Hoshino Resorts KAI Sengokuhara one of the few luxury hotels worldwide to be hand-picked by American travel magazine AFAR.
Hoshino Resorts KAI Sengokuhara was one of the 27 hotels worldwide to be specially selected for “The Stay List” in the April 10th 2019 edition of American travel magazine AFAR.
AFAR is targeted at upper-class North American travellers. “The Stay List” is the name of the magazine’s list of hotels that are recommended by the magazine’s writers and editors. The April 10th edition of the magazine’s Stay List consists of just 27 hand-picked hotels from countries worldwide and Hoshino Resorts KAI Sengokuhara was one of them. KAI Sengokuhara was praised for its location amidst abundant nature whilst being close to the city. The magazine also admires its inspiration to the guests.
In July 2018, KAI Sengokuhara became the 15th hotel set up by Hoshino Resorts. With the concept of a “studio room-style hot spring” in mind, the hotel was built in the midst of the vast and magnificent nature. Each guest room was designed with an open-air bath with a large window through which the guests can enjoy the beauty of each season. The room design fuses western and Japanese-style designs with the tatami flooring and sofa combination. In addition, each room has pieces of art on display, each inspired by the surrounding nature. Guests can thoroughly enjoy food sourced from the mountains and the sea such as beef and abalone shellfish. Every night, there is a special event that the guests can get involved in called Go touchi gaku which involves decorating and colouring hand towels.
This hotel is highly rated by both the Japanese and foreigners. So, how about treating yourself?
Hoshino Resorts KAI Sengokuhara
Address: Sengokuhara 817-359, Hakone, Ashigarashimo District, Kanagawa Prefecture 250-0631
Price：From ¥32,000 per night (price per guest in a 2 guest room, tax, service charge, dinner & breakfast included)
Access: 15-minute drive from Gōra station, Hakone Tozan Railway
Hoshinoya Tokyo to Offer New Year’s Kabuki Plan Inspired by Edo Period Theater Teahouse
08.January.2023 | SPOT
Hoshinoya Tokyo, a traditional ryokan in Otemachi, has announced the New Year’s Kabuki Plan, a two-day, one-night stay from January 5 until January 7, 2023. During the Edo Period, citizens enjoyed watching Kabuki plays during the New Year’s holidays, often sipping tea at connected teahouses. This event will invite visitors to experience what this was like, complete with traditional food and decorations.
Watching Kabuki was a chic way for those in Edo to ring in the new year. Theater teahouses were also a popular gathering place–along with arranging tickets, the teahouses offered plot notes, tea, sweets, boxed lunches, snacks, and other drinks.*
*Hiroshi Fujita, Yoshihide Tomizawa (2012) / The Updated Kabuki Dictionary, Kashiwa Shobo
Relax Before Enjoying Tea and a Play
Guests are invited to relax in the Ochanoma (Living Room) Lounge, decorated to look like a traditional teahouse with fans, ukiyo-e prints, and formal curtains. Hanabiramochi, or rice cakes with flower petals, will be served with green tea. These rice cakes are said to date back to the New Year’s tradition of eating hard foods like daikon and rice cakes in the hopes of prolonging one’s life. Characterized by its curious burdock root aroma, the cakes are sweetened with white miso bean paste.
Enjoy a Post-Viewing Mont Blanc Shaped like Soba with Sweet Dessert Wine
At theater teahouses in the Edo period, sake, snacks, and desserts were served one after another. During this special event, a menu inspired by this practice and prepared by Hoshinoya Tokyo Executive Chef Noriyuki Hamada will be served! Soba noodles were often served after a play in the past. Inspired by this tradition, Mont Blanc made with chestnut paste and sponge cake will be served up to look like this popular dish. Paired with a dessert wine aged in oak barrels, the sweet will be served in a traditional lacquerware basket. In addition, the dish will be paired with Wasabi Pralines, Shichimi Meringue, and Ginger Pate de Fruits.
Take a Rickshaw to the Kabuki-za Theater
Guests will be taken on an Edo-style tour on their way to the Kabuki-za Theater. Passing through the Nihonbashi area, the first stop will be the Fukutoku Shrine. It’s said that Hidetada Tokugawa paid a visit to and praised the shrine on New Year’s Day in 1614. The next shrine on the docket, Hodo Inari Jinja, was enshrined in Edo Castle during the Edo period to protect the heir to the Tokugawa family. It’s said that the shrine provides blessings for child rearing, matchmaking, and business prosperity.
This tour will provide a more elegant way to explore Tokyo as guests enjoy exposition from their chauffeur. To make the rickshaw ride even more enjoyable, guests can rent kimonos for an extra charge.
Would you like to take a step back in time this New Year?
New Year’s Kabuki Plan
Running: January 5 – January 7, 2023
Capacity: 1 couple per day (1-2 people)
Price: ¥110,000 per person, ¥180,000 for 2 people (Including Tax & Service charge, excluding accommodation charge)
Reserve/Details – Official Site: https://hoshinoya.com/tokyo
*Reservation required at least 14 days in advance
**Exclusive experience for Hoshinoya Tokyo guests
Hirosaki and Hakodate to Begin Winter Tourism Campaign with Snow Miku Starting December 2022
The cities of Hirosaki and Hakodate in Hokkaido have announced that they will team up with Hatsune Miku’s popular iteration Snow Miku to promote tourism in the area this winter. A number of activities will begin in December 2022.
[Snow Miku x Hirohako] Collaboration Project
■Hirohako Winter Tourism Campaign Poster Featuring Snow Miku
・Period: Mid-November~February 28, 2023
・Locations: Facilities in both cities, tourist facilities, hotels, shopping areas
■Snow Miku Illustration Contest Exhibition Event
Over 50 illustrations have been submitted under the theme of Snow Miku and Hakodate / Snow Miku and Hirosaki. These will be on display through the winter!
・Running: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Venues: Hirosaki Municipal Tourist Center (Hirosaki)
Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse (Hakodate)
■Snow Miku Photo Spot
Snow Miku panels featuring shamisen and apples from Hirosaki will be on display, while the Hakodate version will include references to squid fishing and footbaths.
・On Display: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: JR Hirosaki Station, Chuohirosaki Station (Hirosaki)
JR Hakodate Station, Hakodate Airport (Hakodate)
■Digital Stamp Rally Using the Mikunavi App
A number of panels will be installed at five checkpoints in Hirosaki and Hakodate. A total of 1,000 people–500 in each city–will win original merch including a Snow Miku mask case and decorated masking tape. All you need to do is check in!
・Available: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: (Hirosaki) Hirosaki Municipal Tourist Center, Hirosaki City Machinaka Information Center,
Hirosaki Tourist Information Center, Hirosaki Castle Information Center, Tsugaru-han Neputa Village
(Hakodate) Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse, Yunokawa Hot Spring Footbath, Goryōkaku Tower,
Hakodate Green Plaza C Block (Hakodate Lumi-Pop), Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward
■Hirohako Winter Tourism Campaign Theme Song and Music Video
The tourism theme song will get a new music video that will be broadcast on YouTube, at local tourist facilities, and on TV and radio!
・On Air: December 1, 2022~
・Theme Song: Mahou no Keshiki (Lyrics/Composition: ryuryu)
■Snow Miku Welcome Announcements to be Broadcast at Tourism Facilities, etc.
A one-minute welcome announcement by Snow Miku will air at tourist facilities!
・Running: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: Tourist areas in both cities
■Snow Miku Filters Using AR
When each barcode is scanned with a smartphone, Snow Miku will appear on the screen! Visitors can take pictures with Snow Miku to commemorate their winter trip to Hirosaki and Hakodate.
・Available: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
Hirosaki x Hakodate x Snow Miku Tourism Campaign
Beginning December 2022
Enjoy a Hot Footbath Inside an Igloo with a Glass of Sweet Sake at Hoshino Resorts KAI Alps
22.November.2022 | SPOT
Starting February 1, 2023, visitors to Nagano will be able to experience an unforgettable winter experience at Hoshino Resorts KAI Alps. The Kamakura Footbath will invite guests to soak their feet in a warm bath as they sit in a traditional Japanese igloo while sipping local amazake and enjoying the snowy scenery.
Soak your Feet Inside a Hot Footbath Inside a Kamakura
During February when snowfall is the heaviest, these kamakura, or igloos, can be spotted in the hotel’s courtyard. A private footbath is available inside each structure, which will keep guests from experiencing the cold wind. According to many, having a cool body and warm feet is the perfect recipe for a good night’s sleep and good health.
Taste Amazake from a Local Brewery
Kurazukuri Amazake is brewed at Hokuan Brewery in Omachi, Nagano. Made exclusively from home-grown, expertly polished sake rice, the sweet beverage has a delicate flavor similar to wagashi. Why not warm your body from the inside out with this traditional drink?
Enjoy the Winter Landscape Illuminated by Bamboo Lights
Around each kamakura are a sea of bamboo lanterns, popular in the area. Guests can gaze out at the cold winter landscape beneath the awesome peaks of the Japanese Alps while pondering what the spring will bring.
Running: February 1 – 28, 2023
Price: ¥2,000 (Tax Included)
*Reservations are required by noon the day before.
Time Slots: 18:00-18:45 / 19:00-19:45 / 20:00-20:45
Capacity: Up to 3 guests per session
*Must be staying at the hotel.
**Bookings may be canceled due to weather.
Hoshino Resorts KAI Tsugaru in Aomori Prefecture to Hold Special Snow and Sake Event
16.November.2022 | SPOT
Hoshino Resorts KAI Tsugaru, a hot-spring hotel located in Owani, Aomori Prefecture, will hold a special snow and sake event from February 1 until February 28, 2022. Hotel guests will be invited to enjoy drinks before dinner with a special winter twist–under a kamakura! A kamakura is the Japanese equivalent of an igloo, and local sake will be cooled by the snow as guests enjoy a glass while taking in the gorgeous scenery.
Famed author Osamu Dazai described the seven types of snowfall found in the Tsugaru region in his work Tsugaru. To allow visits to enjoy the many different types of snow in Aomori, seven unique sakes will be prepared and depending on the snowfall each day, the sake guests are served will change. This unique experience is sure to leave an impression. Who would you like to bring along?
Tsugaru Snow Lanterns
Seven lanterns designed by Iemasa Yamahata will be placed on the inside of the kamakura. Each has a different color and pattern and each is based on one of the seven types of snow: powdery snow, large snowflakes, grainy snow, watery snow, granular snow, sleet, and crusted snow.
Tsugaru Snow Festival
Running: February 1 – February 28, 2023
Price: ¥1,000 per set (Tax Included, 20 sets available per day)
Included: 1 glass of local sake, 2 scallop snacks
Venue: Hoshino Resorts KAI Tsugaru, Water Garden
*Only available to hotel guests.
Night Strawberry Picking Tour Opens at Hoshino Resorts Risonare Atami in Shizuoka
The scenic Hoshino Resort Risonare Atami in Shizuoka Prefecture, known for its spectacular views and hot springs, will begin hosting Night Strawberry Tours, inviting couples to pick strawberries in an illuminated greenhouse from January 6 until March 30, 2023. The event is only available on even-numbered days, and only one couple per day can participate. Beni Hoppe Strawberries are a specialty of the area, and this is the 10th event of its kind. Fittingly, guests can enjoy their strawberries with 10 unique condiments.
Enjoy Fresh Strawberries with 10 Condiments
Guests can enjoy ten unique condiments with their strawberries, including condensed milk, mascarpone, and pistachio. When the mild flavor of condensed milk is combined with savory pistachios, the fresh, full-bodied sweetness of the Beni Hoppe strawberries reaches a new level. Visitors are welcome to ask the staff for the best combinations, or are welcome to experiment themselves!
Pick Strawberries at Night in a Private, Shimmering Greenhouse
After dinner, guests will leave the hotel to begin the Night Strawberry Tour. A red carpet is laid out in the illuminated greenhouse, and those taking part in the tour will enjoy strawberry picking as they sip a glass of rose champagne.
See how Strawberries are Cultivated
Beni Hoppe strawberries are made by combining the Akihime and Sachinoka varieties. In Japanese, the name means red cheeks, and the name was inspired by the Japanese term hoppe ga ochiru*, meaning “my cheeks are falling off.” This is often used to describe food that’s extremely flavorful. These particular strawberries are award-winning, so visitors won’t want to miss this exclusive experience!
*See Shizuoka Prefecture’s official website for more information.
Hoshino Resorts Risonare Atami – Night Strawberry Tour
Running: Even-numbered days from January 6, 2023 – March 30, 2023
Price: ¥17,000 per person, reservation for 2 people (Tax Included)
Anime ‘The Vampire Dies in No Time’ Inspires Concept Room in Shin-Yokohama
Shin Yokohama Prince Hotel will be offering a special room and collaboration menu inspired by the popular anime series The Vampire Dies in No Time from September 22 until November 30, 2022. Reservations will open on the hotel’s official website starting September 12 at 1:00 PM.
The Vampire Dies in No Time follows the hilarious adventures of the vampire Draluc and the vampire hunter Ronaldo. Set in the city of Shin-Yokohama, it makes sense that this collaboration would be taking place!
Guests and fans of the series will be able to enjoy a fully-decorated room and collaboration menu inspired by characters from the popular anime series.
The concept room, located on an upper floor overlooking the Shin-Yokohama cityscape, is decorated with illustrations of Draluc, Ronaldo, and other characters. The guest-only goods feature newly-drawn illustrations.
Sweets plates and drinks will be served at the restaurant on the top floor of the hotel. Guests can enjoy desserts shaped like Ronaldo’s red hat and Draluc’s ashes, so don’t miss it!
Shin-Yokohama Prince Hotel x The Vampire Dies in No Time
Available: September 22 – November 30, 2022
Available: September 22 – November 30, 2022
Venue: Top of Yokohama Bar & Lounge (42F)
Hours: Weekdays 4:00-7:00 PM / Weekends & Holidays 2:00-5:00 PM
Reservations Open: September 12, 1:00 PM
HOTEL SHE, KYOTO Invites Guests to Stay in a Gallery for a Limited Time
Art subscription service Casie is collaborating with HOTEL SHE, KYOTO! A special art exhibition titled GALLERY HOTEL SHE, will be held from September 17 until October 16, inviting guests to enjoy the once-in-a-lifetime experience of staying in a gallery overnight!
During the event period, guests of HOTEL SHE, KYOTO will be able to select their favorite piece of artwork from an on-site gallery. The piece will then be hung in their guestroom, and visitors can spend the night appreciating it at their own pace. This is a great way to learn more about art appreciation, and guests can enjoy discussing the art world with their friends and family.
“Although we may view art in museums and other venues, it is rare to have the opportunity to select and display a work of art of our own choice,” the project description reads. “Through this unique experience, we aim to provide guests the chance to actively engage with art and inspire them to make art a part of their daily life going forward.”
‘Stay in a Gallery’ HOTEL SHE, KYOTO
Running: September 17 – October 16, 2022
Works on Display: https://casie.jp/features/404?notrented=0&order=added_at_desc
*No fee required, works on display for all guests of HOTEL SHE, KYOTO during the event period.
HOTEL SHE, KYOTO: https://www.hotelshekyoto.com
Address: 16, Higashikujo-Minamikarasumacho, Minamiku, Kyoto
Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Exhibition Inspires Limited-Time Hotel Suite
The Grand Prince Hotel Takanawa in Tokyo will offer a special suite inspired by the upcoming Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Exhibition from July 1 until August 31, 2022. This will include tickets to the exhibition, which will take place at Warehouse Terrada in Shinagawa from July 1 until September 7.
Toshio Suzuki, a producer at Studio Ghibli, has worked with both Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata on a number of beloved masterpieces. The exhibition will feature a large bookshelf housing 8,800 of Suzuki’s publications and favorite tomes. Many of these were published before Suzuki joined Studio Ghibli, and guests are invited to see how the producer was inspired to join the legendary studio after working as an editor at a manga magazine. To commemorate the exhibition’s opening, this special suite is filled with books written by Suzuki along with other books that visitors may enjoy during their relaxing stay.
In the suite, guests will find a list of 106 books that influenced Suzuki the most. This list will be available to take home. Visitors will also find reproductions of Suzuki’s calligraphy.
©TS ©Studio Ghibli
Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Exhibition Special Suite Package
Venue: Grand Prince Hotel Takanawa
Available: July 1 – August 31, 2022
Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Museum Accommodation Plan with Ticket
Available until September 6, 2022
Banyan Tree Group Opens Garrya Nijo Castle Kyoto Hotel
26.June.2022 | SPOT
Banyan Tree Group, one of the world’s leading independent hospitality groups, held the grand opening of Galleria Nijo Castle Kyoto, on Friday, June 17, 2022. This is the first of the group’s hotels to open in Japan.
Located south of Nijo Castle, a World Heritage Site, and named after the beautiful winter flower, Galleria Nijo Castle Kyoto is a small, modern, and minimalist luxury hotel that offers simple guests a chance to recharge themselves.
For the grand opening, a new Wellbeing Room has been opened where visitors can experience quiet meditation.
Visitors can stroll through nearby gardens, temples, and shrines, take a tour of Kyoto’s many historical sites, or spend time in the Wellbeing Room meditating or practicing yoga to recharge their batteries away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
The French Restaurant Singular will also offer up healthy and tasty meals with a focus on local ingredients and producers.
Enjoy a visit to Kyoto in this peaceful space perfect for resting both body and soul.
Garrya Nijo Castle Kyoto
Address: 180-1 Ichinocho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto
Access: 2-minute walk from Nijojo-mae Station on the Kyoto City Subway Tozai Line
Official Site: https://www.banyantree.com/ja/japan/garrya-nijo-castle-kyoto
Private Jet Package Now Available in Toyama Offering Spectacular View of Tateyama Mountains
22.June.2022 | SPOT
Mizu to Takumi, a company associated with the Toyama West Tourism Promotion Association, has teamed up with SKYTREK to offer guests a once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit the area via private jet. Reservations for the incredible experience began on June 17, 2022.
Offering an entirely new tourism experience in Toyama Prefecture, visitors can see the area’s natural wonders from miles above the Earth. The program also aims to share local culture and more about traditional craftsmanship and cuisine.
Toyama Prefecture boasts dramatic topography, from the massive peaks of the Northern Alps and the Tateyama Mountains to the deep waters of Toyama Bay. To better allow visitors to see the sights, these private jet tours will be chartered on special courses different from standard airlines.
After the flights, guests will be welcomed to explore Takaoka’s deep history and culture. Kane no Sanzun, a restored and preserved inn, will welcome visitors, offering a relaxing and rejuvenating time.
Visitors can also book optional excursions to further explore the area, such as a Zen meditation experience at a famous temple in Takaoka, a traditional crafting workshop, and a tour and tasting of the only whiskey distillery in the Hokuriku region.
Come enjoy a trip to Toyama with a whole new perspective!
Travel to Toyama by Private Jet
Available: June 17 – October 26, 2022
Travel Period: June 22 – October 31, 2022
Airbnb Reveals Top 10 Most Popular Summer Destinations in Japan
08.June.2022 | SPOT
Airbnb boasts one of the largest travel communities in the world, filled with users offering up lodging and those eager to visit somewhere new. The Japanese subsidiary of the company has revealed the top spots added to Japanese users ‘Favorites (Wish Lists)’ from May 1 to May 17, 2022. Where will travelers in the country be headed this summer?
Golden Week is long gone and users are starting to think about where to visit during the hottest part of the year. This national ‘Wish List’ might make it easier to pick a spot, with many locations highlighting lesser-known areas!
Gujo Hachiman Villa, Limited to 1 Couple Per Day (Gifu)
This completely private rental villa was made for sauna enthusiasts. One lucky pair per day can book this suite along the Yoshida River flowing through Gujo Hachiman, known as the “City of Water and Dance.” Currently booked through the end of August, reservations for September and beyond will be available in early June. Book a stay to enjoy the gorgeous autumn foliage!
A House Surrounded by Lush Greenery in the Countryside (Tottori)
Hosted by a family of musicians and architects, this guesthouse invites guests to enjoy gorgeous Nordic-inspired interiors and the serene quiet of the countryside. For those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, this is the perfect spot.
Hoshina Satomachi, Limited to 1 Couple Per Day (Nagano)
There’s nothing like spending the summer in a traditional Japanese home. Enjoy a barbeque on the terrace and relax on the massive lawn. This is the perfect spot for families with children or pets!
Coastal Cabin (Chiba)
You can’t have summer without a pool. This luxurious coastal retreat boasts a 15-meter pool, outdoor Jacuzzi, bonfire space, and a barbeque. Relax by the pool while listening to your favorite songs or soak in the outdoor bath as you watch the waves crash along the shore.
An Elegant and Peaceful Log Cabin (Nagano)
Located at 1,300 meters above sea level on the Iizuna plateau, this log cabin is situated in the midst of a dense forest. A perfect space for couples, families, or small groups of friends, guests are welcome to enjoy hiking through this gorgeous landscape in the center of Japan!
Buffet Inspired by ‘Moominvalley Turns Jungle’ to be Held for the First Time at Keio Plaza Hotel Hachioji
From June 1 until August 31, Keio Plaza Hotel Hachioji is inviting guests to travel to the adorable world of Moomin by partaking in two tasty buffet events at the Le Clair Restaurant on the second floor. In Moomin’s home country of Finland, people start enjoying the summer following the solstice in June. The theme of this project is ‘Moominvalley Turns Jungle,’ inspiring the hotel’s chefs to create a spectacular original menu. A tasty lunch buffet will be held Tuesday through Friday during the event period, while a sweets buffet will take place on weekends and holidays. The restaurant’s interior will be decorated with artwork from Tove Jansson’s 1956 comic Moominville Turns Jungle.
The Moomin Lunch Buffet is titled ‘Jungle Party in Moominville,’ and will depict a fun summer lunch get-together in the titular character’s home village. The lineup of foods includes smoked salmon canapes, marinated herring, and sardine sandwiches, all typical of Scandinavian cuisine. Plenty of spiced dishes and veggies will be available, the latter looking like they came from Moominmamma’s garden. August 9 is Moomin Day, and the chefs will be preparing some extra goodies for each guest on that day only.
The Moomin Sweets Buffet will feature adorable desserts created by expert pâtissiers and will be inspired by Moomin and his friends enjoying the summer. From red velvet cake made to look like Little My’s dress to chocolate mousse in the style of Moominpappa’s Silk Hat, fans of the series will want to snap plenty of pictures before they dig in! Tons of sweets will include popular Scandinavian ingredients like red currants, raspberries, and blueberries. The welcome plate, limited to one per person, will change monthly, with a Tropical Parfait coming in July and an Edible Jungle coming in August. Light meals will also be available to compliment the sweets.
The Sweets Buffet will also include a special table plan limited to three per day, using plates and mugs included in the Moomin by Arabia 2022 Summer collection. Guests participating in this plan can order a special non-alcoholic cocktail created by the restaurant’s bartender and made with rose-colored ice inspired by Moominmamma’s love for flowers.
Moomin x Keio Plaza Hotel Hachioji
Moomin Lunch Buffet ~Jungle Party in Moominvalley~
Running: June 1 – August 31, 2022 [Tuesday-Friday only]
Location: Le Clair Restaurant, 2F
Hours: 11:30-15:30 (2-hour seating) *Last order 30 minutes before reservation ends.
Moomin Sweets Buffet ~Moominvalley Turns Jungle Fun Summer Time~
Running: June 4 – August 28, 2022 [Weekends and Holidays only]
Location: Le Clair Restaurant, 2F
Hours:  11:30-13:00  12:00-13:30  14:30-16:00  15:00-16:30
Buffet Bonuses: https://www.fujibi.or.jp
Advanced Reservations begin on May 17, 14:00 for hotel email subscribers, LINE Friends only
Standard reservations begin May 19 at 10:00
Moomin by Arabia Product Information:
Sekiguchi Product Information: https://www.sekiguchi.co.jp/collection/