Spend the Winter in a Unique Shinshu Snow Hut with Limited-Time Package
17.November.2021 | SPOT
A part of Hoshino Resorts, KAI Alps is an incredible hot spring inn located in Omachi, Nagano prefecture, at the foot of the Northern Japanese Alps. In February 2022, the hotel will allow guests to book the Shinshu Snow Hut Experience, where visitors can enjoy the winter in a traditional snow-packed hut surrounded by bamboo lights. This area is one of the snowiest places in the region, and the locals have plenty of knowledge when it comes to getting through the cold.
Nagano prefecture is often called the ‘Space prefecture’ for its beautiful starry skies. Inside the snow hut, guests will be surrounded by lights, and bamboo lanterns will light the way. These gentle lights are perfect for the white of winter, despite the cold.
Exclusively for this package, a kotatsu (heated table) will be placed inside the huts, and guests can wear traditional local clothing perfect for the weather. Sweet sake made at the Hokuan Sake Distillery in Omachi City and local rice cakes with Nozawa pickled greens, a Shinshu specialty, will also be served up.
How would you like to partake in this traditional experience?
Shinshu Snow Hut Experience
Running: February 1, 2022 – February 28, 2022
Price: ¥2,000 per person (Tax & Service Charge included)
Reservations: Make on the website at least one week in advance
Capacity: 1 group per session (2-4 people per group)
Location: KAI Alps – Hoshino Resorts
Hours: 19:00-19:45 / 20:00-20:45
Limited to Hotel Guests Only
McCafe by Barista to Offer Cookies & Cream Frappe for Winter Season
05.December.2021 | FOOD
McDonald’s Japan locations with McCafe by Barista installations will begin selling the Cookies & Cream Frappe for a limited time starting December 8, 2021. The McCafe by Barista corner employs full-time baristas serving ‘authentic cafe coffee.’
McCafe by Barista invites guests to enjoy high-quality frappuccinos and smoothies and these locations are offering three unique Frappes this winter. Following the Strawberry Creme Brulee Frappe and normal Creme Brulee Frappe released in late November, the Cookies & Cream Frappe will release soon, filled with rich vanilla sweetness!
Cookies & Cream Frappe Medium: ¥470 / Large: ¥540 (Tax Included)
The drink is a rich blend of creamy vanilla made from Madagascar Bourbon vanilla beans, blended with crunchy Oreo cookie bits and topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce. What’s not to love?
Cookies & Cream Frappe
Release Date: December 8, 2021
Where to Buy: McDonald’s Japan Locations with McCafe by Barista
Official Site: https://www.mcdonalds.co.jp/campaign/winter-frappe/
Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse to Hold 17th Annual Art & Ice Skating Event ArtRink
30.November.2021 | SPOT
Starting in 2005 to add more color to Yokohama’s winter season, the ArtRink event held at Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse combines artworks and ice skating for a bright and colorful way to spend a cold day. The 17th annual event will be held from December 4, 2021, until February 20, 2022, and will feature two artists: Moeno Ootsu and unpis, both taking part for the first time. The theme for this year’s art is ‘Stepping Out in Slippers.’
Message from the Artists
For this event, we’ve created an everyday space, ‘home,’ in a very not-everyday space: ArtRink in Yokohama.
Guests should come on an adventure that begins at the front door, then dance on ice through the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and more!
You might discover something new among the familiar furnishings and snippets of daily life.
We hope that once you leave ArtRink and return home, you’ll try to keep dancing from time to time.
Just have fun. Dance with us!
Whether you’re wearing skates, sneakers, or slippers…
Just take a step and have the best possible time this winter.
ArtRink at Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse
Running: December 4, 2021 – February 20, 2022
Location: Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse Event Space
Actresses Masami Nagasawa and Kaho Model LOWRYS FARM 2021 Winter Looks
17.November.2021 | FASHION
Fashion brand LOWRYS FARM has released a new Winter visual and promotional video featuring popular actresses Nagasawa Masami and Kaho as models.
Yuni Yoshida served as art director on the new campaign. The winter collection is filled with items to appeal to the widest range of women in the hopes of attracting newcomers to the brand.
The main visual features Masami Nagasawa and Kaho wearing LOWRYS FARM’s most popular knitwear along with memorable contrasting orange lines. Which of these new pieces would you like to add to your winter rotation?
Anime Idol Group HAKOMEN Becomes Tourism Ambassadors for Hakodate
Hakodate is one of the main cities in Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island. In September 2021, the city launched a new tourism initiative called HAKOMEN, an anime idol group based on historical figures associated with Hakodate. Starting November 1, the members are now official tourism ambassadors! In July 2021, the Jomon historical sites in Hokkaido and the northern Tohoku region were registered as World Heritage Sites, so what better time to promote these incredible areas?
Debut Song ‘Kimi to HAKO☆DATE’
HAKOMEN lore tells the story of incredible historical figures summoned to the present day by the Hollow Dogu, the only National Treasure in Hokkaido and on display at the Hakodate Jomon Culture Center. Forming an idol group to promote the town, the five members see the Hollow Dogu as their producer. On October 14, HAKOMEN made their debut with the song Kimi to HAKO☆DATE, which is already racking up impressive YouTube views.
Comments from the Members
Hijikata Toshizo / A Cutting-Edge Commander and Moodmaker
“I was surprised that I, a man who had mastered the way of the blade, would somehow become Hakodate’s tourism ambassador.
I will put all of my energy into promoting this place!”
Takeaki Enomoto / A Highly Ambitious Peacemaker
“I’m not even from this era, but you want me to do PR for Hakodate?!
Now that I’m here, I’ll be sure to convey some of the charms that only someone from the past would know!”
Takuboku Ishikawa / A Calm and Peaceful Lover of Sweets
“I love Hakodate so much that I moved there during my time, so I’m thrilled to promote it as an ambassador!
I’ll do my best to make all kinds of people fall in love with Hakodate!”
Matthew C. Perry / A Happy and Gourmet Scatterbrain
“Back when I showed up on my black ships, the people of Hakodate were so lovely♪
It’s such an honor to be able to work with Hakodate~ I’ll do my very best!”
Ayasaburo Takeda / An Open-Minded Big Brother Character
“As an ambassador for tourism to Hakodate, I’d love to promote Goryokaku fortress which I designed as an architect in 1855.
Of course, it’s not the only attraction Hakodate has to offer!”
Official Site: https://www.hakobura.jp/hakomen_official/
G-NEXT, Hightlighting Up-and-Coming Artists Each Month, Announces October Picks
05.November.2021 | MUSIC
Subscription music streaming service AWA has teamed up with free video service GYAO! and Nihon Kogakuin College to develop G-NEXT, a project to highlight a particular up-and-coming artist each month. October’s POWER PUSH artist is singer-songwriter Riho Nishikata, who is captivating young people not only with her sound, but with her deeply personal lyrics and design prowess.
AWA has also released a playlist of songs selected by Nishikata herself. This playlist, titled “Tomorrow Will be a Little Better,’ is filled with both up-tempo tracks and ballads, all capable of making hopelessness disappear. Be sure to follow the official AWA Twitter page and retweet the designated post to be entered to win an AWA hat autographed by Riho Nishikata!
G-NEXT has also unveiled a special webpage filled with music videos from this month’s artists, so be sure to check them out!
POWER PUSH ARTIST Riho Nishikata: Tomorrow Will be a Little Better
- Just in Time to Dance / OYAT
- That’s All I Need (BASI REMIX) / BASI
- Ultramarine / Naotaro Moriyama
- Mabushii Hito (Dazzling Person) / Humbert Humbert
- Kaede / Spitz
- The Traveling Guitar / Lucky Old Sun
- About the Time Machine / Merengue
- Don’t Let Me Go / Have a Nice Day!
- LONELY NIGHTS / tofubeats
- nothing anymore / Age Factory
- I Need Something / Newton Faulkner
Official Site: https://awa.fm/
POWER PUSH ARTIST Riho Nishikata: Tomorrow Will be a Little Better
G-NEXT Feature: https://gyao.yahoo.co.jp/feature/music/g-next/
Trend News Interview: https://trendnews.yahoo.co.jp/archives/794561/
Follow the Official AWA Twitter page and retweet the designated post. Winners will be selected by lottery: https://twitter.com/AWA_official/status/1453194747120537606
Accommodation Plan Overlooking ‘Tokyo Dome City Illuminations’ and Matching Collab Cocktail Announced
28.October.2021 | SPOT
Tokyo Dome Hotel has announced that a special accommodation plan overlooking the ‘Tokyo Dome City Illuminations, which will be lit up between November 5 2021 and February 28 2022, and a matching collaboration cocktail will be available between November 5 and January 10.
Room Example: Deluxe Double Room
A spectacular view from the rooms! Sample image of Tokyo Dome City Illuminations
Tokyo Dome City Winter Illuminations Collab Cocktail ‘Winter Bright’
Bar ‘2000’ Interior
The event theme this year is “Lights you’ll want to snap a picture of.” Tokyo Dome City, including the giant 15m Christmas tree, will be decked out in over 230,000 champagne gold LED lights which can change between white, red, blue, purple, and orange. Photo frame shaped photo-spots will be spread across five locations throughout Tokyo Dome City, full of gimmicks to offer amazing photo opportunities! In addition to the beautiful lights, there will be exciting and playful light displays to encourage visitors to take photos and have fun at the same time.
With this new accommodation plan, you can enjoy the beauty of the illuminations from the comfort of a private hotel room. The offer includes two one-time-use amusement park ride tickets per person, giving guests the opportunity to visit their favorite attractions while taking in the fantastic night view that can only be seen over the winter period.
The Tokyo Dome City illuminations can be fully appreciated from bar ‘2000,’ who will be offering a limited-time collab cocktail during the event period. The ‘Winter Bright’ cocktail is made using strawberry and peach liquor, orange juice, and tonic water, with the red, white, and orange layers that match perfectly with the backdrop of glowing illuminations. Why not visit and spend an evening sipping on this fruity cocktail while enjoying the beautiful winter view?
Tokyo Dome City Winter Illumination Accommodation Plan
Duration: November 5 2021 ~ January 10 2022
30 rooms are available per day.
Official Site. https://www.tokyodome-hotels.co.jp/
Collaboration Cocktail “Winter Bright”
Availability: November 5 2021 ~ January 10 2022
Tokyo Dome City Winter Illuminations
Duration: November 5 2021 ~ February 28 2022
※The main tree will be displayed until January 10 2022
Location: Tokyo Dome City
Hours: 17:00 ~ 24:00 ※Subject to change based on social conditions and sunset time.
Gorgeous Project Mapping Event Coming to Yamashiro Onsen in Kaga, Ishikawa
26.October.2021 | SPOT
DMM.com will sponsor a projection mapping project titled Yamashiro Night Promenade Fall 2021 on Yamashiro Onsen Street in Kaga, Ishikawa prefecture from October 30 until November 28, 2021.
The limited-time project is being organized by the Yamashiro Onsen Tourist Association with support from DMM. Under the themes of harmony and local tradition, brilliant images of flowers, water, and geometric patterns will illuminate the hot spring resort while accompanied by music. There will also be traditional Taiko performances during the event.
Yamashiro Night Promenade Fall 2021
Running: October 30 – November 28, 2021
Hours: 20:20-21:20 (Canceled for rain)
Address: Yamashiro Onsen Street in front of Hatori Ryokan (17 Onsen-dori, Yamashiro Onsen, Kaga City, Ishikawa)
Official Site: https://sousei.dmm.com/
New Rap Track by monyusode Inspired by 1926 Short Story ‘The Izu Dancer’
20.October.2021 | MUSIC
Female duo monyusode just released their new track With no ODORIKO on October 8, 2021. The song is available on the iTunes store and major streaming sites.
The song was inspired by the 1926 short story The Izu Dancer by Nobel Prize-winning Japanese writer Yasunari Kawabata. Kawabata was the first Japanese writer to win the award in 1968 and the short story follows a young boy from Tokyo traveling to Izu on a lonely summer holiday. On this trip, he repeatedly crosses paths with five traveling musicians who bring joy back to his life.
Comment from monyusode
“With no ODORIKO is a song that combines a traditional enka-style melody with modern rap. Be sure to pay attention to the lyrics!”
“The music video tells the story of a traveler who meets and falls in love with a dancer. It was shot in the town of Murata in Miyagi prefecture and features this rare and incredibly beautiful scenery. We hope you’ll enjoy the casting!”
Kadokawa Musashino Museum Celebrates First Anniversary with Ukiyo-e Theater from Paris Project
To celebrate the location’s first anniversary, the Kadokawa Musashino Museum will hold a 360-degree experimental exhibition titled Ukiyo-e Theater from Paris starting October 30. The theater continuously holds showings to help share Japanese culture with both domestic and international visitors.
Bowie as Kidomaru. Masumi Ishikawa for the Ukiyo-e Project
Momoiro Clover Z and KISS. Megumi Oishi (BALCOLONY) for the Ukiyo-e Project
In the Edo period, the price of one ukiyo-e print was 28 mon, the same as a bowl of soba noodles. The word ukiyo means ‘this world,’ and these paintings captured the familiar and the mundane. In that period of time, these creations were what television, the internet, and Instagram are to us today. In the 19th century, ukiyo-e pieces first appeared in Europe and made a large impact on impressionist artists, which continues to this day.
Danny Rose Studio has helped create a giant video space for the new exhibition, combining the old and the new. The Dreamed Japan – Images of the Floating World exhibition has been experienced by over 2 million people in France and is now coming to Japan for the first time with some new enhancements. Twelve unique works of art will be dynamically projected on a massive space, transporting visitors into an entirely new world. Clocks will tick, lanterns will dance in the air, cherry blossoms will flutter in the wind, and waves will rush overhead.
In the back of the Grand Gallery, a large number of ukiyo-e prints used by the Danny Rose Studio will be on display along with works by contemporary Japanese ukiyo-e artists.
Ukiyo-e Theater from Paris
Running: October 30, 2021 – April 10, 2022
Kadokawa Musashino Museum 1F Grand Gallery
GU x UNDERCOVER Collab for Second Time, First Kidswear Launched
17.October.2021 | FASHION
Affordable clothing retailer GU is teaming up with top Japanese fashion brand UNDERCOVER for the pair’s second collaboration. The collection will be available at GU stores nationwide and online starting October 29, 2021.
First Kidswear Product Lineup
Started by Jun Takahashi in 1990, UNDERCOVER blends various aspects of art, music, and subculture into its constantly evolving collections.
Following the popular Spring/Summer 2021 collection, this new collaboration mixes UNDERCOVER’s unique and original worldview with GU’s concept of ‘freedom.’ Together, they have come up with the keyword ‘FREEDOM/NOISE’ to describe the new pieces.
This new Fall/Winter collection features original patterns, graphics, and characters created by Takahashi exclusively for GU. Each item was designed with the style of UNDERCOVER in mind, giving more of a streetwear feel. The full lineup includes men’s and women’s seasonal wear, scarves and gloves for fall and winter, and even pajamas and loungewear. This also marks the first time kidswear has been released in a collaboration between the two.
GU x UNDERCOVER
Release Date: October 29, 2021
Where to Buy: GU Stores Nationwide and Online
(*Products may vary depending on the store.)
Solo One-Day Hot Spring Plan Offers Complete Relaxation and Rejuvenation in Karuizawa
12.October.2021 | SPOT
Karuizawa Hoshino Area, a place known for bringing nature and culture lovers together, will be offering a new one-day hot spring spa plan from November 4, 2021, until March 19, 2022. This is the perfect way to unwind from the stresses of the past year while getting away from crowds and responsibilities. Because it’s only one day, it’s perfect for those who can’t take a long vacation, but who are still desperate for some relaxation! The package will include access to hot spring baths, body care, a choice of lunch and drinks, and plenty of skincare amenities.
Tonbo-no-Yu Hot Spring, open since the Taisho era, will serve as the main location for the getaway. The springs themselves are bicarbonate and chloride springs with soft and thick waters in which to achieve the perfect soak and detox. Getting out of the water will leave a veil of salt on your skin, moisturizing it and cleansing every inch of your body. The open-air bath is surrounded by trees, while the indoor baths offer excellent views through oversized windows.
Five Luxuries to Enjoy on the One-Day Getaway
[Power Up] Proper Bathing Instructions for the Best Hot Springs Experience
For those looking to maximize their hot spring experience, a comprehensive bathing guide will be provided to all guests, including breathing exercises and techniques for a great facial massage. The plan includes rental towers, and guests can feel free to enter the springs as many times as they like. At the reception desk, guests will also be given a bottle of Apple Vinegar Water to help them stay properly hydrated while soaking.
[New] Gentle Skin Care while Relaxing in the Spring
Those participating in the one-day plan will be given OSAJI amenities to use during their stay. The brand is made up of safe and organic products approved by dermatologists, to be applied before and after bathing.
[Power Up] Improve Gut Health with Healthy Beverages
When guests get out of the bath, a warm brown rice amazake will be waiting, shown to improve the intestinal environment and boost natural immunity. By using brown rice, the drink contains larger amounts of Vitamin E and dietary fiber than traditional amazake. This tasty drink will be served at Cafe Hungry Spot, adjacent to the springs.
Relieve Stiff Joints with Attentive Body Care
At Tokoyo, located within the Harunire Terrace in the Karuizawa Hoshino Area, guests will get a 30-minute body care treatment with their choice of foot massage or shoulder and neck massage. Unwind and let go of all of your stress.
Choose From Six Different Restaurants for Lunch
For lunch, six restaurants in the Hoshino area are at your beck and call, from Japanese cuisine to Italian. There’s no need to make reservations in advance; choose what you’re craving the day of, and don’t stress!
Solo One-Day Hot Spring Spa Plan
Running: November 4, 2021 – March 19, 2022 (Excluding Dec. 29 – Jan. 3 and Jan. 11 – 20)
Reservations: https://www.hoshino-area.jp (Reservations required by 18:00 the day before)
Location: Tonbo-no-Yu, Karuizawa, Nagano
Exhibition Featuring Famed Silk Fabrics from Tsuruoka in Yamagata Prefecture Now Open
Tsuruoka, Yamagata prefecture is known throughout Japan and the world for its silk production. Beginning on September 18, a new exhibition is inviting guests to see some of the incredibly beautiful fabrics to come out of the area, particularly highlighting Reiko Sudo, an innovative cloth-maker living in the area. These stunning pieces are being displayed at the Matsugaoka Reclamation Site, celebrating 150 years of history in 2021 and known as the birthplace of Tsuruoka silk. In particular, Sudo’s own Kibiso fabrics, created with the intent of blending long-held traditions with modern technologies, will be making an appearance! Kibiso refers to the first silk that comes off the cocoons in industrial silk spinning.
Kibiso Stripes & Streaks: 2018 Photo Sue McNab
Kibiso Zori: Photo Keiko Matsubara
Swinging Cherries: 2021 Photo Keiko Matsubara
An exhibit featuring the production process, original design sketches, and prototypes
Kibiso – Ogarami Choshi Sheets: 2018 Photo Keiko Matsubara
Ogarami Choshi, the byproduct of the silk mill: Photo Keiko Matsubara
The First Cultivation of the Matsugaoka Reclamation Site
Tsuruoka City is the only region in Japan where the entire silk-making process–from caring for silkworms to dying and wearing–is completed in a single place. Silk production began in 1872 when the former Shonai clam’s samurai warriors began cultivating new lands around the Matsugaoka area. During the Meiji period, a local inventor named Saito Toichi invented the automatic weaving machine, making the production of silk fabrics much quicker and easier. The new fabrics were exported around the country to be used in dresses, and silk production quickly became the area’s main industry.
Kibiso, a type of thread made from the first silk discharged from a silkworm, has been in production since 2007 and is breathing new life into the area’s industry. The thread is hard and thick, making it very difficult to work with–but once these works are completed, the textile is extremely durable. It holds moisture well, has antibacterial properties, and will help protect the wearer from UV rays. Combining new designs with functionality, Kibiso also cuts down on waste, and museums in the United States and the United Kingdom currently have some of these creations on display, with more requesting installations.
At the current exhibition, 29 unique textiles, mainly Kibiso, are hung from the ceiling. Visitors are allowed to touch each of these pieces, and can also view the entire creative process from sketches and prototypes to the final product. All pieces were created together with the members of NUNO, a textile design studio directed by Sudo. The designs were decided on through conversations with craftsmen throughout Japan. By reviewing traditional processes and helping them evolve to suit modern needs, Kibiso was born and is helping to revitalize the silk industry in Tsuruoka.
A highlight of the exhibition is ogarami choshi, a byproduct of silk production often caught in the thin metal tubes of silk mills. These can be torn into sheets and used for new creations, and by doing so, helps reduce waste.
Circular Design -Kibiso Continues-
Running: September 18 – October 17, 2021 (Planned to be extended until the end of 2021)
Hours: 9:00-16:00 (Closed on Wednesdays)
Address: Matsugaoka Reclamation Site, Silkwork-Raising Room 2F (29 Haguromachi Matsugaoka, Tsuruoka, Yamagata)