What is japanese guest house? guest house is built with a combination of native wood and recycled materials. the outer deck is alaskan yellow cedar (cupressus nootkatensis). the material of the external and internal walls is mainly western red cedar (thuja plicata) and the vertical pillars are douglas fir (pseudotsuga menziesii).

Reminder of the tragedy of the art of change

Perhaps the most famous guest staying at the guesthouse is the poet theodore roethke. a talented american poet, roethke taught poetry for 15 years at the university of washington. two of his students have won the pulitzer prize and two more have been nominated for that prestigious award. unfortunately, in 1963, while staying at the guest house, roethke had a heart attack in the pool and died.

New use for a jewel from the 1960s

Currently primarily used as meeting spaces for bloedel reserve staff and sometimes for special events the guesthouse is generally not open to visitors. but the shoji exhibits in the front of the building are generally open to anyone visiting the reserve. except for the bedroom conversion, most of the furnishings remain the same as when the guesthouse was originally built.

Ryokan types

Every ryokan is different, but the following are common, especially among traditional hostels. the decor of the traditional ryokan is sparse and minimal compared to western hotels. instead of rugs, the floor was covered with fragrant tatami mats. the only furnishings found in many ryokans include a low table and legless chairs called zaisu. the futon bedding, not the common folding sofas in europe and america, but comfortable mats with thick blankets, will be laid out for you while you dine.

You will also find urban ryokans in major metropolitan areas such as tokyo and kyoto. since these ryokans may not be located near natural hot springs, many offer a traditional indoor bathing experience, fed by an urban water source rather than a natural spring. kyoto has some ryokans located in historical buildings, which have been in operation since the feudal era.

Ryokan etiquette

when you arrive at your ryokan, you will immediately change out of traditional clothing. before entering, soften your shoes: outdoor shoes are never allowed inside the ryokan. instead, you will find slippers already prepared to wait for you. in your room, you will be given a yukata, or traditional robe, to wear during your stay at the ryokan.

A japanese house in naoshima

For those of you unfamiliar with japan’s most famous island, naoshima is a mysterious and lush land in the seto inland sea that has become an exclusive arts destination.

In fact, our rooms at oomiyake have three rooms, separated by richly painted sliding doors with ceiling-high chinese symbols and vibrant village motifs.

If you go to japanese guest house:

  • some things to keep in mind:
  • restaurants in this area are few and far between.
  • no private bathroom or shower
  • cleaning service is not provided
  • there are also western style apartments on site; be sure to ask for a japanese-style room if you like personality (and sleeping on the floor).

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