Hot springs are popular year-round in Japan and you’ll find locals travelling to various onsen destinations across the country for a spot of holistic pampering while escaping the hectic city life. One of Hokkaido’s three major hot spring hubs, Yunokawa hot springs in Hakodate has a new hotel with an infinity onsen on the rooftop overlooking the Tsugaru Straits. Feast your eyes on the view.
Hewitt Resort, a popular hotel in Okinawa known for its infinity pool with panoramic views, opened a second location in southern Hokkaido on July 1. Instead of a pool, Hakodate Yunokawa Onsen Umi to Akari has an infinity onsen on the 12th floor facing Honshu, Japan’s biggest island, where you can enjoy different scenery depending on the time of day.
As these pictures show, it's stunning at all hours, but we think the view is most spectacular come nighttime, with the tiny lights from fishing boats and the moon reflected on the water.
For the freezing winter months, the resort also has an indoor onsen with tatami floors.
There are 221 guest rooms that can each accommodate up to four people. Guests also have access to the Japanese garden, which is lit with a bonfire in the evening, where you can snack on complimentary amazake and dango.
The buffet restaurant on the second floor, Tsukifune, is worth visiting for its sumptuous dinner serving 150 dishes championing local Hokkaido produce. It's a treat for seafood lovers with its wide variety of kaisendon, sushi and grilled fish.
However, if you’re looking for a more intimate dining experience, Kumonami on the first floor serves kaiseki meals at the counter seat or in a private room.
Hakodate Yunokawa Onsen Umi to Akari is now open, with rooms priced from ¥10,375 per night including breakfast and dinner. To book, see the resort website.
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