Hida Takayama Travel Guide – Shirakawago, Beautiful Views, Onsen, And More!
09.February.2017 | SPOT
Takayama city in Gifu prefecture’s Hida region is frequently known as Hida Takayama. Only two and a half hours away from Nagoya, it is a great spot for those who wish to go off the beaten path. Here, you will be able to see historic towns, wonderful natural scenery, hot springs, and the World Heritage site Shirakawago. This area is rightly one of Japan’s most popular tourist destinations.
In the heart of Takayama city, you will be able to see well-preserved castle towns and businesses from the Edo period; the historic town is also referred to as Hida’s Little Kyoto. Recently, it has been widely recognized as ”a town with nostalgic Japanese scenery” and many tourists visit from all over. Why not enjoy venturing through Takayama using this guide as a reference!
Japanese Sweets Brand Tohouen Offers Cherry Blossom & Cat-Inspired Spring Manju
09.March.2022 | FOOD
Tohouen, a Japanese confectionary maker in Gifu Prefecture, has begun selling a springtime version of its popular cat-inspired manju. Inspired by the many cats that like to stroll around the shop’s headquarters, the new release includes cherry blossom-colored cat paws.
A traditional sweet in Japan, Manju is made from flour, rice powder, and buckwheat, with a tasty sugar and anko (red bean paste) filling.
Do you think these are too cute to eat?
Cherry Blossom Cat
Release Date: March 2, 2022
Where to Buy: Tohouen Stores, Tohouen Online Shop
Hotel Made Entirely of Ice Opens in Tomamu, Hokkaido
19.January.2022 | SPOT
Hoshino Resort Tomamu, one of the largest stay-and-go snow resorts in Hokkaido, will open a hotel made entirely of ice from January 20 until February 28, 2022. The ceiling, walls, and furniture will all be made of ice, and guests can also enjoy an outdoor ice bath! In addition, a new Ice Dinner will be on offer, where visitors can enjoy a beautiful table surrounded by ice overlooking a forest of white birches while staring up at the starry winter sky.
The seamless dome-shaped ice structure is about 8.5 meters in diameter and 3.5 meters high. Sleeping bags will be provided to guests to keep them warm and comfortable until morning.
Visitors can enjoy a hot spring in the open winter air in Shimukappu Village’s Scan Portopia Yunosawa Onsen.
The aforementioned Ice Dinner features three ice-themed dishes and welcomes guests to sit at a table made entirely of ice surrounded by majestic nature.
The appetizer includes iced vegetables like tomatoes, bell peppers, and cauliflower. Each is dipped in a warm garlic sauce, balancing the sweetness of the veggies, which become more sugary when cold.
The main course, Iceberg Bouillabaisse, is covered with ice. This begins to melt as the soup pot is slowly heated in front of the guests, revealing gorgeous seafood like cod and shrimp. It’s a feast for the eyes as well as the tastebuds!
The frozen fruit dessert mixes strawberries and kiwis with hot wine and a touch of cinnamon. Sweet and sour flavors come together to end the night on a high note.
Running: January 20 – February 28, 2022
Price: ¥28,000 per person, per night (Includes tax, service charge)
Check-in: 21:40-22:00 / Check-out: 8:00
Capacity: 1 group per day (Minimum 1 guest, maximum 2 guests)
Eligibility: Must be elementary school age or older and staying at Tomamu The Tower or Hoshino Resort RISONARE Tomamu
*Must be made at least 1 week in advance.
Boutique Hotel TRUNK to Hold Winter Market with Outdoor Comfort Concept
15.December.2021 | SPOT
From December 20 until December 26, 2021, TRUNK, a boutique hotel in Jingumae, Shibuya, will hold the TRUNK Winter Market 2021. The theme of the event will be ‘outdoor comfort,’ and carrying on last year’s tradition, the hotel will deliver content aiming to warm the body and soul during the cold winter season. The public terrace will be decorated with fire pits and lanterns, creating a space where visitors can fully enjoy the cozy atmosphere. The limited-time event will offer workshops, food, and drinks to be enjoyed with family and friends.
The food menu includes ‘Chicken and Mushroom Pan Stew,’ served in a bread bowl and made with fresh ingredients. Guests can also enjoy a ‘Cheddar Cheese Crepe with Homemade Roast Ham,’ along with plenty of scrumptious desserts. Perfect for the Christmas season, warm eggnog and mulled wine will be served, and kids will love the organic hot chocolate!
Four different workshops will be set up at tents in the public terrace. Kids Gabbeh Painting will teach kids how to design their own Gabbeh, a traditional small fabric woven by nomads in southwestern Iran. After drawing their design, artisans will weave the Gabbeh, and will send it to your home. The ‘Socializing Flower Swag’ workshop allows visitors to make swag using dried flowers that were upcycled from fresh flowers that would otherwise be thrown away. These will be silk-screened and wrapped for a great souvenir. Outdoor Candle is a workshop where visitors can create original leather candle holders.
At Campfire Roast Coffee, guests can roast coffee over an open fire pit. Imagine how good it smells! Afterwards, you can take home your spoils.
There will also be a TRUNK Vintage Store on-site, where hotel staff will sell decorations and furniture no longer needed in the hotel, as well as clothes and other goods.
McCafe by Barista to Offer Cookies & Cream Frappe for Winter Season
05.December.2021 | FOOD
McDonald’s Japan locations with McCafe by Barista installations will begin selling the Cookies & Cream Frappe for a limited time starting December 8, 2021. The McCafe by Barista corner employs full-time baristas serving ‘authentic cafe coffee.’
McCafe by Barista invites guests to enjoy high-quality frappuccinos and smoothies and these locations are offering three unique Frappes this winter. Following the Strawberry Creme Brulee Frappe and normal Creme Brulee Frappe released in late November, the Cookies & Cream Frappe will release soon, filled with rich vanilla sweetness!
Cookies & Cream Frappe Medium: ¥470 / Large: ¥540 (Tax Included)
The drink is a rich blend of creamy vanilla made from Madagascar Bourbon vanilla beans, blended with crunchy Oreo cookie bits and topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce. What’s not to love?
Cookies & Cream Frappe
Release Date: December 8, 2021
Where to Buy: McDonald’s Japan Locations with McCafe by Barista
Official Site: https://www.mcdonalds.co.jp/campaign/winter-frappe/
Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse to Hold 17th Annual Art & Ice Skating Event ArtRink
30.November.2021 | SPOT
Starting in 2005 to add more color to Yokohama’s winter season, the ArtRink event held at Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse combines artworks and ice skating for a bright and colorful way to spend a cold day. The 17th annual event will be held from December 4, 2021, until February 20, 2022, and will feature two artists: Moeno Ootsu and unpis, both taking part for the first time. The theme for this year’s art is ‘Stepping Out in Slippers.’
Message from the Artists
For this event, we’ve created an everyday space, ‘home,’ in a very not-everyday space: ArtRink in Yokohama.
Guests should come on an adventure that begins at the front door, then dance on ice through the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and more!
You might discover something new among the familiar furnishings and snippets of daily life.
We hope that once you leave ArtRink and return home, you’ll try to keep dancing from time to time.
Just have fun. Dance with us!
Whether you’re wearing skates, sneakers, or slippers…
Just take a step and have the best possible time this winter.
ArtRink at Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse
Running: December 4, 2021 – February 20, 2022
Location: Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse Event Space
Actresses Masami Nagasawa and Kaho Model LOWRYS FARM 2021 Winter Looks
17.November.2021 | FASHION
Fashion brand LOWRYS FARM has released a new Winter visual and promotional video featuring popular actresses Nagasawa Masami and Kaho as models.
Yuni Yoshida served as art director on the new campaign. The winter collection is filled with items to appeal to the widest range of women in the hopes of attracting newcomers to the brand.
The main visual features Masami Nagasawa and Kaho wearing LOWRYS FARM’s most popular knitwear along with memorable contrasting orange lines. Which of these new pieces would you like to add to your winter rotation?
Spend the Winter in a Unique Shinshu Snow Hut with Limited-Time Package
17.November.2021 | SPOT
A part of Hoshino Resorts, KAI Alps is an incredible hot spring inn located in Omachi, Nagano prefecture, at the foot of the Northern Japanese Alps. In February 2022, the hotel will allow guests to book the Shinshu Snow Hut Experience, where visitors can enjoy the winter in a traditional snow-packed hut surrounded by bamboo lights. This area is one of the snowiest places in the region, and the locals have plenty of knowledge when it comes to getting through the cold.
Nagano prefecture is often called the ‘Space prefecture’ for its beautiful starry skies. Inside the snow hut, guests will be surrounded by lights, and bamboo lanterns will light the way. These gentle lights are perfect for the white of winter, despite the cold.
Exclusively for this package, a kotatsu (heated table) will be placed inside the huts, and guests can wear traditional local clothing perfect for the weather. Sweet sake made at the Hokuan Sake Distillery in Omachi City and local rice cakes with Nozawa pickled greens, a Shinshu specialty, will also be served up.
How would you like to partake in this traditional experience?
Shinshu Snow Hut Experience
Running: February 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
Price: ¥2,000 per person (Tax & Service Charge included)
Reservations: Make on the website at least one week in advance
Capacity: 1 group per session (2-4 people per group)
Location: KAI Alps – Hoshino Resorts
Hours: 19:00-19:45 / 20:00-20:45
Limited to Hotel Guests Only
Accommodation Plan Overlooking ‘Tokyo Dome City Illuminations’ and Matching Collab Cocktail Announced
28.October.2021 | SPOT
Tokyo Dome Hotel has announced that a special accommodation plan overlooking the ‘Tokyo Dome City Illuminations, which will be lit up between November 5 2021 and February 28 2022, and a matching collaboration cocktail will be available between November 5 and January 10.
Room Example: Deluxe Double Room
A spectacular view from the rooms! Sample image of Tokyo Dome City Illuminations
Tokyo Dome City Winter Illuminations Collab Cocktail ‘Winter Bright’
Bar ‘2000’ Interior
The event theme this year is “Lights you’ll want to snap a picture of.” Tokyo Dome City, including the giant 15m Christmas tree, will be decked out in over 230,000 champagne gold LED lights which can change between white, red, blue, purple, and orange. Photo frame shaped photo-spots will be spread across five locations throughout Tokyo Dome City, full of gimmicks to offer amazing photo opportunities! In addition to the beautiful lights, there will be exciting and playful light displays to encourage visitors to take photos and have fun at the same time.
With this new accommodation plan, you can enjoy the beauty of the illuminations from the comfort of a private hotel room. The offer includes two one-time-use amusement park ride tickets per person, giving guests the opportunity to visit their favorite attractions while taking in the fantastic night view that can only be seen over the winter period.
The Tokyo Dome City illuminations can be fully appreciated from bar ‘2000,’ who will be offering a limited-time collab cocktail during the event period. The ‘Winter Bright’ cocktail is made using strawberry and peach liquor, orange juice, and tonic water, with the red, white, and orange layers that match perfectly with the backdrop of glowing illuminations. Why not visit and spend an evening sipping on this fruity cocktail while enjoying the beautiful winter view?
Tokyo Dome City Winter Illumination Accommodation Plan
Duration: November 5 2021 ~ January 10 2022
30 rooms are available per day.
Official Site. https://www.tokyodome-hotels.co.jp/
Collaboration Cocktail “Winter Bright”
Availability: November 5 2021 ~ January 10 2022
Tokyo Dome City Winter Illuminations
Duration: November 5 2021 ~ February 28 2022
※The main tree will be displayed until January 10 2022
Location: Tokyo Dome City
Hours: 17:00 ~ 24:00 ※Subject to change based on social conditions and sunset time.
GU x UNDERCOVER Collab for Second Time, First Kidswear Launched
17.October.2021 | FASHION
Affordable clothing retailer GU is teaming up with top Japanese fashion brand UNDERCOVER for the pair’s second collaboration. The collection will be available at GU stores nationwide and online starting October 29, 2021.
First Kidswear Product Lineup
Started by Jun Takahashi in 1990, UNDERCOVER blends various aspects of art, music, and subculture into its constantly evolving collections.
Following the popular Spring/Summer 2021 collection, this new collaboration mixes UNDERCOVER’s unique and original worldview with GU’s concept of ‘freedom.’ Together, they have come up with the keyword ‘FREEDOM/NOISE’ to describe the new pieces.
This new Fall/Winter collection features original patterns, graphics, and characters created by Takahashi exclusively for GU. Each item was designed with the style of UNDERCOVER in mind, giving more of a streetwear feel. The full lineup includes men’s and women’s seasonal wear, scarves and gloves for fall and winter, and even pajamas and loungewear. This also marks the first time kidswear has been released in a collaboration between the two.
GU x UNDERCOVER
Release Date: October 29, 2021
Where to Buy: GU Stores Nationwide and Online
(*Products may vary depending on the store.)
GU Web Commercial Features New Cast in 2021 Fall/Winter Collection
10.September.2021 | FASHION
Japanese fast-fashion retailer GU is promoting the 2021 Fall/Winter Collection with a new cast and new image. In a fun and goofy web commercial recently uploaded to YouTube, the five faces of the collection are seen rocking some of the new pieces available now.
In addition to Ayami Nakajo and Sota Fukushi, three new cast members–Noritake Kinashi, Chara, and Yutaro–are joining the 2021 Fall/Winter campaign. The commercial highlights GU’s stylish and warm knit cardigans, which are currently a huge trend for autumn.
Using these unique individuals, GU hopes to show that these new pieces can fit anyone of any age, gender, or size. Chara and Noritake Kinashi show that adults can still have fun with their fashion, while Yutaro claims that fashion isn’t just following trends, but accentuating your individuality.
In an upcoming commercial set to air on television in October, Ayumi Nakajo, Chara, and Yutaro will be shown in more trending knitwear, while a November commercial will feature all five cast members in easy-to-wear and stylish winter pants.
Which of these new pieces would you like to add to your wardrobe?
GU Web Commercial ‘FashiON!’
Hankyu Men’s Chooses Comedian Eiko Kano as Face of New Collection
31.August.2021 | FASHION
Comedian and singer Eiko Kano has been chosen as the new icon for Hankyu Men’s 2021 collection. The new concept, “WELCOME TO THE NEW WORLD ~RESPECT FOR THE NORTH~,” is heavily inspired by life in the north, and the collection will feature a variety of useful products and services from fashion to lifestyle.
PERFECT LOVE～HANKYUMEN’S VER～
With a humor that transcends age, Eiko Kano has been appointed as the new icon for Hankyu Men’s 2021 collection, in the hopes that he can raise people’s spirits during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to the visuals, an original music video has also been released to convey the northern theme.
Kano originally debuted as the lyricist and composer for band 50TA as a prank segment on popular TV Asahi variety show London Hearts. His first album hit #9 on the Oricon charts, with the most popular track being PERFECT LOVE. His new arrangement of the song, PERFECT LOVE HANKYU MEN’S 2021AW Version, was made for this new collaboration.
HANKYU MEN’S 21AW
Hankyu Men’s Osaka: https://www.hankyu-dept.co.jp/mens/
Hankyu Men’s Tokyo: https://www.hankyu-dept.co.jp/mens-tokyo/
Shohei Otani is Brand Ambassador for BOSS 2021 Autumn/Winter Collection
31.August.2021 | FASHION
In a new promotion, BOSS is previewing their upcoming 2021 Autumn/Winter Collection with a surprising new brand ambassador: Los Angeles Angels pitcher/batter Shohei Ohtani.
Clad in BOSS’s uniquely elegant pieces, Ohtani shows off casual styles and new looks possible only through creative combinations. From a cool leather jacket to a sophisticated wool coat, each detail has been carefully considered for quality, to ensure that a man wearing BOSS is ready for anything.
Wearing the newest BOSS collection, Shohei Ohtani shows off two distinctive looks.
In the first look, Ohtani is rocking a new leather bomber jacket from the Autumn/Winter collection. Made from 100% sheepskin, the piece is smooth to the touch and features luxurious trim, ribbed knitting on the color and sleeves, and plenty of other small details throughout. The structured collar and dark green color make it a perfect choice for the sophisticated man.
For the second look, the baseball star is clad in a relaxed wool coat. This mature and elegant style is achievable with this coat alone, worn here with simple white pants. A versatile piece, wear it over a suit when heading to the office, or with a casual outfit on the go.
How do you feel about the new BOSS 2021 Autumn/Winter collection? Would these pieces fit your personal style?
BOSS x Shohei Otani
Official Site: https://www.hugoboss.com/jp/men/