Shizuoka’s Hot Spring Hotel SOKI ATAMI Opens For Business
07.November.2020 | SPOT
UDS Ltd. opened SOKI ATAMI on Sunday (November 1), a new hot spring accommodation situated in the town of Koarashicho in Atami, Shizuoka.
The town of Koarashicho is considered the annex, as it were, to Atami. SOKI ATAMI can be reached in around 40 minutes by bullet train from Shinagawa Station. The accommodation takes into account the value of Atami’s hot spring resorts and what’s on offer there. It serves a ‘sojourn style’ of accommodation that allows you to return to yourself as you are, without any stresses, something which is enhanced thanks to being situated away from the hustle and bustle of the city in nature.
The accommodation’s name originates from the Japanese characters so (素) and ki (器), the former roughly translating to ‘origin,’ ‘source,’ or ‘foundation’ and the latter as ‘utensil’ or ‘vessel.’ Together, the words combine to make up what SOKI ATAMI prides itself on: seeking authenticity and being yourself without decorations in a space that welcomes nature, natural features, and incorporates raw materials.
Atami is one of the primary hot spring locations in Japan, prospering as a place that treats illness and injury, something which began after Tokugawa Ieyasu himself bathed there during the Edo Period. The city has since continued as a place to pass down the Japanese culture of hot spring bathing, and SOKI ATAMI cements this fact once again with its grand opening as it serves as a facility offering the nurturing of the body and soul. At the same time, it will promote local culture and cuisine.
The accommodation, surrounded by nature, offers a panoramic view of the ocean, and consists of a reception wing, guest room wing, and restaurant wing. In the ‘Village Garden,’ there are trees growing citrus fruits and a variety of plants and crops, showcasing the regional lifestyle and natural features.
There are 54 guest rooms in total ranging from 40㎡ to 65㎡ which can fit up to 4 people. Guests can enjoy the hot springs with all room types.
TONERICO:INC. is in charge of the inter design who have given it a natural feel.
In the rooms, guests will find sencha and kisetsucha tea grown in Shizuoka Prefecture as well as a Japanese confection made with mugikogashi barley flour which is said to promote longevity and sound health.
Numerous amenities are also available in all guest rooms including relaxing self-care items.
The public baths benefit from the changing seasons which changes up the bathing experience. The water is perfect for de-stressing, moisturising, and making your skin look beautiful.
There’s also a traditional steam sauna in the women’s area for detoxing and moisturising.
The tea room on the top floor of the accommodation offers a panoramic view of Atami Bay. Guests can enjoy watching the annual fireworks launched there throughout the year.
Menu Sample: Seasonal Yoseicha Course ¥3,000 | Wakan Gin & Tonic ¥1,200 (Before Tax)
A variety of menu choices to stabilise the mind and body will be available to order, many using local ingredients from Atami and Shizuoka Prefecture.
Menu Sample: Breakfast – Seasonal Yosei Gozen | Dinner: SOKI Course, Nabe Course, Chef’s Course
In the restaurant wing is the dining room which has an open kitchen in front of guest tables where the chefs cook locally-sourced fish and vegetables among other delicious foods. and other ingredients are all sourced locally and directly.
The dining room was designed by age co.,ltd which has worked on many different ryokan and restaurants. The open and dynamic space has a high ceiling towering 4.5 meters overhead.
The garden area can be seen from the restaurant and is home to a variety of citrus fruits from the Izu Peninsula as well as seasonal vegetables and herbs. It offers beautiful scenery throughout the year .
Grand Opening: November 1, 2020
Address: 4-36 Koarashichō, Atami, Shizuoka
Access: 10-minutes by car from Atami Station
Official Website: http://www.so-ki.jp/
Hirosaki and Hakodate to Begin Winter Tourism Campaign with Snow Miku Starting December 2022
The cities of Hirosaki and Hakodate in Hokkaido have announced that they will team up with Hatsune Miku’s popular iteration Snow Miku to promote tourism in the area this winter. A number of activities will begin in December 2022.
[Snow Miku x Hirohako] Collaboration Project
■Hirohako Winter Tourism Campaign Poster Featuring Snow Miku
・Period: Mid-November~February 28, 2023
・Locations: Facilities in both cities, tourist facilities, hotels, shopping areas
■Snow Miku Illustration Contest Exhibition Event
Over 50 illustrations have been submitted under the theme of Snow Miku and Hakodate / Snow Miku and Hirosaki. These will be on display through the winter!
・Running: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Venues: Hirosaki Municipal Tourist Center (Hirosaki)
Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse (Hakodate)
■Snow Miku Photo Spot
Snow Miku panels featuring shamisen and apples from Hirosaki will be on display, while the Hakodate version will include references to squid fishing and footbaths.
・On Display: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: JR Hirosaki Station, Chuohirosaki Station (Hirosaki)
JR Hakodate Station, Hakodate Airport (Hakodate)
■Digital Stamp Rally Using the Mikunavi App
A number of panels will be installed at five checkpoints in Hirosaki and Hakodate. A total of 1,000 people–500 in each city–will win original merch including a Snow Miku mask case and decorated masking tape. All you need to do is check in!
・Available: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: (Hirosaki) Hirosaki Municipal Tourist Center, Hirosaki City Machinaka Information Center,
Hirosaki Tourist Information Center, Hirosaki Castle Information Center, Tsugaru-han Neputa Village
(Hakodate) Kanemori Red Brick Warehouse, Yunokawa Hot Spring Footbath, Goryōkaku Tower,
Hakodate Green Plaza C Block (Hakodate Lumi-Pop), Old Public Hall of Hakodate Ward
■Hirohako Winter Tourism Campaign Theme Song and Music Video
The tourism theme song will get a new music video that will be broadcast on YouTube, at local tourist facilities, and on TV and radio!
・On Air: December 1, 2022~
・Theme Song: Mahou no Keshiki (Lyrics/Composition: ryuryu)
■Snow Miku Welcome Announcements to be Broadcast at Tourism Facilities, etc.
A one-minute welcome announcement by Snow Miku will air at tourist facilities!
・Running: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
・Locations: Tourist areas in both cities
■Snow Miku Filters Using AR
When each barcode is scanned with a smartphone, Snow Miku will appear on the screen! Visitors can take pictures with Snow Miku to commemorate their winter trip to Hirosaki and Hakodate.
・Available: December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
Hirosaki x Hakodate x Snow Miku Tourism Campaign
Beginning December 2022
Izu Kogen Grand Illumination to Offer New Experiences for 8th Season
14.October.2022 | SPOT
From November 11, 2022 until August 2023, Izu Granpal Park in Shizuoka Prefecture will host the 8th Izu Kogen Grand Illumination event!
The Izu Kogen Grand Illumination was ranked #1 in the Walker+National Illumination Ranking for six consecutive years and is beloved by visitors of all ages. This isn’t just a collection of pretty lights–the Grand Illumination also includes a number of hands-on experiences for everyone to enjoy.
In 2021, the event won first place in the Ninth Illumination Awards for the second year in a row. Known as Japan’s first ‘hands-on illumination experience,’ the park has continued to evolve year after year, adding more attractions and finding its unique style. These attractions include a zip line through the lights, Dinosaur Go-Karts, and more.
This year, the Flower Lantern Area and Sweets Lantern Area have been completely redesigned and upgraded to be even more three-dimensional and colorful. Come enjoy this incredible world of lights and have some fun with the whole family!
Izu Kogen Grand Illumination ~8th Season~ (Hands-on)
Venue: Izu Granpal Park
Running: November 11, 2022 – August 2023
Official Site: https://granillumi.com
Anime ‘The Vampire Dies in No Time’ Inspires Concept Room in Shin-Yokohama
Shin Yokohama Prince Hotel will be offering a special room and collaboration menu inspired by the popular anime series The Vampire Dies in No Time from September 22 until November 30, 2022. Reservations will open on the hotel’s official website starting September 12 at 1:00 PM.
The Vampire Dies in No Time follows the hilarious adventures of the vampire Draluc and the vampire hunter Ronaldo. Set in the city of Shin-Yokohama, it makes sense that this collaboration would be taking place!
Guests and fans of the series will be able to enjoy a fully-decorated room and collaboration menu inspired by characters from the popular anime series.
The concept room, located on an upper floor overlooking the Shin-Yokohama cityscape, is decorated with illustrations of Draluc, Ronaldo, and other characters. The guest-only goods feature newly-drawn illustrations.
Sweets plates and drinks will be served at the restaurant on the top floor of the hotel. Guests can enjoy desserts shaped like Ronaldo’s red hat and Draluc’s ashes, so don’t miss it!
Shin-Yokohama Prince Hotel x The Vampire Dies in No Time
Available: September 22 – November 30, 2022
Available: September 22 – November 30, 2022
Venue: Top of Yokohama Bar & Lounge (42F)
Hours: Weekdays 4:00-7:00 PM / Weekends & Holidays 2:00-5:00 PM
Reservations Open: September 12, 1:00 PM
HOTEL SHE, KYOTO Invites Guests to Stay in a Gallery for a Limited Time
Art subscription service Casie is collaborating with HOTEL SHE, KYOTO! A special art exhibition titled GALLERY HOTEL SHE, will be held from September 17 until October 16, inviting guests to enjoy the once-in-a-lifetime experience of staying in a gallery overnight!
During the event period, guests of HOTEL SHE, KYOTO will be able to select their favorite piece of artwork from an on-site gallery. The piece will then be hung in their guestroom, and visitors can spend the night appreciating it at their own pace. This is a great way to learn more about art appreciation, and guests can enjoy discussing the art world with their friends and family.
“Although we may view art in museums and other venues, it is rare to have the opportunity to select and display a work of art of our own choice,” the project description reads. “Through this unique experience, we aim to provide guests the chance to actively engage with art and inspire them to make art a part of their daily life going forward.”
‘Stay in a Gallery’ HOTEL SHE, KYOTO
Running: September 17 – October 16, 2022
Works on Display: https://casie.jp/features/404?notrented=0&order=added_at_desc
*No fee required, works on display for all guests of HOTEL SHE, KYOTO during the event period.
HOTEL SHE, KYOTO: https://www.hotelshekyoto.com
Address: 16, Higashikujo-Minamikarasumacho, Minamiku, Kyoto
Rascal the Raccoon Collaboration Event to Open at Shizuoka’s Chibi Maruko-chan Land
Starting on August 11, Chibi Maruko-chan Land in Shizuoka will begin a series of events in collaboration with Rascal the Raccoon! Exclusive merchandise will be on sale during the event period, so fans of either franchise won’t want to miss out.
Rascal has come to play in the world of Chibi Maruko-chan! Nakano-san is a little afraid of the animal, but Rascal tries to calm him down. This adorable imagery is everywhere, and everyone’s favorite raccoon meets a ton of popular characters from the Maruko-chan anime and manga series, so be sure to take a look!
On opening day, Maruko and Rascal will greet guests at the entrance. A photo session will be available for guests with admission tickets on a first-come, first-served basis.
For a limited time only, the projection mapping area in the park will host a Chibi Maruko-chan Carnival dance event with Maruko and Rascal!
Merch at a Glance
Medical Diary Cover: ¥550 / Pen: ¥550 / Mechanical Pencil: ¥550 / Clear Folder: ¥385
Wet Tissue Pack (2 varieties): ¥550 each / Mini Towel: ¥880 /
Hand Sanitizer Spray: ¥880 / Acrylic Stand: ¥1,430
A campaign is also underway at Chibi Maruko-chan Land. Those spending ¥2,000 or more on Maruko goods or collaboration goods will receive an original sticker while supplies last.
Come have fun with Maruko and Rascal during this special event!
Chibi Maruko-chan Land
Collaboration Event Dates: August 11-15, 20, 21, 27, 28
*The photo session will only be held on August 11.
Address: S-Pulse Dream Plaza 3F (13-15 Irifunecho, Shimizu-ku, Shizuoka)
Official Website: https://chibimarukochan-land.com/
Popular Character Chiikawa Inspires Collaboration Cafe at Shizuoka PARCO
From July 22 until August 21, fans of the adorable character Chiikawa will want to visit Shizuoka PARCO! The Chiikawa Chinese Restaurant and Drink Stand will be offering up some themed dishes for a limited time.
Original Menu at a Glance
Cream Soda with Winning Lottery Number
Otter’s Iced Cocoa
Hot Spring Style Hot Apricot Milk with Marshmallows
Chestnut Manju Alcohol-Free Drink
Chiikawa Meat Bun
Bonus for Drink Orders: Original Cafe Coaster (17 varieties)
Original Goods at a Glance
Acrylic Smartphone Ring
Silicon Ice Tray
T-Shirt / Meat Bun
Goods Purchase Bonus
The Chiikawa Chinese Restaurant is a collaborative cafe project featuring a Chinese-inspired menu and newly-drawn illustrations. This cafe was a huge hit in Tokyo in the past, and those who missed out will have another chance to enter the world of this popular character!
The collaboration menu includes three kinds of cream soda with a winning lottery stick, iced cocoa similar to a strawberry parfait, and other items to enjoy the world of Chiikawa. Guests can also purchase goods featuring illustrations of Chiikawa, Hachiware, and Usagi in Chinese costumes.
Come have a tasty snack and a refreshing drink while you grab some limited Chiikawa merch!
©nagano / chiikawa committee
Chiikawa Chinese Restaurant and Drink Stand
Running: July 22 – August 21, 2022
Venue: Shizuoka PARCO (6-7 Yoichi, Aoi-ku, Shizuoka)
Drink Stand: 1F Parque Cafe
Goods Shop: 3F Special Event Space
Laid-Back Camp Collaboration Event Takes Guests on a Tour of Yamanashi and Shizuoka Prefectures
The globally popular slice-of-life series Laid-Back Camp is currently serialized in COMIC FUZ.
Set in Yamanashi and Shizuoka Prefectures, Laid-Back Camp is a relaxing series following a group of high school girls going camping and enjoying their daily lives. The original comic has sold over 7 million copies, and the series has helped people around the world destress. In 2018, the first anime series premiered, inspiring a spin-off Room Camp in 2020 and a second season in 2021. An animated film will arrive in theaters on July 1, 2022.
The series has announced a collaboration with Yamanashi and Shizuoka prefectures, which are both depicted in the work, as well as JR Central. The ‘Laid-Back Camp Dramatic Puzzle Solving Game: Two Treasure Maps and a Trip Down Memory Lane’ event will run from July 1 until August 31, 2022. The Rin Route will begin in Kofu and the Nadeshiko Route will start in Shizuoka. Participants will receive a small gift for completing each route.
In conjunction with the event, JR Central will sell special Laid-Back Camp one-day round-trip tickets, and a collaboration train will be decorated with illustrations from the series.
The poster for the event shows new illustrations of Rin and Nadeshiko made by Green House, the illustrators behind Bikkuriman. These illustrations will also appear on a variety of original goods!
When Japan opens again, how would you like to journey through these beautiful areas?
Laid-Back Camp Dramatic Puzzle Solving Game: Two Treasure Maps and a Trip Down Memory Lane
Running: July 4 – August 31, 2022
Booklet Distribution Locations:
Yamanashi Prefecture – Kofu City Tourist Information Center / Shimobe Roadside Station / Minobu Station Shop
Shizuoka Prefecture – Shizuoka City Tourist Information Center
Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Exhibition Inspires Limited-Time Hotel Suite
The Grand Prince Hotel Takanawa in Tokyo will offer a special suite inspired by the upcoming Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Exhibition from July 1 until August 31, 2022. This will include tickets to the exhibition, which will take place at Warehouse Terrada in Shinagawa from July 1 until September 7.
Toshio Suzuki, a producer at Studio Ghibli, has worked with both Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata on a number of beloved masterpieces. The exhibition will feature a large bookshelf housing 8,800 of Suzuki’s publications and favorite tomes. Many of these were published before Suzuki joined Studio Ghibli, and guests are invited to see how the producer was inspired to join the legendary studio after working as an editor at a manga magazine. To commemorate the exhibition’s opening, this special suite is filled with books written by Suzuki along with other books that visitors may enjoy during their relaxing stay.
In the suite, guests will find a list of 106 books that influenced Suzuki the most. This list will be available to take home. Visitors will also find reproductions of Suzuki’s calligraphy.
©TS ©Studio Ghibli
Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Exhibition Special Suite Package
Venue: Grand Prince Hotel Takanawa
Available: July 1 – August 31, 2022
Toshio Suzuki Studio Ghibli Museum Accommodation Plan with Ticket
Available until September 6, 2022
Banyan Tree Group Opens Garrya Nijo Castle Kyoto Hotel
26.June.2022 | SPOT
Banyan Tree Group, one of the world’s leading independent hospitality groups, held the grand opening of Galleria Nijo Castle Kyoto, on Friday, June 17, 2022. This is the first of the group’s hotels to open in Japan.
Located south of Nijo Castle, a World Heritage Site, and named after the beautiful winter flower, Galleria Nijo Castle Kyoto is a small, modern, and minimalist luxury hotel that offers simple guests a chance to recharge themselves.
For the grand opening, a new Wellbeing Room has been opened where visitors can experience quiet meditation.
Visitors can stroll through nearby gardens, temples, and shrines, take a tour of Kyoto’s many historical sites, or spend time in the Wellbeing Room meditating or practicing yoga to recharge their batteries away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
The French Restaurant Singular will also offer up healthy and tasty meals with a focus on local ingredients and producers.
Enjoy a visit to Kyoto in this peaceful space perfect for resting both body and soul.
Garrya Nijo Castle Kyoto
Address: 180-1 Ichinocho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto
Access: 2-minute walk from Nijojo-mae Station on the Kyoto City Subway Tozai Line
Official Site: https://www.banyantree.com/ja/japan/garrya-nijo-castle-kyoto
Private Jet Package Now Available in Toyama Offering Spectacular View of Tateyama Mountains
22.June.2022 | SPOT
Mizu to Takumi, a company associated with the Toyama West Tourism Promotion Association, has teamed up with SKYTREK to offer guests a once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit the area via private jet. Reservations for the incredible experience began on June 17, 2022.
Offering an entirely new tourism experience in Toyama Prefecture, visitors can see the area’s natural wonders from miles above the Earth. The program also aims to share local culture and more about traditional craftsmanship and cuisine.
Toyama Prefecture boasts dramatic topography, from the massive peaks of the Northern Alps and the Tateyama Mountains to the deep waters of Toyama Bay. To better allow visitors to see the sights, these private jet tours will be chartered on special courses different from standard airlines.
After the flights, guests will be welcomed to explore Takaoka’s deep history and culture. Kane no Sanzun, a restored and preserved inn, will welcome visitors, offering a relaxing and rejuvenating time.
Visitors can also book optional excursions to further explore the area, such as a Zen meditation experience at a famous temple in Takaoka, a traditional crafting workshop, and a tour and tasting of the only whiskey distillery in the Hokuriku region.
Come enjoy a trip to Toyama with a whole new perspective!
Travel to Toyama by Private Jet
Available: June 17 – October 26, 2022
Travel Period: June 22 – October 31, 2022
Airbnb Reveals Top 10 Most Popular Summer Destinations in Japan
08.June.2022 | SPOT
Airbnb boasts one of the largest travel communities in the world, filled with users offering up lodging and those eager to visit somewhere new. The Japanese subsidiary of the company has revealed the top spots added to Japanese users ‘Favorites (Wish Lists)’ from May 1 to May 17, 2022. Where will travelers in the country be headed this summer?
Golden Week is long gone and users are starting to think about where to visit during the hottest part of the year. This national ‘Wish List’ might make it easier to pick a spot, with many locations highlighting lesser-known areas!
Gujo Hachiman Villa, Limited to 1 Couple Per Day (Gifu)
This completely private rental villa was made for sauna enthusiasts. One lucky pair per day can book this suite along the Yoshida River flowing through Gujo Hachiman, known as the “City of Water and Dance.” Currently booked through the end of August, reservations for September and beyond will be available in early June. Book a stay to enjoy the gorgeous autumn foliage!
A House Surrounded by Lush Greenery in the Countryside (Tottori)
Hosted by a family of musicians and architects, this guesthouse invites guests to enjoy gorgeous Nordic-inspired interiors and the serene quiet of the countryside. For those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, this is the perfect spot.
Hoshina Satomachi, Limited to 1 Couple Per Day (Nagano)
There’s nothing like spending the summer in a traditional Japanese home. Enjoy a barbeque on the terrace and relax on the massive lawn. This is the perfect spot for families with children or pets!
Coastal Cabin (Chiba)
You can’t have summer without a pool. This luxurious coastal retreat boasts a 15-meter pool, outdoor Jacuzzi, bonfire space, and a barbeque. Relax by the pool while listening to your favorite songs or soak in the outdoor bath as you watch the waves crash along the shore.
An Elegant and Peaceful Log Cabin (Nagano)
Located at 1,300 meters above sea level on the Iizuna plateau, this log cabin is situated in the midst of a dense forest. A perfect space for couples, families, or small groups of friends, guests are welcome to enjoy hiking through this gorgeous landscape in the center of Japan!
Popular Unko Museum to Open First Pop-Up in Shizuoka with a Stunning Mt. Fuji View
06.June.2022 | SPOT
The poop-themed Unko Museum is heading to Shizuoka for the first time! Guests will be able to visit the unique exhibition from July 15 until September 25, 2022.
The Unko Museum has previously popped up in Yokohama, Tokyo, Shanghai, Fukuoka, Hiroshima, and even online. In Shizuoka, it will be held inside S-Pulse Dream Plaza, a spectacular venue with a view of Mt. Fuji. The educational museum features tons of poo-themed attractions, from the poop-spurting Unko Volcano to a game area.
The museum first opened in 2019 and made news around the world. Since the flagship location opened in Tokyo, over 800,000 visitors have come to openings around the world.
While it may seem like a strange way to spend a day, would you like to come and experience this museum for yourself?
Unko Museum Shizuoka
Address: S-Pulse Dream Plaza, 3F Special Event Space (13-15 Irifunecho, Shimizu-ku, Shizuoka)
Running: July 15 – September 25, 2022
Hours: 10:00-18:00 (Last entry at 17:30) *Open 13:00-18:00 on weekdays in September (Last entry at 17:30)