|2005 Spring - Intro - Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort - Actor at Play
Ryokan hospitality at a grand hotel
Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort
Miyazaki City, Miyazaki
Surrounded by pine forest on the island of Kyushu's Pacific coast is the sprawling Phoenix Seagaia Resort with many excellent accommodations and one of Japan's top three golf courses.
In its midst soars the tower of the Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort. Renovated last fall, it now aims to be "an exclusive ryokan within a hotel," a concept embodied in its new Shosenkyu building. Here you can soak in the bijin-no-yu (hot spring for beauty) filled with water gushing from 1,000 meters underground. Japan's first Banyan Tree Spa offers an impressive menu of programs. The Shosenkyu's restaurant Toyotama serves seasonal delicacies of local ingredients gathered by the chef himself.
Service also exudes the essence of a high-class ryokan. Personal concierges have been ryokan-trained in Japanese manners, from bowing to pouring tea. When guests arrive with reservations for the hotel's most luxurious floors, a personal concierge greets them at the door, takes them to their room, serves them tea and sweets, and assists with check-in. Her attentions continue throughout the guests' stay as she accompanies them to the onsen (hot-spring) facilities and restaurants and arranges sightseeing.
The hotel has the best of all worlds: the excellent recreational and entertainment facilities of a large-scale resort, the superb amenities of a world-class hotel, and the service of a ryokan.
Miyazaki City, Miyazaki
Tel. 0985-21-1133 / Fax 0985-21-1144
744 rooms, Rates from 42,000 yen per person (double-occupancy, tax included)
www.seagaia.co.jp (English, Japanese, Korean, Chinese)
Three elements add up to total relaxation, ryokan-style
||Japanese-style rooms with all the comforts
Rooms on the Luxury Grande Floor and Grande Floor (the sixth and seventh) of the main wing are truly a "hotel within a hotel." Corridors evocative of an exclusive ryokan lead to elegant Japanese-style rooms. Change into yukata (informal cotton kimono) or samue (short kimono coat and baggy pants), place your feet on the tatami mat, take in the view, and relax. Western-style rooms on the 40th floor also have a decor with Japanese flavor.
||Meals made with fresh local ingredients
Chef Satoshi Uehara has worked at Kyoto's famed restaurant Kiccho. Now in charge of Toyotama's Miyazaki-ryori (Miyazaki haute cuisine), he cooks to perfection such fabulous ingredients as semi-ebi (a type of lobster that's slightly bigger than spiny lobster) and Ozaki beef. Enjoy them with the wide variety of Miyazaki shochu (distilled spirit of rice, barley, buckwheat, or sweet potato). For breakfast you can sample sashimi of the morning's catch. What better way to start your day?
||Abundant pampering in and out of the water
The Shosenkyu has three bathhouses: the large communal Tsukuyomi, the medium-size Shingetsu, and the private Hanareyu (by reservation). Each has a different ambience. It's fun to make the rounds of all three. The spring water contains minerals that leave your skin feeling slightly sticky. It opens your pores and releases fatigue locked deep inside your body. The adjoining Banyan Tree Spa Pavilion includes a hot-spring soaking treatment on its menualso definitely worth a try.
Articles from the 2005 SPRING issue:
Kateigaho International Edition Issues:
2005 SUMMER - 2005 SPRING - 2005 WINTER
2004 AUTUMN - 2004 SUMMER - 2004 SPRING - 2004 WINTER
2003 AUTUMN - INAUGURAL ISSUE