Go Skiing This Golden Week in Japan at Nekoma Ski Resort

25.March.2020 | SPOT

Nekoma Ski Resort, which is located on the northern slope of the Urabandai area, is holding a special spring ski event from March 30, 2020 called “Haru Nekoma ~Nekoma GO! GO! GO!”

The spring season at Nekoma Ski Resort is the time to enjoy the compacted snow berms, with lots of different kinds of berms to try out. So skiers can enjoy the snow berms that pile up in the early morning, the resort is open from from as early as 5:55, and there’s also snow lifts, so they can maximise their piste riding experience to the fullest. Skiers can enjoy the full view of Mount Bandaiーwhich is officially listed as one of the 100 most famous mountains in Japanーas well as Lake Inawashiro too as they hit the downhill ski trails.


Haru Nekoma ~Nekoma GO! GO! GO!

Running: March 30, 2020 – May 6, 2020

Times: [Weekdays] 7:30-15:00 / [Weekends & Public Holidays] 5:55-15:00

Lift Price: [1 Day Ticket] Adults ¥3,818 / Junior & High School Students ¥3,091 / Elementary School Students ¥1,909 (Before Tax)

Note: Dates and times subject to change depending on weather conditions


Ride the springtime pistes of Alts Bandai too

For the 2019-2020 season, you can ride the snow footpath that connects Nekoma Ski Resort to Alts Bandai. Go through the gate leading to it, walk through the Japanese beech trees for about 15 minutes, and you’ll arrive at the pistes in the deepest part of Alts Bandai which opens up to a spectacular view of Mount Bandai and the town of Inawashiro. Alts Bandai will be shut from March 29, but since there is still plenty of snow to ski down in the high-up pistes even in April, some of the lifts will still be operated. Enjoy a springtime walk and a springtime ski with the beautiful scenery before you with this special ski route.


Running: From March 20, 2020 until the snow melts

Gate Times: 10:00-13:30 (Last entries from Nekoma Ski Resort at 12:00)

Price: Free

Available Courses: Frozen 1, 2, 3 / Peak Lower 3 / Peak Lower 4

Note: A valid day ticket from Nekoma Ski Resort is required


Nekoma Terrace

Bask in the springtime weather at the foot of the pistes in the Nekoma Terrace which has its own bar. After an early morning ski, take a break and relax at the terrace with a drink in hand and soak up the scenery around you as the temperature warms through the day.


Spring Nekoma Terrace

Time: 10:00-14:00

Price: Alcohol ¥454 / Soft Drinks ¥182 (Before Tax)

Location: Nekoma Ski Resort Centre House


Spring discount tickets are also available, which can also be used at Alts Bandaiーwhich has the biggest pistes in Japanーuntil March 29. Ride across 189 hectares and enjoy 26 courses.


Spring Discount Tickets

Available: February 1, 2020 – May 6, 2020

Valid: March 1, 2020 – May 6, 2020

Price: Adults (20-23 Years) ¥20,000 / Junior & High School Students ¥10,909 / Elementary School Students ¥10,000 (Before Tax)

Sold at: Alts Bandai / Nekoma Ski Resort Official Homepage / Alts Bandai and Nekoma Ski Resort sites


  • Witness Mount Fuji and Fully Bloomed Cherry Blossoms at HOSHINOYA Fuji

    24.March.2020 | FOOD / SPOT

    HOSHINOYA Fuji is offering a very special Hanami flower-viewing experience for guests from April 7 to 21 this year where they can observe the springtime cherry blossoms against the backdrop of Mount Fuji. Offers include cherry blossom desserts, a glamping experience inside a cabin eating curry while enjoying the scenery of the outdoors, a private outdoor dining dinner, and more.


    HOSHINOYA Fuji hails as Japan’s first luxury camping resort. Located on the hill overlooking Lake Kawaguchi near Mount Fuji. It offers the ultimate glamping experience, with a large outdoor terrace surrounded by nature, cabins that can be enjoyed throughout the year, and more. It’s difficult to go out and enjoy the cherry blossoms on the streets right now, but if you’d still like to enjoy spring safely with your special someone, then HOSHINOYA Fuji has created a special springtime experience.


    Sakura Apéro: Witness the cherry blossoms during sunset with desserts in hand

    “Sakura Apéro” is a chance to take a breather and enjoy all the beauties nature has to offer. It is held in the cabin area of HOSHINOYA Fuji under the towering cherry blossom trees. Sit back, relax, and enjoy an evening treat of cherry blossom flavoured bean paste rice cake, a cup of matcha milk or a matcha cocktail, and a front row seat of the cherry blossoms as the sun sets.


    Hanami on the terrace

    HOSHINOYA Fuji’s cabina area is built in such a way so that guests can enjoy an outdoor experience. One third of the cabin has a terrace area with an enormous window that looks out into the natural landscape. A fireplace and kotatsu is available so you can still enjoy the outdoors even inside while relaxing with a comfortable stay into the late nights. Some of the cabins offer a view of the surrounding cherry blossom trees, inviting spring into your room.


    Curry made on one of Mount Fuji’s lava plates

    At HOSHINOYA Fuji, guests can enjoy outdoor cooking in luxury be it in one of the cabins or the dining restaurant in the forest. Those who want to relax in a cabin are recommended the “Glamping Curry” at the terrace. You grill beef and vegetables yourself on a Mount Fuji lava plate and can combine five spices of your choice to create your own original flavour. In the outdoor dining area, which is exclusive to groups of guests, game meat is also served, such as boar and deer, as well as seasonal vegetables prepared in a dutch oven. For dessert, there’s cherry blossom flavoured ice cream. You can also make your own strawberry sauce using fresh strawberries over a fire to pour over your ice cream before topping it with matcha crumbles.


    Due to the ongoing situation surrounding the coronavirus, all guest rooms and public areas at all HOSHINOYA facilities are being thoroughly cleaned in line with the recommended guidelines to ensure the health and safety of guests and staff. Alcohol gel is available at all HOSHINOYA facilities, and staff’s health and hygiene are being consistently examined.

  • O Park OGOSE: Saitama’s Hotel Resort Opens New Sauna Suite Cabin

    11.March.2020 | SPOT

    BIO RESORT HOTEL & SPA O Park OGOSE, a hotel resort in Iruma, Saitama, is opening a new accommodation facility on March 12, 2020 called the “Sauna Suite Cabin.”

    This single-building cabin brings to mind a sauna cabin of Northern Europe. The entire interior is decked out in beautiful warm wood. It’s roomy and fully equipped with furniture, a Finnish-style private sauna, jaccuzi, stove, and other bits.


    Guests can enjoy a contrast bath experience with the sauna and open-air bath, as well as entertain themselves with a glamping-style dinner in the spacious outdoor dining area.

    To make the Sauna Suite Cabin’s atmosphere even more enjoyable, O Park OGOSE teamed up with Finland’s oldest textile brand, Finlayson, which turned 200-years-old this year, to bring in some of their elephant design furniture and products, including bed linen, towels, and more. Their “ELEFANTTI” line-up is popular even in Japan.

    In the bedroom drawers, their are even ELEFANTTI notebooks and letter sets which guests are free to take and use.


    If you’re looking for a private sauna experience away from the busy city while in Japan, then be sure to check out the new Sauna Suite Cabin at BIO-RESORT HOTEL & SPA O Park OGOSE.

  • UMI HOTEL ANNEX: The New Luxury Hotel Opens in Shizuoka’s Resort Area Usami

    09.March.2020 | SPOT

    Usami is known as the resort area of Ito in Shizuoka Prefecture, and it’s here that the new luxury relaxation hotel UMI HOTEL ANNEX, which boasts a horizon-stretched ocean view, has openedーtogether with the new restaurant and bar known as The SEA.


    UMI HOTEL ANNEX, a hotel for relaxation

    UMI HOTEL ANNEX offers a breathtaking experience for guests with its ocean view, the sounds of the waves, and the natural scent of trees that envelop it. The hotel is on the small side, built with just six rooms, but this opens the door for greater hospitality, consideration, and comfort. If you want to wind down from a long day of travelling, need some adequate sleep, and wish to get away from the hustle and bustle of Japan’s busy cities, then UMI HOTEL ANNEX has you covered.


    Enjoy a sweeping ocean view

    Upon entering a guest room, you are met with an unobstructed view of the sea. All rooms are also equipped with mirrorsーwhich span the entire wallーwhich bring the view of the ocean into your own room too. This means you can sleep soundly while surrounded by the sea, which is just 30 seconds from the hotel. *4 rooms of the rooms offer the ocean view


    Rooms also have a pillar made from hiba cypress, a type of tree symbolic of Aomori Prefecture. The pillars not only serve to support the structure of the hotel, but also wrap the room with the natural scent of timber. Hiba is a strong antibacterial and pesticide wood, and its aroma also has a relaxing effect. 


    Open-air infinity pool baths with water flowing from the source

    The roof is decked out with infinity pool baths with water flowing in from the source. Everything in and around the pools is made from the same Aoyama hibi cypress, including the pools themselves, meaning all rooms enjoy that warm smell of cypress. The pool joins together with Usami Bay, which stretches 1km, offering a feeling of openness like no other. There are even waterproof sofas in the pool rooms for more relaxation.


    Amenities galore for a quiet night’s sleep

    Amenities offered include items by Sansatia, a Bali-based natural cosmetics company. There’s also an original line of room wear made from a special Japanese gauze which can also be used in the surrounding area outside too. The linen is provided by Imabari Towel, and the beds by Simmons. There’s also bath salts, shoehorns, and more.


    All guest rooms are equipped with pots, microwaves, refrigerators, irons, and trouser pressers. There’s also coin operated laundry machines, accommodating for those longer stays.

  • Okinawa’s New Hot Spring Resort Lequ Okinawa Chatan Spa & Resort Opens

    08.March.2020 | FOOD / SPOT

    Lequ Okinawa Chatan Spa & Resort is the first hotel resort from Vessel Hotels. Operating on the concept of “Loving Yourself, Family, and the Town,” the hotel opened in the town of Chatan in Nakagami, Okinawa on March 1, 2020.


    Rooftop Infinity Pool & Cafe/Bar

    Sat atop the hotel roof is a spa which houses an infinity pool that offers an unbroken view of Chatan as well as the picturesque sunset in the evenings. There’s also a 3-meter high infinity pool, jacuzzis, and more, offering a luxurious space to relax.

    Located to the side of the pool is a cafe and bar that serves a selection of original cocktails and fruity drinks as well as light food. When the sun sets and the evening settles, the pool lights are turned on, creating a relaxed atmosphere. Enjoy a cup of Japanese sake or one of the refreshing cocktails while staring down at nighttime Chatan.


    Vessel Hotel’s First Natural Hot Spring

    Chatan Onsen hails as Vessel Hotel’s first-ever natural onsen hot spring. The water is drawn from 1,400m underground, which provides relief and relaxation from a day of sightseeing and travelling. The hot spring has towering windows, and there’s also a sauna for both men and women.


    SPA SOLANI OKINAWA CHATAN – The Relaxation Salon

    SPA SOLANI OKINAWA CHATAN is a “relaxation salon” which offers a Hawaiian-style spa experience using original products made using ingredients sourced in Okinawa. Oils are made with carefully-selected organic ingredients for that natural feeling. There are body treatments, messages, quick treatments, and more.


    Filling Breakfasts at the Resort’s Kitchen

    Vessel Hotel has brought its “Happy Breakfast Project” to Lequ Okinawa Chatan Spa & Resort. Tuck into a variety of meals prepared with Okinawan ingredients, or try one of the household classic Okinawan breakfasts. Whatever you have, you are guaranteed the Okinawan experience to start your day off.


    The restaurant’s original souffle hamburger is made with a mix of Okinawan black cattle beef and Agu pork. The souffle is made in-house and prepared by the hotel guests’ hands. Food is also served in Okinawan yamuchin porcelain.

  • Stay at Miyazaki Prefecture’s Phoenix Seagaia Resort For the Ultimate Springtime Experience

    07.February.2020 | FOOD / SPOT

    Spring is the season for relaxationーa time for kicking back and letting your mind and body chill in its cool embrace. If you’re looking for the ultimate relaxation this spring, say, to be treated like a princess, then look no further than Phoenix Seagaia Resort.


    Located in Japan’s Miyazaki Prefecture, this resort offers the perfect springtime experience, with an all-you-can-eat dessert buffet, a walk through the flower-filled garden, massages, a bath with an ocean view, and much more.


    All-you-can-eat dessert buffet with 50 different treats – Available Spring Only

    The pastry chefs at Sheraton have poured their hearts and souls into this ambrosial line-up. Fifty beautifully colourful delights make up this all-you-can-eat dessert buffet, which features a bountiful of berries such as strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries. The line-up will change for the second month of this limited-time service to introduce a different fifty items. That makes 100 options over the course of two months. Even better, all the soft drinks are all-you-can-drink too.


    Sheraton Sweets Buffet” Very Very Berry”

    Running: March 1, 2020 – April 30, 2020 (Except March 22, 2020)

    Time: 14:00-15:30

    Location: “Pine Terrace” Garden Buffet at Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort (Floor 1F)

    Price: Ages 13+ ¥2,500 / Ages 4-12 ¥1,250

    Information Page: https://seagaia.co.jp/article/641

    *Members of the Segaia Premium Members Club receive a discount: Ages 13+ ¥2,300 / Ages 4-12 ¥1,150

    *Those looking to eat lunch at the Sheraton restaurant can pay the following price on the day only: Ages 13+ ¥1,000 / Ages 4-12 ¥625


    Drink tea and feel like a princess around the pool

    “THE LIVING GARDEN” is a garden area attached to Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort, where guests can enjoy a “springtime garden party” in a gorgeous, Instagrammable-looking space. Purchase a “Picnic Basket” set for takeout and enjoy some well-deserved princess teatime either on one of the sofas surrounding the pool or in a gazebo, the latter of which you can rent.


    FLOWER LIVING ~Spring Garden Party~
    Running: February 21, 2020 – May 24, 2020
    Price: Free (For Sheatron guests only)
    Information Page: https://seagaia.co.jp/article/641


    Hog that breathtaking ocean view all to yourself

    Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort’s favourable location places it by the sea, meaning all rooms guests stay in enjoy an ocean view. There are also two very special rooms called “Corner Suites” which boast a panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean from the bathtub. The blue sea and sky can be enjoyed from every part of the room too, not just the bath, meaning everyone can enjoy their own private little resort experience without being intruded upon by anyone else.


    Special Club Suite – Grand View Bath

    Location: Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort – Club Floor (Floors 39/41) 109㎡

    No. of People: 2

    Information Page: https://seagaia.co.jp/hotel/sgor/club-floor/20


    Unwind at the spa

    Experience true luxury at the Banyan Tree Spa, a pioneering Asian spa brand that was established in Phuket, Thailand. Enjoy nature and beauty come together in your treatment with quiet music, natural light from the towering windows, and the scent of original essential oils.


    Banyan Tree Spa

    Location: Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort (Floor 39)

    Opening Hours: 10:00-20:00 (Reservation Only)

    Information Page: https://seagaia.co.jp/hss/254


    Eye-catching artisanal cocktails to complete your spring evenings

    Left: Berry Rose Bouquet / Right: Cherry Blossom Tonic

    The KURO BAR offers an unbroken view of the lit-up garden area. Sip on one of their delicious and expensive-looking cocktails, like the “Berry Rose Bouquet,” a full-bodied beverage made with a tea liqueur, rose syrup and cranberry juice. Or you can order the “Cherry Blossom Sonic” at Pacifica, a cocktail lounge with live music. This drink is fragrant with cherry blossom and mixes together cherry blossom liqueur and gin.


    Flower Cocktails

    Available: March 1, 2020 – April 30, 2020

    Prices: Berry Rose Bouquet ¥1,300 / Cherry Blossom Tonic ¥1,600


    Taste the flavours of a Miyazaki Prefecture spring

    At the resort’s main restaurant, Pine Terrace, they are serving a buffet-style menu with seasonal springtime ingredients. Enjoy a line-up of typical Miyazaki flavours, like shimaura sea bream and steamed kumquat white wine, spring cabbage and sakura shrimp spaghetti aglio e olio, tempura, and more.


    Pine Terrace’s Spring Dinner Buffet

    Available: March 1, 2020 – April 30, 2020

    Time: 17:30-22:00 (Last Orders 21:30)

    Prices: Ages 13+ ¥4,500 / Ages 4-12 ¥2,250

    *Prices for the dinner buffet will change from the start of April to: Ages 13+ ¥4,600 / Ages 4-12 ¥2,300

    Information Page: https://seagaia.co.jp/article/641#paragraph_1557


    Make some springtime memories this year at the incredible Seagaiaシーガイアで春の楽しい思い出を作ろう!


    *Listed prices include tax. Photos are for illustrative purposes only.

  • Fukushima 50 Cast and Director Premiere Film About the Nuclear Disaster to Fukushima Locals

    26.January.2020 | MOVIE

    Fukushima 50 is an upcoming film based on the non-fiction book On the Brink: The Inside Story of Fukushima Daiichi by Japanese journalist Ryūshō Kadota. It will be released on March 6, 2020.


    The film will discuss the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster that occurred after the 9.0 magnitude Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011 which stands as the largest ever earthquake recorded in Japanese history.


    The film’s title refers to the pseudonym given by the media to the 50 employees that remained on the site after the nuclear power plant disaster. It will show the reality that the group faced that only they knew from being inside the plant and in the face of death.

    Japanese actors Kōichi Satō and Ken Watanabe, who star in the upcoming film, held a campaign where they visited various locations across Fukushima Prefecture. Satō, as well as the film’s director Setsurō Wakamatsu and executive producer at KADOKAWA Shinichiro Inoue, made a courtesy call to Tomioka, a town which is still difficult for residents to return to. Tomioka is in fact one of the settings featured in Fukushima 50, and so before the films releases in March 2020ー10 years since the disaster struckーthe cast and staff went to pay their respects to the locals still living there.


    The film premiered at Koriyama Theatre in Fukushima where Kōichi Satō, Ken Watanabe, and director Setsurō Wakamatsu all made an appearance. The event began with cast and staff announcing that they first wanted the people of Fukushima to watch the film before they made their comments. This was the first time the film had been shown to the general public, less than two months from its official release.

    Satō, Wakamatsu, and Inoue’s appearance in Tomioka took place on January 22. Executive producer Inoue was the first to greet the people. “We have come to Tomioka today to officially announce to you the completion of the film Fukushima 50. We hope everybody, including the mayor, will see it as soon as soon as possible.” The director Wakamatsu followed, saying: “We are gratefully indebted to the people of Tomioka for letting us interview you before the film shoot. We wish for you all to see it and for it to be a film you believe the rest of the world should see.”


    Satō said: “I believe there will be many people who look back on [the incident] and remember it like it was yesterday rather than something that happened a long time ago. I think there will be people who do not wish to remember as well. However, the film needed to be powerful in order for the memories of the incident to not fade away. The film may bring back pain, but I ask you to view the film as necessary so we can pass down the reality of what happened to future generations.”


    Director Wakamatsu commented on Yonomori, a park in Tomioka and one of the filming locations which people are currently prohibited from entering due to the high radiation levels. “We filmed a crucial ‘cherry blossom scene’ there. Cherry blossoms are a thing of beauty, but it was really complicated when I thought about how these cherry blossoms cannot be seen by anyone.” Satō weighed in on this point. Speaking about his character Toshio Izaki, he said: “I don’t know to what extent his complex feelings are conveyed regarding his mental state when observing the cherry blossoms, but I hope that the beauty and transience of the cherry blossoms ties itself to the thought of never wanting this incident to happen again with those to watch the film.”


    The Tomioka town mayor Miyamoto commenting on the team having filmed in Tomioka. “As living witnesses, for us to be able to pass this film down to future generations, I greatly felt that I wished for them to shoot the film, rather than permitting them to do it. I don’t believe Tomioka has been used as a film location or such before, so I want to go ahead with doing PR, both myself and as a town, so that everybody can see it.”

    The courtesy call at Koriyama Theatre in Fukushima’s city of Koriyama took place the following day on January 23. Satō said before the audience: “I’m overwhelmed that we’ve finally come to this moment. By no means is this a film I could ask you to enjoy. I think there are some scenes in there that are very painful to watch, but I ask kindly that you see it through to the end.”

    Watanabe spoke with strong words, saying: “There are many people whose lives were unfortunately changed by this incidentーpeople who cannot return to Fukushima. When we began filming, me and the rest of the cast and staff said that we would be unable to shoulder the extent of what actually happened, but we should dive head first into the movie, and understand even a little of what those people went through. From there we went and finished the film, and now we’re going around promoting it, starting with this city, and for that I am proud. This film absolutely enables one to feel connected to the future in some way.”


    Director Wakamatsu followed up this comment. “We started this film project five years ago, and at last it’s finished. I am proud that we are able to say that as well as promote the film here in Fukushima. We set out to make this film faithfully and with sincerity.”

    At the end of the talk, everybody gave their final comments. Satō said: “Let’s change this negative legacy into a different kind of legacy, even if just a little.” Watanabe said: “In my heart, I feel I hadn’t actively supported Fukushima until now. But, I believe I have been able to deliver that now to all of the people of Fukushima, doing what I’m best at. I hope it’s something you can get behind.”


    After their closing statements, the cast and director were given a huge round of applause by the people of Fukushima.


    ©2020 “Fukushima 50” Production Committee

  • During the summer holiday period between July and September, Aquamarine Fukushima is holding a range of events and supporting children to learn about marine life independently. Come join in the festival fun with goldfish scooping games, quoits, and much more. There will also be a fair from August 11 to 15. 

    Aquamarine Fukushima Rare Creatures Picture Book <Complete the pictures!>

    Dates: July 13 ー September 1

    Aquamarine Fukushima is displaying rare creatures and ecological systems. The children can write the name of the new creatures they discover in their own picture book. Once they have completed the picture book, it will be an original record of discoveries. As the children record the features of the animals and other organisms they discover, adults will also find this information beneficial when looking around the exhibitions. 


    How to take part: Pick up an application form at the entranceway on floor 1 of the aquarium main building (Honkan). The answers will all be distributed in one place. (Subject to change).


    Summer Aquamarine Fukushima: Children’s Answer Room

    Open: July 20 ー September 1 

    Here, all the answers to the children’s puzzles about Aquamarine life are presented in panels and explained in easy terms. Along with the picture book where the children can record interesting life forms, this is the perfect way to support independent exploration. 


    Goldfish scooping and Fun Fair

    You can purchase goldfish that were bred at the aquarium, or catch them yourself at the goldfish scooping area. There is also a games corner where you and your children can enjoy a range of fun activities such as quoits. 

    The goldfish building, which just opened last year, will be bringing back its 60cm-large Goldfish Nebuta lantern. To raise spirits during Japan’s O-bon lantern festival, the aquarium will be open for much longer so that a lantern event can be held in the evening. 


    Iwaki Traditional Vegetable Marché

    Open: August 17 ー 18 (11:00 ー 14:00)

    Head to the Aquamarine Aguri located outside Aquamarine Fukushima to purchase everyday vegetables as well as Japanese vegetables that have been grown through the cooperation of Iwaki farmers and Iwaki city. The traditional Iwaki marché sells mainly traditional summer vegetables such as okuimo potatoes, yardlong beans, beefsteak plants, kojiroi cucumbers, and much more. From local vegetables to healthy goods, everything is produced at Aquamarine Fukushima. 


    Iwaki Fireworks Festival 

    Enjoy the sight of fireworks soaring through the sky before your very eyes from the Aquarium grounds. This large-scale fireworks event will run until 9 pm on August 3.


    Running: August 11 ー 15 (8pm) . 

    ※ Last entries: Up to 1hr before closing time. 


    Come visit Aquamarine Fukushima for a perfect fun-filled day with the family!

  • Hoshino Resort TOMAMU Ski Area Introduces New ‘Auto Gate System’

    09.October.2018 | SPOT

    The Hoshino Resort TOMAMU Ski Area, where you can enjoy one of the best powder snow experiences in Hokkaido, is introducing a new ‘auto gate system’ for the 2018-2019 winter season.

    Japan’s ski population was a staggering 18 million in 1998, but today it’s less than half. But the fine quality of snow at Japan’s ski locations has garnered much attention abroad.

    The new system being introduced enables people from all around the world regardless of nationality to purchase a lift ticket in advance on the resort’s homepage by credit card payment. This will save on waiting times to purchase a ticket on the day as guests will have already bought their tickets meaning they can board the lift without visiting the counter. They need only scan the QR code at the Pickup Box before which will have been given to them upon buying a ticket. This will issue a lift ticket.

    All gondola lifts will be fitted with gates that read the IC chips on your issued ticket. Simply insert the ticket and head through the gate. This too allows for smoother and quicker access and guests will not have to show their ticket to staff every time.


    If you’re never tried winter sports in Japan then why not visit Hoshino Resort TOMAMU for a stress free experience?

  • 6 Winter Sports Locations in Karuizawa – Where the Netflix Reality TV Show “Terrace House” is Filmed

    08.October.2018 | FEATURES / SPOT

    We previously covered 10 popular tourist spots and 7 must-visit cafes in Karuizawa where the Japanese reality TV show Terrace House, available on Netflix, was filmed.


    In this article we’re taking a look at 6 locations picked up by the show where you can experience and enjoy winter sports in Karuizawa.


    Karuizawa Kazakoshi Park Ice Arena

    This is the ice ring where Tsubasa from the show trains for ice hockey. You can rent ice skates there and enjoy free time where all people can slide around the arena or you can get involved in any of the ongoing events. They even hold figure skating and ice hockey tournaments there.



    Karuizawa Kazakoshi Park Ice Arena

    Address: 182-3 Nagakura, Karuizawa-machi, Kitasaku District, Nagano Prefecture

    Opening Hours: 8:00am-11:00pm

    Open All Year Round.

    TEL: 0267-48-3626

    Website: http://www.kazakoshi-park.jp/ice-arena/


    Kerachi Skate Rink

    This is where Shion and Tsubasa go on a date together. An outdoor ice rink surrounded by a forest, Kerachi Skate Rink is managed by Hoshino Resorts and is open only during wintertime. Since the skate rink is enveloped by trees, you can enjoy the chirping of the birds and the view of Mount Asuma as you skate. The cafe there serves hot drinks which you can sip on the round benches on top of the ice to warm yourself up.



    Kerachi Skate Rink

    Address: 2148 Nagakura, Karuizawa-machi, Kitasaku District, Nagano Prefecture

    Running: October 19, 2018 – March 10, 2019 (*Subject to change depending on weather conditions)

    Opening Hours: 10:00am-4:00pm

    TEL: 0267-45-7777

    Website: http://www.hoshino-area.jp/archives/area/skate


    Karuizawa Prince Hotel Ski Resort

    This is the ski resort where Taka and Yuudai had fun snowboarding. It’s rife with outdoor activities so you can get your fill of nature. As well as skiing and snowboarding, they also bring out the zip-lines, lifts and four-wheeler buggies during the green season. You can also enjoy a spot of shopping, bowling and other thing after skiing, making it a great day out for the family.



    Karuizawa Prince Hotel Ski Resort

    Address: Karuizawa, Karuizawa-machi, Kitasaku District, Nagano Prefecture

    Running: November 3, 2018 – March 31, 2019

    TEL: 0267-42-5588

    Website: http://www2.princehotels.co.jp/ski/karuizawa/


    Yunomaru Ski Area

    This is the ski resort that Shohei took Ami to. Enjoyed for its powder snow, Yunomaru Ski Area boasts a wide location where you can gaze at the Northern Alps. They also have sleds and a boat park. As well as this, there are hot spring facilities and a roadside station in the surrounding area which are great places to stop by on your way back.



    Yunomaru Ski Area

    Address: Mihari Yunomaru, Tomi, Nagano Prefecture

    TEL: 0268-62-1515

    Website: http://yunomaru.co.jp/


    Resort Lodge Suzumoto

    This is the lodge that Taka visited, situated 1300m high with the fresh air. Here you can enjoy activities throughout the year while surrounded by the lush environment that Sugadaira Kogen has to offer. It’s well known to people as a ski resort with a history spanning 75 years. After activities you can enjoy a handmade meal from the owner with Kogen’s famous vegetables. There’s also a convenience store within walking distance if you need a nighttime snack or some quick shopping.



    Resort Lodge Suzumoto

    Address: 1223-5501 Sugadairakogen, Ueda, Nagano Prefecture

    TEL: 0268-74-2110

    Website: http://www.sugadaira.ne.jp/~suzumoto/


    Sugadaira Kogen Snow Resort

    Sugadaira Kogen Snow Resort is where Taka and Ami had their date. The site is split into two main skiing and snowboarding areas: the “Davos Area” and the “Taro Area.” The Taro Area is surrounded by trees and is home to the Taro Long Course. It’s a wide and the slope is steep so it’s recommended to advance skiers and snowboarders. The Davos Area on the other hand can be enjoyed even by beginners with its 1,000m long run. Guests can also enjoy trekking in snow shoes, taking the back country tour or getting involved with a lesson that suits your level.



    Sugadaira Kogen Snow Resort

    Address: 1223-1751 Sugadairakogen, Ueda, Nagano Prefecture

    Running: Open from December 1, 2018

    TEL: 0268-74-2137

    Website: http://sugadaira-snowresort.com/



    Try challenging yourself to one of the many exciting winter sports available in Karuizawa!

  • 6 Ski Resorts in Hokkaido ― Winter Sports in Japan

    31.August.2018 | FEATURES / SPOT

    Wintertime in Hokkaido means winter sports, like skiing and snowboarding. Every year, people from around Japan and overseas roll up to one of Hokkaido’s many popular snowy ski resorts, such as Niseko, Tomamu and Rusutsu.


    Len S.さん(@lensak)がシェアした投稿

    Niseko Mt. Resort Grand Hirafu

    Niseko Grand Hirafu is Japan’s largest winter resort, covering a huge area with an enormous amount of powder snow. It is the biggest of the four ski resorts in the Niseko area and boasts some of the largest quantity of powder snow around the world, gaining huge popularity from skiers overseas. There are 30 courses to pick from in addition to 15 lifts and 2 ski centers which are decked out in the latest facilities. Everything accommodates skiers of all levels from beginner to professionals. Enjoy gazing at Mount Yotei―one of the 100 famous mountains of Japan―while having the best snow experience you could imagine.



    Niseko Mt. Resort Grand Hirafu

    Address: 204 Yamada, Kutchan-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido

    Website (English): http://www.grand-hirafu.jp/winter/en/




    Rusutsu Resort

    Rusutsu Resort is a gigantic ski resort formed around Isola Mountain, the East Mountain and the West Mountain. Guests can enjoy plenty of space to ski in a magnificent location. There are 37 courses spanning 42km. Beginners can feel at ease at the wide open snow barn while intermedite and advance skiers can go straight for the freedom park or even the side country park which takes advantage of the natural shape of the mountain. There’s even sled dogs, ski mobiles, ice fishing and more. If you’re looking for lots of activities then Rusutsu Resort is the place to go.



    Rusutsu Resort

    Address: 13 Izumikawa, Rusutsu-mura, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido

    Website (English): https://www.hokkaido-rusutsu.com/en-gb



    Snya Mtaniさん(@mii._.iick)がシェアした投稿

    Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area

    This is the best ski resort in the Nisekoi area for beginners and families. There are 13 courses catered towards beginners that are spacious, simple and not scary. We recommend the Long Cruise when the weather’s nice which stretches 4,000 meters! After skiing you can enjoy a nice hot soak in the natural hot springs or open air baths to warm up!



    Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area

    Address: Niseko-485 Niseko, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido

    Website (English): http://annupuri.info/winter/english/



    池端 清美さん(@kiyomi.ikehata)がシェアした投稿

    Sapporo Teine

    Sapporo Teine hosted several events for the 1972 Winter Olympics. The ski resort is located on Mt. Teine elevated 1,023m. It’s split into the upper Highland Zone and middle Olympia Zone with 15 courses to choose from which people of all ages can enjoy, including kids and adults alike. From the top of the mountain you can catch sight of the Sapporo towns and Ishikari Bay. It’s easily accessible by car just 40-minutes from central Sapporo.



    Sapporo Teine

    Address: 593 Teinehoncho, Teine-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido

    Website (English): https://sapporo-teine.com/snow/lang/en/



    chikanori uriyaさん(@uriuri72)がシェアした投稿

    Kiroro Resort

    Kiroro claims to have the snowiest winter valleys on earth and boasts an abundance of powder snow with a 5m depth at the top of the mountain. This dreamlike world of silvery snow has 21 varied courses for beginners to expwerts. Beginners can choose from 3 different 2km beginner courses. There’s also a ski school for children from the age of 3 where they can learn the ins and outs of skiing. There’s also hot springs, a pool and more to enjoy in addition to skiing. There’s also an indoor entertainment facility which can be taken advantage of during in all weathers.



    Kiroro Resort

    Address: 128-1 Tokiwa, Akaigawa-mura, Yoichi-gun, Hokkaido

    Website (English): https://www.kiroro.co.jp/




    Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

    Hoshino Resort Tomamu has a total of 29 courses for beginners to experts, with each course balanced perfectly for every skill level. It is the only ski resort in Hokkaido that has individual lanes for each level where you can enjoy safe and fun slope skiing. There’s also a 4,020m snow cart course―the longest in Japan―as well as lots of activities to pick from like snowmobiling, snow rafting, sledding night snow cruises and more. The resort is easily accessible from New Chitose Airport, Asahikawa Airport and Tokachi–Obihiro Airport too, making it a great choice when planning your trip.



    Hoshino Resorts Tomamu

    Address: Nakatomamu, Shimukappu, Yufutsu District, Hokkaido

    Website (English): https://www.snowtomamu.jp/winter/en/



    Did you enjoy this list? Be sure you get the full Hokkaido experience by getting involved with the winter sports!

  • i+Land Nagasaki: The New Entertainment Resort Opening on Iojima in Nagasaki

    12.June.2018 | SPOT

    i+Land Nagasaki is a new entertainment resort that will host its grand opening on July 18.

    A former leisure facility, the establishment underwent a huge renewal and changed its name to i+Land Nagasaki on April 1, 2018. The new resort will host a huge line-up of activities including Island Lumina, which hails as Japan’s first interactive and immersive night walk, as well as yoga, SUP yoga, sea kayaking, and more. Select parts of the resort’s accommodation and restaurants have been revamped too.

    Iojima is an easy location to being just 30 minutes by car from the city of Nagasaki (or 20 minutes from Nagasaki Port via boat).

    i+Land Nagasaki covers a wide area and faces the sea. It’s split into four areas: the Port Area, Garden Area, Shimakaze Area and Lumina Area.

    In the run up to the grand opening, the new seaside BBQ facility will open in the garden area on July 1 smack bang in the middle of the island and facing the sea. Food and amenities will already be prepared for guests so you can turn up empty-handed. There’s even outdoor tents meaning you can enjoy yourself even if it rains.

    As well as each area having their own accommodation facilities, there’s also a restaurant, hot springs, a kid’s play area and more, all of which can be used by non-guests of the resort too. An array of activities are also scheduled to take place around the resort.

    The huge recommendation at i+Land Nagasaki is Island Lumina which opened on April as Japan’s first ever experienced-based multimedia night walk. You’ll be transported into a mystical and romantic world that will pleasure all five of your senses.

    Island Lumina was created by Moment Factory, a world-leading digital art group from Canada. It uses cutting-edge technology that combines light and music in a twilight forest environment. Those who enter the forest will be absorbed into an immersive story of a girl looking for a magical jewel.


    You can take part in a bicycle excursion tour of Iojima―which stretches across 2.26km² of the island―that’ll around 1 hour. There’s also optional tours to go and see Hashima Island, now an abandoned island and World Heritage site, as well as Oura Church, another World Heritage Site, and more.

    Take a strip to the new i+Land Nagasaki this summer and immerse yourself in nature.


    ■Informationi+Land Nagasaki
    Address: 1-3277-7 Iojimamachi, Nagasaki-shi, Nagasaki PrefectureGrand Opening: July 18, 2018Price: From ¥13,800 (Pre-Tax) – Includes 1 night and 2 meals for up to 2 people
    TEL: 095-898-2202
    Official Website: https://www.islandnagasaki.jp/


    Seaside BBQ
    Times: Lunch 11am-3:30pm (Last Orders 2:30pm) / Dinner 5pm-9:30pm (Last Orders 9pm)


    Lunch – Adults ¥2,800, Children ¥1,200, Toddlers (4-6 years) ¥300

    Dinner – Adults ¥3,800, Children ¥1,200, Toddlers (4-6 years) ¥300

    Area: i+Land Nagasaki Garden Area
    Seats: 340


    Island Lumina
    Time: Sunset-11pm (Last Entries 10:30pm) *Time will change depending on the season
    Price: Adults ¥2,400, Middle Schoolers to High Schoolers ¥1,800, Children (4-years to Elementary School) ¥1,500

    *Free for those aged 3 and below.
    Official Website: https://www.islandlumina.jp/


  • “Okuibuki Snow Resort” in Shiga Prefecture will be opened until April! Let’s enjoy skiing and snowboarding

    13.March.2018 | SPOT

    Okuibuki Snow Resort is the largest ski slope in the Kansai Region located in Yonehara-shi, Shiga Prefecture. The site will be opened until the 8th of April.



    ​During March/April when spring skiing can be enjoyed, it is easy to get to the  ski slope since there is no snow on the roads. You don’t have to use winter tires for  most of the time and the weather conditions of the ski slopes are    good for most of the time.




    Events which offer discount lift tickets will be held on special days and periods such as Couple’s DAY, School appreciation Day and Junior/Senior appreciation Week.



    In addition, parking fees during weekdays will be free from the 5th of March.

    Moreover, a “Garden Chair”area where you can view the slopes, will be installed in the open terrace. Why not enjoy winter sports during this spring season with your family, friends or your boyfriend/girlfriend!



    Okuibuki Snow Resort

    Business hours: until 2018/04/08

    Address: Okuibuki, Kozuhara, Yoneharashi, Shiga Prefecture

    Business hours: 8:00 to 17:00 (detailed information – please refer to the website)