Photography by Japan National Tourism Organization
15 September 2022
There has never been a more exciting time to plan a visit to Japan. The country’s accommodation, arts, and food scenes are all thriving with the arrival of unique and distinctively Japanese hotels, exhibitions and art installations, plus award-winning bars and restaurants that have been popping up in the cities and countryside.
Even returning visitors will enjoy many new discoveries in the Land of the Rising Sun.
Within walking distance of the Nikko Toshogu shrine, the FUFU Nikko offers travellers an elegant retreat in a beautiful green oasis. All 24 individually designed guest suites overlook the surrounding forests and come with private indoor or outdoor onsen (hot spring) baths.
Within easy reach of bustling Tokyo, Nikko feels like a different world. With trekking and cycling drawing visitors, adventure-seekers can also try their hand at rafting across Lake Chuzenji or canyoning through Urami Falls.
Korinkyo is located moments from Kanazawa’s Kenrokuen Garden. Onsite, there’s an aroma distillery where guests can create essential oils to be used in-room, or while relaxing in the hotel’s rooftop sauna and bath. Its 18 guest rooms have simple wood and stone finishes and a neutral design palette, allowing the surrounding nature vistas to take the spotlight.
Luxury accommodation designed by Kengo Kuma, Comico Art House Yufuin is near the coastal city of Oita in Kyushu. Located within the stunning yet little-known Comico Art Museum Yufuin, it comprises the Tsuchi house and the Take house, both inspired by Satoyama culture, where nature and community are deeply intertwined.
Both houses boast private onsen, traditional Japanese gardens and spacious rooms with tatami mat floors.
Tech-savvy hotel brand YOTEL to arrive in Tokyo. Slated to open in 2024, YOTEL Tokyo will be centrally located in Ginza, one of Tokyo’s most vibrant neighbourhoods.
The 244-room hotel will showcase YOTEL’s signature robotic concierge YOBOT, motorised SmartBeds and touchless guest experience from reservation to check-out. YOTEL Tokyo is part of YOTEL’s wider expansion plans across Japan including Sapporo, Yokohama, Nagoya, Kyoto, Osaka and Kobe.
A new Club Med ski resort is to open in Hokkaido in time for the 2023 season.
The third Club Med resort to open in Japan, Club Med Hokkaido Kiroro will be an all-inclusive winter resort, 90 minutes from New Chitose Airport.
Conducted in two phases, Club Med Kiroro Peak will open in December exclusively for guests aged 12 and over, where guests can kick back in a cosy yet hip environment with access to a natural open-air hot spring and spa.
Open for all ages, Club Med Kiroro Grand will follow in 2023 and will house a wide selection of family-oriented facilities.
teamLab Planets Tokyo is the latest immersive experience launched by teamLab. Planets Tokyo sees guests walk through water installations or take in the scents of 13,000 real orchids that react by making space for visitors to walk around. Michelin-starred restaurant Vegan Ramen UZU Tokyo has also opened on site, dishing up bowls of signature flower ramen.
An Andy Warhol exhibition has come to Kyoto.
An exhibition dedicated to iconic pop artist Andy Warhol is coming to the Kyoto City KYOCERA Museum of Art and running until February 2023.
The exhibition will be divided into five main sections, including a Warhol, Japan and Kyoto chapter which looks at Warhol’s first visit to Japan in 1956 and features a collection of sketches, souvenirs and keepsakes that the artist collected during his two-week visit.
Nakanoshima Museum of Art has opened after nearly thirty years of planning. Housed in a dramatic box shape structure with a jet-black exterior, the museum boasts one of Japan’s largest collections—more than 6,000 art pieces in its collection (with a bespoke sample of around 40 pieces on display at any time) by modern masters such as Magritte, Dali, and Japanese artists including painter Jiro Yoshihara.
Wakayama sake stalwart begins brewing in Tokyo. Established in 1928 in Wakayama Prefecture, legendary sake brewery Heiwa Shuzou has opened the doors to Heiwa Doburoku Brewery, offering up a modern take on the classic Japanese tipple in the heart of Tokyo’s Nihonbashi district.
Ginza Hachigo is the latest ramen bar in Tokyo to be awarded a Michelin Star.
The newest member of the exclusive Michelin-starred ramen club, Ginza Hachigo’s beautifully complex soup is clear, flavourful, and made by boiling down Nagoya Cochin chicken, duck, scallop, dried tomatoes and shiitake mushrooms, konbu (seaweed), heirloom onions from Kyoto and cured ham.
Gold Bar at Tokyo EDITION is a new luxurious and sophisticated cocktail bar. Nestled next to the hotel entrance on the ground floor, Gold Bar at EDITION is a social playground that brings another dimension to Tokyo’s bar scene. Cocktails on the menu include a Nippon Pale Ale, made with local chardonnay from Nagano, pisco, grappa, pineapple, IPA and nutmeg.
Crafting rural Lake Biwa into a culinary destination. A 90-minute drive from Kyoto on the shores of Lake Biwa, Michelin pedigree chef Coleman Griffin is in the kitchen at Sower. In a minimalist space designed by Teruhiro Yanagihara Studio, Griffin takes inspiration from the landscape to craft innovative tasting menus using the region’s rich seasonal produce.
The world’s first automated pasta robot prepares a meal in 45 seconds. E Vino Spaghetti has opened in Tokyo Station, welcoming people that have very little time for a lunch break.
It uses the world’s first automated pasta cooking robot. AI-based image recognition technology is used to understand the status of pasta ingredients and pasta cooks in a specially developed frying pan using high-powered induction. The robot makes up to 90 meals per hour and even washes pans on its own.