Try This Mino Traditional Culture and Tea Tasting Experience Hotel Plan in Gifu

21.August.2019 | FOOD / SPOT

The Mino region of Gifu is famous for its traditional pottery called Mino Ware, its Gifu lanterns, and much more. Recently, an empty building located in front of Minokamo station in Gifu prefecture was renovated by a company called IDENTITY, who transformed it into a community building called MINGLE. MINGLE is now home to the Japanese tea shop Minokamo Chapo. This tea shop proudly represents the culture of tea and pottery that still remains in the Mino region. In order to share this wonderful culture, they are now offering a new accommodation plan to provide guests with the chance to experience the world of Japanese tea and the rich culture of Mino.

You can also experience tasting and comparing different Japanese teas that are offered by Minokamo Chapo. During your stay, you will also encounter lots of Mino Ware, and be surrounded by a traditional Mino interior decorated with Mino washi paper.

 

1st floor: Café and Bar

You can order the Japanese tea tasting selection at the counter. This space is used as the Minokamo Chapo tea shop from 11 am to 4 pm on weekends and national holidays.

 

2nd floor: Rooms


The rooms are approximately 22m2. On top of this space, there is also a shower room and toilet in their own separate rooms.

 

3rd floor: Lounge

This is an area of free space for the guests. There are future plans to decorate this space with paintings and pottery according to the season.

 

The interior of the guest rooms are also packed with the wonders of the Mino region, so we are going to introduce you to a few of its special features. 

Upon entering your room, you will be greeted by the warm light of an Akari lantern. This is a kind of lantern which is recognized as a traditional craft of Gifu prefecture. This lantern design was created by famous artist Isasmu Noguchi, who named it Akari which means “light”.

In the bathroom, you will spot a few stylish mugs which belong to the brand “3rd-ceramics”.  

 The rooms are affixed with paper sliding doors (shoji) and bear beautiful Mino washi paper that is a traditional turquoise-blue colour. 

 

This is the perfect place to enjoy a traditional experience like no other. 

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  • Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo Offers Luxurious Accommodation Plan & Tea Ceremony Experience For Families

    05.August.2019 | SPOT

    Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo, a highly prestigious and magnificent 4-star hotel located in Shinjuku, is now serving an all-new “luxurious” family package which includes a tea ceremony experience and much more. It is currently running from July 20 to September 1.

    The rooms offered in the accommodation plan are the hotel’s popular Wide Twin Rooms located on the Premier Grand club floor. Use of the Club Lounge is included in the package. The Wide Twin Rooms include two roomy queen-size beds which span 1.53 meters wide which allow parents to sleep comfortably with their children. Rooms also feature their own bathroom facilities.

     

    The package also includes a check-in simulation for children aged 6-12 years where they can get a feel for what it’s like to check-in. They will fill in their own check-in cards with parents and receive a ticket for the tea ceremony experience. They will be able to take their card home with them and take a commemorative photo.

    The tea ceremony experience will be held on the hotel’s 10th floor in the “Shofuan,” an authentic tearoom that has been in the hotel since it opened in 1971. Parents and children will receive proper instruction from the tea ceremony teacher before pouring their own tea, allowing them to learn about traditional Japanese culture and etiquette. They will receive a special certificate of completion at the end.

     

    If you’re travelling to Japan as a family this summer then enjoy it in luxury at Hotel Keio Plaza Tokyo.

  • New Hotel Renovation Hakone Yutowa in Gora Caters to Millennials and Families

    17.August.2019 | SPOT

    Hakone Yutowa is a new hotel in the town of Gora, Hakone that opened on August 11, 2019. This hotel renovation is aimed at millennials (those in their 20s and earlier 30s) and families, offering various different rooms include your typical hotel-type as well as condos. There are also multiple shared public spaces full of fun and relaxation.

     

    Part of the enjoyment at Hakone Yutowa is getting to walk around the site leisurely finding all the little things it has to offer, from the hot spring with its own hot spring source to a communal room so stylish you can’t help reaching for your camera to snap photos. The hotel aims to offer guests “an experience in remote Hakone you can’t get anywhere else” and it does so by presenting a new style of hotel accommodation.

     

    Hakone Yutowa is about a five-minute stroll along a flat-level path from Gora Station, which is accessed via the Hakone Tozan Railway, meaning it can be accessed easily by those without a car. “Yutowa” is has a combination of meanings: the yu in Japanese means “hot water” which conjures up not only the hot springs but also a warm and welcome stay at the hotel. It is also word play with the word “you.” The to means “and” in Japanese and wa is “circle” like a circle of friends. In other words, at Hokone Yutowa, you’ll be spending a nice time together with someone special.

     

    The hotel is split into three buildings: the East Wing, West Wing, and Condominium Wing. Each offers “a new style of travel accommodation.”

     

    New Style ①

    Spa Lounge Nakaniwa and Lively Lounge are two public spaces in the hotel that anyone is free to use at their leisure. Nakaniwa is home to a footbath at the outdoor wooden deck which makes use of the hotel’s natural spring source, as well as an open-air fire. Lively Lounge houses around 700 books which guests can pick from before finding a little spot to sit down and relax.

     

    New Style ②

    There are two types of rooms: Hotel and Condominium. The Condominium rooms are the first hotel rooms of their kind to be offered in the Gora area. These fancy rooms have their own hot spring bath with a beautiful view. The water in the bath flows directly from the hot spring source.

     

    New Style ③

    The all-inclusive plan includes breakfast and dinner as well as free drinks and free use of the communal spaces. Guests do not need to worry about any extra fees as everything is included. There are also other baths available in the hotel including one that makes use of colourful lights.

     

    If you’re looking for a hotel with freedom in Japan then take your family, friends or loved one to Hakone Yutowa.

  • Snoopy Themed PEANUTS HOTEL Celebrates 1st Anniversary

    03.August.2019 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    To celebrate the 1st anniversary of the PEANUTS HOTEL, which opened on August 1, 2018, the hotel has released a collection of original commemorative merchandise.

    The PEANUTS hotel is home to 18 rooms each with its own unique design. The merchandise collection is themed on each of these rooms.

    PEANUTS HOTEL “Happiness is a warm puppy..” (Room 64) – ¥3,500

    The theme of Room 64 is “Happiness is a warm puppy,” so the PEANUTS HOTEL has made that a reality by creating a huggable Snoopy plush toy which is so cute and soft you’ll never want to let him go. He is a smaller version of the big Snoopy you can hug in Room 64, meaning you can take him anywhere with you!

    PEANUTS HOTEL 1ST ANNIVERSARY Postcards (5 Designs / 2 Included With Each) – ¥2,200

    The hotel’s postcard sets are popular with guests, and to celebrate the 1st anniversary, it is selling limited edition designs. Using special manufacturing methods, the hotel has released sets themed on Rooms 44, 57, 61 and 62. They are packaged in a beautiful box that looks like the outside of the hotel and its windows. They are great for both sending to someone with a message or for simply using them as decoration in your own room.

    PEANUTS HOTEL x tegoto “solarsystem” (Room 42) – ¥49,000 (Only 30 Available)

    PEANUTS HOTEL has teamed up with the internationally popular product brand tegoto to release mobiles inspired by Astronaut Snoopy which is the theme of Room 42. Each mobile is handcrafted individually and features Snoopy, Woodstock and the planetary system. Perfect for both kids and adults alike!

    *Only 30 available. Each comes with its own unique handwritten serial number.

     

    PEANUTS Cafe Nakameguro and PEANUTS DINER Yokohama are also joining in the celebration with their own pop-up corner which will run for the whole month of August. For this limited time only, they will sell items which are usually exclusive to the PEANUTS HOTEL.

    “Lila” Aroma Essential Oils – ¥2,300 / Aroma Air Mist – ¥2,200 / Aroma Stone Diffuser – ¥2,200 / PEANUTS HOTEL Bath Towel – ¥3,200, Face Towel – ¥1,800, Amenity Set – ¥3,400 / Compression Bag (Contains 5) – ¥1,500

    These items are also available over on the PEANUTS Cafe Online Shop. Join Snoopy and his friends in celebrating the 1st anniversary of the PEANUTS HOTEL by picking up some cute merch!

     

    *All listed prices are pre-tax.

    © 2019 Peanuts Worldwide LLC

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  • Naruto Themed Hotel Room Opens at GRAND CHARIOT Hokutoshichisei 135° in Japan

    02.June.2020 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    GRAND CHARIOT Hokutoshichisei 135°, a hotel and glamping facility located in Awaji, Hyogo, opened its new Naruto-themed room on June 1, 2020.

    The room, called “Hokage no Bessou” (Hokage’s Villa), is renovated from one of the resort’s buildings, and aims to plunge guests into the world of ninjas.

    The room takes inspiration from the Hidden Leaf Village and its characters, with references to the series and recreated scenes littered throughout. It also offers exclusive amenities for guests to enjoy.

    Guests who stay in the Naruto room will receive a free ticket to the popular “Naruto & Boruto Shinobi Zato” attraction at the anime theme park Nijigen no Mori on Awaji Island where the hotel is located.

     

    ⒸMasashi Kishimoto Scott / Shuiehsa・TV Tokyo・Pierrot

  • Pour Tea Like Never Before With HAIRO’s New Lidless Teapot

    22.May.2020 | FOOD

    HARIO has created a completely new way of serving tea with its new clear lidless teapot.

    The teapot substitutes a lid for a filter, allowing for you to place your tea leaves directly into the pot and not have to worry about any pieces falling into your cup. The spout is made from PCT resin which caters to high temperatures and gives it impact strength, heat resistance, and makes it transparent.

    Clear Lidless Teapot: ¥2,000 (450ml) / ¥2,500 (700ml) (Before Tax)

    As you pour the pot, the scent of the tea rises together with the steam. The pot is made from heat-resistant glass which means you can see the tea leaves as well as watch the colour of the water change. It’s made so you can enjoy every sip of your tea’s delicious flavour, right down to the last golden drop. Not only that, it’s also smart and stylish, so is sure to elicit a comment or two when you’re pouring tea for people.

    Since you don’t have to worry about any leaves pouring out, you can try out all kinds of different teas, whether it be Japanese tea, herb tea, and so on. It’s great for iced tea too, especially with the weather warming up.

     

    The teapot benefits from not being made up of many parts, so it’s super easy to clean—you can get right down into the corners.

     

    Make teatime even more fun while you’re at home with this clever new invention!

  • Experience Kyoto Culture in Arashiyama With HOSHINOYA Kyoto’s New Hotel Plan

    19.May.2020 | SPOT

    HOSHINOYA Kyoto has introduced a new hotel plan in an attempt to bring a little luxury into people’s lives and lift their spirit during this stressful time. The plan will have people going to Arashiyama to experience a bit of Kyoto culture and hospitality to lift their mood.

    You will board a small boat located at the port near the hotel entrance and be taken to your private room. During your sail, you will be able to soak in the gorgeous sights of nature all around. Check-in is being carried out in guest rooms, meaning you won’t have to come into contact with other guests.

    You have arrived at your room. HOSHINOYA Kyoto is located in Arashiyama which was formerly a holiday home destination for the Heian aristocrats. There are 25 rooms inside the garden, all of which look out onto the Ōi River. When you slide the window open, you can feel the gentle wind sweep through the valleys. Guest room walls are plastered with beautiful traditional kyokarakami wallpaper and fitted with HOSHINOYA Kyoto-original tatami sofas. Each and every part of the rooms are imbued with Kyoto culture. The rooms are not only comfortable and provide you with everything you need, but also offer a luxurious stay.

     

    Inside your room, there are sutras which can be used for sutra copying, known as sakyou in Japanese, as well as equipment for making matcha to enjoy your own private tea ceremony without having to worry about the tradition’s strict rooms. It’s your very own private Kyoto cultural experience without having to worry about other people.

    Dinner can be enjoyed in the main dining hall or in your room. The dining hall is fitted with semi-private booths where you can enjoy a seasonal Arashiyama 9 course kaiseki-ryori dinner with rice, vegetables, a special bento assortment, and more. For breakfast you can enjoy a morning hot pot which uses a special dashi stock packed full of seasonal veggies.

    There are also activities to enjoy Kyoto’s breathtaking green outdoors. Mosquito nets made from Japanese red cedar are provided under which you can take part in a stretch routine which uses breathing techniques and meditation.

     

    Outdoor activities are severely restricted right now as a result of COVID-19, but HOSHINOYA Kyoto has made it so you don’t have to do much moving around at all while still enjoying the fruits of nature.

  • Japan Coronavirus: Room for Rescue Project Provides Free Accommodation to Foreigners Who Can’t Get Home

    01.May.2020 | SPOT

    With flights cancelled around the world, it is becoming increasingly harder for foreigners to return home from Japan, resulting in them being forced to change their plans, extend their stay, and live every day in stress and uncertainty. To lend a helping hand to foreign travellers in this stressful time, three accommodation companies Slacktide Co., Ltd, Shared Value Co.,Ltd. and Life Bonds, LLC, who manage Kaname Inn Tatemachi, Sakura Cross Hotel and BONDS HOUSE respectively, have launched a joint accommodation project called “Room for Rescue” which provides free accommodation to international visitors who cannot return home as a result of the current travel restrictions.

    This collaborative project was launched to ensure that foreign travellers don’t feel like their trip to Japan was a bad experience, which could be a reason to avoid visiting Japan again in the future and heavily impact the tourism industry.

    Tokyo:BONDS HOUSE

    Tokyo:Sakura Cross Hotel

    Kanazawa: KANAME INN

    Currently, three accommodations in Tokyo and one in Kanazawa have opened their doors to stranded foreigners.

     

    Room for Rescue: Request a Room

    https://kaname-inn.com/room-for-rescue/

     

    To apply for a room, you need a valid visa and a cancelled flight ticket which meets Room for Rescue’s criteria. For more information, please refer to the application page. The Room for Rescue project is also looking for more accommodations to join the fight against coronavirus and open their doors to stranded foreigners. If you own an accommodation in Japan and want to help foreign travellers, please apply using the link below.

     

    Become Part of Room for Rescue (for accommodation owners)
    https://kaname-inn.com/room-for-rescue/contact/

     

    If you are an individual who wants to support this project, please consider donating via their crowdfunding page mentioned in the information section below.

  • nana’s green tea Releases Luxurious Gyokuro Tea Drink and Parfait You Can Take Out

    20.April.2020 | FOOD

    Modern tea hosue nana’s green tea has 81 branches across Japan. Alongside café-style food, their specialty is traditional desserts and drinks made from traditional teas such as matcha and hojicha. They are now selling a new parfait and chilled drink made from fresh gyokuro green tea for a limited time.

     

    As the days grow gradually closer to summer, the menu blooms to life with the season’s fresh green colours. The desserts at nana’s green tea never fail to boast their own unique and unbeatable flavours. The new parfait and drink are made with a generous serving of  gyokuro, which is a fine and luxurious type of green tea recognised by its signature bright green appearance. The rich green tea is sourced from the long-established Kyoto tea-producer YAMAMASA KOYAMAEN.

     

    YAMAMASA KOYAMAEN: Kyoto’s Long-Established Uji Matcha Tea Producers

    YAMAMASA KOYAMAEN are the owners of a tea plantation in Kyoto’s renowned matcha region called Uji. With their passion for selling only the best flavour of tea above all else, they have contributed to the growth of Uji-grown tea since the end of the Edo period.

    Gyokuro tea is produced with the same careful attention and care as matcha but with a different procedure. nana’s green tea grind the leaves to a fine powder to fully extract its refined essence. From the flavour to the aroma, gyokuro tea provides a completely different experience to matcha. If you love Japanese tea, this is the perfect opportunity for you to explore the wonderful flavours of Uji tea.

    Gyokuro Warabimochi Parfait

    Gyokuro jelly made from 100% gyokuro Uji tea and white bean paste dusted in gyokuro powder dress this parfait in rich flavours. The warabimochi is also dusted in gyokuro powder to balance its sweetness. The sweetness of the warabimochi and the gentle and refined flavour of gyokuro tea will spread through your mouth. Finally, the parfait is laced in black sugar syrup for a refined accent. 

     

    Gyokuro Jelly Frozen

    Gyokuro tea and milk are mixed together to create an aromatic and vivid drink mixture. Chunks of soft gyokuro jelly can be seen at the bottom of the drink. Suck them up through your straw for a refreshing and fun texture. As the process of roasting gyokuro leaves is very difficult, it is a flavour that can be difficult to come across. This is the perfect way to enjoy a refined flavour in a casual way.

     

    You can also order the parfait and drink to take out, making it the perfect luxurious treat to enjoy at home. If you love exploring tea, this is an unmissable opportunity.

  • Kanucha Resort in Okinawa Announces Spring and Summer Activity Program for 2020

    06.April.2020 | SPOT

    Located in the city of Nago in Okinawa lies Kanucha Resort, a hotel resort which boasts 2.6 million square meters of land. The resort has revealed its spring and summer program which invites guests to enjoy everything Okinawa has to offerーnot just its breathtaking oceans.

     

    What is Kanucha Resort?

    Kanucha Resort sits on the east coast of Nago on the northern part of the Okinawa mainland. It’s surrounded by the vast rolling sea and mother nature, and also faces Oura Bay, which is known for its coral reefs, which includes blue coral. Guest rooms come in nine styles, all of which incorporate gorgeous wooden decor. The resort has a bounty of restaurants, its own golf course, the beach, and over 70 activities to choose from, all of which makes Kanucha Resort a little town of its own. In the past winter months just gone, it also celebrate the 20th anniversary of Okinawa’s largest illumination event, Stardust Fantasia.

     

    Buggy Ride Tours & Buggy Adventure Tours

    Experience a different side of Okinawa away from the beaches with an off-road ride through Yanbaru no Mori Forest on a quad bike.


    Running: All Year

    Time: 9:00-17:00

    Meeting Locations: Buggy Ride Tour @ Dokidoki Yambarunture / Buggy Adventure Tour @ Matayoshi Coffee Farm

    Ages: 4 years and older

     

    Coral Snorkeling Tour in Banana Boats

    Witness the tropical fish swimming around you, and gaze upon the gorgeous coral reefs, as you explore the waters below when you climb off the banana boat.

    Running: July 23, 2020 – August 31, 2020

    Time: 60 minutes

    Ages: 5 to 65 years

     

    Mangrove Kayak Tour Along the Kesaji River

    The Okinawan mainland is home to many mangroves. See them together with the expand of Yanbaru’s nature with a kayak ride along the Kesaji River.

    Running: All Year

    Time: Subject to change each day depending on how busy it is – please enquire directly

    Courses: 150 Minutes (5 years and older) / 90 Minutes (3 years and older)

     

    Star Sommelier to Space Walk

    Hear about the moon and space with talks from Hoshi no Somurie® (“Star Sommeliers”) and use a telescope to observe the stars at the planetarium.

    Running: Monday-Thursday

    Time: 20:00-20:50

    Meeting Point: Leisure Counter

     

    Oura Mangrove Kayak

    Enjoy a round trip kayak ride around the Oura Mangrove which has been designated as an Important Cultural Property of Nago.

     

    Running: All Year Round

    Time: Please enquire directly

    Ages: 3 years old and above (*For guests only)

    Meeting Point: Wansaka Oura Park

     

    For more details on the activities available at Kanucha Resort, visit their website here.

  • Kyo no Ondokoro Marutamachi: Rent An Entire Kyoto Townhouse to Yourself

    01.April.2020 | SPOT

    Kyo no Ondokoro Marutamachi is set to open in the Goshominami area of Kyoto on April 25, 2020. The single-accommodation hotel is a complete renovation of a traditional Kyoto-style townhouse.

    Kyo no Ondokoro Marutamachi comes as the 7th branch of hotels from Kyo no Ondokoro. It’s a single building to rent for up to 4 people, who can enjoy taking a soak in the man-made carbonated spring bath which is kind to the skin and hair, using the soft water shower, and getting ready in the spacious makeup corner. It’s the perfect getaway for girl groups travelling together.

    The hotel is in a convenient location for sightseeing in the ancient capital of Kyoto. The building has been completely renovated to adapt to modern lifestyle while still retaining those traditional elements of a Kyoto townhouse that was built during the Meiji Periodーand in an area that’s rich in traditional scenery.

    The lounge space sofa seats are inspired by Japanese rock gardens

    The lounge space, which connects the second-floor bedrooms and the washitsu Japanese-style room, are furnished with unique round sofas. All the rooms open up to each other so guests can enjoy the company of each other during their travel stay.

    Hinoki cypress artificial carbonated spring bath

    Amenities

    The round bath is made from hinoki cypress, and the carbonated water lets you stay glowing and nice and warm after you step out of it. The bathroom is also stocked full of amenities like shampoo courtesy of popular brand THREE.

    Up to four people can apply their makeup together in the makeup corner

    The makeup corner is big enough to sit four people so they can get ready for their day or night out together while chatting.

    Colourful art pieces also adorn the walls of the makeup room, Japanese-style room and elsewhere to add a touch of beauty to them.

     

    If you’re planning a trip to Kyoto with the girls then why not book at Kyo no Ondokoro Marutamachi when it opens on April 25?

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Feel Like You’re Living On Okinawa’s Taketomi Island With HOSHINOYA’s New ‘Workation’ Hotel Plan

    27.March.2020 | SPOT

    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.

  • Dine in Luxury With Truffle Toast at Patisserie SATSUKI in Hotel New Otani Osaka

    22.March.2020 | FOOD

    If you’re looking to indulge yourself during your trip to Japan, and happen to be staying in Osaka, then Hotel New Otani Osaka’s pastry shop Patisserie SATSUKI has you covered with their new “Spring Truffle Toast” which is made with Bianchetto truffles. Only 5 servings are served per dayーand 10 on weekends and public holidays.

     

    The arrival of Japan’s unprecedented bread boom

    In recent years, Japan as a country has seen a boom in the baking and serving of bread. NOGAMI, a bread shop in Osaka, is credited with lighting the fire of the “shokupan” boom, a type of fluffy bread in Japan. This has resulted in many more shops opening selling shokupan. In spring 2017, Hotel New Otani Osaka decided it wanted the people of Kansai to buzz about high quality shokupan too, so it developed its French-inspired “Spring Truffle Toast.” Since releasing, the bread has continued to sell out, and if you don’t place an order for one you won’t be able to get your hands on it. Their tasty truffle toast has returned again this year.

     

    Premium toast with loaded truffle

    Spring Truffle Toast With Bianchetto Truffles – ¥1,500 Per Loaf (Before Tax)

    The ambrosial Spring Truffle Toast lacks nothing when it comes to taste, texture, and smell. The ingredients used to make ordinary bread like eggs, milk, and butter aren’t used for the shop’s Spring Truffle Toast. Instead, strong flour, yeast, water, and finely chopped spring truffles are used. To bring out even more flavour, truffle butter, pure olive oil, and shortening is used.


    The same goes for the crustーeggs and milk aren’t used like in ordinary bread. And to prevent the bread from drying out, more time and labour is put into kneading the dough. A lava pot is used to bake the dough. By using far infrared to heat it, it makes the finished bread nice and chewy.


    The shop’s head chef wanted to ensure that the bread’s fragrant smell is preserved when you take the lid off, and so the entire loaf is lathered in truffle oil, which also gives it a moist taste.

     

    The bread can be toasted and enjoyed on its own, and you’re guaranteed great flavour and smell, but you can take it to the next level by topping it with a fried egg or scrambled egg to create an extraordinary and filling meal.

     

    These truffles can only be harvested in spring

    Truffles are a delicacy in kitchens around the world. The types used for the Spring Truffle Toast are Bianchetto. They are a very popular traditional truffle of Italy and can only be harvested from mid-March to April. As a result, they are extremely rare in Japan, making the toast that much more special.

  • 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.

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