Kyoto’s Shinto Shrine Iwashimizu Hachimangu Announces Light-Up Event

16.January.2021 | SPOT

Iwashimizu Hachimangu, a Shinto Shrine in Yawata, Kyoto, has announced that a 5-day light-up event will take place from February 10 to 14 at the site’s main shrine which is listed as a national treasure of Japan.

Following government guidelines in response to COVID-19, the event will feature LED illuminations, glowing exhibits from craftsmen, lights made by locals from materials such as bamboo, and more, all in the hopes of creating a bit of evening-time sightseeing in the area. The event will also be streamed live online for those unable to attend where viewers can also enjoy watching ceremonial dance by shrine maidens.

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  • ‘Kyoto Yura Hotel M Gallery’ New Halloween Menu Features Adorable Monster Motifs

    18.October.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    The ‘1F Lounge & Bar 1867’ at the Kyoto Yura Hotel M Gallery will be hosting a Halloween themed afternoon tea from October 1 2021, with tea sets and cocktails available. The premium hotel is owned by Accor, a Paris, France based group that owns over 5,000 hotels and resorts in 110 countries.

    The Halloween-themed afternoon tea has been made by Jennie Chiu, a pastry chef who grew up in America, the home of Halloween. The afternoon tea features cute and playful monster motifs, including a witch-hat Mont Blanc, a Cassis and Chestnut Cake topped with a small ghost, and a spider-web topped Raspberry and Chocolate Mousse. For savory treats, Chef Nishimura Niki has prepared Foie Gras soaked in Salted Koji, plus two luxurious lobster dishes.

     

     

    The creative Halloween cocktails were brainstormed by Yamazaki Sousei, who ranked in the Japan Top 10 category of bartending competition ‘WORLD CLASS 2021.’ The Halloween and apple pie inspired lineup was inspired by Scotland and the Celtic people, looking back to when Halloween was first celebrated. 

    Enjoy some adult-only time in this retro-modern “family mansion” themed space. 

  • Tokyo Mega Illumination at Tokyo City Keiba to Collaborate with NAKED for AR Experience

    17.October.2021 | FASHION / SPOT

    2021 marks the fourth year that the Oi Racecourse, also called Tokyo City Keiba, will be bathed in a sea of over eight million colorful lights! The Tokyo Mega Illumination is back from October 16, 2021, until April 10, 2022, and features a water fountain show synchronized to music, a 100-meter tunnel covered in twinkling lights, and more. This year, in the Twinkle area of the event, guests can enjoy various AR illuminations created as a collaboration with NAKED, a creative production company headquartered in Shibuya. The NAKED BIG BOOK interactive experience will also welcome visitors to enjoy a projection mapping experience like no other.

     

    NAKED BIG BOOK

    Pergola (Interactive)

    Illuminated Logo

    AR Horse Camera Filter

    AR Lights
    Limited-Time Area: Tree Playing with Lights (Lawn Area)

     

    NAKED’s most popular work, NAKED BIG BOOK, utilizes projection mapping to allow guests to turn the pages of a giant book and experience a unique world separate from their own. Using web filters and AR, guests can also see the object as a pop-up picture book! 

     

    During this special collaboration held on a horse racing track, visitors can also see a giant white horse in AR as they explore the grounds. Colorful horseshoes and stars will pop up from people’s footprints, and the sound of visitors’ steps will take on the sound of a horse’s hooves instead. Be sure to make some memories by snapping commemorative photos with themed filters during the event!

     

  • Halloween Sweets Now Available at Historical Kyoto Sweets Shop Tsuruya Yoshinobu

    14.October.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    Founded in 1803, Tsuruya Yoshinobu is a famous Japanese sweets shop specializing in wagashi, or traditional Japanese confections. To celebrate Halloween, the shop is now selling some themed treats through the end of October. 

     

    Halloween Pumpkin/Halloween Ghost Japanese Sweets

    Happy Halloween Cookie Assortment

     

    The celebration of Halloween dates back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, before later being Christianized as All Hallow’s Day. A day to ward off evil spirits and celebrate the fall harvest, it has become a much less serious holiday in recent decades. Children dress up in costumes and go door-to-door asking for candy, and the past is largely forgotten. The sweets available at Tsuruya Yoshinobu are decorated with cute expressions and are sure to be a hit at tea time with friends and family. Be sure to keep an eye out for the ghosts, featuring six different expressions!

     

    Japanese sweets aren’t as strong as their American counterparts, and each is sculpted like a work of art. These will melt in your mouth and are perfect for enjoying with matcha, tea, or coffee! Be sure to fill out the blank card along with the cookie gift box for a thoughtful gift this holiday season.

  • Rosa & Berry Tawada English Garden Celebrates 10 Years with Light-Up Event

    12.October.2021 | SPOT

    In scenic Shiga prefecture, visitors can find one of the largest light-up events in the Kansai region. The Rosa & Berry Tawada park is celebrating ten years in 2021, and to celebrate this milestone, the Rosa & Berry Illumination 2021 is covering the space in thousands of brightly colored rainbow lights!

     

    Giant 4-meter Wreath and Treehouse

    Constructing the Giant Wreath

    Illuminated Flowers

    Glittering Balloons & Rainbow Churros

     

    The main stage, Stardust Lake, is located beside the Galaxy Railroad area. Guests can experience the beauty of Lake Biwa, the largest lake in Japan, as they wander the illuminated grounds. Don’t miss this year’s unique light show ‘Rainbow of Hope,’ a wish for the end of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

     

    In commemoration of the park’s 10th anniversary, a huge wreath over four meters wide will be hung within the park. Created by Yoshihi Futana, the wreath was created with carefully collected plants that were starting to wither. The size is sure to impress, so don’t miss your chance to snap a picture with this work of art!

     

    The church-like building sitting atop a hill in the park is decorated with illuminated flowers made by creative team You Ru Maru. Fans of Shaun the Sheep can enjoy a store dedicated to the popular character and his friends on-site, some hotpot during the cooler months at the Kotatsu Nabe restaurant, and a hot cup of tea overlooking the lights at the Hillside Cafe Tearoom. Don’t forget to grab a rainbow churro as you wander around the park!

  • Kyoto’s Kurodani Temple, Typically Closed to the Public, to Accept Visitors for Limited Time

    12.October.2021 | SPOT

    Constructed in 1175, the Kurodani Temple is one of the head temples of the Jodo Sect of Buddhism. Though typically closed to the public, the grounds will open for a short period to allow guests to experience some beautiful autumn scenery beginning November 12, 2021. This temple is associated with the Shinsengumi and served as the headquarters of the Aizu Clan at the end of the Edo period, so those interested in history won’t want to miss out on this incredible opportunity. 

     

    [Night] Shiun Garden

    [Day] Autumn Leaves at the Main Gate

    [Day] Shiun Garden

    [Night] Autumn Leaves at the Main Gate

    Temple Grounds at Sunset

    The Tiger’s Room

    Ohoujou Garden

    Founders Hall

    Live Koto Performance

    Gokoushiyuiamidabutsu, ‘Afro Buddha’ 

     

    Guests will be able to enjoy the gorgeous autumn temple scenery during both daytime and nighttime, with the night viewing also offering some traditional Japanese live music. Visitors can also see various temple treasures and historical items, as well as the Tiger Room, known for its painted doors. The unique and aptly named Afro Buddha will also be on display. After training for an extremely long period of time, the Buddha’s hair piled up, giving him this strangely modern appearance. 

     

    On a clear day, guests will be able to see clear to the Abeno Harukas building in Osaka. Vividly painted ceilings and other statues will completely surround visitors in spiritual history. At night, traditional Japanese music will be played at three different times in the front gardens. On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, the temple will offer a Premium Plan, allowing interested guests to enter the grounds 30 minutes before general admission starts. (This will require reservations made on the official website.) This will also include a guided tour!

     

    How would you like to experience this piece of Japanese history while surrounded by unforgettable autumn foliage? 

  • Enjoy “A Magical Moment” at the ‘HIBIYA Magic Time Illumination 2021’ Event

    12.October.2021 | SPOT

    The ‘HIBIYA Magic Time Illumination 2021’ light event will be held in Tokyo Midtown Hibiya, as well as in related associations like Hibiya Area Management, Hibiya Chanter, Tokyo Midtown Hibiya, Hibiya Nakadoori, and Hibiya Chanter’s Area Management locations, between November 18 2021 and February 14 2022. The theme for this year’s illumination event is “A Magical Moment” that can be enjoyed from a distance. 

     

     

    HIBIYA AREA ILLUMINATION

    The ‘HIBIYA AREA ILLUMINATION’ transforms Hibiya into a sparkling Christmas scene every year. The trees surrounding the Hibiya area will be lit up in a gradient of colors to represent a new drawn, with the theme “may a wonderful tomorrow shine at the end of today.” Each tree is lit up in a different colour, creating the gradation effect.



     

    Duration: November 18 2021 ~ February 14 2022 (scheduled)

    Switched On Between: 17:00 ~ 23:00

    Location: Hibiya Nakadoori / Tokyo Midtown Hibiya

     

     

    HIBIYA WINTER SQUARE

    The ‘HIBIYA WINTER SQUARE,’ installed at the Hibiya Step Plaza, has been designed to be viewed while maintaining distance from the other visitors, creating an all-new experience for the New Normal era.

    Duration: November 18 ~ December 26 2021 (scheduled)

    *The main staircase illuminations are scheduled to remain installed until February 14 2022.

    Switched On Between: 17:00 ~ 23:00

    Location: Tokyo Midtown Hibiya 1F, Hibiya Step Plaza

     

     

    PARK VIEW WINTER GARDEN

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    Duration: November 18 2021 ~ February 14 2022 (scheduled)

    Switched On Between: 17:00 ~ 23:00

    Location: Tokyo Midtown Hibiya 6F Park View Garden

     

     

    Earth Christmas Tree

    Artificial Art Tree

     

     

    This year’s illuminations have been designed with Reduce, Reuse, Recycle in mind. The producers have made efforts to be sustainable while creating the Earth Christmas Tree and reduce waste by using LEDs that use 40% less power compared to regular bulbs, while the Artificial Art Tree can be reused year after year.

     

    Enjoy a magical time this winter with the ‘HIBIYA Magic Time Illumination’ while maintaining a safe and considerate distance from the other guests!

  • Junei Hotel Kyoto Adds New Plan Allowing Guests to Reserve Entire Property

    06.October.2021 | SPOT

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto Imperial Palace West, a small luxury hotel located in the heart of Japan’s ancient capital, has revealed a new plan allowing guests to rent out the entire premises. Imagine being in a hotel with only your closest family and friends!

     

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto Imperial Palace West – Guest Room

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto Imperial Palace West – Bathroom

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Bamboo Suite

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Bamboo Suite Bathroom

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Standard Room

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Standard Bathroom

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Breakfast at Futago

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Futago Restaurant Interior

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto – Dinner at Futago

    Arashiyama Yusaitei

    Arashiyama Yusaitei

    Kibune Riverbed

    Hozucho River Boat Ride

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto Rooftop View of Kiyomizu-dera Lights

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto Rooftop Garden Moon Viewing

     

    With two locations in Kyoto, guests will be able to enjoy the entirety of the hotel in complete privacy while still enjoying hotel hospitality. With between 8-11 rooms, this would be the perfect spot for a family gathering, wedding reception, graduation trip with friends, corporate meeting place, or even for overseas guests!

     

    The Junei Hotel Kyoto Imperial Palace West opened in 2017 as a community-based luxury hotel with only eight rooms, with a single mission: bringing the beauty of Japan to the world. Beyond simply finding a place to sleep for the night, the hotel wants guests to experience something special and to provide an unforgettable experience. By partnering with local tourism associations, the Junei Hotel hopes to accurately convey the traditions and singular culture of the city of Kyoto. 

     

    In March 2020, a second location opened. The Junei Hotel Kyoto is surrounded by bamboo, and in fact, the theme of the hotel itself is bamboo and the moon. Each of the guest rooms is decorated with traditional and local bamboo crafts, and every detail is pulled from the natural beauty of Higashiyama, Kyoto. 

     

    The restaurant attached to the hotel, Futago, is the perfect place for adults to unwind and recharge. The kappo-style course menu features Kyoto vegetables and seasonal ingredients, blending the delicious with the nutritious. Chefs will cook each dish using a variety of methods, and guests will be amazed by how the flavor of the meat changes from course to course. The menu changes each month, so be sure to come back throughout the year!

     

    Guests can also rent out Arashiyama Yusaitei, a gorgeous building deep in the forests of Kyoto perfect for wedding receptions, photoshoots, tea ceremonies, and more. The rooftop garden offers a stunning view of Kiyomizu-dera and is also perfect for moon viewing. Those wanting to get even closer to nature can enjoy a boat ride down the Hozucho river, and for those craving desserts, a Japanese sweets-making class is also available!

     

    Who would you take with you on a private stay at the Junei Hotel Kyoto? 

  • Kyoto Brighton Hotel Offers New Morning Plan to Admire Autumn Leaves

    27.September.2021 | SPOT

    The Kyoto Brighton Hotel is offering a special morning plan that will charter temples and shrines exclusively for hotel guests between November 17 and November 30 2021.

     

     

    Hougon-in

    Anrakuji

    Kitano Tenmagu Shrine

            

    Koudaiji

    Shisendou

     

    Taizouin

    Touji

     

    Even throughout Japan, Kyoto has one of the highest amounts of Autumn leaf viewing spots. This unique viewing plan allows guests to enjoy the vivid autumn leaves by charter, with special permission to visit each spot before it opens to the general public. With this plan, you can experience the wonders of Kyoto in Autumn while avoiding the crowds.

     

    The “Morning Plan” proposed by the Kyoto Brighton Hote offers guests the chance to spend a peaceful time in the fresh, dignified early morning air while avoiding the crowds. This popular plan has been running for 20 years.

    Not only is the viewing private, but you will also learn more about the area with guidance from the priests and staff. 

    After returning to the hotel, you will be treated to a special “Kyoto Breakfast” which uses local ingredients arranged in both Japanese and Western styles. This breakfast will taste even better following the cleansing of body and mind in the crisp early morning air.

     

    Why not take part in this purifying “Morning Activity” and immerse yourself amongst the Autumn leaves?

     

  • The National Museum of Modern Art in Kyoto Opens Meiji Era Exhibition

    14.September.2021 | SPOT

    A special exhibition titled ‘Japanese Landscapes Discovered: Views from and for the Outside World,’ showcasing a private collection of Meiji era paintings, is now on display at the National Museum of Modern Art in Kyoto until October 31, 2021.

     

    Inside the Exhibit

    Inside the Exhibit

     

     

    This exhibition is designed to take visitors on a journey through the Meiji period (1868-1912), the beginning of Japan’s modern era, through oil and watercolor paintings of the time, and through the landscapes and customs depicted in these pieces of art. During this time, many foreign painters visited Japan, and were inspired to paint the country’s beautiful landscapes and unfamiliar customs, bringing these creations back to their countries of origin. Japanese artists studied these unfamiliar painting techniques, and made their own culturally-inspired paintings, often selling them to foreign visitors as souvenirs.

     

    Many works on display in this exhibition have never been shown publicly, with many being brought back to Japan from locations abroad. These include long-lost oil paintings by Kuroda Seiki and a massive newly-discovered work by Tamura Soryu. Other Japanese artists inspired by Western-style on display include Hiroshi Yoshida, Jirokichi Kasagi, Shotaro Koyama, and Ioki Bunsai.

     

    Also on display are works by foreign artists who visited Japan during this period, including British news painter Charles Wirgman, French news painter Georges Bigot, and British landscape painters Alfred Parsons, Alfred East, and John Varley Jr. These three men in particular triggered a watercolor boom in Japan during the late Meiji period. Vibrant female painters such as British watercolorist Ella du Cane, a lover of Japanese gardens, also make an appearance.

     

    Be sure to see these incredible depictions of Japan before they’re gone.

  • Famous Oil Blotting Paper Brand’s Yojiya Café Reforms Three Popular Parfait Flavors

    14.September.2021 | FOOD

    The Yojiya Café, opened by the Yojiya brand famous for its Aburatorigami, or facial oil blotting paper, will be renewing its menu from September 13. The popular face parfait, which features the logo alongside a Kyoto woman with a mole, comes in three flavors available – Kinako, Matcha, and Milk Tea. Each parfait comes with a sauce, so you can adjust the taste as you eat.

     

    Kinako Parfait: ¥1,200 (Tax Incl.)

    Matcha Parfait: ¥1,200 (Tax Incl.)

    Milk Tea Parfait: ¥1,200 (Tax Incl.)

     

     

    The Yojiya Café is currently open in two locations, Gion and Sagano Arashiyama, offering a relaxing space to rest between shopping and sightseeing.

     

    The café has renewed their iconic Kinako Parfait, which combines Japanese Kinako and Western Maple Syrup, along with the Matcha Parfait, which is packed full of matcha ice cream, jelly, and cookies. The Milk Tea Parfait is made with a rich Japanese Tea and Earl Gray ice cream.

     

    Take a trip to Yojiya and find out which parfait is your favorite!

  • Kyoto Sweets Cafe eXcafe Gion-Shinbashi Restarts Popular Breakfast Menu for Weekends

    03.September.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    The calm Machiya sweet shop eXcafe Gion-Shinbashi will be restarting the popular eXcafe Breakfast (Calico) menu on weekends from September 4 2021. This is the perfect spot to start your Gion adventure, packed full of ancient city charm and history. 

     

     

     

    eXcafe currently has three store locations in Kyoto: Kyoto-Arashiyama, Gion-Shinbashi, and the newly opened Gion Yasaka.

    eXcafe Gion Shinbashi is located in an area where you can appreciate the beauty of Gion, with the ever changing scenery fully reflecting the four seasons. Even on sunny weekends, the area isn’t overly busy and the sky is beautifully clear, making it the perfect spot for commemorative photos.

     

    The returning breakfast menu is the eXcafe Breakfast (Calico), made up of charcoal-grilled toast with a calico cat motif. The fluffy bread is thickly cut and can be completed with your favorite topping: Bean paste, butter, whipped cream, or fruits. The breakfast set also includes a drink and Mitarashi dango dessert, making it the perfect way to spend a relaxing moment at the beginning of your trip, or as a break from your early-morning sightseeing.

     

    Morning walks in Gion are particularly refreshing at this time of year, making a perfect break from the intense Summer heat. It is also ideal for visiting the Yasaka Shrine.

    You’ll feel even cooler as you listen to the flowing Shira River, the water gently bubbling under the cobblestones of the famous Tatsumi Bridge. Although it is located in a trendy area, the eXcafe Gion-Shinbashi is a welcome break from the bustle of the city, surrounded by cobblestone alleys and wooden townhouses.

     

  • Volleyball Series Haikyu!! Gets Collaboration with Toei Kyoto Studio Park

    02.September.2021 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    Toei Kyoto Studio Park will hold a limited-time collaboration with popular volleyball anime series Haikyu!! starting September 11.

     

     

    Haikyu!! x Randen Retro Train

     

    Original Towel

    Stage Set

    Original Fairground Game Merchandise 

    Randen Collaboration

     

    Limited-edition Collaboration Merchandise

    Purchase bonus bookmark (1 of 8 designs: 4 designs from Karasuno High School, 4 designs from Inarizaki High School)

    Selected Merchandise

    For each menu order, a random coaster will be presented as a gift. *8 original designs available.

     

     

    In the newly drawn concept image for the event, the members of the Karasuno High and Inarizaki High volleyball teams are seen during a trip to Kyoto, where they meet at the Toei Kyoto Studio Park. Fans can see their favorite characters dressed in Shinsengumi happi coats, buying souvenirs, eating, drinking, and enjoying their hard-earned day off. There will be a Haikyu!! exhibition at the park, a footbath, special goods and food items, as well as a running collaboration train.

     

    Look forward to this very unique event in Kyoto, coming soon!

    ©古舘春一/集英社・「ハイキュー!!」製作委員会・MBS

    短縮形 ©HF/S,HP,M

     

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