Japanred Project Opens New Website to Promote Recultivation of Japanese Akane Plant
13.September.2021 | FASHION
The Osaka-Kansai Expo’s “TEAM EXPO 2025 Co-creation Challenge” have launched the official Japan Red Project website, marking the beginning of a new project which aims to revive and redevelop the cultivation of the Japanese Akane, a culture which died out during the middle ages.
Japanese Akane, or Madder, is a flowering plant that grows naturally across Japan – But few people are aware of its existence. Despite this, the plant’s root has been used to create red pigment in Japan since ancient times, appearing in excavated materials from the Yoshinogari ruins and in the Gishiwajinten records. It was also used to dye multiple precious historical artifacts, such as Nara period Emperor Shomu’s favorite items and on Heian period armour. The first rising sun flag, which was established as the official flag of Japan upon the arrival of American ships in 1984.
The color is called JAPAN RED, but the dying method of Japanese Akane is tough – It requires a large number of roots to create the pigment, but the roots take three years to grow. The practice gradually declined, and eventually even the appearance of the Akane was forgotten, becoming a phantom plant. Due to this, the Japanese Akane is not available as a commercial dye.
The Japanred project is working towards agricultural diversification, focusing on the Japanese Akane. Their goal is to bring Japan’s most important shade of red into the modern world and introduce it to a wider audience, increasing demand. Why not check out their official website to learn more about the iconic plant?
Official Site: https://japan-red.com
Edo-Tokyo Museum to Hold Exhibition Highlighting the 30,000 Year History of Tokyo
16.September.2021 | SPOT
Tokyo as we know it today is built upon tens of thousands of years of history. The Paleolithic era, during which traces of human life have been found in the Tokyo area, dates back more than 30,000 years. It might be difficult to imagine what life was like so long ago, but ruins discovered during urban development offer a glimpse into the ancient past.
The Edo-Tokyo Museum opened in 1993, and is set to begin a large-scale renovation in April 2022. Prior to the museum’s temporary closure, a special exhibition titled ‘Memories of the City: A Thirty Thousand Year History of Tokyo’ will open from September 18 until December 5, 2021. The installation will look back on the history of Japan’s capital, from the Paleolithic era to the present day.
Tokyo Takanawa Coast Steam Railway – Hiroshige Utagawa III. 1871.
Sword-shaped Haniwa. Excavated from Kannonzuka Burial Mound. From the Kofun Period (250-538 CE)
Roof tiles. Excavated from the Site of Musashi Kokubunji Temple. From the Nara Period (710-794 CE)
Scene from Yamabuki no Sato by Ota Dokan. Saitou Yukio, Saitou Yukitaka, Saitou Gesshin, Hasegawa Settan. 1836.
Excavated Materials from Hachioji Castle Ruins. From the Azuchi-Momoyama Period (1558-1600 CE)
Map of Edo. 1666.
Procession of the Lords of Edo. Adachi Ginko. 1889.
Washington Heights (Tokyo Aerial Photograph). Satou Suiyou. 1957.
Blazer worn by the Japanese Delegation at Tokyo Olympic Games. 1964.
Nipponbashi at Dawn. Kawase Hasui. 1940.
As urban development continues to progress, it’s incredible to look back at the many people who have lived in the Tokyo area, and the many events that have taken place over time. Recently, a new train stop was added to the busy Yamanote Line in the capital, and the remains of an old railroad track were discovered during construction! What else might be hiding beneath the metropolis?
Tokyo has undergone constant change due to natural disasters, war, and urban development, but historical buildings and important spots that tell the story of the city are being carefully preserved for future generations. Visitors to Japan often comment on this, claiming that so much of Tokyo’s beauty comes from it’s blend of old and new.
Memories of the City: A Thirty Thousand Year History of Tokyo
Running: September 18 – December 5, 2021
Hours: 9:30AM-5:30PM (Closed Mondays, with exception of September 20. Closed September 21.)
Address: Edo-Tokyo Museum, Permanent Exhibition, 5th Floor Feature Exhibition Room (1-4-1 Yokoami, Sumida-ku, Tokyo)
Official Site: http://www.edo-tokyo-museum.or.jp/
Results of First Japanese Traditional Culture Grand Prix Announced
With 130 entries submitted from all parts of Japan, the 8 winners of the first Japanese Traditional Culture Grand Prix have finally been announced. The contest was spearheaded by the Japan Traditional Culture Promotion Project, established in May 2020 as a collaborative effort among companies, associations, and local governments to establish a sustainable framework for the continued development of Japanese traditional culture.
Grand Prix Winner: Nakagawa Woodcrafts Hira Studio “Wave” series (left) “YORISIRO” series (right)
The winner of the top prize was Nakagawa Woodcrafts Hira Studio, in which the craftsmen still use a 700-year-old technique to create their famous wooden buckets. These buckets, once used for storing rice and miso, are still used today for a variety of different purposes, from bathing to cooling champagne! In stepping away from their typical works, the Nakagawa Woodcrafts studio created the more freeform “Wave” series, and the name surely fits–each bucket looks too free to have been manmade. The “YORISIRO” series, rather, keeps the natural curvature of the wood. Both are signature pieces of traditional Japanese artisanal culture.
Runner-up: Cubism in Calligraphy “Natural Stance,” Atelier Sisyu, Sisyu
Excellent Award: Kyo Braided Cords Sanjiku-Kumiori “Kujaku Kouki,” Saiko Ltd., Koichiro Murokado
Excellent Award: Structured System “Kumiko Endurance Wall,” Tosa Kumiko Co., Daisuke Iwamoto
Excellence Award: Porcelain “Yuragi” Hiroshi Taruta
Excellence Award: Lacquer Art “Tataeru” Shinsuke Aoki.
Excellent Student Award: Picture Frame “KOZAI” Ryohei Nomura.
Special Award: Rinku, a group of young female craftswomen from the Toukai region
The Japan Traditional Culture Promotion Project began this contest as a way to honor outstanding works from creators around Japan. The jury consists of 18 people from various fields, including Richard Collasse, the Chairman of Chanel LLC, and popular model Kozue Akimoto. A collection of online presentations and interviews with the winners is planned in future events, and the project aims to help these artists continue to work sustainably. The second round of applications will open in November 2021.
Wakayama Culture Festival 2021 Coming to Shibuya
ASOBISYSTEM, in cooperation with the Agency for Cultural Affairs, will hold the Kinokuni Wakayama Culture Festival 2021 in Shibuya on October 3, 2021. The event will be free to attend, and will take place at Shibuya CAST, a modern commercial facility located between Shibuya and Harajuku.
The Kinokuni Wakayama Culture Festival 2021, taking place in Wakayama Prefecture from October 30 to November 21, is the one of the largest cultural festival in Japan. This event will bring many popular presentations and goods from Wakayama to Shibuya, allowing Tokyo residents to experience some of the beauty and traditions of this area of the Kansai region. A number of celebrity guests will be in attendance, and local Wakayama goods will be on sale. Measures will be taken during the event to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Promoting the Wakayama Culture Festival Throughout Shibuya!
In a special collaboration with SHIBUYA TELEVISION, the largest media outlet in the Shibuya area, a promotional video produced in Wakayama Prefecture will be aired on eight large screens in the Shibuya area from September 27 to October 3. Select restaurants in Shibuya will also serve dishes featuring ingredients from Wakayama for a limited time.
Get the Wakayama Panda Mask Cover for Attending!
An original Wakayama Panda Mask Cover, produced by ASOBISYSTEM, will be given to visitors on the day of the event. *Quantity limited.
If you’re in the Tokyo area, be sure to come out to this special event where you can experience the charm of Wakayama!
Kinokuni Wakayama Culture Festival 2021 in Shibuya
When: October 3, 11:00-17:00
Where: Shibuya CAST. (1-23-21, Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo)
Content: Wakayama Product Market / Stage Show, etc.
Guests: To Be Announced
Organized by: Agency for Cultural Affairs
Planning: ASOBISYSTEM / Channel 47
* In order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the event may be subject to admission restrictions, changes in content, or performance cancellations.
Japanese Artists Associated With The TEA-ROOM Launch Art Production and Management Company
13.April.2021 | FASHION
Mucha Kucha is announced the launch of a new art production and management project that aims to create a space and opportunities for people to discover the Japanese spirit and value through performances and products created by artists associated with the The TEA-ROOM.
The project brings together seven diverse artists from different backgrounds whose mission is to “Respect and Go Beyond.”
Art Production & Management Project
Participating artists will showcase their experience and personalities in a variety of ways as part of the project in an effort to create new possibilities within Japanese culture while seeking to elevate cultural value.
The TEA-ROOM productions
Art and products
Souryou Matsumura (Tea Ceremony Instructor)
Shiho Sakamoto (Confectioner)
Fumihiko Sano (Artitect/Artist)
Gentaro Yokoyama (Potter)
RYOTA HAGIWARA (Flower Arranger)
Masahiro Inoue (Paperer)
The TEA-ROOM (Art Collective)
Official Website: https://mucha-kucha.co.jp/
Experience Japanese Culture at Home With Live Streams From Japanese Artists and Monks
23.May.2020 | SPOT
Japan Culture and Technology, a company which offers Japanese experiences taught by professionals in their respective industries, has launched an online service on WABUNKA EXPERIENCE which lets you experience traditional Japanese culture from the comfort of your home.
WABUNKA EXPERIENCE is led by leading artists and offers memorable experiences of Japanese traditional culture, such as calligraphy, tea ceremony, flower arrangement, and so on, at impressive sites in Tokyo or Kyoto.
Now people can learn about Japanese art, culture, and ways of thinking from home with the launch of their new online service. Expert Japanese artists and monks will be streaming workshops live from temples and cultural facilities in Kyoto and Tokyo. Since travel is strictly limited right now, this is the perfect opportunity for foreigners to learn more about Japan and Japanese culture.
The commemorate the launch of the online service, it will be offered at a special price. Check out the website below and learn about the programs currently on offer, from online meditation to flower arrangement, tea ceremony, and more.
URBAN SENTO: The New Brand Making Japanese Bath House Clothing Stylish
22.February.2020 | FASHION
“JAPAN MADE PROJECT” is a project launched by Japanese apparel shop URBAN RESEARCH which aims to revitalise regions around Japan by building local communities with businesses and creators around the country while also looking to take a step back to reconsider what is appealing about each of those regions.
As part of this new project, URBAN RESEARCH has announced its plans to establish “JAPAN MADE PROJECT TOKYO” on March 20, 2020. Focusing on Tokyo, this branch of the project will see the launch of “URBAN SENTO.” This will focus on the potential of sento, or “bath houses,” in the city, which will also include a new line of bath house clothing made in collaboration with Kosugi-yu a sento located in the Tokyo district of Koenji.
Public bath houses play an important part in Japanese culture by contributing to people’s mental health and creating communities. This is especially so in a city as busy as Tokyo. That’s where URBAN SENTO comes in, which will encourage the rediscovery of the city’s appealing culture through sento.
Pre-sales for the new clothing line opened on the URBAN RESEARCH online store on February 14, 2020. It features a collection of must-have items for the bath house, whose message is to spread the bath house lifestyle.
To ensure the clothing is comfortable as bath-wear, the collection is made from high quality cotton provided in collaboration with HAAG, a brand managed by Smile Cotton. This cotton is nice and soft and does not rub against the skin. Smile Cotton’s materials are even endorsed by the Japan Atopic Dermatitis Patients Association.
Crew Neck T-Shirt – ¥7,700 (Tax Included) | Sizes: Small/Medium/Large | Colours: White/Light Grey/Black
One Piece – ¥13,200 (Tax Included) | Sizes: Small/Medium | Colours: White/Light Grey/Black
Short Pants – ¥12,100 (Tax Included) | Sizes: Small/Medium/Large | Colours: White/Light Grey/Black
ZIP Parker Hoodie – ¥16,500 (Tax Included) | Sizes: Small/Medium/Large | Colours: White/Light Grey/Black
Pouch (Medium Size) – ¥3,080 (Tax Included) | Colours: White/Navy/Orange
The mesh pouch can be taken into the bath with you. Put your shampoo or other bath products in with you and take a dip.
Miscellaneous Items: IKEUCHI ORGANIC x URBAN SENTO
The bath towels you can use at Kosugi-yu are made by IKEUCHI ORGANIC. They come in two sizes and are incredibly soft on the skin.
Oragnic 120 Bath Towel – ¥5,060 (Tax Included) | Colours: White/Grey
Oragnic 120 Face Towel – ¥1,980 (Tax Included) | Colours: White/Grey
Kimura Soap x URBAN SENTO
The products used for cleaning yourself at Kosugi-yu, as well as what’s used for washing the towels, is soap provided by Kimura Soap. This pure soap, crafted by artisans by cooking in kettles, is friendly to the environment and the skin. It can be used at the bath house, in the bath at home, or even for your laundry.
Body Soap (Hinoki Cypress/Lavender) – ¥1,980 (Tax Included)
This body soap gently lathers your skin in bubbles and leaves your skin filling refreshed. Both the hand soap and body soap feel good to use.
The a video and main visual were released for URBAN SENTO, which feature Japanese music artists Yusuke Emoto and Aoi Nogi as the models.
JAPAN MADE PROJECT TOKYO “URBAN SENTO”
Pre-sales: Opened February 14, 2020
Available: URBAN RESEARCH online store
*Only a select number of items are available in the pre-sale
General Sale: March 20, 2020
Available: URBAN RESEARCH online store / URBAN RESEARCH Jinnan / URBAN RESEARCH Namba CITY / URBAN Famima!! Toranomon Hills Business Tower
*Store list subject to change
Official Website: https://media.urban-research.jp/news/61847/
BEAMS fennica to Release Gorgeous Collection in Collaboration With Ainu Crafts
06.October.2019 | FASHION
fennica is a fashion label associated with BEAMS that combines traditional Japanese handicraft with new and old designs collected from Northern Europe. The label has announced that it will collaborate with the Akan Tourism Association (法人阿寒観光協会まちづくり推進機構) non-profit organisation to release an all-new collection that incorporates traditional Ainu crafts.
Terry Ellisーthe London-based director of fennicaーand Keiko Kitamura observed Ainu culture in the Lake Akan area in Kushiro, Hokkaido, and have used the creative beauty of young craftsmen and craftswomen who are in charge of next-generation Ainu culture. Overtime they have worked together with the artisans to create an original collection entitled “Ainu Crafts from Lake Akan: Tradition and Innovation” which will be sold on the fifth floor of the Shinjuku branch of BEAMS Japan in the fennica studio and B Gallery from October 12.
The collection incorporates silver jewellery with Ainu patterns, wood-carved cutlery, hamper bags made with traditional materials, and many other lifestyle items familiar to Ainu culture. During the showcasing, there will be other exhibitions related to Ainu in the gallery, as well as talks, live performances, and more.
A special webpage went live on October 1 talking about this collaboration.
The collection’s director Terry Ellis commented: “When I was walking around Takiguchi’s store Ichigen No Mise, my attention focused on this cutlery. I felt the folklore in its simplicity. Though it’s an item to be used, the craftsmanship is incredible. You can’t just stop at one, you want to collect more and decorate with them.” *Translated from Japanese
Keiko Kitamura, also a director for the collection, commented: “Akan is a rare kind of place, with mountains, rivers, lakes and forests. It has its own shapes and colours because of the light, colours and sounds which change intensely with time and soak into your body. And Ainu art is distinct from the traditional craftsmanship of other countries and regions because in almost all categories you can still produce it even today. There are [Ainu] people who are still continuing to make art for their family to this day. Their still being here is something valuable.”
She continues: “Japan’s handiwork is in danger of vanishing across all areas of the country. Even if there are no successors, there are people who have been beside them watching, and people who were once involved in the past. So we may barely just make it. Because if this handiwork comes to a stop, it will be no more. We feel a sense of duty to protect this wonderful work.”
Ainu Crafts from Lake Akan: Tradition and Innovation
Location: BEAMS Japan – Floor 5F (3-32-6 Shinjuku, Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo)
<fennica Studio> Product Sales: October 12, 2019 – October 20, 2019 (*AINU CRAFTS products, specially-made fennica select Lake Akan items, and more)
<B Gallery> Lake Akan Exhibitions: October 12, 2019 – October 27, 2019
①Live Event: October 13, 2019 @ 18:00-18:30
Guests: Sister music unit “kapiw & apappo” (Fukuko Gōukon/Emi Shimokura)
②Talk Show: October 20, 2019 @ 18:00-19:30
Guests: Kengo Takiguchi, Hiroyuki Shimokura, Erika Katsuya, Keiko Kitamura, Terry Ellis
*The live event and talk shows are booking-only. Please check the B Gallery website for more details and how to book.
Visit the following website for more details on the participating artisans: https://www.akanainu.jp/karpekuru
Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo Offers Luxurious Accommodation Plan & Tea Ceremony Experience For Families
05.August.2019 | SPOT
Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo, a highly prestigious and magnificent 4-star hotel located in Shinjuku, is now serving an all-new “luxurious” family package which includes a tea ceremony experience and much more. It is currently running from July 20 to September 1.
The rooms offered in the accommodation plan are the hotel’s popular Wide Twin Rooms located on the Premier Grand club floor. Use of the Club Lounge is included in the package. The Wide Twin Rooms include two roomy queen-size beds which span 1.53 meters wide which allow parents to sleep comfortably with their children. Rooms also feature their own bathroom facilities.
The package also includes a check-in simulation for children aged 6-12 years where they can get a feel for what it’s like to check-in. They will fill in their own check-in cards with parents and receive a ticket for the tea ceremony experience. They will be able to take their card home with them and take a commemorative photo.
The tea ceremony experience will be held on the hotel’s 10th floor in the “Shofuan,” an authentic tearoom that has been in the hotel since it opened in 1971. Parents and children will receive proper instruction from the tea ceremony teacher before pouring their own tea, allowing them to learn about traditional Japanese culture and etiquette. They will receive a special certificate of completion at the end.
If you’re travelling to Japan as a family this summer then enjoy it in luxury at Hotel Keio Plaza Tokyo.
Tea Ceremony Experience and Luxurious Accommodations for Families
Running: July 20, 2019 – September 1, 2019
Price: ¥18,450 per person for the Wide Twin Rooms on the Premiere Grand Club Floor *Usage for 2-4 people (Includes use of the Club Lounge, breakfast, and includes service charge and tax)
①Tea Ceremony experience for overnight guests (1.5 hours required, children of preschool age or younger cannot participate but are welcome to watch)
②Simulated Club Lounge check-in experience for children and special commemorative photographs available between 2:00p.m. to 5:00p.m.
③Amenity items for mother use (skin care products etc.)
④Commemorative certificates of stays and tea ceremony completion, and photographs presented to guests
⑤Complimentary late check-out at 12:00p.m. (Normal check-out time is 11:00a.m.)
⑥Complimentary use of Sky Pool facilities
Enquiries & Reservations: +81-35322-8000
Keio Plaza Official Website: https://www.keioplaza.com/
See Traditional and Modern Japanese Culture Collide With Yukata, DJs & More at Tokyo’s Hamarikyu Gardens
The three-day Hamarikyu Oedo Cultural Festival will take place at the beautiful Hamarikyu Gardens in Tokyo from August 23 to 25. It will be produced by international fashion designer and stylist Junko Koshino.
The boisterous festival is a coming together of Japan’s traditional Edo period and modern times which will be celebrated with a myriad of exciting experiences.
The centrepieces of this year’s event are the DJ performances and Yukata Fest which will take place around the two 6-meter tall pillars in the garden’s plaza. DJ KOO will appear as a special guest on Friday August 23rd while Japanese models Arina Urahama, Sayaka Shimizu and YORI will take the spotlight on Saturday 24th wearing Edo-style outfits with a contemporary pop spin all made by Junko Koshino.
During the Yukata Fest, there will be taiko drumming along to the DJ performance. Three people from the Eitetsu Fu’un no Kai―a group supervised by famous Japanese musician Eitetsu Hayashi―will be the drummers. The Fest will mash together traditional Japanese music with modern DJing.
Expect to be thrilled with an up-close performance of kendo swordsmanship, iai―the art of drawing one’s sword―and a showcasing of naginata, a type of long pole weapon. There will also be a play area where you can play karuta with the Hyakunin Isshu one-hundred poems which was popular during the Edo period, blow bubbles, and more.
And of course, there’ll be plenty of Japanese food to tuck into as well served at one of the many booths. This includes namie yakisoba, a local speciality soba noodle dish adored by the people of Fukuoka which will be served as part of maintaining the culture, a Fukushima no Sake standing bar which has won the top award in the Shinshu Kanpyokai 7 years in a row, and so on.
Specially prepared traditional Japanese wagashi confections produced by Junko Koshino will also be sold as part of a collaboration project with Ito En who are sponsoring the event and holding a special tea party. They are limited in availability, and those lucky few who do get a spot will be able to enjoy tea and sweets while enjoying a view of the spectacular Japanese-style gardens at the Nakajima No Ochaya cafe.
Visitors will also be able to pick from a wardrobe of bright and colourful yukata, including some designed by Junko Koshino, at one of the booths at the festival and have them fitted on from them. Those who arrive already dressed in a yukata will receive free entry to the festival!
You’ll completely forget you’re in the boisterous city of Tokyo while at this traditional x modern fusion of a festival. If you’re in Japan this summer, then don’t miss out. More details of the festival and its content can be found on the official website below.
Hamarikyu Oedo Cultural Festival 2019
August 23 @ 17:00-21:00
August 24 @ 11:00-21:00
August 25 @ 11:00-17:00
*Hamarikyu Gardens are open from 9am as usual while the festival is running
Location: Hamarikyu Gardens (1-1 Hamarikyuteien, Chuo Ward Tokyo)
Price: General ¥300 / 65+years ¥150 (Free for elementary school children and younger, residents of Tokyo, and middle school student residents and younger)
*Free entry for those wearing a yukata
Official Website: https://hamarikyu-event2019.jp/
Ehomaki Sushi Rolls to Eat in 2019: Heart-Shaped Rolls, Doraemon Rolls & More
Setsubun is an annual event in Japan that takes place on February 3. It is the day before spring and is a time when Japanese people perform a ritual called mamemaki in which beans are scattered to ward off evil.
Another element of Setsubun is the consuming of ehomaki. These large sushi rolls are to be eaten facing a set direction each year for good health all year round. This year’s direction is East-Northeast.
We have created a list of ehomaki to be enjoyed in 2019 that includes classic rolls and more unique ones.
AEON’s ehomaki can be enjoyed by kids and adults alike
AEON Retail has announced 22 varieties of ehomaki to be sold at nearly 400 branches of AEON and AEON Style on February 2 and 3. This includes Sushi Yoshitake’s Goku Ehomaki―made by a Michelin 3-star restaurant that has ranked in the Michelin guide for 8 consecutive years―which incorporates sushi techniques from before the Edo period; as well as the Doraemon Ehomaki.
Thick ehomaki stuffed with sea urchin, caviar and more at Daimaru Tokyo
Daimaru Tokyo is now serving over 150 varieties of egomaki until February 3. This includes a fully-packed ehomaki made with 19 ingredients including sea urchin, caviar, tuna, fugu and more. There’s also a red king crab ehomaki that lovers of crab won’t be able to resist.
Strawberry-filled ehomaki roll at InterContinental Yokohama Grand
InterContinental Yokohama Grand’s “Ehomaki Rolls” sell out every single year, and they’re set to return once more in 2019 for a limited time. Available from January 26 until February 3, this dessert ehomaki is pumped with 2 varieties of high quality fresh cream and 5 whole sweet strawberries.
Matsuzakaya Nagoya’s Heart-shaped ehomaki♡
The Nagoya branch of Matsuzakaya is serving 140 types of ehomaki in 40 of its stores on floor B1F. One of the most eye-catching options is the cute heart-shaped ehomaki that’s filled with shibazuke, flying fish roe and shrimp tempura. There are only 50 of these being sold so be sure to get your hands on on quick!
Feeling hungry yet? When in Japan, do as the Japanese do and get your hands around a delicious ehomaki.
Osaka Bubble Festival Song ‘Once In Your Life In Osaka’ Goes Viral on YouTube
14.August.2018 | SPOT
Bubble Festival -Osaka Bon 2018- is a huge outdoor festival scheduled for August 25 and 26 that will combine music, dance and traditional culture. To promote the festival, Cool Japan TV released a music video in collaboration with Room39 two weeks ago titled Once In Your Life -Osaka Bon- which has already broken 1 million views on YouTube.
Cool Japan TV released another viral hit titled Tokyo Bon in collaboration with Malaysian hip-hop artist Namewee last year which currently has over 34 million views. The video acted as a bridge between Japan and the rest of the world, prompting people to post videos of themselves performing the traditional bon odori dance themselves.
Bubble Festival -Osaka Bon 2018- is the first collaboration between producers Afro&Co. and Japan’s largest influencer marketing company Cool Japan TV. The festival is focused on ensuring foreign tourists can enjoy the event too by offering information and services in multiple languages.
The music video for Once In Your Life In Osaka -Osaka Bon- features popular Thai artist Room39 as well as bon odori choreography by Ukon Takafuji. The colourful video captures the excitement of Osaka tourism and the bubble festival as they sing in English, Japanese, Thai and Chinese.
At the festival you can catch performances from DJ KOO, Ukon Takafuji, CYBERJAPAN DANCERS, SPICY CHOCOLATE, Have a Nice Day! who are known for their exciting live performances, calligrapher Bisen Aoyagi, DJ Afromance, and more.
Check out the video for yourself to witness the charm of Japanese culture.
Airbnb’s Experience-Based Services Expanding in Japan to Promote Culture to Local & Foreign Guests
02.August.2018 | SPOT
Airbnb have announced that they are expanding their experience-based services from select regions of Japan to all regions. These services offer both Japanese and foreigners a chance to get up close to Japanese culture and tradition.
Airbnb opened their “Experiences” services worldwide in 2016. To date, their experience service in Japan could be used in Kanto, Kansai, Fukuoka and Okinawa. Japan already ranks 2nd worldwide in the Experiences category with a recorded 886% increase this June in guests booking these services compared to last year.
These numbers are what led to Airbnb deciding to expand the service to the whole country. Individuals across Japan, interpreting services and more stretching all the way from Okinawa up to Hokkaido can register as an Airbnb Experiences host to network with over 300 million Airbnb travellers.
To celebrate the expansion, a curation page for experiencing world architecture has been set up in co-operation with internationally acclaimed Japanese architect Kengo Kuma. A new destination has also been added for people to go and visit a building created by Kuma in the town of Yusuhara in Kochi Prefecture. Bookings opened on July 31.
Comment by Yasuyuki Tanabe (Country Manager, Airbnb Japan)
“Experiences at Airbnb are a platform offering a chance for guests around the world to experience local charms and the passion of individuals. Hosts in Japan are able to provide true local experiences through Experiences which give a glimpse into Japan’s rich culture and attraction. By expanding the service, I hope to also promote to the world the hidden charms of regions outside the famous tourist spots.”
Comment by Kengo Kuma
“Airbnb’s platform offers various experiences related to architecture that enable people to see architectural structures, from worldwide famous structures to locally unique ones. As part of that I have curated some local experiences offered by hosts who are rooted in their local region. As well as that, there are many structures I have created in Yusuhara in Kochi Prefecture, also known as the town atop the clouds, which I am extremely happy are now a newly introduced available experience on Airbnb. Travel is a treasure house of inspiration. I hope that by using Airbnb, lots of new inspiration will be born from exchanging and promoting to the people of the world Japanese culture and people’s individuality. Japan also has a lot of assets it can boast to the world. Anyone in Japan can become an Airbnb Experiences host, so I hope lots of people use this opportunity to challenge themselves.”