Hotel Made Entirely of Ice Opens in Tomamu, Hokkaido
19.January.2022 | SPOT
Hoshino Resort Tomamu, one of the largest stay-and-go snow resorts in Hokkaido, will open a hotel made entirely of ice from January 20 until February 28, 2022. The ceiling, walls, and furniture will all be made of ice, and guests can also enjoy an outdoor ice bath! In addition, a new Ice Dinner will be on offer, where visitors can enjoy a beautiful table surrounded by ice overlooking a forest of white birches while staring up at the starry winter sky.
The seamless dome-shaped ice structure is about 8.5 meters in diameter and 3.5 meters high. Sleeping bags will be provided to guests to keep them warm and comfortable until morning.
Visitors can enjoy a hot spring in the open winter air in Shimukappu Village’s Scan Portopia Yunosawa Onsen.
The aforementioned Ice Dinner features three ice-themed dishes and welcomes guests to sit at a table made entirely of ice surrounded by majestic nature.
The appetizer includes iced vegetables like tomatoes, bell peppers, and cauliflower. Each is dipped in a warm garlic sauce, balancing the sweetness of the veggies, which become more sugary when cold.
The main course, Iceberg Bouillabaisse, is covered with ice. This begins to melt as the soup pot is slowly heated in front of the guests, revealing gorgeous seafood like cod and shrimp. It’s a feast for the eyes as well as the tastebuds!
The frozen fruit dessert mixes strawberries and kiwis with hot wine and a touch of cinnamon. Sweet and sour flavors come together to end the night on a high note.
Running: January 20 – February 28, 2022
Price: ¥28,000 per person, per night (Includes tax, service charge)
Check-in: 21:40-22:00 / Check-out: 8:00
Capacity: 1 group per day (Minimum 1 guest, maximum 2 guests)
Eligibility: Must be elementary school age or older and staying at Tomamu The Tower or Hoshino Resort RISONARE Tomamu
*Must be made at least 1 week in advance.
Extensive Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Exhibition to Open at Sapporo Factory in Hokkaido
An exhibition focusing on the Mugen Train and Entertainment District Arcs of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba will open at Sapporo Factory in Hokkaido from July 15 until August 7, 2022.
Fans of the series won’t want to miss this huge showing of Demon Slayer materials, including a video exhibit showing off some of the best fight scenes from the film and anime series on a massive screen.
Stay tuned for more details!
Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba – Mugen Train Arc / Entertainment District Arc
Running: July 15 – August 7, 2022
Hours: 10:00-19:30 *Closing at 17:00 on August 7
*Admission permitted until one hour before closing time.
Venue: Sapporo Factory 3-jo 3F
Official Site: http://www.stv.jp/
Yunohana Onsen Resort Reveals Contemporary Art-Inspired Guest Rooms
Sumiya Kihoan, a cozy inn at Yunohana Onsen in Kameoka City in Kyoto, opened a unique new guest room on April 28, 2022. The room’s concept is “where guests can stay in the middle of contemporary art,” and was inspired by the works of internationally-acclaimed contemporary artist Yukinori Yanagi. The new room, created as part of the Art Room Project, has been named ‘Kofuu.’
The Icarus Corridor Connecting Heaven and Earth
Heavenly Bath Welcoming a Rainbow at Dusk
In-Ground Bath Featuring Oribe Glazed Ceramic
Concept Drawing of the Art Room Project by Yukinori Yanagi
The new room includes an open-air bath where guests can be transported into the world of Yanagi’s contemporary art while gazing at the gorgeous Kyoto landscape. Upon entering the inn, guests are greeted by a long corridor leading to the bedrooms, dining room, and two creative open-air baths. The space was created in collaboration with Yanagi and local artists and craftsmen, such as potter Ishii Naoto, obi craftsman Yamaguchi Genbei X, plasterer Kusumi Akira, and Japanese paper craftsman Hatano Wakaru. A delicious menu is prepared by chef Hosoi Kunihiko.
Ryokan Sumiya Kihoan
Address: Yunohana Onsen, Kameoka City, Kyoto
Room Details: https://hakutai.sumiya.ne.jp/artroom-kohoo/
Room Reservations: https://reserve.489ban.net/client/sumiya/0/plan/id/119287/stay?noSearch=1
Official Site: https://www.sumiya.ne.jp/
Kanahei’s Small Animals Inspires Hotel Room at Hotel New Otani Tokyo
03.May.2022 | SPOT
Hotel New Otani Tokyo will offer special collaboration rooms inspired by illustrator Kanahei’s characters Piske & Usagi from May 1, 2022 to April 30, 2023.
Original Cushion / Acrylic Stand
The room is completely decorated with brand new illustrations of Piske and Usagi made exclusively for the collaboration. A total of five original amenities will be included with each room plan, including an original cushion and acrylic stand. Come surround yourself with complete cuteness!
Piske & Usagi’s Relaxing Room Plan
Location: Hotel New Otani (Tokyo)
Available: May 1, 2022 – April 30, 2023
Official Site: https://www.newotani.co.jp
Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto Reveals Room Plan with UNDERSON UNDERSON Washi Underwear
The lifestyle brand UNDERSON UNDERSON is all about making skin healthier by using washi paper. The unique brand has teamed up with Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto, known for its traditional washi decorations, for a special accommodation plan! Booking a room will get you a fancy new pair of underpants and some other popular items. The plan began on April 11, 2022, and will continue through the end of the year.
UNDERSON UNDERSON Underwear
UNDERSON UNDERSON Stretchy Washi Mask
john masters organics × UNDERSON UNDERSON Mask & Air Refreshener
The plan wants to allow visitors to enjoy their stay in Kyoto while experiencing traditional Japanese washi paper with both their eyes and their skin. The walls of the Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto feature artwork and furnishings with Japanese flare and have been upgraded to include HAMADAWASHI’s Tosa washi paper. This material has been used in the restoration of cultural heritage sites such as Nijo Castle and Ginkaku-ji Temple. Tosa washi can also be found on the partitions at Cafe O and on the walls of the coworking space!
To celebrate the collaboration, UNDERSON UNDERSON will be giving away underwear and other items made of its iconic WASHIFABRIC.
While this may sound like a strange collab, how would you like to give this underwear a try?
Oakwood Hotel Oike Kyoto
UNDERSON UNDERSON Underwear Collaboration Room Plan
Available: April 11 – December 31, 2022
Reservations / Official Site: https://oakwood.jp/kyoto-oike/
W Osaka Reveals Special Menu Inspired by Fashion Duo AMIAYA
Luxury hotel W Osaka will be offering ‘ICHIGO AFTERNOON TEA – Dressed up for Spring,’ a special menu inspired by the fashion duo AMIAYA, from April 1 until May 31, 2022. The menu items will be available at the Living Room area on the hotel’s third floor.
W Osaka Fashion Ambassador AMIAYA
ICHIGO AFTERNOON TEA – Dressed up for Spring
The event will utilize some of the popular strawberry dishes currently popular at the hotel, but will also include some raspberries and orange sweets. Some dishes will be decorated with flower petals, inspired by the vivid fashion of W Osaka’s fashion ambassador AMIAYA. The twins have attracted worldwide attention as models and DJs, and they celebrated their first anniversary on March 16.
Savory options include a Quiche with Sakura Shrimp and Spring Cabbage and Caramelized Onion and Chevre Cheese plate. Guests can enjoy a total of 12 items prepared by the W Osaka chef team, all displayed on a beautiful afternoon tea stand. Each menu comes with a welcome drink and free refills for tea and coffee.
ICHIGO AFTERNOON TEA – Dressed up for Spring
Available: April 1 – May 31, 2022
Location: W Osaka Living Room (3F)
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto to Offer Immersive Meditation Rooms
13.April.2022 | SPOT
The pandemic has caused problems for people all over the world. Mental health has taken a beating over the last few years, and in order to help people take back control of their mental wellness, The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto will begin offering immersive meditation rooms for guests only! These rooms will allow guests to enjoy a soothing private space and will be available starting April 1, 2022.
The Medicha meditation rooms consist of two spaces: ‘blank,’ where guests are surrounded by mist, and ‘tea,’ where guests will immerse themselves in beautiful water patterns. An original program shown on in-room televisions at the hotel will also instruct guests in the art of meditation.
In ‘Blank Meditation,’ guests will stand in a cool mist and immerse themselves in layers of diverse sounds and shifting colors of light. This will help quiet the mind and create a ‘blank slate’ mentally.
The ‘Tea Meditation’ room invites visitors to spend time with themselves while getting lost in shimmering water patterns in a dimly lit space as they carefully brew their own tea. Two types of tea are on offer, each with distinct aromas and flavors.
Meditation Room by Medicha
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto
Address: 420 Funayacho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto
Official Site: https://www.the-royalpark.jp/ic/kyoto/
Hotel New Otani Tokyo to Hold Fourth Collaboration with Paul & Joe
From April 1 until June 30, 2022, Hotel New Otani Tokyo will hold its fourth collaboration with the Paris-born fashion brand Paul & Joe! One specially designed room will be available per day. The brand is extremely popular with women in their 20s and 30s, and those wanting to reserve a room will want to act quickly, as the previous collab room was booked up almost immediately!
The pink and ivory interior is dotted with chrysanthemums and images of Gipsy and Nounette, the iconic cats of brand designer Sophie. Everything from the couch cushions to the hairbrush is completely inspired by Paul & Joe.
Items Only Available in the Paul & Joe Room
4th Collaboration Cosmetics
Limited Edition Pajama and Slipper Set with Room Plan
The fourth cosmetic collection has been sourced from the Les Vacances series, a collection made to take on summer vacation. The lineup includes a body primer sunscreen made to moisturize and protect and an ‘After Sun Oil’ with a floral citrus scent perfect for use after outdoor lounging.
A special Les Vacances-themed spa bag will also be available for guests to take home. Enjoy taking it to the pool, to the spa, or simply while taking a stroll around the hotel.
Guests can also take home a sample of the brand’s Protecting Foundation Primer, a makeup base that has taken home a number of Best Cosmetics Awards. Selected skincare samples, such as lotions and oils, will also be included in the room package.
One of the collaboration plans will also allow guests to take home an exclusive pair of pajamas and slippers decorated with an adorable cat design.
*Guests cannot choose the pajama color or slipper pattern.
*The design of pajamas and slippers is subject to change without notice.
Paul & Joe Room ~Summer~ Collaboration Room Plan
Available: April 1 – June 30, 2022 *One room available per day
Location: Hotel New Otani Tokyo (4-1 Kioicho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo)
Online Reservations / Details: https://www.newotani.co.jp/tokyo/stay/plan/paul-joeroom/
INN THE PARK Fukuoka Allows Guests to Spend the Night in a Public Park
30.March.2022 | SPOT
INN THE PARK Fukuoka is the first place in Kyushu where you can spend the night overnight in a public park! No, you won’t be sleeping on a bench or on the ground–this is way fancier. This is the second such location, with the first opening in Shizuoka in 2017.
The new facility will be located in Uminonakamichi Seaside Park in Higashi-ku, Fukuoka City. The park is about 6km from east to west and includes a zoo, outdoor swimming pool, aquarium, outdoor theater, and more. Guests can overlook Hakata Bay while enjoying these many fun outdoor activities and delightful accommodations!
How about staying here on your next trip to Japan?
INN THE PARK Fukuoka
Open: March 15, 2022
Official Site: https://www.innthepark.jp/
St. Regis Hotel Osaka Offering Updated Strawberry Afternoon Tea Menu
The St. Regis Hotel Osaka’s current strawberry-themed afternoon tea set has been updated as of March 7, 2022!
The Fifth Avenue Collection, a strawberry afternoon tea set inspired by the hottest trends in New York fashion, is now available at the St. Regis Bar. The St. Regis New York Hotel was founded in 1904, and is located on 5th Avenue, one of the most famous shopping streets in the world. This new afternoon tea set features a gorgeous three-tiered array of colorful savory and sweet dishes inspired by the many fashion items that line the shop windows of the NYC street.
The Spring Collection features brand new items, including six sweet items, four savory items, two scones, and three pass-around glass desserts.
The legs extending from the Strawberry Heels glass dessert give a nod to the classiest scenery in New York, while the Strawberry & Mango Shortcake adds a vibrant touch of yellow, popular on the runway this season.
The desserts include lime and strawberry macaroons and plenty of chocolate for cocoa lovers. Those wanting something savory can enjoy meat-filled crepes and the spring vegetable and smoked salmon rolls. This bright and colorful set is sure to brighten up anyone’s mood!
Strawberry Afternoon Tea ‘Fifth Avenue Spring Collection’
Available: March 7 until May
Location: The St. Regis Bar, 12F
Reservations/Official Site: https://www.stregisbar.stregisosaka.com/
Booking.com Reveals 4 Best Lodgings with Outdoor Baths for Snow Viewing
16.March.2022 | SPOT
Booking.com Japan has revealed its top four picks for the Japanese accommodations with the best outdoor baths and snow views!
Zao Kokusai Hotel (Zao Onsen, Yamagata Prefecture)
Located 900 meters above sea level and surrounded by the gorgeous natural beauty of the Zao mountains, this resort has long been renowned for its spectacular view of seasonal scenery. During winter, guests can enjoy a fully spring-fed open-air bath while gazing at the snow-capped mountains. The milky white waters of the Zao Hot Springs have high sulfur content which will improve the texture of your skin. The resort also has a bath large enough to accommodate up to seven people at a time and a private bath for families or lovers.
Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa (Date, Hokkaido)
The Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa is surrounded by nature and contains one of the largest open-air baths in Japan, along with 20 unique fragrant baths for guests to enjoy. In winter, the surrounding trees seem to glisten with snow, and visitors are sure to find plenty of peace and relaxation while lounging beneath the grey skies.
Akakura Kanko Hotel (Myoko, Niigata Prefecture)
This highland resort sits on a 1,000-meter peak, offering unmatched views of Niigata Prefecture. The natural hot spring flows from the inside of Mt. Myoko, with healing waters perfect for soaking in during the cold winter months. The large baths are also equipped with a sauna and deck, and those wanting to view the scenery from their room can enjoy guest accommodations with private baths as well!
Satoyama Jujo (Minamiuonuma, Niigata Prefecture)
Winning a design award for its facilities, Satoyama Jujo has a different feel when compared to most hotels and ryokan. Booking.com recommends it for travelers looking for new experiences! In the open-air bath, visitors can relax while enjoying a panoramic view of Mt. Makihata, one of Japan’s 100 most famous peaks. Guests can also enjoy the starry skies at night. This is a perfect location for couples!
Each season in Japan offers uniquely beautiful scenery. How would you like to enjoy winter in one of these luxurious baths?
Kyoto Tower Hotel Annex Collaborates with Fullmetal Alchemist on New Exhibition, Themed Room
Kyoto Tower Hotel Annex is now offering a limited-time plan in collaboration with the beloved anime and manga series Fullmetal Alchemist. In addition, an exhibition is underway commemorating 20 years of Ed and Al’s story at Hirakata Park in Hirakata, Osaka through June 26, 2022. Two unique rooms are available during the event period!
Guest Room (Ed & Al Version)
Guest Room (Roy & Riza Version)
Original Cushion / Original Throw Blanket / Original Motel Keychain
In addition to life-sized character panels, the walls of the room are decorated with illustrations in full color, and the cushions and throw blankets also feature characters from the series. The hotel will also offer a lineup of not-for-sale original merchandise unique to the project exclusively for guests to take home.
Fullmetal Alchemist Collaboration Room
Location: Kyoto Tower Hotel Annex
Available: March 11 – June 26, 2022
Fullmetal Alchemist Exhibition RETURNS
Location: Hirakata Park Event Hall, Hirakata City, Osaka
Running: March 12 – June 26, 2022
Official Site: https://www.mbs.jp/hagarenten/
Three Japanese Tourism Instagram Accounts to Follow for Travel Inspiration
07.March.2022 | SPOT
The pandemic has changed our lives forever. People have spent the last two years missing travel as they spend more and more time at home, and while many are ready to travel again, it can be difficult to know if it’s the right time to return to normalcy. To make the situation a little easier, many local tourism associations in Japan are posting images on Instagram to inspire people to give traveling another try. These three Instagram accounts are our personal favorites, and once Japan opens to tourists again, you won’t want to miss visiting these areas!
[Official Kumamoto Tourism Association] Motto, motto, Kumamoto!
Discover the charms of Kumamoto on this local Instagram account featuring photos from four unique local photographers. Many will know the area as the home of the character Kumamon. The images capture the daily lives of Kumamoto residents and include local food and gorgeous scenery. The postings also include the location of the photo and comments from the photographers, making things feel more personal.
[Official Hokkaido Tourism Association] GoodDay Hokkaido
Hokkaido is an area rich in gourmet seafood and dairy, but its spectacular landscapes are reason enough to visit. GoodDay Hokkaido shows off both the common and uncommon elements of Hokkaido life, often introducing little-known areas. Each photo is vividly colored, and followers can see different seasons at every time of day as they scroll through the feed. See the best images from Japan’s northernmost island each and every day on your smartphone!
[Ome / Okutama] Umetama
Umetama is an account that introduces places of interest in Ome and Okutama, two of Tokyo’s most scenic towns. Each can be reached in about an hour by train from Shinjuku Station. Visitors can enjoy a gorgeous day trip from the Tokyo center, with the area featuring plenty of campsites and hiking trails. There are tons of stargazing spots, and visitors are often surprised that such incredible nature is so close to Japan’s hectic capital. Those with kids will find plenty to do here, so start taking notes while you scroll through the Umetama page!
More and more young people are finding the appeal of Ome and Okutama, and the area has become the perfect relaxation spot for those seeking refuge from their busy lives. In addition, the craft beer bar Ome Beer, located near Ome Station, sells local alcohol, including Okutama’s popular craft beer ‘Vertere.’ See the lesser-known side of Tokyo on this picturesque account.
Remember how wonderful it is to travel? Hopefully, Japan opens for tourism again soon, and you can visit all of these gorgeous locales.