Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto to Open in Hokkaido in January 2022
21.October.2020 | SPOT
Hoshino Resorts, Japan’s premiere hotel management company boasting over 40 properties both inside and outside Japan is set to its new onsen ryokan (hot spring Japanese style inn) Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto in January 2022 following the completion of a partnership agreement with Shiraoi, Hokkaido on June 28, 2018.
KAI Poroto comes as the 19th property for the KAI brand, following KAI Nagato (opened in March 2020), KAI Kirishima (scheduled to open in January 2021), and KAI Beppu (scheduled to open in summer 2021). It will also be the third KAI property to open in Hokkaido, following RISONARE Tomamu in Shimukappu and OMO7 Asahikawa in Asahikawa. The new property will be designed by Japanese architect Hiroshi Nakamura.
(Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP)
Guests will be able to enjoy Shiraoi onsen water at KAI Poroto. The water comes from a “moor spring” which contains organic minerals derived from plants. This type of water is rare throughout the world. KAI Poroto faces the shores of Lake Poroto and is surrounded by the natural forests of Hokkaido where many species of wild bird live. All guest rooms boast a lake view where changes in scenery throughout the seasons can be enjoyed.
KAI Poroto will is cooperating with both the town of Shiraoi as well as “Upopoy”, the National Ainu Museum and Park, which has the aim of becoming a “symbolic space for ethnic harmony”. The facility will respect Ainu culture and provide a place of accommodation for guests to experience it.
Upopoy: A symbolic space for ethnic harmony
A symbolic space for ethnic harmony by the name of “Upopoy opened in Shiraoi, Hokkaido on July 12, 2020. This national centre serves as a base for the reconstruction and development of Ainu culture, which is in danger of survival. The main facilities are the National Ainu Museum and the National Ainu Park. The National Ainu Museum is the first national museum in Japan centred around indigenous Ainu people and the history and culture of the people as expressed through their perspective. This is expressed in a variety of different exhibits. The National Ainu Park is a field museum, where Ainu culture can be taught through a number of programs. Experiences on-site include the Ainu traditional dance, which is registered as UNESCO intangible cultural heritage, wood carving, and embroidery workshops, as well as food and traditional performing arts experiences. “Upopoy” means “to sing (in large numbers)” in the language of Ainu.
Designed by Hiroshi Nakamura
Japanese architect Hiroshi Nakamura is behind the design of KAI Poroto. “Poroto” means a large lake in the Ainu language and KAI Poroto boldly draws this lake into its premise. In the lobby of the birch forest, guests will be greeted by a magnificent view of the lake, which leads to Mount Tarumae. Guests can also relax in the lounge while watching the flames in the fireplace, something which was at the centre of Ainu people’s lives. On the surface of the lake, a bathhouse called Kashi, which is built using traditional Ainu construction methods, stands like a village. The open-air bath makes one feel as if you are immersed in the lake. The design has been created in a way that is modern, inspired by the lifestyles, nature, and family of Ainu people.
Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto
Address: 1-1018-1 Wakakusa, Shiraoi, Hokkaido
Grand Opening: January 2022
Official Website: https://www.hoshinoresorts.com/en/brand/kai/
EMOCAL, a Project to Support Japanese Regions, Releases Music Using Local Sound Samples
The EMOCAL project aims to support small-town areas of Japan. As a new initiative in the project, specific soundscapes only found in certain areas of the country have been combined with music to create some unique tracks. A selection of musical artists have collaborated with the project to bring these songs to life!
EMOCAL was created by ZOWA’s original label, CatchyStuck. The project supports local regions and communities by using ASMR soundscape videos recorded in each region to convey their particular charms to all of Japan. The sounds recorded in each place are considered to be very valuable and are intended to serve two purposes: to bring tourism back after the pandemic and to provide fans of ASMR a way to experience these areas from afar.
Check out each of these unique ambient tracks created by four up-and-coming musicians! Each song is available on viviON’s ASMR platform ZOWA and on Spotify.
Ube, Yamaguchi Prefecture / Ikkyuu x Hige Driver, I Love Ikkyuu
Beard Driver created this ambient track with sounds recorded inside of Ikkyuu, a ramen shop.
Odawara, Kanagawa Prefecture / Miyuki no Hama x Powerless, Seiren
Powerless created this track, inspired by the sounds of waves crashing at Miyuki no Hama, a seaside recreation area 20 minutes from Odawara Station.
Shizuoka, Shizuoka Prefecture / Wasabi Field x baker, On the silent hill
Utogi in Shizuoka city is surrounded by incredible nature. Known as the birthplace of wasabi cultivation, baker used sounds recorded in the area to create this ambient track.
Ibusuki, Kagoshima Prefecture / Cape Tara x SeA0, Akushu
Cape Tara is a popular spot featuring an 800-meter-long sandbar at low tide. The sounds captured here were used by artist SeA0, and this track is sure to make you miss the water.
Official Site: https://catchystuck.jp/ambient/
Yunohana Onsen Resort Reveals Contemporary Art-Inspired Guest Rooms
Sumiya Kihoan, a cozy inn at Yunohana Onsen in Kameoka City in Kyoto, opened a unique new guest room on April 28, 2022. The room’s concept is “where guests can stay in the middle of contemporary art,” and was inspired by the works of internationally-acclaimed contemporary artist Yukinori Yanagi. The new room, created as part of the Art Room Project, has been named ‘Kofuu.’
The Icarus Corridor Connecting Heaven and Earth
Heavenly Bath Welcoming a Rainbow at Dusk
In-Ground Bath Featuring Oribe Glazed Ceramic
Concept Drawing of the Art Room Project by Yukinori Yanagi
The new room includes an open-air bath where guests can be transported into the world of Yanagi’s contemporary art while gazing at the gorgeous Kyoto landscape. Upon entering the inn, guests are greeted by a long corridor leading to the bedrooms, dining room, and two creative open-air baths. The space was created in collaboration with Yanagi and local artists and craftsmen, such as potter Ishii Naoto, obi craftsman Yamaguchi Genbei X, plasterer Kusumi Akira, and Japanese paper craftsman Hatano Wakaru. A delicious menu is prepared by chef Hosoi Kunihiko.
Ryokan Sumiya Kihoan
Address: Yunohana Onsen, Kameoka City, Kyoto
Room Details: https://hakutai.sumiya.ne.jp/artroom-kohoo/
Room Reservations: https://reserve.489ban.net/client/sumiya/0/plan/id/119287/stay?noSearch=1
Official Site: https://www.sumiya.ne.jp/
Kanahei’s Small Animals Inspires Hotel Room at Hotel New Otani Tokyo
03.May.2022 | SPOT
Hotel New Otani Tokyo will offer special collaboration rooms inspired by illustrator Kanahei’s characters Piske & Usagi from May 1, 2022 to April 30, 2023.
Original Cushion / Acrylic Stand
The room is completely decorated with brand new illustrations of Piske and Usagi made exclusively for the collaboration. A total of five original amenities will be included with each room plan, including an original cushion and acrylic stand. Come surround yourself with complete cuteness!
Piske & Usagi’s Relaxing Room Plan
Location: Hotel New Otani (Tokyo)
Available: May 1, 2022 – April 30, 2023
Official Site: https://www.newotani.co.jp
Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto Reveals Room Plan with UNDERSON UNDERSON Washi Underwear
The lifestyle brand UNDERSON UNDERSON is all about making skin healthier by using washi paper. The unique brand has teamed up with Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto, known for its traditional washi decorations, for a special accommodation plan! Booking a room will get you a fancy new pair of underpants and some other popular items. The plan began on April 11, 2022, and will continue through the end of the year.
UNDERSON UNDERSON Underwear
UNDERSON UNDERSON Stretchy Washi Mask
john masters organics × UNDERSON UNDERSON Mask & Air Refreshener
The plan wants to allow visitors to enjoy their stay in Kyoto while experiencing traditional Japanese washi paper with both their eyes and their skin. The walls of the Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto feature artwork and furnishings with Japanese flare and have been upgraded to include HAMADAWASHI’s Tosa washi paper. This material has been used in the restoration of cultural heritage sites such as Nijo Castle and Ginkaku-ji Temple. Tosa washi can also be found on the partitions at Cafe O and on the walls of the coworking space!
To celebrate the collaboration, UNDERSON UNDERSON will be giving away underwear and other items made of its iconic WASHIFABRIC.
While this may sound like a strange collab, how would you like to give this underwear a try?
Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto
UNDERSON UNDERSON Underwear Collaboration Room Plan
Available: April 11 – December 31, 2022
Reservations / Official Site: https://oakwood.jp/kyoto-oike/
W Osaka Reveals Special Menu Inspired by Fashion Duo AMIAYA
Luxury hotel W Osaka will be offering ‘ICHIGO AFTERNOON TEA – Dressed up for Spring,’ a special menu inspired by the fashion duo AMIAYA, from April 1 until May 31, 2022. The menu items will be available at the Living Room area on the hotel’s third floor.
W Osaka Fashion Ambassador AMIAYA
ICHIGO AFTERNOON TEA – Dressed up for Spring
The event will utilize some of the popular strawberry dishes currently popular at the hotel, but will also include some raspberries and orange sweets. Some dishes will be decorated with flower petals, inspired by the vivid fashion of W Osaka’s fashion ambassador AMIAYA. The twins have attracted worldwide attention as models and DJs, and they celebrated their first anniversary on March 16.
Savory options include a Quiche with Sakura Shrimp and Spring Cabbage and Caramelized Onion and Chevre Cheese plate. Guests can enjoy a total of 12 items prepared by the W Osaka chef team, all displayed on a beautiful afternoon tea stand. Each menu comes with a welcome drink and free refills for tea and coffee.
ICHIGO AFTERNOON TEA – Dressed up for Spring
Available: April 1 – May 31, 2022
Location: W Osaka Living Room (3F)
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto to Offer Immersive Meditation Rooms
13.April.2022 | SPOT
The pandemic has caused problems for people all over the world. Mental health has taken a beating over the last few years, and in order to help people take back control of their mental wellness, The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto will begin offering immersive meditation rooms for guests only! These rooms will allow guests to enjoy a soothing private space and will be available starting April 1, 2022.
The Medicha meditation rooms consist of two spaces: ‘blank,’ where guests are surrounded by mist, and ‘tea,’ where guests will immerse themselves in beautiful water patterns. An original program shown on in-room televisions at the hotel will also instruct guests in the art of meditation.
In ‘Blank Meditation,’ guests will stand in a cool mist and immerse themselves in layers of diverse sounds and shifting colors of light. This will help quiet the mind and create a ‘blank slate’ mentally.
The ‘Tea Meditation’ room invites visitors to spend time with themselves while getting lost in shimmering water patterns in a dimly lit space as they carefully brew their own tea. Two types of tea are on offer, each with distinct aromas and flavors.
Meditation Room by Medicha
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto
Address: 420 Funayacho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto
Official Site: https://www.the-royalpark.jp/ic/kyoto/
Hotel New Otani Tokyo to Hold Fourth Collaboration with Paul & Joe
From April 1 until June 30, 2022, Hotel New Otani Tokyo will hold its fourth collaboration with the Paris-born fashion brand Paul & Joe! One specially designed room will be available per day. The brand is extremely popular with women in their 20s and 30s, and those wanting to reserve a room will want to act quickly, as the previous collab room was booked up almost immediately!
The pink and ivory interior is dotted with chrysanthemums and images of Gipsy and Nounette, the iconic cats of brand designer Sophie. Everything from the couch cushions to the hairbrush is completely inspired by Paul & Joe.
Items Only Available in the Paul & Joe Room
4th Collaboration Cosmetics
Limited Edition Pajama and Slipper Set with Room Plan
The fourth cosmetic collection has been sourced from the Les Vacances series, a collection made to take on summer vacation. The lineup includes a body primer sunscreen made to moisturize and protect and an ‘After Sun Oil’ with a floral citrus scent perfect for use after outdoor lounging.
A special Les Vacances-themed spa bag will also be available for guests to take home. Enjoy taking it to the pool, to the spa, or simply while taking a stroll around the hotel.
Guests can also take home a sample of the brand’s Protecting Foundation Primer, a makeup base that has taken home a number of Best Cosmetics Awards. Selected skincare samples, such as lotions and oils, will also be included in the room package.
One of the collaboration plans will also allow guests to take home an exclusive pair of pajamas and slippers decorated with an adorable cat design.
*Guests cannot choose the pajama color or slipper pattern.
*The design of pajamas and slippers is subject to change without notice.
Paul & Joe Room ~Summer~ Collaboration Room Plan
Available: April 1 – June 30, 2022 *One room available per day
Location: Hotel New Otani Tokyo (4-1 Kioicho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo)
Online Reservations / Details: https://www.newotani.co.jp/tokyo/stay/plan/paul-joeroom/
Banyan Tree Rooftop Bar Opens on Japan’s Southernmost Island
30.March.2022 | SPOT
The Banyan Tree Rooftop Bar, located at Hoshino Resort Risonare Kohamajima on Japan’s southernmost island, is holding a special stargazing event until April 20, 2022. Visitors can enjoy a cocktail as they gaze at the countless twinkling stars overhead.
Kohama Island is located within the Yaeyama Islands. With a warm climate, it’s comfortable to spend long hours outside, even at night. Kohamajima was also the first island in Japan to be protected by the IDA (International Darkness Association), meaning that no bright manmade lights can interfere with stargazing. Visitors can see 84 of 88 constellations!
Enjoy a Boundless Starry Sky
The Banyan Tree Terrace will bring guests together to feel the sea breeze and taste colorful mojitos as they enjoy the pleasant weather. Why not spend a relaxing time in a fantastic space lit with faintly glowing candles as you stargaze?
Taste Colorful Mojitos
A limited number of colorful mojitos will be available at a bar counter set up on the terrace for this event only. You can also enjoy Okinawan original mojitos with made with Okinawa lime, brown sugar instead of sugar, non-alcoholic mojitos for children, and tropical fruit mojitos with pineapple and passion fruit.
Munch on Snacks Perfect to Pair with Cocktails
Guests can also enjoy a snack set with salty nuts perfect for enjoying with alcohol!
Banyan Tree Rooftop Bar
Open: March 1 – April 20, 2022
Location: Banyan Tree Terrace
Official Site: https://risonare.com/kohamajima/
INN THE PARK Fukuoka Allows Guests to Spend the Night in a Public Park
30.March.2022 | SPOT
INN THE PARK Fukuoka is the first place in Kyushu where you can spend the night overnight in a public park! No, you won’t be sleeping on a bench or on the ground–this is way fancier. This is the second such location, with the first opening in Shizuoka in 2017.
The new facility will be located in Uminonakamichi Seaside Park in Higashi-ku, Fukuoka City. The park is about 6km from east to west and includes a zoo, outdoor swimming pool, aquarium, outdoor theater, and more. Guests can overlook Hakata Bay while enjoying these many fun outdoor activities and delightful accommodations!
How about staying here on your next trip to Japan?
INN THE PARK Fukuoka
Open: March 15, 2022
Official Site: https://www.innthepark.jp/
The Ryokan Tokyo Yugawara Opens in Kanagawa Prefecture, Features Hot Spring Bath Cafe
The Ryokan Tokyo Yugawara, a traditional-style Japanese inn and hot spring located in Kanagawa Prefecture, will open on March 18, 2022. The hot springs in the area have a storied history, appearing in the oldest collection of Japanese poems from the year 759 AD and loved by great writers such as Natsume Souseki and Ryunosuke Akutagawa. There is also a cafe inviting visitors to enjoy delicious meals as they relax in the springs.
Onsen Dojo operates and plans hot spring facilities, including the ‘Ofuro Cafe’ brand, resort facilities, and more. The company also provides support for local business investments.
The Ryokan Tokyo YUGAWARA
Grand Opening: March 18, 2022
Address: 742 Miyakami, Ashigarashimo, Yugawara, Kanagawa
St. Regis Hotel Osaka Offering Updated Strawberry Afternoon Tea Menu
The St. Regis Hotel Osaka’s current strawberry-themed afternoon tea set has been updated as of March 7, 2022!
The Fifth Avenue Collection, a strawberry afternoon tea set inspired by the hottest trends in New York fashion, is now available at the St. Regis Bar. The St. Regis New York Hotel was founded in 1904, and is located on 5th Avenue, one of the most famous shopping streets in the world. This new afternoon tea set features a gorgeous three-tiered array of colorful savory and sweet dishes inspired by the many fashion items that line the shop windows of the NYC street.
The Spring Collection features brand new items, including six sweet items, four savory items, two scones, and three pass-around glass desserts.
The legs extending from the Strawberry Heels glass dessert give a nod to the classiest scenery in New York, while the Strawberry & Mango Shortcake adds a vibrant touch of yellow, popular on the runway this season.
The desserts include lime and strawberry macaroons and plenty of chocolate for cocoa lovers. Those wanting something savory can enjoy meat-filled crepes and the spring vegetable and smoked salmon rolls. This bright and colorful set is sure to brighten up anyone’s mood!
Strawberry Afternoon Tea ‘Fifth Avenue Spring Collection’
Available: March 7 until May
Location: The St. Regis Bar, 12F
Reservations/Official Site: https://www.stregisbar.stregisosaka.com/
Hoshino Resort Aomoriya Holds Cherry Blossom Viewing Event Under a Cozy Kotatsu
21.March.2022 | SPOT
Hoshino Resort Aomoriya, an inn where visitors are invited to fully enjoy Aomori’s culture, will begin its Hanami Kotatsu event from April 1 until May 31, 2022. Guests can enjoy local sake while warming themselves beneath a cozy kotatsu. In the chilly Aomori spring, a kotatsu) will be set up beneath the blooming trees for visitors to comfortably view the cherry blossoms. Hot-water bottles will also be available for rent if guests can a little too cold!
April in Aomori is spring according to the calendar, but it’s still quite chilly. Nevertheless, the people of Aomori look forward to flower viewing to overcome the cold winter and enjoy the long-awaited arrival of spring.
Three Fun Additions to Make Cherry Blossom Viewing More Fun
1 A Traditional Umbrella with a Sakura Pattern
Next to each kotatsu is a row of Japanese umbrellas with cherry blossoms painted on them, spreading the pink cherry blossom imagery all around. When opened, the umbrellas are covered with cherry blossoms, making you feel as if you are under the cherry blossoms in full bloom.
2 Choose a Local Sake and Sake Cups for a Flower Viewing Sake Tower
Choose your favorite local sake and three sake cups to make a sake tower! Guests can choose from 10 Aomori sake brands, each with unique aromas and flavors.
3 Cherry Blossom Patterned Cotton-Filled Hot Water Bottle for Extra Warmth
To keep extra warm beneath the kotatsu, a cotton blanket with a cherry blossom pattern and a hot-water bottle are available for rent. Doesn’t it sound heavenly?
Running: April 1 – May 31, 2022
Hours: 15:00-18:00 (Last Entry at 17:30)
Duration: 30 minutes