutanese traditional dress gho and kira a 16th century old custom. Gho is a knee-length dress like the Japanese kimono and has some resemblance to the Scottish kilt, normally made of white raw silk, cotton and polyester. In cold Himalayan climatic condition, double ghos provides warm insulation from icy winds during long winter months.

Women wear ankle length piece of long skirt like dress supported by clipper designed like brooches called koma on the shoulders. Like gho, colourful hand woven flowery patterned kera is used to tie around waist separating the upper and lower folds of kira.

Visit the Discover Breathtaking Bhutan Travel Fair to see Royal Garments made for His Majesty the King Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck and Her Majesty the Queen Jetsun Pema, as well as traditional Bhutanese gho and kira daily wear.

Textiles For Good

With the aim to preserve and promote weaving, the Royal Textile Academy of Bhutan was instituted in May 2005 under the patronage of Her Majesty the Queen Mother as a non-government, non-profit organization. Established as an educational centre for the training of individuals in the traditional art of weaving, it seeks to preserve and conserve the culture of Bhutanese Textiles.

Each purchase of textiles, accessories and garments at the Discover Breathtaking Bhutan Travel Fair will see proceeds going to the RENEW Women’s Fund, a Charitable Trust by the Queen Mother of Bhutan, Her Majesty Sangay Choden Wangchuck.

The RENEW Women's Fund is an organization that provides emergency and integrated relief and support services to women and girls suffering from domestic and gender based violence and sexual abuse, assisting marginalized women and girls through shelter, counselling, legal services, advocacy and awareness and scholarships.

In Pursuit Of Happiness

Bhutan is known famously as the first country in the world to measure progress based on happiness. To do so, the 4th Druk Gyalpo coined the term Gross National Happiness (GNH). From then on, GNH was used to measure the country’s development instead of Gross National Product (GNP). The happiness of the Bhutanese is more important than material growth and there should be a balance between to two. A GNH Commission was created to take an annual measure of how the people fare. The poll is based on an index of nine domains.

Living standards, education, health, cultural diversity and resilience, community vitality, time use, psychological wellbeing, ecological diversity, and good governess are the nine domains that are taken into account. According to the GNH Commission, 81.5% of the population of Bhutan is deeply happy.