Don’t Miss The Beautiful Blooming of Karuizawa Lake Garden This Summer
22.July.2019 | SPOT
Over the summer, Karuizawa Lake Garden is holding a range of events for parents and children to immerse themselves in the beautiful nature, smell the fragrant lilies, and experience the popular false anemone, water lilies and many more gorgeous flowers. Approximately 33,000m2 of space is covered with the Karuizawa’s most beautiful plants and even a lake.
At Karuizawa, roses are particularly beautiful during the summer O-Bon festival season, flourishing more than ever in Karuizawa’s unique climate. As the roses bloom for the second time in the year during mid august, this is a particularly beautiful sight. ♪
The entire garden consists of eight areas where you can enjoy different sceneries. The rose garden, for example, consists of roses and a whole range of plants that flower at different times of the year, so you can enjoy the variation in appearance of the garden throughout the year. Different flowering plants and roses surround a waterfront in the rose garden. You must come witness just how beautiful it looks during the summer.
Address: Lake New Town, Karuizawa-machi, Kitasaku District, Nagano
Opening hours: 9am ー 5 pm (Last entries: 4:30pm)
※ The opening hours of the garden vary according to the season, so please confirm these times by visiting the garden’s official website.
※ The garden will close one hour earlier than the usual time on Wednesdays for maintenance.
Entry fees: Vary depending on the season.
teamLab Blooms Digital Sunflower Art at teamLab Planets TOKYO
03.July.2019 | SPOT
teamLab Planets is a museum in Tokyo’s Toyosu area that will celebrate one year since opening on July 7. At this museum, visitors move through water and traverse its four vast exhibition spaces.
The museum is set to showcase its new digital art piece Drawing on the Water Surface Created by the Dance of Koi and People – Infinity for a limited time from July 7 to 21. Koi swim on the surface of the water that stretches to an infinite horizon. The koi fish are influenced by the movement of people in the water and turn into flowers when they collide.
As well as this, the museum will serve up new summertime foods at its restaurant The Bowl Steakhouse, where it will serve shaved ice, and its food stand Everything Is In Your Hand, where it will sell sandwich wraps.
Drawing on the Water Surface Created by the Dance of Koi and People – Infinity
teamLab, 2016-2018, Interactive Digital Installation, Endless, Sound: Hideaki Takahashi
Three shaved ice desserts will be sold from July 20. In the picture from the left the flavours include strawberry, matcha adzuki and mango. Each is served with velvety fresh cream in each respective flavour.
Five wraps will be served from July 13. These include Mexican Chili Con Carne, Chicken Salad, Salmon & Cream Cheese, Avocado & Shrimp, and Vegan Salad.
Cool yourself down this summer by stepping into the waters of teamLab Planets and enjoying some refreshing seasonal food.
teamLab Planets TOKYO – TOKYO DMM.com
Address: 6-1-16, Toyosu, Koto Ward, Tokyo
Running: July 7, 2018 – Fall 2020
Official Website: https://planets.teamlab.art/tokyo/
20,000 Pink Flowers to Adorn Fuji-Q Highland For ‘Pink Garden’ Event
16.June.2019 | SPOT
The free-to-enter theme park Fuji-Q Highland is set to hold an event entitled Pink Garden at Lisa & Gaspard Town where around 20,000 pink flowers are set to bloom.
The event is being held as a way for both local and foreign tourists to Mount Fuji to enjoy the beautiful scene of flowers with the mountain in the background. The event will follow the ongoing Yellow Garden event which is ongoing until June 23. During the full bloom period, the town’s symbolic 13 meter tall Eiffel Tower will be surrounded by 4 types of summer plants including petunias and impatiens for a total of 20,000 flowers. The best time to see them will be at the end of July.
As well as that, a fruit-themed event entitled Fruits Festa will also be held in Lisa & Gaspard Town from June 29 to September 6. The town will be decorated in colourful flowers and fruits, and visitors can look forward to cooling down with some decorative shaved ice made by the hotel, or one of the refreshing drinks. There will also be some adorable looking fruity desserts too.
Enter Fuji-Q Highland for free if you’re visiting Japan this summer and enjoy the gorgeous flowers with Mount Fuji as the backdrop.
Lisa & Gaspard Town – Pink Garden
Location: Lisa & Gaspard Town Eiffel Tower Plaza
Running: Early July – Late August
High Season: Late July – Late August (Subject to change depending on climate)
Fuji-Q Highland – Lisa & Gaspard Town
Address: 5 C-6-1 Shinnishihara, Fujiyoshida, Yamanashi Prefecture
Opening Hours: Weekdays 9:30-17:00 / Weekends & Holidays 9:30-18:00
*Lisa & Gaspard Town is open 30 minutes before Fuji-Q’s opening hours and closes 30 minutes after Fuji-Q’s closing hours
No Fixed Holidays.
Free Pass: Adults ¥5,700 / Junior High School Students ¥5,200 / Children ¥4,300
See the Snapdragons at Tobu Zoo Park’s Flower Festival
18.May.2019 | SPOT
If you head to Tobu Zoo Park right now you will be able to see the snapdragons in full bloom. They are located in the Campus Garden which is part of Heartful Garden, a garden made up of five areas each with their own theme.
The Campus Garden is made up of over 6,600m² of flower beds. Planted on one side of the garden are winding rows of five different coloured snapdragons which will are now in the height of their bloom until early June.
You also won’t want to miss the Rose Garden where around 220 species of roses are bunched together. From late May to early June, you’ll also be able to catch a glimpse of 16 species of roses which were inducted in the Hall of Fame by the triennial World Rose Convention, as well as rose arches and gazebos.
School students are set to perform a garden concert at the Welcome Garden and event stage too.
Enjoy a spring day out in Japanese nature this year at Tobu Zoo Park.
Tobu Zoo Park
Address: 110 Suka, Miyashiro, Minamisaitama District, Saitama Prefecture
Travel Virtually to Japan’s City of Komoro in Nagano to See Cherry Blossoms, Soak in the Onsen & More
02.April.2020 | SPOT
Komoro Tourism Bureau has developed the new “Komoro Tourism Channel” using Voicy, a news and media site which reports spoken information online. The channel focuses on the latest information with regards to tourism in Komoro, and focuses on the city’s many different hot springs.
Komoro is a city in Nagano Prefecture. Komoro Castle is home to Kaikoen Park, which was chosen as the 100 best cherry blossom spots in Japan. The city also boasts a wide variety of onsen (hot springs) which offer amazing views and numerous different bathing experiences. Komoro Tourism Channel covers all of this and more.
Komoro is about 2-hours by car via the Nerima Interchange on Kan-etsu Expressway. It’s also accessible from Tokyo via car. You can also reach it in around 24 minutes from Karuizawa Station via Shinano Railway.
Delivering the sounds of the relaxing onsen from Komoro
Komoro has eight water sources which provide water to its hot springs. The city sits 1,400 meters above sea level, from which each of its hot springs offer breathtaking views. The podcast on the hot springs, which is in Japanese, lets you feel like you’re experiencing them from your very own home. More podcasts on Komoro are planned to be released in the future, and QR codes will be implemented are various hotels and tourist facilities in Komoro which when scanned will offer voice guides to those places.
Komoro Tourism Channel: https://voicy.jp/channel/1074
The Komoro Tourism Bureau is coming up with measures to continue promoting the city during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. As well as Komoro Tourism Channel, it is also releasing information on its website, Twitter page, and elsewhere.
Kaikoen Park at Komoro Castle
Kaikoen Park at Komoro Castle is a tourist hot spot in Komoro. The castle itself was chosen as one of Japan’s 100 most famous castle sites. It is also famous for the castle itself being situated lower than the town around the castle. Kaikoen Park was selected as one of Japan’s 100 best cherry blossom spots, where around 500 trees bloom Yoshino cherries, shidare-zakura, higan-zakura, and more through April every year. The “Komoro-yae-beni-share” tree is an endemic species of cherry tree to Komoro and has a deep pink colour. The park also has towering stone walls and is home to the the front castle gate.
Komoro Castle Official Website (Japanese): https://www.komoro-tour.jp/castle/
Komoro Castle Official Website (English): https://www.komoro-tour.jp/lg_en/
Learn About Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture in This Breathtaking 8K PR Video
31.March.2020 | SPOT
A new PR video for Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture was posted on the city’s official YouTube channel on March 2, 2020 as part of Ito City’s digital marketing efforts for 2020, and it’s already garnered over 21 million views in just over two weeks.
The video was directed and editor Yuki Eikawa who has gained much attention across Japan for his touristic PR video work. It captures the most famous sights across Ito including Mount Omuro and Jogasaki Coast, and showcases the city’s food, culture, and incredible natural environments. Check it out below.
ITO City, Shizuoka, Japan in 8K HDR
Learn more about Ito on the city’s official website which has a bounty of useful information for exploring everything Ito has to offer.
See 3,000 Rhododendrons in Full Bloom at the Tsutsuji Garden by Lake Ashi in Hakone
29.March.2020 | SPOT
May is the most colourful time of the year at Hotel de Yama near Lake Ashi in Hakone, when a total of 3,000 rhododendronsーcomprised of 30 different typesーbloom their beautiful flowers in the large Tsutsuji Garden, where one can enjoy a great view of Mount Fuji and Lake Ashi.
Tsutsuji Garden at Hotel de Yama
“Tsutsuji” is the Japanese word for rhododendron. The Tsutsuji Garden at Hotel de Yama was once the villa of Koyata Iwasaki, “the fourth and last president of a unified Mitsubishi.” During that time, numerous varieties of rhododendrons were planted in the garden, which have since been maintained. There are plants amongst them that are over 100-years-old, ones that tower over the human stature, and more; with petals that bloom pink, red, purple, and white.
A combined view of the kaleidoscopic rhododendrons and Mount Fuji
The staff who are experts on the garden have set up two photo frame stands in two of the best spots in the garden for taking picturesque photos. Snap some Instagrammable and memories with the colourful rhododendrons and Mount Fuji together.
Rhododendron Desserts: Saison a colorier – ¥1,634 / Tea Set – ¥2,360 (Before Tax)
Salon de thé Rosage, the dessert restaurant that sits in front of the hotel, is serving up a new special dessert called “Saison a colorier” in line with the full bloom of the rhododendrons. It captures the colourful pink, red, white, and purple appearance of the flowers, and looks like a mini version of the hotel’s garden on your plate. The main part of the dessert is the tea mousse, which has a bright red colour as it is coated beautifully in a strawberry puree nappage. The tea used in the mouse is an original rhododendron blend exclusive to the restaurant.
The white rhododendron dessert is a macaron that’s filled with raspberry sorbet. The red which contrasts with the white is a rhododendron milk tea cream and fresh raspberries. The rest of the plate is adorned with pink jelly and edible flowers. The perfect afternoon tea to finish off your time at Tsutsuji Garden.
Hotel de Yama / Salon de thé Rosage
Address: 80 Motohakone, Hakone, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa
Official Website: https://www.hakone-hoteldeyama.jp/en/
Coronavirus in Japan: Kaname Inn Tatemachi in Kanazawa Offers Free Accommodation to Foreigners Who Can’t Get Home
29.March.2020 | SPOT
Kaname Inn Tatemachi, a hotel in Kanazawa, Ishikawa, has announced a project named “Room for rescue” which will offer free accommodation to foreigners unable to travel back to their home countries from Japan due to lockdowns and restrictions from going outside as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic
With flights cancelled around the world, there is no way for foreigners to return home from Japan, resulting in them being forced to change their plans and extend their stay. They are living their days in constant worry, both financially and mentally. To ensure that foreign travellers don’t feel like their trip to Japan was a bad experience, free accommodation is becoming available to those who meet certain prescribed conditions.
In response to the decreasing number of tourists, Kaname Inn Tatemachi opened its doors to Japanese citizens through Facebook for free accommodation to help support businesses like local restaurants that could no longer make a living. They received a lot of guests, as well as a request from a friend who asked if someone from the Netherlands could stay there because they couldn’t get back to their country. This sparked the “Room for rescue” project for stranded foreign tourists to stay at Kaname Inn Tatemachi for free too.
Kaname Inn Tatemachi is using its own funds to pay for the project and allow free stay. However, doing this long term will put strain on the business, so to help pay for hotel use and staff’s wages, the hotel has opened up a crowd funding page which you can find here.
Room for rescue
Aimed at: Foreign travellers who cannot return home
How to Apply
Send the following details to the e-mail address email@example.com
①Write “Room 4 Rescue” as the subject of your e-mail
②Include which country you are from
③Write the names of all the people who wish to stay at the hotel
④Write the number of adults
⑤Write the number of children
⑥Write your check-in time and date
⑦Write your check-out time and date
⑧Attach a screenshot or photo of your cancelled flight details
Application Deadline: March 28, 2020 at 23:59 (JST)
Free Accommodation Stay Time: Until April 15, 2020
3 Must-Visit Cherry Blossoms Spots in Nagasaki Prefecture’s Hirado City | Spring 2020
Spring has arrived in the city of Hirado, Nagasaki, which has been dyed a cherry blossom pink colour from the blossoming of the cherry trees. A simple glance at the signs of spring there is enough to have one feeling elated. It has also made the news that the budding of the cherry blossoms in Hirado has arrived earlier than usual.
We’ve made a list of 3 popular spots to enjoy Hanami in Hirado this spring.
Jigenzakura is a single sakura tree that stands proud and majestic. Aged 140 years old, the tree is listed as a National Treasure of Hirado. It’s close to the Oshima variety of cherry tree, and was planted by Catholics who migrated to Japan at the beginning of the Meiji Period. A visit to Jigenzakura offers a splendid sight to behold as it blossoms in the ravine. The best time to see it in full bloom last year was March 31.
Address: Kigatsucho, Hirado, Nagasaki (35-minutes from Hirado Bridge)
Nagasaki Tabi Net: https://www.nagasaki-tabinet.com/guide/51690/
Kameoka Shrine / Kameoka Park
Kameoka Park is a famous cherry blossom site that’s adjacent to Hirado Castle. It’s home to around 1,000 sakura trees, which are best seen from the end of March to early April. It also has a very rare type of cherry blossom called the nidozaki-zakura which blooms twice. You can see these around mid-April at Kameoka Park.
Address: 1458 Iwanouechō, Hirado, Nagasaki (7-minutes from Hirado Bridge)
Nagasaki Tabi Net: https://www.nagasaki-tabinet.com/guide/370/
Tabira Park is just over Hirado Bridge, and is a place where you can look out at both Hirado Bridge and Hirado Seto while gazing at the rows of cherry trees.
Address: 823-1 Tabirachō Kotedamen, Hirado, Nagasaki (Next to Hirado Bridge)
Official Website: http://nagasaki-park.or.jp/free/tabira
Hirado is easy to get to, and is a must-visit not just for Hanami, but for the food and its rich history too.
Feel Like You’re Living On Okinawa’s Taketomi Island With HOSHINOYA’s New ‘Workation’ Hotel Plan
HOSHINOYA Taketomi Island in Okinawa rolled out a new hotel plan on March 18 that’s set to run until June 30 this year.
Taketomi Island can be said to be home to landscape of what Okinawa used to be, with the Ryukyuan red roof tiles of its buildings, stone walls, and alleys spread with coral sand. Someone plucks away at a three-stringed sanshinーthe Okinawan precursor to the mainland shamisenーas time flows with gentle ease on the island. Taketomi Island is rich in traditional culture which can be felt throughout.
The guest rooms at HOSHINOYA Taketomi Island emulate the island’s traditional architecture. All guest rooms have south-facing windows that can be opened to let in the southern winds, which the local islanders say are lucky. HOSHINOYA Taketomi Island developed its new workation plan in response to the current situation when more people are having to do remote work and work from home. It enables people a private abode where they can work and relax simultaneously. And all the necessary amenities have been prepared for a workation.
The guest rooms at HOSHINOYA Taketomi Island are known as guest pavilions, which allow for you feel like you’re living like a real islander. They are equipped with Wi-Fi, printers, pand photocopiers too, making it the perfect work environment. And you don’t have to worry about hay fever as there are no Japanese cedar or cypress trees around.
The pavilions offer a beautiful view of the bright blue sky and sea. The beaches are also open from March, so you can take a dip in the springtime sea too while basking in the warm climate.
Running: March 18, 2020 – June 30, 2020
Price: From ¥278,460 (Before tax/service charge)
People: Up to 2 people per room
*70% off from the normal price. The above-listed price is calculated for 30 days of stay.
HOSHINOYA Taketomi Island
Address: Taketomi, Yaeyama District, Okinawa 907-1101
Official Website: https://hoshinoya.com/taketomijima/en/
*You must select the meal option if you require food
Japan’s First Guest House Meiji Kinenkan Officially Designated as Tangible Cultural Property
Meiji Kinenkan, located in Minato, Tokyo, was officially designated as a Tangible Cultural Property this month.
Meiji Kinenkan was built in 1881 as a dining and reception hall used for receiving important guests from abroad to the Akasaka Temporary Palace. In October 1881, a dinner was held at the site with Prince Albert Victor and Prince George who visited Japan that autumn. Five years later, in 1886, Empress Shōken received foreign guests in Western clothing for the first time. In 1888, a meeting attended by Emperor Meiji was held to discuss the draft of the Constitution, which is represented in artwork you can see on the walls of Meiji Kinenkan. During the construction of Meiji Jingu Gaien in 1918, Meiji Kinenkan was dedicated to Meiji Jingu from the Ito family and relocated to where it stands today. Before the war, the building was known as the “Constitution Memorial Hall” and was used for events related to the Imperial Family. It was renamed “Meiji Kinenkan” in 1947 and became a wedding hall of Meiji Jingu.
Dining hall used as the stage for Emperor Meiji’s Imperial Court diplomacy
Golden roosters flutter on the walls around the black-lacquered mantle piece mirror
This building was used for court diplomacy under Emperor Meiji. Located on the grounds of Meiji Kinenkan, its interior exemplifies the idea of “Modern Meiji.” It has survived two relocations, the Great Kantō earthquake of 1923, and the Second World War. The lavish decor is a harmonious fusion of the traditional and the modern, with the overhead chandeliers, golden roosters, and mantle piece with its black lacquering and towering mirror.
Overlooking the garden, offering not only a modern cafe experience but banquets too
The Meiji Kinenkan Main Building was designated as an Tangible Cultural Property for its 100+ years of history, honouring its historical background, cultural role, and value as a building. Today, it is used for many different things, from a wedding reception to a venue for company parties.
On weekdays, it is mainly used for its “kinkei” lounge, a spacious area that faces a gorgeous green garden planted with a variety of flowers that bloom through the seasons. Its interior decor also has history, such as its ceiling which is a reflection of the Meiji Period. They even serve cake from Meiji Kinenkan’s original sweets brand “Kaminomi no Mori” and coffee.
Address: 2-2-23 Motoakasaka, Minato Ward, Tokyo
Closed: During summer for maintenance, and New Year
Official Website: https://www.meijikinenkan.gr.jp/english/
Hoshino Resorts to Open New KAI Poroto Ryokan in Hokkaido in Winter 2021
20.March.2020 | SPOT
Hoshino Resorts, which manages 42 ryokan inside and outside Japan serving Japanese tradition and culture, signed a partnership agreement with the town of Shiraoi in Hokkaido on June 28, 2018, which would have them open a hot spring ryokan there. It has been revealed that the new facility will be named Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto.
Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto. Built by Japanese architect Hiroshi Nakamura, the site will open its doors in winter 2021 as the 19th branch of Hoshino Resorts’s hot spring ryokan brand KAI, of which it operates 16 in Japan. It will be the third branch of KAI in Hokkaido, following from Hoshino Resorts RISONARE Tomamu in Shimukappu village and Hoshino Resorts OMO7 Asahikawa.
Hot springs in Shiraoi, Hokkaido include moor springs, a type of organic spring water that is rare globally. KAI Poroto faces Poroto Lake, which is enveloped in nature and home to creatures such as wild birds. All rooms at the ryokan enjoy a view of the lake, as well as a chance to see the trees and flowers bloom and change in different colours throughout the seasons.
KAI’s aim is to offer Japanese hospitality that can only be experienced in that town or city, and during that season, as well as to give guests a comfortable experience in a Japanese-style accommodation. At KAI Poroto, they are set to offer a completely new experience tied to Ainu culture in collaboration with the Upopoy National Ainu Museum and Park currently in development in Shiraoi.
Upopoy is scheduled to open at Lake Poroto on April 24, 2020. “Upopoy” is a word in the Ainu language that means “singing in a large group.” The museum is the first national museum in Japan to be dedicated to the indigenous Ainu people. It will serve as the national center for the revival and development of Ainu culture, something which is on the verge of extinction, and it will do this by showcasing Ainu culture and history through exhibitions, hands-on programmes, performances, and more.
Hiroshi Nakamura is the architects that designed Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto. “Poroto” is also a word in Ainu to mean “large lake.” The ryokan’s lobby, which is decorated with Japanese white birch, offers a view of the lake and Mount Tarumae. There are also small bath houses called kashi which have been made using Ainu architectural methods, as well as open-air baths that have you feeling like you’re taking a dip in the lake.
Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto
Address: 1-1018-1 Wakakusacho, Shiraoi, Shiraoi District, Hokkaido
Construction Work Start: Mid-May 2020 (subject to change)
Grand Opening: Winter 2021 (subject to change)
Official Website: https://kai-ryokan.jp/
3D Character at Narita International Airport Exhibition Lectures On Japanese Culture & History in Multiple Languages
The National Museum of Japanese History’s 3D character Momi-chan has been set up at the “Hikaru Edozu de Kanjiru Nihon” exhibition taking place at Narita International Airport. She is appears via Gatebox, a projection tube that uses the latest projection and sensory technology.
“Momi-chan” – The National Museum of Japanese History’s 3D Character
The exhibition is a showcase of folding screens owned by The National Museum of Japanese History with pictures of Edo art on them. It hopes to promote an interest in Japanese history and culture to both foreign tourists travelling to Japan as well as Japanese travellers.
Momi-chan can speak in English, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese. If you’re travelling through Narita International Airport, be sure to pay her a visit for an insightful lesson.
“Hikaru Edozu de Kanjiru Nihon” Exhibition – Narita International Airport x The National Museum of Japanese History
Running: March 12, 2020 – Late June 2020
Location: NARITA SKY LOUNGE WA (Narita International Airport Terminal 2, after Departure Check-In)
*Due to the exhibition’s location, only passengers who are departing via an international air route can visit
Winston in Bloom: Afternoon Tea Collaboration by Harry Winston and Park Hyatt Tokyo Releasing in April
13.March.2020 | FOOD
Harry Winston and Park Hyatt Tokyo are joining hands to release a special afternoon tea set titled “Winston in Bloom.” It will be served at Peak Lounge on the 41st floor of Park Hyatt Tokyo from April 1 to 30 and be inspired by Harry Winston’s floral jewellery.
Known as the “King of Diamonds” and “Jeweler to the Stars,” Harry Winston founded his brand in New York in 1932. He was captivated by the beauty of flowers and how they produce themselves naturally, a beauty which is represented in his jewellery.
The collaborative “Winston in Bloom” afternoon tea is made in the image of a high-class flower garden adorned with diamonds and coloured stones.
This is the Harry Winston brand’s first afternoon tea collaboration in Japan, and offers an elegant taste experience for anyone who wishes to munch through this garden.
Special gifts are also prepared for anyone that orders this afternoon tea. These are available while supplies last.
Winston in Bloom Afternoon Tea
Running: April 1, 2020 – April 30, 2020
Time: Weekdays 14:00-17:00 / Weekends & Holidays 12:00-17:00)
Price: ¥5,000 per person (Service charge and tax not included)
Location: Peak Lounge (Park Hyatt Tokyo Floor 41F)
Top 10 Must-Try Cherry Blossom Outdoor Bathing Experiences in Japan
12.March.2020 | SPOT
Online Japanese travel website Jalan has published an article listing the Top 10 cherry blossom furo (bath) locations in Japan based on the results of a questionnaire it held.
Experiencing an outdoor Japanese bath is one thing, but it’s made even more special when coupled with the view and scent of the springtime cherry blossoms. The line-up features a list of locations praised for their scenery and the blossom of the cherry trees.
1st Place: Hotel Keikyu Aburatsubo Kanchoso | Kanagawa Prefecture
The baths at Hotel Keikyu Aburatsubo Kanchoso offer a clear view of Koajiro Bay from the hills of the Miura Peninsula. The bright blue shimmer of the ocean and the overlooking sky is made even more vibrant by the Yoshino cherry and kawazu-zakura trees that stand around the bath. It’s a tranquil spectacle as you gaze at the blue sea and enjoy your hot bath, which is full of beneficial minerals, as cherry blossom petals dance down from the trees onto the water surface.
2nd Place: Hotel Suehiro | Aichi Prefecture
This popular hotel offers a spectacular view of the ocean from the open-air rooftop bath. Around this time, the 300 Yoshino cherry trees are in full bloom down below. The common way of viewing cherry blossoms is to look up at the trees; but Hotel Suehiro offers the opposite for a unique Hanami experience.
3rd Place: Onsen Yumoto Hounoya | Nara Prefecture
Mount Yoshino is a famous cherry blossom spot as well as a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Onsen Yumoto Hounoya sits in the centre of it all, with cherry blossom trees rolling up and down all around. Enjoy a dip in the hydrogen carbonate spring water while you soak up the sights.
4th Place: Goriyaku no Yu | Chiba Prefecture
Among the mountains of the lush green city of Minamiboso lies Goriyaku no Yu. Three cherry trees bloom right in front of the open-air bath, which can be enjoy together with the striking mountains of the Yoro Ravine. Depending on the day, the petals of the cherry trees fall into the bath, dyeing it a beautiful pink.
5th Place: Fuga No Yado Chouseikan | Niigata Prefecture
Fuga No Yado Chouseikan is home to the largest open-air bath in the prefecture. It’s surrounded by 10 Yoshino cherries, which are lit up at night to create a magical atmosphere. Enjoy their full bloom together as the season for the petals’ fall begins.
6th Place: Hotel Kami no Yu Onsen | Yamanashi Prefecture
100 cherry trees can be enjoyed from the guest rooms, various baths, and inside the hotel at Kami no Yu Onsen. There are three kinds of cherry blossoms to see: the Yoshino cherry, yoshino-zakura, and yae-zakura. You can see them from the large public baths, but it’s the Hanami Furo baths that you can rent out which provide the best experience. They must be booked via telephone.
7th Place: Fujino Yamanami Onsen | Kanagawa Prefecture
This spacious open-air bath is enveloped by a gorgeous garden which blooms many different flowers through the season, including the 11 cherry blossom trees. During the day, you can enjoy the elegance of the garden, and at night it is lit up to provide a bewitching experience. The hot water is pulled from 1,800 meters below ground. The water is praised for its rich minerals which warm you from the inside.
8th Place: Awanoyu Ryokan | Nagano Prefecture
Five Yoshino cherries are planted beside this milk-coloured bubbly bath. Only in a mountainous land such as this where spring arrives late can you enjoy the cherry blossoms together with the leftover snow atop the mountains. The ryokan’s sulphur spring water contains carbon dioxide which warms the bath.
9th Place: Okayama Ikoi No Mura | Okayama Prefecture
Okayama Ikoi No Mura is a facility that offers a range of experiences, including coming into contact with animals. There are three bookable baths which offer your very own Yoshino cherry blossom tree view. The observatory deck at the facility is also popular as it overlooks the Seto Inland Sea.
10th Place: Shigisan Kanko Hotel | Nara Prefecture
Shigisan Kanko Hotel in Nara is easily reachable even from Osaka. There, guests can enjoy the full extent of the outdoors with the hot springs that reflect the mountains and the light pink Yoshino cherry trees.
These cherry tree furo baths, where even the steam of the water is dyed pink, can only be enjoyed for about half a month! So if you’re planning a trip to Japan for the spring, cherry blossoms, and Hanami, be sure to put one of these picks on your list of must-visit places.
THE HIRAMATSU Kyoto is a New Luxury Hotel On Muromachi Street Renovated From a Traditional Townhouse
09.March.2020 | SPOT
The new luxury hotel THE HIRAMATSU Kyoto is set to open along Muromachi Street in Kyoto on March 18, 2020.
“Explore and indulge your curiosity” is the hotel’s concept
The hotel aims to create a place that encourages guests to explore and indulge their curiosities, and one that welcomes and treasures its guests in a way that only THE HIRAMATSU Kyoto can.
Built from a traditional Edo Period Kyoto-style townhouse
THE HIRAMATSU Kyoto sits pretty much in the heart of Kyoto, and is just a three-minute stroll from Karasuma Oike Station. It faces Muromachi Streetーa street that has long thrived when it comes to trade. The hotel is renovated from an old townhouse that has been around since the Edo Period, and it has been made sure that it hasn’t lost that traditional design.
Nakamura Sotoni Komu: A contemporary craftsman
To progress with the renovation work, THE HIRAMATSU KYOTO called on board the executive building director of Kyoto’s famous craftsman company Nakamura Sotoni Komu, who lent their skill to effect the effort.
THE HIRAMATSU Kyoto
Grand Opening: March 18, 2020
Address: 361 Sanjo Agaru Ennogyojacho, Muromachi-dori, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto
Access: 15-minutes by taxi from Kyoto Station / 3-minutes on foot from Karasuma Oike Station (via Kyoto Municipal Subway)
Official Website: https://www.hiramatsuhotels.com/eng/kyoto/