Airbnb recommends 3 kinds of overnight stays and 4 experiences to take in this cherry blossom season
05.April.2017 | SPOT
With the arrival of Japan’s cherry blossom season, it is predicted that this year foreign tourists visiting Japan will increase by 18% and domestic travel will increase by 28% over last year.
Airbnb recommends 3 kinds of overnight stays and 4 experiences for this cherry blossom viewing season.
Three popular overnight stays for the cherry blossom viewing season
This house is located in the town of Yoshino in Nara Prefecture, a town known as one of Japan’s most famous places for cherry blossom viewing. The room is made of Yoshino cedar and white cedar so you can enjoy viewing cherry blossoms enveloped in the nice tree smell. One overnight stay is approximately 9900 yen ~
There are about 1300 cherry trees in Nishi Park and it has been chosen as one of the 100 best cherry blossom viewing sites in Japan. You can walk to this park in 5 minutes. One overnight stay is approximately 7900 yen~
You can walk to Maruyama Park in 5 minutes from this cabin. Murayama Park is famous for its cherry blossoms. You can enjoy drinks and cakes in an old Japanese-style house café near here. One overnight stay is approximately 7000 yen~
Not only will you learn how to do floral arrangement, but also you can learn floral arrangement philosophy by visiting a shrine and participating in a tea party for 3 days. Mika who has a 30 year career in flower arranging will help you to enjoy this experience!
This experience will be taught by Kyoko who runs a Furoshiki (Japanese wrapping cloth) online shop. You will learn how to wrap different things using a Furoshiki on this 3 day-trip. Using your newly learned technique you can wrap your lunch box and go on a cherry blossom-viewing picnic.
An Amazake making experience and a tasting of different kinds of Amazake over a 3 day-period. The host will be Mayu who is a sommelier and the owner of a SAKE BAR.
The host of this event, Maria has experienced teaching Japanese-style painting in Japan and in New York. She will guide the program both in Japanese and in English. You will learn about the history, and about pigmented ink by visiting an art store. You can enjoy Japanese-style painting over a 3 day-period.
It’s getting warmer everyday and the cherry blossoms will be at their best very soon. Have some wonderful spring experiences!
Nakitai Watashi wa Neko wo Kaburu Anime Film Additional Cast Announced
Studio Colorido’s second original anime feature film Nakitai Watashi wa Neko wo Kaburu is set to release in Japan on June 5, 2020. The studio’s first feature film Penguin Highway released in August 2018 to critical acclaim (August 2018 release) and went on to win the Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year as well as the Axis: The Satoshi Kon Award for Excellence in Animation award at Fantasia International Film Festival for the best-animated feature.
Mirai Shida is voicing Miyo Sasaki, a 2nd year middle schooler who’s head over heels for Kento Hinode, who’s voiced by Natsuki Hanae. Several new cast members have been announced who will voice characters that play important roles in relation to the protagonists, like family and classmates. The additional voice cast includes Minako Kotobuki, Kensho Ono, Susumu Chiba, Ayako Kawasumi, Sayaka Ohara, and Daisuke Namikawa.
Yoriko Fukase (voiced by Minako Kotobuki) is a close friend of Muge. Masamichi Isami (Kensho Ono) is a friend of Hinode, and a good one at that in being there for Hinode who experiences the many worries we all face in our youth.
Yoji Sasaki (Susumu Chiba) is Muge’s father, and Kaoru Mizutani (Ayako Kawasumi) is her father’s lover who has no blood relation to Muge. Miki Saito (Sayaka Ohara) is Muge’s real mother.
Tomoya Sakaguchi (Daisuke Namikawa) is a young guy who’s employed at the pottery workshop run by Hinode’s family. Like Hinode, Tomoya also likes the cat Taro who enters the workshop.
The story of Nakitai Watashi wa Neko wo Kaburu followws Miyo Sasaki, a 2nd year middle schooler a little different from the rest, and whose classmates called her “Muge” which is short for Mugendai Nazo Ningen in Japanese which roughly translates to “Infinitely Puzzling Human.” She’s head-over-heels for her classmates Kento Hinode, who she boldly tries to attack every day, but he pays her no attention. But she’s not discouraged and continues to approach him. She also has a big secret she can’t tell anyone about. The reason for Muge not giving up on her situation with Hinode is thanks to a mysterious mask she received from a cat shop owner which allows the wearer to turn into a cat. Muge uses this power to turn into a cat every day to visit Hinode’s house.
©2020 “Nakitai Watashi wa Neko wo Kaburu” Production Committee
Nakitai Watashi wa Neko wo Kaburu
Release Date: June 5, 2020
Official Website: nakineko-movie.com
Rina Sawayama Drops New Video For Japanese Fans to Get to Know Her
31.March.2020 | MUSIC
Lady Gaga chose two of Japanese-born British icon Rina Sawayama’s tracks for her “Women of Choice” playlist on Apple Music, STFU! and Cherry. Other acts on Gaga’s curated list include Charli XCX, Grimes, HAIM, ROSALÍA, St.Vincent, TOKiMONSTA, and Kyary Pamyu Pamyu.
Rina is described as an “experimental pop visionary who refuse to play by the rules” in the playlist.
Rina Sawayama’s international fame has continued to skyrocket over the past year. When she signed to Dirty Hit in November 2019, Matthew Healy, the front man of The 1975 who are on the same label, called her a member of the family.
Her presence in Japan continues to grow as well. She performed on the MBS television show Jonetsu Tairiku last year. She was also chosen as one of Vogue Japan’s “Women of the Year” for 2019. Her song XS was included in Spotify Japan’s “Early Noise 2020” list.
Rina is now set to garner even more fans in Japan with the release of an introductory video entitled “Who is RINA” which was posted on the official avex YouTube channel.
American-Japanese model and actress Kiko Mizuhara, who is an old friend of Rina’s, spoke of her: “She’s an audacious woman whose music shows people around the world the importance of being yourself.” (*Comment translated from Japanese)
Rina Sawayama will release her debut album SAWAYAMATwitter on April 22, 2020. Rina said on her official page: “I put my heart and soul into it, writing and producing it across 2.5 years with
Clarence Clarity and many others. It contains all my memories from 29 years.”
Release Date: April 22, 2020
Official Website: https://www.rina.online/
Ninjala Full CG Movie Shows Off Upcoming Multiplayer Action Game For the Nintendo Switch™
31.March.2020 | ANIME&GAME
Ninjala is an upcoming multiplayer action game set to release worldwide on the Nintendo Switch™ on May 27, 2020. In the world of Ninjala, players blow bubble gum to craft different weapons and fight using the fighting style of ninjutsu. Players can also transform into nearby objects, and they must use parkour to traverse different landscapes while aiming to take down their opponents.
Ninjala Episode 0: Ninja-Gum is Born
WNA Research Laboratory members Burton, Berecca, and Ron
Eagle City, Komerica — WNA Research Laboratory Branch
WNA researchers Burton, Berecca, and Ron continue their tireless efforts to develop “Ninja-Gum”; a mysterious substance that activates latent Ninja DNA in people descended from those legendary mercenary warriors (alt: those legendary mercenaries from days gone by).
Today, all their hard work finally pays off. It is here – on their 2,503rd attempt – that they finally succeed in producing Ninja-Gum!
Burton and Berecca can barely contain their excitement, and waste no time in trying the gum for themselves!
Stay tuned for the next episode of the animated series, and mark May 27, 2020 in your calendars for the long-awaited release of Ninjala.
© GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Genre: Multiplayer action fighting gam
Platform: Nintendo Switch™
Release Date: Worldwide May 27, 2020 (in Japan: May 28, 2020)
Languages: English, Japanese, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Chinese (Simplified/Traditional), Korean
*Existing images of the game are of a game still in development. The game is subject to changes without notice.
*Company names, logos, product names and services are trademarks and registered trademarks of their respective owners.
*Nintendo Switch and the Nintendo Switch logo are trademarks of Nintendo.
*The information in this article are correct at the time of publishing. Subsequent announcements and information are subject to change without notice.
Official Website: https://ninjalathegame.com/en/
Producer and DJ banvox, who reigns at the forefront of Japan’s modern dance music scene, dropped his brand new EP today (March 31).
banvox’s new EP ‘SUGAR’ is a clear reflection of his hip hop roots. Guest vocalists BBY NABE and ASA Wu also feature on the tracks. There are a total of five tracks on the EP, three of which are sensational instrumentals which showcase banvox’s incredible music taste.
If you’re keen to discover the latest Japanese music trends, don’t take your eyes of banvox.
Neon Genesis Evangelion Themed Clothing Collection Released in Collaboration With X-girl
Women’s streetwear fashion brand X-girl has teamed up with Neon Genesis Evangelion to release a new collection of 15 T-shirt inspired by the internationally-celebrated anime series. T-shirts from the collection dropped on Friday last week online Calif, which has an international shipping option, as well as at various stores around Japan, and more items are set to roll out from mid-April.
Neon Genesis Evangelion is known for its deep story, memorable characters, and stylish expression. It had a huge influence on the anime industry and since its release has continued to influence countless series that have followed it.
The new collection by X-girl captures famous scenes from the anime series and its memorable characters. There are also iconic lines written in text on the T-shirts.
The short-sleeved t-shirts were released on May 27, while shirts and bags will drop around mid-April.
The new Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 animated film will be released on June 27, 2020. Get ready for it with a T-shirt from X-girl’s new collection.
X-girl x Neon Genesis Evangelion Collaboration
Sold At: All X-girl and XLARGE/X-girl stores in Japan, X-girl’s official online store, EVANGELION STORE TOKYO-01, EVANGELION STORE SHINJUKU, EVANGELION STORE HAKATA, EVANGELION STORE OSAKA, EVANGELION STORE ONLINE
Official Website: https://x-girl.jp/en/news/202003/detail792
Doraemon Manga Set Collector’s Edition Features All 45 Volumes to Commemorate 50th Anniversary
31.March.2020 | ANIME&GAME
As part of the ongoing promotions to commemorate 50 years since the Doraemon manga was first published in January 1970, pre-orders for the new “100 Years Doraemon” collector’s edition full manga set Tentōmushi Comics by are now open. And there’s some other exciting collector’s merchandise pieces to go along with it.
What’s “100 Years Doraemon”?
Specially-Selected Coloured ‘Surreal’ Picture Collection
Doraemon was born in the 22nd century, and so this collector’s edition aims to have the famous manga series make it all the way there. To ensure that happens, Fujiko Fujio’s full 45-volume collection will have expertly-crafted and carefully-considered book binding and printing.
Beautiful designs to lead Doraemon across the next 100 years into the 22nd Century
Manga cloth front covers with gold leaf on silk screen prints
All the volumes will have hardback covers, which will feature the series’s first ever cloth front covers. The silk screen printing incorporates gold leaf. The books are also thread-bound to make for more fun page turning. Pages are made from high-quality “Opera Clear Max” paper which ensures the pages do not deteriorate over time. The manga itself features completely remastered prints using the latest technology which are printed with 150 line output as opposed to the common 133 output. All volumes use Tentōmushi Comics’s Doraemon cover illustrations made by book and graphic designer Naoko Nakui.
5 Bonus Items
①Specially-Selected Coloured ‘Surreal’ Picture Collection
An assortment of cuts and illustrations from the Doraemon manga series using original colours from back when the volumes were announced. Also includes previously unreleased illustrations by Fujio F. Fujiko.
A complete index that allows you to look up what volumes characters and Secret Gadgets appear in.
A special Volume 0 will be included featuring 6 variations of the first Doraemon story.
Doraemon & Nobita-kun Figure
This figure captures the scene from Volume 40 of the manga series. The figure was created by MEDICOM TOY.
Giant Time Furoshiki Cloth
This giant 110cm x 110cm furoshiki cloth can wrap the entire three boxes which house the manga set.
100 Years Doraemon Anywhere Door Bookshelf
Store your books on this limited-edition bookshelf which is exclusive to those who purchase the 100 Years Doraemon set. Each shelf stacks 15 volumes to fit the entire collection. It’s inspired by the Anywhere Door, one of Doraemon’s many Secret Gadgets. It was co-developed with furniture maker Karimoku, MEDICOM TOY, and Shogakukan. Sign-ups for this bookshelf will be announced at a later date.
“100 Years Doraemon” 45 Volume Set
Pre-Orders: Opened March 28, 2020
Release Date: December 1, 2020
Price: ¥70,000 (Before Tax)
Binding: Naoko Nakui
Editor: 100 years Doraemon Project Team Shogakukan
*Book and bonus items design subject to change
Official Website: https://www.shogakukan.co.jp/pr/100dora/
Learn About Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture in This Breathtaking 8K PR Video
31.March.2020 | SPOT
A new PR video for Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture was posted on the city’s official YouTube channel on March 2, 2020 as part of Ito City’s digital marketing efforts for 2020, and it’s already garnered over 21 million views in just over two weeks.
The video was directed and editor Yuki Eikawa who has gained much attention across Japan for his touristic PR video work. It captures the most famous sights across Ito including Mount Omuro and Jogasaki Coast, and showcases the city’s food, culture, and incredible natural environments. Check it out below.
ITO City, Shizuoka, Japan in 8K HDR
Learn more about Ito on the city’s official website which has a bounty of useful information for exploring everything Ito has to offer.
YOSHIKI Donates $100,000 to COVID-19 Relief Fund to Help Struggling Music Artists
30.March.2020 | MUSIC
Today, Japanese singer-songwriter, composer, and record producer YOSHIKI donated $100,000 to the COVID-19 Relief Fund through YOSHIKI FOUNDATION AMERICA, a non-profit public interest company managed by the artist himself.
The COVID-19 Relief Fund was created by The Recording Academy® and MusiCares© to help support struggling music artists who are having to postpone and cancel tours in response to the pandemic outbreak. YOSHIKI is a board member of The Recording Academy®, which is known for presenting the Grammy Awards.
YOSHIKI said: “In a time when we are being told to conduct self-control and restraint, I’m still called out by people on whether it’s best to put shows on holdーfor the benefit of fans included. The financial damage of that is of course substantial. Many different industriesーnot just the entertainment industryーare on the verge of danger, as are people of varying positions [across society]. As someone in the world of music, I would hope there would be some way of offering help to those involved in the music industry around the world, Japan included, during this difficult time, and so I have donated to the COVID-19 Relief Fund. The danger of COVID-19 is a global problem, not just Japan. I pray from the bottom of my heart that this will all be over much quicker by everyone cooperating to conduct self-restraint and wait this out to lessen the spread of the virus, and that the entertainment industry can once again return to its thriving self.”
Steve Boom, Chairman of the Board at MusiCares, also expressed his deep gratitude to the donations which go towards relieving the burden of musicians and those involved in music. He said that everyone’s cooperation will ensure that the necessary funds and resources are there for people to continue their careers.
YOSHIKI continues to post information related to the coronavirus via his social media pages. On March 11, he interviewed Shinya Yamanaka, the director of the Center for iPS Cell Research and winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. The interview can be seen below and has English subtitles.
YOSHIKI Official Website: http://www.yoshiki.net/
AmPm to Perform Fruits Basket Anime’s Season Two Opening Theme ‘Prism’ feat. Miyuna
Since dropping their debut track Best Part Of Us feat. Michael Kaneko in March 2017ーwhich has over 33 million plays on Spotifyーmasked music duo have garnered fans in worldwide. And it’s now been revealed that they will perform the opening theme song for the upcoming second season of the TV anime series Fruits Basket.
The song is entitled Prism and features Miyuna on vocals. Miyuna is a 17-year-old Japanese singer who gained fans across Japan last year for her incredible singing talent. This will also be AmPm’s first song sung entirely in Japanese. The track will be released on April 8, 2020.
Fruits Basket was serialised in Hana to Yume, published by Hakusensha, from 1998 to 2006. The entire 23-volume series has sold over 30 million copies worldwide. The original 26-episode anime adaptation by Studio Deen ran in 2001 from July to December. A new series with new cast and staff began aired from April to September last year. Its long-awaited second season will return next month on April 6. The season two ending theme ad meliora will be performed by THE CHARM PARK.
Hear both Prism and ad meliora tie together the highly anticipated second season of Fruits Basket when it airs on April 6.
©Natsuki Takaya・Hakusensha/Fruits Basket Production Committee
AmPm – “Prism feat. Miyuna”
Release Date: April 8, 2020
©℗ A.S.A.B / PLAY RECORDS
Stream AmPm: https://ampm.lnk.to/ampm
Fruits Basket – Season 2
Initial Broadcast: April 6, 2020
2nd season Opening Theme: “Prism” by AmPm feat. Miyuna
2nd season Ending Theme: “ad meliora” by THE CHARM PARK
Fruits Basket Official Website: https://fruba.jp/
New Japanese KitKat Commercial Sees Shingo Katori Show Off His Art Skills
30.March.2020 | FOOD
Shingo Katori is an official ambassador of KitKat Japan, and he appeared in the latest television commercial for the chocolate brand which began broadcasting on March 27. The commercial was also posted on the KitKat Japan website.
Japan has the biggest KitKat market in the world. In September 2019, in an effort to reduce the amount of plastic waste, Nestlé made the decision to alter the packaging of five types of its large size KitKat chocolate bars from plastic to paper. The paper can then be used to make paper cranesーa symbol of hopes and prayers in traditional Japanese cultureーor for writing messages on to give to people.
In KitKat’s latest commercial, Shingo Katori comes together with young people to create an art piece from the paper packaging which reads, “Let’s all work hard together!” in Japanese.
Official Website: https://nestle.jp/brand/kit/
Vogue Japan, fragment design, & THE CONVENI to Release T-Shirts and Hoodies in Triple Collaboration
29.March.2020 | FASHION
Vogue Japanーthe Japanese edition of the world’s most influential fashion magazine Vogueーhas teamed up with Hiroshi Fujiwara-led brand fragment design and his concept store THE CONVENI to create two T-shirts and hoodies. This is the first time Vogue Japan has collaborated to release an item with its logo branding.
VOGUE MAGAZINE TEE: ¥8,500 (Before Tax) / COLOR: BLACK, WHITE / SIZE: S, M, L, XL
This is Vogue Japan’s first ever triple-collaboration and celebrates the 20th anniversary since it launched. THE CONVENI is known for its creative packaging, which has spilled into this collaboration too with the hoodie being packaged in a cereal box and the t-shirt in a milk carton.
VOGUE MAGAZINE HOODIE: ¥18,000 (Before Tax) / COLOR: BLACK, WHITE / SIZE: S, M, L, XL
Both the T-shirts and hoodies are available in black or white. The front reads “VOGUE JAPAN,” the back features the 20th anniversary logo, and the sleeves read “FRAGMENT.” The release dates for the items will be announced on THE CONVENI’s social media, so follow them on Instagram to keep up to date.
VOGUE MAGAZINE TEE / VOGUE MAGAZINE HOODIE
Buy At: THE CONVENI (GINZA SONY PARK) / B1, 5-3-1 Ginza, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Cute Pompompurin Puddings to be Released in Collaboration With Pastel
Desserts brand Pastel is collaborating with popular Sanrio character Pompompurin to release a selection of puddings at Pastel stores around Japan for the whole month of April.
Pastel prides itself on the smooth texture of its purinーa type of Japanese custard pudding. The company will celebrate Pompompurin’s birthday, which falls on April 16, with a line of 4 adorable Pompompurin desserts.
Pompompurin’s Mini Pudding – ¥380 (Before Tax)
The classic style of Japanese custard pudding, smooth and topped with whipped cream. It’s finished with a cute sprinkled design of Pompompurin.
Soft and Fluffy Pompompurin – ¥450 (Before Tax)
Pompompurin is looking cute in this one as he pokes his head out of the caramel-drizzled and marshmallow-topped pudding.
Pompompurin’s À La Mode – ¥600 (Before Tax)
Served in an original design cup branded with Pompompurin’s adorable face, this à la mode includes a pudding topped with an orange slice and cherry.
Pompompurin’s Chiffon – ¥2,200 (Before Tax)
This fluffy chiffon cake is about 15 meters across in size, and is made with pudding cream, glazed in caramel sauce, and topped with a Pompompurin who’s just taking a little rest. *Available on weekends only
Shopper Bag Design (Available while supplies last)
When you order any of these desserts, you’ll receive an exclusive Pastel x Pompompurin collaborative bag which makes for a great gift or souvenir to friends.
Don’t miss out on these tasty Pompompurin treats.
Pastel x Pompompurin Collaboration
Running: April 1, 2020 – April 30, 2020
Location: Pastel stores in Japan
Pastel Official Website: http://pastel-pudding.com