Recently in Japanese culture Category

Hi how was your day today??

I will give you a little infomation about kyoto on this blog^^

hope my blog this time would help those who are planning to go visit kyoto^^

<the autumn coloured foliage>

japan has four seasons and each seasons would entertain you by their own beauties.

many guide books suggest that you should go visit kyoto in autumn as the best season to visit,

yea i agree with the guide books!! i was so touched by its beauty when i first saw the autumn coloured foliage in kyoto.

city, mountain, river and temple complex...

many places are covered by red, yellow and orange beautifully coloured foliage, which makes those places look so pretty!

<kiyomizu-dera temple>

kiyomizu-dera temple is one of famous ancient buddhist temples in kyoto.

this is a temple which is part of the historic monuments of ancient kyoto and is on the world heritage site.

there are many temples illuminated during autumn season,

especially kiyomizu-dera temple is remarkably attractive by the night illumination,

however it will get super crowded, which will make you even a bit tired from waiting in a long queue just to enter the temple.

anyways is it worth queuing for it. this is one of places you MUST see in kyoto!!

<kyoto McDonald's>

it is said that McDonald's signboards in Kyoto are brown color to preserve the historic scenery,

yea its true, and also they have several policies to preserve the ancient surroundings.

for example, building in kyoto should be lower than 31meters high although there are some exceptionals,

and all rooftop and blinking advertisements are banned in kyoto under landscape policy.

there is a liitle more interesting information about kyoto that i would like you to know.

wait till the next time please!


Hello everybody?

Do you think the Japanese Convenience Store is really convenient ?!!
Actually for sure?I?think the?Japanese Convenience Store is really?convenient
It's working all the 24 Hours & all the 365 days of the year.
Maybe it's appearing to be small , but you can buy & do many things from there!!
But , there isn't only for buying food , drinks & sweets (^_^)
if in case if you need an?immediate money ..??There's an ATM machine in any?Convenience Store .
Also there 's a copy & Fax machine?
Is there anything else you need in the?Convenience Store (^_~)

Yesterday,a guest from Mexico asked me "Can I see "Geisha"in Tokyo??"

I think many guests from oversea has this question.

For Japanese people,speaking of Geisha always remains "Kyoto", but I found that?

for people from overseas,the image of "Gaisha" is not only for Kyoto, but for Japan.

I am ashamed myself but I didn't know about "Geisha" well even I am Japanase!

I seach for the answer of "Can I see "Geisha"in Tokyo??"

and found the name of "Geisha" is bifferent between Kyoto and Tokyo!

In Kyoto

The master: GEIKO

The young trainee:MAIKO

In Tokyo

The master: GEISHA

The young trainee: HANGYOKU or OSHASKU

I see...

Also I found you can do "OCHAYA-ASOBI",

meeting Geisha in special restrant, in Asakusa or Fukagawa,

old down town in Tokyo, but it is bit expensive.

The number of Geisha in Tokyo is defenitely?less than Kyoto,

so it is very rare to see Geisha ?by accidentally in Tokyo.

However there is some place that you can be Geisha by yourself

in both Tokyo and Kyoto!

One of my friend changed her self to be Geisha when we went Kyoto together.

Wearing KIMONO and put the special wig on...


Making up to be Geisha face...


Oh its geogious!!!

I regret that I didn't try it at that time,

because I didn't wanted to be painted my face to white,

and I wore usual KIMONO with usual face and hair.

It was very nice and memorable thing for me to walk around kyoto wearing KIMONO,

its cheeper and easier than becoming Geisha.

Please try it when you visit Japan!!

☆★If you can not have a time to become "Geisha",

you can feel Japanese soul with carrying MIKOSHI on 23rd of Sep.!!☆★



On Sep. 23rd.?

Mikoshi Festival is coming soon!


And we carry mikoshi or portable shrine at the festival.
You can join us.


Let's gather in Sakura Hotel Hatagaya!!

You can carry Mikoshi with us!!
Enjoy this festival, with Sakura Hotel Hatagaya staff !!


Last year many hotel and sakurahouse guests enjoyed to carry Mikoshi and excitent air of local residents!

Check BLOG of Last year :?

Sakura Cafe Hatagaya welcomed 300 customers this afternoon!


Mikoshi will start at 10am and 1pm!

Want to Join ? please contact us @: [email protected]

Please come at least 45minutes earlier if you would like to join, we will prepare Happi and Tabi (Festival traditional costume) for you !

Enjoyed to carry a mikoshi portable shrine in a festival!!
Come on and join us to experience exciting Festival!

We are going to have "Ancient Egyptian Calligraphy" WORKSHOP on Sept.1st!!

サクラカフェ幡ヶ谷 古代エジプト象形文字 9/1(日)開催

Kyoto Trip in my Summer Vacation

| | TrackBacks (0)

☆My Diary inSummer Vacation☆

On August 8th and 9th, went to Kyoto.

To meet my friends whose were my co-workers in Sakura Hotel Hatagaya.

Stayed their house one night on Aug. 8,

and on the next day, we 3 went to KIBUNE Shurine, do you know??


KIBUNE shirine's temprature is normally 5?℃ lower than Kyoto town, so we felt cooler!

And It's one of the famous spot about,

1. EMA (picture bellow).


People who visitted there usually write their wish on this wood plate, called 'EMA 絵馬'.

E=mians Picture, Ma=(originally UMA) means horse, so EMA has pictures of 2 horses.


Many Many people hung their dreams here, so as I.



2. Noryo Yuka,


You can seat on Tatami, can feel the river streaming, water sound, by the seat during eating Japanese cuisine!


And I found a good cafe (the cafe interior is Japanese style) by the street.

How about to go there in your summer vacation!?

【How to go to Kyoto from Sakura Hotel Hatagaya】

totally 13,020 yen, 3 hours.

Hatagaya to Shinjuku, by Keio New Line. @120 yen.

Shinjuku to Shinagawa, by JR Line.@190yen.

Shinagawa to Kyoto, by JR Bullet train Nozomi. @12,710 yen.

【the way to Kibune Shrine from Kyoto】

totally 790 yen, 70 minutes.

Kyoto to Demachiyanagi-Ekimae, by Bus @220 yen.

Demachiyanagi-Ekimae to Kibuneguchi, by Eizan train @410 yen. and walk 5 min.

Kibuneguchimae to Kibune, by bus @160 yen.
☆Event on Aug. 31 with just 500 yen= one coin in Sakura Cafe Hatagaya☆

サクラカフェ幡ヶ谷 ワンコインフェスタ限定メニューをご用意!幡ヶ谷ワンコイン・フェスタ7/27(土)開催

Doyo Ushi no hi!! "土用の丑の日"

| | TrackBacks (0)

This year the day of the ox in midsummer is coming today (July 22nd).
It is said that when you eat eel on the day of the ox in midsummer or "Doyo no Ushi" Day, then you won't suffer from natsu-bate (summer heat).
Do you have some food to have in order to prevent from suffering from summer heat?
Hi! I'm Manuel, the Spanish staff of Sakura Hotel Hatagaya.

Since June there is many festivals in Japan,
All neighborhoods and cities have any festival.
Yesterday I wrote  the blog about the Kawagoe Festival and today a write a bit more about this nice Festival!

There is many stalls and I always eat many Yakitoris,
Then for dessert a Choco-Banana i always welcome!

There is many fairgrounds, a classic is the Japanese Haunted House.

And the children buy mask of his favorite characters,
Japanese anime and Hero characters is very popular but Disney characters too.

Would you like to enjoy a Japanese traditional festival?
Hi, I'm Manuel, the Spanish staff of Sakura Hotel Hatagaya.

On Sakura Hotel Hatagaya this week there was a big group from North America!
They are around 18 years old and are very funny.
Today they will return to his country, we hope that have a good trip,
Thanks very much for stay with us and See you!!

This Sunday we have too a special event: 
With delicious Okonomiyaki lunch included.
Would you like to join us?

On Harayuku area there is many interesting places for visit,
the Meiji temple, one of the most important shrine temple of all Japan, the Takeshita Street, Omotesando street, the Yoyogi park,... etc
For join us, please, ask to the staff or touch here!.
Let's enjoy the weekend!!!


In most of Japan, the rainy season lasts from the beginning of June to mid July.
This year it seems different; we still have not had much rain.
It was another sunny day today.

It is not that I like rain. I am just wondering if anything is wrong with the weather.
Is it because of global warming?

Anyway, I would like you to get ready for the expected rainy days while it is sunny.

1. Hydrangea


by ptrktn

Do you know what hydrangea is? It is a flower that blooms in the rainy season.
During the season you can find it anywhere in Japan.
It is an ordinary, but beautiful flower.

2. Rain scenery



Do you think a rainy day is not good for sightseeing? 
Actually some places, such as temples and shrines, would look more beautiful in rain.
If you are into photography, it is the day for you.

Even to those who prefer staying inside, the rainy season should not be that bad, 
as they can have the excuse of not going out.
Play your favorite music and enjoy reading with a nice cup of coffee.

Make your own Sushi-Roll!

Not just a Sushi-Roll,We will make special Sushi ART!

Look at this - "Sumo wrestler" is holding "Sumo wrestler Sushi-Roll" !!
With Sushi-roll workshop teacher, everyone can make sushi art like this :)

This character is called "Sekitori-Kun", cute ay? :)



If you would like to join,just send us the following info to the address below!
**We have a recipe for Vegetarians.

1. Name
2. If you are SAKURA GROUP Guests, hotel /
     premises name and room number
3. Phone Number ( if you have )

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Egypt Event !! 2nd JUNE 2013!!
Hello, everyone!

Today We held a calligraphy event at Sakura Cafe Hatagaya with 26 guests from Indonnesia!!

 It was the first time for all of them to try calligraphy!


Ok、Let's write your name in KANJI


It looks difficult...

My name in kanji is more complicated than yours....

What does this kanji mean ?...



They are really good at writing calligraphy!

it was a good experience :)

We, Sakura Cafe hatagaya holds events like this !

We are looking to forward to seeing you ♪


Hello everyone 
Here's Mohamed from Sakura Hotel Hatagaya (^_^)/

Do you like the Japanese popular meal .. Sushi ?
Actually when i came to Japan in the beginning i wasn't like it.
i never ate raw fish before coming to Japan .. Also that hot sauce (Wasabi) , it's hotness isn't similar the chilli pepper.

But now , i like Sushi very very much & i can't eat it with out Wasabi 

Last week i went to take my dinner at Sushi restaurant 

It was cheap & also there was many kinds of it 

because i love the Sushi .. every time i eating a lot , lol 

There are a lot of sushi restaurants in Shinjuku area.

If you want to know how to find them .. Please ask the staff at any time & we'll recommend the best for you 

By the way .. Today a very cute customers came to Sakura Cafe Hatagaya
They are ===> from the right .. Anna Chan & Kana Chan 

2013-04-22 17.16.08.jpg
They are really so cute , isn't it !!
Also Anna Chan make a special present for me!!
It was Origami ..

2013-04-22 21.15.44.jpg
I was so much happy for that \(^_~)/

I hope she come again someday to our Sakura Cafe Hatagaya 

Naoya's Japanese lesson part 1

| | TrackBacks (0)

Hi, this is Naoya fromSakura Hotel Hatagaya.

Do you know any Japanese word?

Arigato?(Thank you)

well, today, let me introduce another word which is not quite famous, but still very useful and easy to remember.

Which is...



when you want to say good bye, "Sayonara" can be one, but it's sometimes too formal.
When you talk to a friend, you never say Sayonara.

So, this word.


it's like "see ya!"

when you visit Japan, please keep this word in mind, and try using it.

He or She would be so happy.

well, the Sakura blossoms are finishing their lives now.

so just let's say to them, Matane!!

but, our Yayoi campaign is still on.

you can taste Sakura flavored alcohol!!!

don't miss it!!

Hello all from Sakura Hotel Hatagaya.
This is Ayumi :)

White day is a romantic holiday celebrated in Japan, Taiwan and South of Korea.

The holiday falls on March 14th, one month exactly after Valentine's Day.

Tradition in these countries holds that women are supposed to give men romantic gift on Valentine's Day, while men are supposed to return the favor on White Day.

Valentine's Day in parts of Asia has expanded beyond the Western version of the holiday.
Instead of giving gifts to spouses or boyfriends,  some women in Japan feel  duty-bound  to present gifts of chocolate to all male co-workers.

If Valentine's Day in Japan is all about the guys, White day is all about ladies.

White day is a chance for all the men who received gifts on Valentine's Day to return the favor to the ladies in their lives.

The ladies lave sweets and flower!


Are you ready for White Day???

We have special menu!!
Check it out!!!↓↓↓↓↓

St. Patrick's Day Special Menu

The end of March, we will meet cherry blossoms season!

Did you already our Blog?

I recommend you where is good place to see Cherry blossoms in Tokyo!

Shinjuku Gyoen Park

Entrance fee: 200 yen 


Covering 58 hectares, Shinjuku-Gyoen is one of Tokyo's largest parks

 (in the city center). 

It was opened to the public in 1949 after it had served as a garden for the Imperial Family since the beginning of the 20th century. Shinjuku Gyoen features three garden types: an English landscape with wide lawns, a traditional Japanese "Niwa" with teahouses and a symmetrically arranged, formal French garden. Besides, there are many types of vegetation as well as a greenhouse (the greenhouse is being reconstructed until 2011). Shinjuku Gyoen also has more than a dozen types of cherry trees, making the park one of Tokyo's most popular and romantic Hanami spots during late March and early April

a.JPG写真 (99).JPG

sakura1.JPG gyoen.JPG


From Hatagaya to Shinjuku gyoen park

Hatagaya-(keio-new line)-Shinjuku 3 chome.

7 min 270 yen

2nd March Sushi Roll Event!


Potluck Party!!

| | TrackBacks (0)

How do you spend a saturday night?

I am invited to my friends moving party.
though, I will be late because of work...

But anyway, today's party is potlick style.
Organizer of today is from Spain.
so he prepared gallons of SANGLIA !!

↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓

0209 party sangria new.jpg

I prepared this dishes..hope every body like my cook..

0209 party new.jpg

I heard there are any guest from many country.
So I'm looking forward to eat variety of foods and drinks.

Sakura cafe have a international food party plan.
Please check this.

Japanese Proverbs

| | TrackBacks (0)

Do you know any Japanese proverbs?
Though I speak English as I work at our hotel, I do not really know any proverb in English.
That is why I thought you might not know any Japanese saying, though you might be familiar with Japanese culture already.

Let me introduce you some Japanese sayings.

「悪事千里を走る」 Akuji senri wo hashiru.
Translation: Bad news runs 1,000 miles.


January 22, 2011
by Jeremy Jenum

In English, there is a similar saying: "A lie can be halfway around the world before the truth gets its boots on."

「石の上にも3年」 Ishi no ue nimo sannen.
Translation: Stay 3 years on a stone.


by Public Domain Photos

It is a bit hard to get it. 
It means that even if it is a cold stone, it becomes warm if you sit on it for a long time.
A similar proverb is "Rome was not built in a day."

That is it for today!

I will explain more proverbs next time!

I went to Asakusa yesterday, to do my first visit of the year to 'Sensouji'

When you entered the temple, there is 'place for wash your hands' near the entrance.

Before praying, people wash their hands with ladle.


Many people including foreigners were coming to pray their wishes.

You know, this fire & smoke are famous, call the smoke by hands to your body-parts where you want to 'repair' or 'heal' or 'become better than ever' .


This is also famous, a written oracle (normally from 100 yen).
My fortuneluch was, 吉 (normal luck) , it's not so bad:)


Asakusa has many kinds of shops, mainly traditional food/ costume in Japan, and

I bought 'Steamed Potatoes ' for tea time in my friend's home.



This is another snack, fried dough cookies.
The package is soooo cute:)

Foreigners, good souvenirs for your friends and families !
(Tokyo Sky Tree, Sumidagawa River and Sensouji are designed for the package )

Let's enjoy Asakusa walking, and pray your wishes of this year at temples in Japan!

(Asakusa also have our branch hostel, Sakura Hostel Asakusa.)
Kakizome corner is now occupied with guests' calligraphy♪


逢 = meet someone special,
勝利 = victory

Guess other word's meaning...


華やか= gorgeousness 

By the way,

they are Australian newlyweds, staying at Sakura Hotel Hatagaya :)
So lovely costume:)


So their word 2013 is, 
'祝結婚' = congratulation for marriage:)

Then, you know about 'Mirror word' in China??

This 福 (fuku, means happiness) is hanged upside-down.

Upside-down (mirror ) word means, 'to arrive happiness in our life'

This is one of Chinese traditional culture.

Since I didn't know about the meaning, I thought somebody missed to hang it correctly:) Ha-ha!


At last, her name is Mrs. Deise, coming from Brazil.

'Deise' means 'Margaret', and the flower meaning is, 'real love' 

So she wrote '愛 Love' ♪ Great word in whole world.

How about to fill in your heart on the paper?
Have you already eaten Osechi in Japan?

Osechi is a traditional Japanese food-box for new years day (oshougatsu).

Osechi have many kinds of wishes inside.

Congratulation: Sekihan 赤飯 (red bean rice )

Richness : Kurikinton 栗きんとん (marrons glacés)

Large Families: Kazunoko 数の子 ( salted herring roe )

Joyful : Kobumaki昆布巻き (rolled kelp with fish in it )

Please think about these happiness during you're eating OSECHI:)

I wrote "How to make Japanese curry" last blog.
In this time I will tell you " How to make Curry Udon"

Ingredients for 4 people:
Udon 400g
Soy sause 1 spoon
Hondashi(Fish soup stock) 2 tea spoon
(You can buy it in Japanese super market)

1.Boiled Udon
2.Add Water to Curry and mix, simmer about 5 min.
udon (4).JPG
3.Add Hondashi and Soy sause
udn (2).JPG
4.Add Udon,simmer about 5 min

Ready to eat!
udn (1).JPG
Enjoy Curry Udon!!

☆Premium Gift in Winter of Japan ☆

| | TrackBacks (0)

It's time to send premium gift  in Japan

We have 'Seasonal gift' on middle summer 'Otyu-genお中元' and the end of the year 'Oseiboお歳暮', you know??

(free photos by yoppy、 and by titanium22)


By the way, I was given a gift from my friend yesterday♪
When the present was given, I think I wanna give something special for her/ him.
How about you??


How about to send something special gift to your important persons, in this winter??

This is one of the tour on Jan. 19th 2013, Let's go to the mosque near Sakura Hotel Hatagaya with Egyptian Mohamed:)


Needles in Tofu?

| | TrackBacks (0)

Some people in Japan put needles in Tofu on 8th December.

As you might know, tofu is food made from soybeans; it is not a tool for sewing!

Why do they do that?


Needle Macro
by fdecomite

It is for "Hari-kuyo." Hari-kuyo is a dedication ceremony for broken needles.

It is a bit funny to me that there is such a ceremony because I do not do needlework...  However, needles are necessary to make a Kimono; a good Kimono is made only by hand! 

Besides, needles used to be very important when there was not a sewing machine. 

That is why people thank needles soul and do a dedication ceremony. 

But why do they put it in Tofu??


Warm Tofu with Spicy Garlic Sauce

by joyosity 


The reason why broken needles are put in Tofu is to thank them by putting in something soft (those old needles no longer have to work! :D)! 

Hari-kuyo is so traditional and hilarious an event.


chilled tofu

by [puamelia]

Good evening!

The other day I have found beautiful Christmas illuminations in Tama, a west area of Tokyo.




This Pegasus is my favorite. 


This tunnel is made of illuminated wires. On the tunnel you can find some creatures in the sea, such as an octopus and a lobster.
Though it just looked like tangled up wires when I had seen it in the afternoon, 
it completely changed at night! 

If you are coming to Tokyo by Christmas, you will see a lot of illuminations.
Find your favorite spot!

Where is my iPhone??:(

| | TrackBacks (0)

Hi, I am Yujiro a new trainee of Sakura Hotel Hatagaya
I will talk about the Amazing Story!

Last Friday, I lost my iPhone on Yamanote Line...
Yamanote Line is one of the famous trains.
It's so difficult to find lost items.

But my iPone was found and return to me safely.
I really feel how safe Japan is!

Anyway I want u to remember 2 points, if you lose something on the train.

I show you the website for Lost and Found of JR EAST
If u lose something on the train, please contact to them!!

If you lose something in Tokyo, please ask Japanese so kind police!!
Here is their website.

What day it is today?

| | TrackBacks (0)

Hello all. My name is Yutaka Tamura, a new trainee at Sakura 

Do you know what day it is today in Japan?.
It is "Hotel's Day" today.
It is named after the date of Imperial Hotel's opening date in 1890.
The hotel was built as a national undertaking at the initiative of 
Kaoru Inoue, foreign minister at that time.

121120syodai imperial hotel.jpg

The picture above is the first Imperial Hotel. 

Also, Nov. 20th is the day for "Pizza"
In 1889, Margherita, the Italian princess of the day, desired a piece 
of "Pizza" which was trendy food back in those days. Pizza makers 
in Naples then made a Pizza with White (mozzarella cheese), Green 
(basil) and Red (tomato sauce) in the motif of Italian national flag. 

That was the origin of "Pizza Margherita".

121120 Margherita.jpg


Beautiful Princess Margherita

Anyway, it is the day for "Hotel" and "Pizza". So why 
don't you enjoy "Pizza" at our Sakura Cafe Hatagaya
then have a good sleep at Sakura Hotel Hatagaya at night!!


Today is one special day, though, where Pocky (supposedly) reigns as king of the snack world, and that day is "Pocky Day," which lands on November 11 (11-11) because that date consists of a bunch of ones, which are, of course, shaped like Pocky.
Also Today, we got a Party reservation from Kyoko!
Have you seen her?
kyoko alogo.jpg

It was girls Party!
Thank you for choosing Sakura Cafe Hatagaya!

Have a nice POCKY!

As the title says, "Oden" is one of Japanese winter foods.
Cook some vegetables, such as white radish, and fish-paste products together in a big pot.
That is the basic Oden we usually eat. A lot of Japanese people miss it when the air gets chilly as the season changes.

by rhosoi

What is interesting is that what they put in a pot is different depending on the place.
In Shizuoka prefecture, they put black hampen. 
Hampen is a fish-paste product and the color is white. Since I have never had Oden in Shizuoka, I have never seen a black hampen.

by kynbit

Another fish-paste product, Chikuwabu, is also something similar to black hampen.
Some people say it must be in Oden and some not.
I guess you could put anything in Oden as long as it goes well with the other food in the pot.

by jetalone

However, a few wees ago I was surprised to know that some people even put tomatoes.
It would be so red and look like a pot of tomato soup. 
What is the definition of Oden if it could have a tomato in it?? Oden is really a funny food even to Japanese people.

World heritage sites in Japan

| | TrackBacks (0)

Tomorrow, November 4th is UNESCO Charter Memorial Day.

Speaking of UNESCO, I associate the organization with world heritage.

Do you know how many world heritage sites there are in Japan?

We have 16 world heritage sites (12 cultural heritage sites and 4 natural heritage sites) in Japan.
In the world, 962 sites are listed as world heritage.

The below is the list of world heritage sites in Japan.
1.Cultural heritage sites
1)  Buddhist Monuments in the Horyu-ji Temple Area
2)  Himeji-jyo Castle
3)  Hstoric monuments of ancient Kyoto
4)  Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama
5)  Hiroshima Peace Memorial
6)  Itsukushima Shinto Shrine
7)  Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara
8)  Shrines and Temples of Nikko
9)  Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of the Kingdom of Ryukyu
10)Kii Mountain Range
11)Iwami Ginzan Silver Mine and its Cultural Landscape
12)Historical area of Hiraizumi

2.Natural heritage sites
1) Yakushima Island
2) Shirakami mountain range
3) Shiretoko
4) Ogasawara Islands

How many sites on the list have you ever been to?

November 3rd is a national holiday in Japan.

It is called the day of culture.


November 3rd is the birthday of Meiji Emperor as well.


Have you ever heard of Meiji Shrine near Harajuku?

Meiji Emperor is enshrined there (That's why the shrine named Meiji Shrine).


On November 3rd, an event such as Yabusame (the shooting of arrows while riding horses) will be held to honor the 160th anniversary of his birth.


From Sakura Hotel Hatagaya to Meiji Shrine,

please take Keio new line from Hatagaya (2 minutes' walk from the hotel) to Shinjuku.

After that, please take JR Yamanote line from Shinjuku to Harajuku.

It takes two minutes from the south exit of Harajuku to Meiji Shrine.

Conveyor-belt sushi bar

| | TrackBacks (0)

I love Sushi~

I went to Conveyor-belt sushi bar in Shinjuku.すし2.JPG


Foreign guests sometime ask me

「Is this display?Can we eat them?」

Yes, you can !


On the table, there is Hot water.

We can make green tea by myself.

Green tea and Sushi are good combination!


 How many sushi can you eat,,,???

I ate a lot~! 


What season do you associate fireworks with?
I guess most people in Japan may associate them with summer.

But we will have two fireworks festival in October in Tokyo.

One will be held in Adachi (near Kitasenjyu station) on October 13th.
It will starts from 6 p.m. and lasts for an hour.

The other will be held in Chofu (near Chofu station) on October 20th.
It will starts from 5:50 p.m. and lasts for about an hour.

If you miss watching fireworks festival in summer, it might be good chance to enjoy watching fireworks.

Almost the chance is coming

| | TrackBacks (0)

As we have been writing, we are mostly having autumn atmosphere in Japan.
It is getting cooler and cooler in the morning and evening, we feel s indeed.

We go around and enjoy the foods, travel and so on.
Japanese some times trip to a little far places to enjoy coloured leaves when the time comes.
Personally Kyoto is the most famous for it and a lot of people visit.
They reserve hotels or ryokans( Japanese style inns) some months before and look forward to visit the spots.

紅葉.jpg   栗.jpg

Though the time for coloured leaves is a few more months later, we will have Tsukimi (moon viewing) chance almost.
It is, Chusyu no meigetu (The most beautiful moon in Autumn) 
This moon is known as the most beautiful moon in a year.
We could view it on 12th of September, and we will be able to view the moon on 30th of September (5 days later)

The weather on that day will be cloudy sometimes sunny, and the chance of rain is 30 percent.
The moon can be viewed on condition this weather goes on.

After the moon viewing, why don't you visit sakura Cafe Hatagaya and take a rest over a cup of hot drink??

How many national holidays do you have in your country?

| | TrackBacks (0)

Today is national holiday in Japan.
The third Monday of September is Respect-for-the-Aged Day 
which honors and shows respect to the aged.
We have 15 national holidays a year in Japan.

Do you think it's so many?
How many national holidays do you have in your country?

Grand Sumo Tournament will be started from tomorrow.

| | TrackBacks (0)

Grand Sumo Tournament will be started from tomorrow at Ryogoku in Tokyo.
It will last for 15 days.

Do you have a plan to visit Tokyo from September 9h to September 23rd?
If so, you have a chance to see Sumo match.

And are there anyone who will be staying at SAKURA HOUSE/HOTELs around September 12th or September 20th?
If your answer is yes, you are eligible to apply for CHANKO LUNCH PARTY & SUMO TOUR.

If you are interested in, you can check the details about the event here.

What's CHANKO?

Chanko (ちゃんこ) is a Japanese stew (a type of nabemono or one-pot dish) commonly eaten in vast quantity by sumo wrestlers as part of a weight-gain diet. ←from Wikipedia

Awa Odori performance at Otsuka

| | TrackBacks (0)

Awa Odori will be performed at Otsuka (near south exit of Otsuka station) coming Saturday (September 1st) between 16:30 and 21:00.

You can enjoy watching dance performed by a total of 14 groups (more than 1,000 dancers).


What is Awa Odori?

Groups of choreographed dancers and musicians known as ren () dance through the streets, typically accompanied by the shamisen lute, taiko drums, shinobue flute and the kane bell. Performers wear traditional obon dance costumes, and chant and sing as they parade through the streets. (from Wikipedia)


From Sakura Hotel Hatagaya to Otsuka

Keio new line Hatagaya→Shinjuku

JR Yamanote line Shinjuku→Otsuka

about 30 minutes

Awa Odori performance at Koenji in Tokyo

| | TrackBacks (0)

Awa Odori will be performed at Koenji this weekend (August 25th and 26th) between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.


You can enjoy watching dance performed by a total of 150 groups.


FYI, about 900 thousand audience gathered to watch the event last year that is almost equivalent to the number of audience of Sumida River fireworks festival.

From Sakura Hotel Hatagaya to Koenji

Keio new line Hatagaya→Shinjuku

JR Sobu line      Shinjuku→Koenji

about 25 minutes


What is Awa Odori?

Groups of choreographed dancers and musicians known as ren () dance through the streets, typically accompanied by the shamisen lute, taiko drums, shinobue flute and the kane bell. Performers wear traditional obon dance costumes, and chant and sing as they parade through the streets. (from Wikipedia)

Salt on a watermelon

| | TrackBacks (0)

Do you like watermelons?


How do you eat a watermelon?


In Japan, it's no wonder that some sprinkle salt on a watermelon.

How do you like sprinkling salt on a watermelon?


One last question, do you know what is watermelons called in Japanese?

The answer is Suika. That's the same pronunciation as a prepaid railroad pass whose name is Suica.


【Sight seeing in Japan】Kamakura

| | TrackBacks (0)

Every year I visit Kamakura city.

There are a lot of nature, many temple and good restauraunt!

This is my Sashimi lunch meal.

Thumbnail image for 写真 (65).JPG

Thumbnail image for ブログ1.jpg   

You can go inside of Budda it cost only 30 yen!

Thumbnail image for 写真 (67).JPG

My favorite Japanese sweets ' Cream Anmitsu '

I think this is the Best one ever.

写真 (69).JPG

Do you like ' Miso Soup'? You can buy it from Vending machine.

I have never seen before!

Thumbnail image for 写真 (68).JPG

More information about Kamakura city....

1 day pass for Kamakura.

Japanese Bon Festival

| | TrackBacks (0)

I went to Bon Festival near my house. 
Usually we have Bon festival during summer vacation time(July and Aug)

We can enjoy Bon Dance and food.But we dont't know why we have this festival exactly...

What are you going to do on summer vacation?
Have a nice summer!

Restaurant in Tokyo-Gonpachi-

| | TrackBacks (0)

I went to "Gonpachi in Shibuya" with my friends.

Gonpachi is Japanese restaurant.

You can feel Japanese atmosphere.

ごん (2).JPG


kositu .JPG店内着物1.JPG

    ごん.JPGStaff can speak English!

also there is English menu

ごん (3).JPG

If you would like go there, you can yake local bus from Hatagaya to Shibuya! 

----Time table----



Iced coffee ~ Germany vs. Japan

| | TrackBacks (0)

Today I realized something for the first time...

Japanese iced coffee is completely different from German iced coffee!

If you order iced coffee at a Japanese cafe, this is what you will get...

Coffee with ice cubes. "Coffee on the Rocks" so to speak. ;)

In Germany iced coffee (Eiskaffee) looks like this. 

Coffee with ice cream (usually vanilla ice) and whipped cream on top.

If I think about it, I've never seen coffee with ice cubes in Germany. 

I wonder why I've never recognized this before. I don't really drink coffee usually, but I work at a cafe and serve coffee everyday, so this is a bad excuse. I guess, when I came to Japan for the first time I was so expecting to everything being different from home, that I didn't even think twice about it. (^^;)

Somehow I feel like I made a huge discovery today. 
Well, almost. XD

What does iced coffee look like in your country?

The day of the ox in midsummer

| | TrackBacks (0)

This year the day of the ox in midsummer is coming today (July 27th).

It is said that when you eat eel on the day of the ox in midsummer or "Doyo no Ushi" Day, then you won't suffer from natsu-bate (summer heat).

Do you have some food to have in order to prevent from suffering from summer heat?

This is a nice article, "how to wear A YUKATA"

in Japan's No1 English Magazine "METROPOLIS"!!


You know A "YUKATA"?

"YUKATA" is a Japanese garment, a casual summer kimono usually made of cotton.

 People wearing yukata are a common sight in Japan at fireworks displaysbon-odori festivals, and other summer events.


Off course, we can wear it for ourselves!!

(Miwa, Koz, Ai, Miyuki, Mitsuko, all are Sakura Hotel Hatagaya's staff .

some of them are already retired, but they are fine!!)



Feel cool summer in Japan, with wearing Yukata:)

Just 2 stops from Shinjuku station ↓↓
I often get asked by Japanese people if there is something I find strange about Japan. It's kind of hard to answer this question since I have gotten used so much to Japanese lifestyle that I hardly realize anymore whether something is strange or not.

There is one thing though that kind of bothers me, since nobody has been able to give me a proper explanation for this so far. It has to do with the 2,000 yen bills. They look like this and are worth about 25 US dollars (20 euro).

Pretty, don't you think? But the thing is, for some reason that escapes me, Japanese people don't like them.

In fact you will hardly ever see a 2,000 yen bill in Japan. It is as if they don't exist. And if a Japanese person happens to get hold of one accidentally, they will try to get rid of it as quickly as possible. Which can be tricky because most vending machines don't accept them. 


I think the only reason why I have ever come across a 2,000 yen bill is because we have many foreign guests at Sakura Hotel who receive them when they exchange money in their home countries before they come to Japan. There seems to be a vast amount of 2,000 yen bills at foreign banks. Maybe more than there are in Japan. ;)

I have to admit I am really surprised at how much Japanese people seem to dislike their 2,000 bills. When I ask somebody about this the only answer I ever get is that they are "hard to use" or a "nuisance" even. I've never heard a European person complain about the 20 euro bills, so I just don't get it.

One yen coins are much more of a nuisance in my opinion. They take away space and are have practically no worth. But Japanese people don't seem to mind them.

Do you happen to know the answer I am looking for? 
Or is there a coin or bill in your country that is disliked by everyone? 
Tell us! ^^ 

◆Star Festival-Tanabata◆ 

| | TrackBacks (0)

★When You Wish Upon a Star★

♪When you wish upon a star
Make no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you...♪

Do you know the famous song??


The meanings are like star festival, don't you think so?


Star festival will arrive soon!!

This is the picture of Tanabata festival in Sendai city. 

It's usually held on July 7th!!

Will you join a Tanabata event somewhere??


Many Japanese people(mainly children in elementary school)will make these original 'Origami' for Tanabata Bamboo tree.

折り紙igosso 2.jpg
折り紙 Igosso.jpg

What will you make a wish upon the star?



★★★Online bookings are 24 hours available HERE . ★★★

Address: 1-32-3Hatagaya Shibuya-ku Tokyo151-0072

Fax +81-3-3468-4307

★★★Online bookings are 24 hours available HERE . ★★★


When I was waching my photo's data of my camera yesterday,,,

       I found the cutest photo from photos taken in Kyoto!


This is the photo,


 How cute this Torii is!!

How do you think about it!?


During walking on the street, called 'Nene's road', who was a wife of Hideyoshi Toyotomi

( Toyotomi Hideyoshi finally prevail in many battles from the status of farmers is a great military commander in history the whole of Japan was repression)


The minimum torii atracted me strong. 


Is the cutest torii still excist on the road?

 I miss it. 




★★★Online bookings are 24 hours available HERE . ★★★

Address: 1-32-3Hatagaya Shibuya-ku Tokyo151-0072

Fax +81-3-3468-4307

★★★Online bookings are 24 hours available HERE . ★★★

The annual sales of umbrellas in Japan

| | TrackBacks (0)


Rainy season has begun in Tokyo.


How many do you think annual sales of umbrellas  in Japan in a year.


130 million umbrellas!!

That is about population in Japan.

About 60% of that is plastic umbrellas.

How many umbrellas do you have?

The annual sales of umbrellas in Japan

| | TrackBacks (0)


Rainy season has begun in Tokyo.


How many do you think annual sales of umbrellas  in Japan in a year.


130 million umbrellas!!

That is about population in Japan.

About 60% of that is plastic umbrellas.

How many umbrellas do you have?

Love for the flowers

| | TrackBacks (0)


I love flowers.  I love them for their beauty, scents, and vanity.

Flowers are alive just as we are, and together we experience the passing of time.


At first glance of the blossom seems helpless, yet it uses all of its energy to continue the beauty of its existance. 

This somewhat seems able to reflect to our beings. 


Flower arrangement allows you to experience the joy of creation of your own arrangement that

represents your thoughts, which springs from your attument to plants. 

It offers you a revelation of plant beauty brings both peace of mind and happiness to you. 



Have you ever heard of MINYO or SHAMISEN?

MINYO & SHAMISEN CONCERT will be held at Sakura Hostel on May 26th.

民謡 (MINYO, people songs) were born out of the climate and culture in various regions. 三味線 (SHAMISEN) is a traditional Japanese 3 stringed instrument.

MINYO and SHAMISEN songs are passed down from generation to generation. 
The songs also represent the countryside's landscape. 

Ms. Kazuse who singer of MINYO will explain easily for you and SHAMISEN performer Mr. Taiyo will present powerful SHAMISEN songs. Why don't you come and enjoy the sound of Japanese core music!!
[Date] May 26th (sat)
[Time] Start 7 PM to 9 PM
[Fee] FREE ADMISSION! (Please order drinks)

* No appointment necessary. 予約不要
The concert will be open to anyone.

 I went to Tokyo Big Sight to see Design Festa last weekend.




A lot of cosplayers joined here to perform their cosplay.

This is a kind of art!






What cosplay do you like?

Next Design Festa comes in this November.

I recommend you to join or see this big art event.





| | TrackBacks (0)

My friends from Italy whose hobby are Cosplayitarian girls.JPG

They visited Japan many times,but they didn't have SUICA!

*What is Suica?  The Suica is a prepaid e-money card for moving around and shopping in the Tokyo area. There is no more need to buy a ticket from a vending machine. Just touch your Suica to the ticket gate and the fare is automatically deducted from your Suica. The Suica can be used not only for JR East trains, but the subways and buses as well. For shopping, use your Suica card in the place of cash wherever the Suica mark is displayed.

We made it together


There is English Pages

Today's Photo @ Sakura Cafe Hatagaya ♪♪

| | TrackBacks (0)

Golden Week (Japan's huge national holidays ) is almost here in Japan !

   Children's day is one of the Golden week's national holidays, 

on which we celebrate  children's health and wish they will grow good !

 ↓↓↓ Here is the photo of seasonal tradition of Children's Day.


( These beautiful decorations are more than 40 years old...! )

Come and visit us to see more Japanese traditional things...

and enjoy a cup of coffee here at Sakura Cafe Hatagaya.

♪♪ We are 24 hours OPEN for you ♪♪



Ryokojin [email protected]

| | TrackBacks (0)

I went to Ryokojin Exhibition in Kagurazaka.Ryokojin used to be a famous backpakers magazine in 1990's,but it ceased publication last year.I of couse subscribed to the magazine for a long time.

Their writers' and  illustrators' works are on display there.

I show you some of them on this post.







Japanese Tea Party 2012

| | TrackBacks (0)

We got invitation from Mr.and Mrs Honma san 

who live near Hatagaya Hotel again!

They have Japanese tea Party at their own place,

and the hosts gave us many attractions.

We went there every year,so I look forward seeing them again.


They have small concert.

Or guests also join them 



We tried Japanese tea and Chinese tea!



IMG_3646.JPG   And wearing Kimono!


IMG_3653.JPG IMG_3663.JPG                   IMG_3606.JPG 

Every time we enjoyed this party a lot.

Thank you so much for your thoughtful hospitality♪



In Japan, I guess many people associate "flower" with cherry blossoms.

We can find cherry blossoms on the surface of 100 yen.


April is theseason of cherry blossoms and we enjoyed viewing them.

What kind of flower do you associate "flower" with in your country?


We have Hanami Party under the cherry trees along Sumida River on April 10th.

Hanami , which means cherry blossom viewing, is a Japanese seasonal event in spring.


?  Day : 2012/ Apr / 10(Tue) from PM 03:00 to PM 06:00

?  Fee : JPY 0 (Tax included)

Viewing very beautiful cherry blossoms, we enjoy drinking, eating, talking, etc....

It's FREE of charge, but you have to take potluck.

Please don't forget to bring your own food and beverages.
Meet in the lobby of Sakura Hostel at 3:00 PM, and let's head to Sumida Park together.

Date : April 10th ( THU )
Meeting Place & Time : Sakura Hostel Asakusa at 3:00 PM

*This event is only for guests who are staying at Sakura Hostel/Sakura Hotel/Sakura House.

Dragon Quest Map by Google

| | TrackBacks (0)


Google released 8-bit "Dragon Quest" map on 1st April.





You can see Tokyo Sky Tree in the map.


This is a map of Europe.You may find a dragon in this map.


WHAT is the White Day??

| | TrackBacks (0)

14th March is the White Day. Though this anniversary is widely known in Japan, it is not at all in the other areas, especially in western countries.

*Many females give chocolate (or other sweets) to males on Valentine's Day in Japan. On the White Day, males give sweets to females in return.


ホワイトデー / mersy

I googled "white day" just out of curiosity and got the following result.

"About 4,880,000 results"

This number is more than I thought I would get!

However, the contents of the results were mainly introduction of Japanese culture. As I thought, it seems not to be so common (it is known in countries in Eastern Asia such as China and Korea).

Males are supposed to give sweets like these:


Candy / Smabs Sputzer

Cookies / Moyan_Brenn

As usual, these pictures make me hungry... (but candies seem too sweet!!)

I wonder what everyone gives on the White Day.




Today it has passed 1 year since the earthquake occured.




(at Shibuya Koen street) 


Some other time, we are deeply sorry for injured people.


Then, thanks for many country's huge support, Japan (mainly in Tohoku area) is about to revive, however it's by little.


 ■Today, please just pray for Japan.■


We are very appreciated for anything you (and your country) did for us, including guests come to Japan after the earthquake.


(some guests' photos, came in last month...)


susa%20brasil-thumb-350x232.jpg malaysia-thumb-350x233.jpg 

(↓this is presents from Chinese guest.) 

ありがとうございます。 謝謝 


 ------ From Sakura Hotel Hatagaya -----

Doll's Festival (Hina Matsuri)

| | TrackBacks (0)


March 3rd is Doll's Festival (Hina Matsuri) in Japan.


This festival is a traditional event held to wish for girls' growth and happiness.

Families with girls display a set of hina dolls at home.


Do you have similar event in your country?

Pocket Warmer "Hokkairo" News!

| | TrackBacks (0)

It's still very cold in Tokyo.

However we have the great winter goods, Hokkairo(Pocket Warmer)!



セイコーマート(冬の釧路・厚岸) Kushiro Trip (East Hokkaido) / jetalone


We can see various Hokkairos in the market nowadays.

Attatching Hokkairo and Applying Hokkairo are popular.

Hokkairo for toes and for eyes,



ホッカイロ(足全体用) / jetalone

Some characters' Hokkairo exist.

Rechargeable Hokkairo! It's very interesting and economic :D

We can overcome this coldness with these excellent Hokkairos!!


If you catch a cold in Japan...

| | TrackBacks (0)

It has been very cold these days in Japan and flu is epidemicing!
I also caught a cold (but it's not flu!) on last Friday and had a high fever...

風邪/Catching a cold / typexnick


When you catch a cold, what usually do you do to cure in your place?
In Japan, when we caugh, we roll a leeks around throat.

Welsh Onion Field / Dick Thomas Johnson

It is said that the anti-inflammatory component in leeks makes throat better!

And also, we eat something good for digestion or something warm.
For example this!

お粥できたー #dinner / is_kyoto_jp

PorridgeThis is the light-salted boiled rice.

At Sakura Cafe Hatagaya, we're offering the Ginger Hot Drink fair!

Ginger is good for the sickness:)



You take care not to be sick and flu!

Needles in Tofu?

| | TrackBacks (0)

Why are the needles put in Tofu and Konnyaku (jelly made from the devil's tongue) for 8th February?

It is for "Hari-kuyo". Hari-kuyo is a dedication ceremony for broken needles.

It is a bit funny to me that there is such a ceremony because I do not do needlework...  However, needles are necessary to make a Kimono; a good Kimono is made only by hand! 

Besides, needles used to be very important when there was not a sewing machine. 

That is why people thank needles soul and do a dedication ceremony. 

But why are needles in Tofu??

The reason why broken needles are put in Tofu is to thank them by putting in something soft (those old needles no longer have to work! :D)! 

chilled tofu / [puamelia]

Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum

| | TrackBacks (0)

My friend and I went to the Ramen Museum in Shin-Yokohama the other day. There you can eat all kinds of Ramen noodles from many different regions of Japan. As you know, I love Ramen, so I was very excited to go there.

aussen.jpgThis is what it looks like from the outside. It's very close to Shin-Yokohama station.


innen.jpg  museum innen.jpg


And these are photos from inside the museum. The overall theme is Tokyo during the Showa era, so everything looks really old, just like 40 years ago. There are many Ramen restaurants right next to each other.



In every restaurant you can order a mini-bowl of Ramen, so you can try many different types and find your favorite.


ticketautomat.jpgFirst you choose a dish and pay on the ticket machines in front of the restaurants.


tonkotsu miso ramen.jpg   hokkaido ramen.jpg 


These are Tonkotsu-Miso Ramen from Kumamoto prefecture, and Shoyu Ramen + Shio Ramen from Hokkaido. I was already full after 2 bowls, but I tried the ones my friend ordered as well. So yummy!


eis.jpgThere was still enough space left for some ice cream though. XD

We decided to come back soon, because it's impossible to eat all the different styles of Ramen during just one visit!


anschlagtafel.jpgBy the way, our guests at Sakura Hotel can get a free admission ticket to the Ramen museum. You can find more information on our Special Offer site (you need to scroll down till the end). Just ask our staff at the front desk. ^^

If you love Ramen, this museum is highly recommended!


Spring has come.

| | TrackBacks (0)

Today is the first day of spring in the traditional Japanese calendar.

But it's still freezing. 
So I guess many people cannot feel the change of the seasons.

What makes you feel coming of spring?

Smoking Rates in JAPAN

| | TrackBacks (0)

The Ministry of Health,Labour and Welfare of Japan announced that

Japan has the lowest rate of smoking after 1986 in which they began

the investigation.

The price of cigarette has been raised in this fifteen years.
Mild Seven,a popular brand in Japan was sold for 230Yen(USD3.00/EUR2.28) in 1997.
Now the price is 410Yen(USD5.35/EUR4.07).Worldwide popular Marlboro is 440Yen(USD5.74/EUR4.37) in Japan.How much is it in your country?

By the way,all guest rooms in SAKURA HOTEL HATAGAYA become non-smoking after 15 February.
We are sorry to say that for smokers.

A Wise Calendar!

| | TrackBacks (0)

I found a very interesting calendar in our office today.
Can you see what's different about it?
(you can click on the photo for a bigger version)

s-kalender1.jpgIt shows only 1 day per month, but for all 12 months of the year on one page. So there are 31 pages in total. The page on the photo shows the 17th day of each month, i.e. January 17th, February 17th, March 17th... you get the idea.


I was like, what the heck, at first! It's an upside down calendar! oO; 


s-kalender4.jpgThe good part about this calender is that you can turn the page and enjoy a different picture every day (though the page will get repeated every month on the same date).

The bad part about it is, that it doesn' t make much sense apparently, and is quite inconvenient in a way.


So I asked the wise Ai-san, who dressed up as a frog today

for a reason that escapes me. XD


s-kalender5.jpgShe explained to me that this is a popular type of buddhist calendar. Every page provides some words of wisdom in beautiful calligraphic writing. Instead of reading a new advice everyday of the year and forgetting them all immediately, you are supposed to take them to heart. Which is made easy since every page is repeated 12 times during the course of the year.


s-kalender6.jpgA very wise calender indead. Thanks for the explanation dear frog Ai!



"Small New Year's Day"??

| | TrackBacks (0)

11th January is known as the day for "Kagami-biraki."

People eat "Oshiruko," which is sweet red beans soup with pieces of rice cakes in it.

On the other hand, it is not well known that 15th January was "Koshougatsu," which literally means "Small New Year's Day."

On "Koshougatsu," it is said that they eat "Azuki-gayu," rice porridge with red beans, though I have not had it before...

Here is what it looks like. Unlike "Oshiruko," this does not taste sweet.

Traditionally, red beans are believed to drive away evil spirits and keep you away from diseases. Although "Koshougatsu" is already gone, "Azuki-gayu" is still good for your health and easy to cook. Why don't you try it!?


Change of generation!!

| | TrackBacks (0)

Hi, everyone. It is new from an old thing today but subject is the Shinkansen. Various Shinkansen appeared from commencement of business in 1964, and it retired to private life.





It continued the other day also at first 0 series, and, as for 100 series and 300 series, retirement was decided. If a new thing is made, the old thing is lost someday. The time is progressing.




Although the appearance of the newest N700 series and E5 series are good looking, if it is called the Shinkansen, are they the Shinkansen of a round nose which is first generation!?


Japanese Literary Award

| | TrackBacks (0)

It is said that there are more than 500 literary awards in Japan. 

The most famous prizes are Akutagawa Prize and Naoki Prize. 

These were established by a famous author Kan Kikuchi in 1935 in honor of great authors, Ryunosuke Akutagawa and Sanjugo Naoki.

The winners of 146th Akutagawa, Naoki Prizes will be chosen on 17 January!

Some of the nominated stories are as follows:

"Shiro wo kamaseta otoko" by Jyun Ito (The man who made a castle bitten) (Nominated for Naoki Pirze)

 "Yumechigai" by Riku Onda (Different dream) (Nominated for Naoki Pirze)


*English titles are not official; I translated Japanese titles literally just for this blog article.


Since the winners of these prizes will be very popular, past nominated works might have been translated from Japanese already. 

If you look for books written by Japanese authors, I recommend you to check them out!


Late happy new year!!

| | TrackBacks (0)

Hello world,Let's say "Late Happy New Year!!!"


So,,,This is Masaru.
I went back to my hometown in Kyoto and My wife's hometown Kawachinagano for new year.

Kawachinagano is border area between Osaka Pref, and Wakayama Pref.
Especially, Kakihata area is beautiful area for awsome waterfalls.



Tram in Kyoto is so cool!

I like that modern design.

tram2.JPGI met nephew!!!
He is super Kawaii!!
And in Kyoto,We went to my friend's Livehouse to spend new year day.
I didn't say for anyone about visiting there.So everyone really got surprise!
We enjoy to make Michi too.

Hatsumoude and Omikuji

| | TrackBacks (0)

January 1st is Japanese New Year's Day.

On New Year's Day, people pay a visit to shrines to pray for happiness and good health, it called Hatsumoude.

So I went Sensoji in Asakusa for Hatsumoude on January 1st.


There were so many people and many stalls, looks like Matsuri★


I drawed Omikuji at Sensoji and I got the best one Daikichi!!




__ (2).JPG

I hope..all this Daikichi will bring all the hapiness to me :)

Omikuji sold at Sensoji have English explanations as well, so please try!!

Gook Luck!


* More information for Sensoji, Omikuji...Check here.


You wanna go Sensoji, Asakusa?

About 30-40 minutes from Sakura Hotel Hatagaya. 



A happy new year!! 

Since 2011 is the year of the rabbit in Chinese Zodiac, 2012 is the year of the dragon!

Though the dragons only exist in stories, we know several kinds of them.

This is a European dragon.

Dragon / fireflythegreat

And this is an Eastern dragon. In Japan dragons are illustrated like this.

Dragon / miheco

It seems that the biggest difference is whether it has wings or not...

Although dragons are thought to be good creatures generally in Japan, they are not in Western countries (right?) Maybe you can tell us what you think about dragons. J


Thank you very much for supporting us last year, 2011!

We are all looking forward to seeing you next year here in Japan.

We hope you have a great year!!


Want to grown vegitable with my family!!

| | TrackBacks (0)

They are my family!, Father and mother.


(I have one more young brother, but he's not appear on this picture.)


 Next week, I'll go back to Aichi(=my hometown) again!

新井きゃべつ.jpg 新井ねぎ.jpg

My father's farm!! 


Aichi prefecture is famous for producting district of Cabbage, butterbur.


Are you growing something to eat for yourself?? 

Doraemon Museum!

| | TrackBacks (0)

I went to Doraemon museum with Yoshi and Ryoma.

It takes only 30min 210yen from Hatagaya Sakura Hotel to there.

If you would like to go,you should make reservation before.


Lovely character "Korosuke" welcoming to us!


Photo spot 1!


Photo spot 2


Photo spot 3!!どかん人生.JPG

Welcome to Sakura Hotel~~ 

You can enjoy Cafe.korokke.JPG

There is Manga area

Doraemon comics are not only comedy but also touching..


This is one of the best scene ....Ohhhhhhバギー.JPG

Winter Solstice

| | TrackBacks (0)

Tomorrow (December 22nd) is the Winter Solstice.


In Japan, people take yuzu bath.

It is said that we can stay healthy during the cold winter to do that.


In addition, the Winter Solstice is called Touji in Japanese and Touji means hot spring cure as well.


What do you do on the Winter Solstice?

Guests from Laos!!

| | TrackBacks (0)

We Sakura Hotel Hatagaya welcomed guests for JICA participant from Laos today!!
And we made green tea as Japanese traditional way to them.

写真 (1).JPG
 How to make tea....??

写真 (2).JPG

写真 (3).JPG

We hope they have great time in Tokyo, Japan!!
Enjoy your stay :)

Today, there were Indnesian group guests in Sakura Hotel Hatagaya.

MAIKO made welcome drinks, green tea with performance, for them!P1040541.JPG 

Whipping with snapped hand.

Of course, we tought 'HOW TO DRINK Green Tea'

How great their smile is!!


P1040540.JPG P1040542.JPG


 We wish this experience become good memory of JAPAN trip!

Do you know Kotatsu?

| | TrackBacks (0)

Have you tried when you visited Japan?

Kotastu is a low, wooden table frame covered by a futon and heavy blanket, upon which a table top sits. Underneath is a heat source, often built into the table itself.

Mametan,coal briquettes are mostly used in the early 20th century
as a heater for Kotastu.

This is a heater unit in Kotatsu.

Conveyor-belt sushi bar

| | TrackBacks (0)

I love Sushi~

I went to Conveyor-belt sushi bar in Shinjuku.すし2.JPG


Foreign guests sometime ask me

「Is this display?Can we eat them?」

Yes, you can !


On the table, there is Hot water.

We can make green tea by myself.

Green tea and Sushi are good combination!


 How many sushi can you eat,,,???

I ate a lot~! 


Japanese Ghosts & Monsters! :P

| | TrackBacks (0)

It's November! Almost a week has passed already...How fast!


By the way, did you dress up on Halloween?

I think many people wore the costumes of monsters... like them!


Monster / annabellaphoto


They all look scary and bad. On the contrary, look at Japanese ghosts and monsters.

Catgirl statue 猫娘 / urawa

Ghost / Jem Yoshioka


Don't you think they are humorous?


I have never seen people in costumes of Japanese monsters.

If you have ever tried before, let me know and show me pictures please!

Torinoichi fair

| | TrackBacks (0)


Fukuda-san (our cleanig staff) brought Kumade or colorfully decorated rakes this morning.

She bought it at Torinoichi fair.


Kumade is thought as a lucky charm. It is said to rake in good fortune and attract customer.


We place it in the entrance.

We hope we can welcome many guests:)

Wedding party

| | TrackBacks (0)

I went to my friend's wedding party few days ago.


画像 003_copy.jpg
Have you joined or seen Japanese style wedding?

We Japanese usually wear a wedding dress or Kimono for wedding, and most of couple wear both lately I guess.


If you would like to challenge a Japanese style wedding, how about this??

This is a Jinrikisha (a rickshaw), you can ride a Jinrikisha from a temple or shrine that you held a wedding ceremony to the party place.

Do you have your own style for wedding in your country?

What do you think a Japanese style?



Japanese Favorite Winter Food -NABE-

| | TrackBacks (0)

Winter will start very soon, means Nabe season will start!

Nabe is a general name of Japanese pot. As long as its cooked in Japanese style pot, its called Nabe no matter what flavor or what kinds of ingredients it made.

There are so many variety of soup flavor from typical soysauce, miso to curry, tomato.

You can put vegetable, seafood, meat or anything you like.


If you visit Japan in winter season, you can taste many kinds of them.

Healthy, yummy, make you warm!


My Favorite?  Motsu-nabe.

Stay warm!!

Tokyo Ramen Show 2011

| | TrackBacks (0)

There's an event coming up that I am very much looking forward to!

The Tokyo Ramen Show


ramen show.jpgAs you all probably know Ramen noodles are very popular in Japan and there are many different types of soups and toppings. So the Tokyo Ramen Show is the perfect opportunity to try Ramen from all over Japan and find your own favorite!

Time: November 2nd (Wed) ~ 6th (Sun) between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Place: Komazawa Olympic Parc

(Train station: Komazawa Daigaku on the Denentoshi Line)

It's just about half an hour away from Sakura Hotel Hatagaya. We'll be happy to tell you how to get there if you ask at the front desk.


Btw, did you know that Hatagaya is full of Ramen restaurants? Even if you can't make it to the event you can still enjoy a big variety of Ramen in direct vicinity of our hotel!

Just ask for our "Ramen Map" that we often hand out to our hotel guests. 


Hikawa Matsuri

| | TrackBacks (0)

It was festival time in Hatagaya today!


anne girls.JPG 


anne, arai-san.JPGWe've been very busy preparing for this event during the last couple of days.


anne, fuke-san.JPG

Ai was so kind to offer me to wear her Yukata (light summer Kimono).

Yoshi and Miwa dressed in a traditional festival outfit as well!


food2.JPG  foooood.JPG

   We offered drinks and food to the participants. So many people came!


omikoshi small.jpg  omikoshi1 small.jpg

They were carrying a portable shrine through the streets. Some of our guests took part as well!



guests small.jpg  italian guests.JPG

Foreigners and the locals had a great time bonding with each other!


anne mikoshi2.JPGMe in front of the portable shrine.

It was so much fun! Let's celebrate again next year! 



A week later

| | TrackBacks (0)


A week later, he will come.


But it's too difficult even for Japanese to know what is going to happen by just seeing the picuture above.


So, I'll give you another hint.


What do you think they are doing?



The answer is Local Festival in Hatagaya will be held a month later or 23rd of September.

And we carry mikoshi or portable shrine at the festival.



You can join us.



Why don't you stay with us on 22nd of September 2011 (longer is better :) and  experience Japanese culture with us?

You can check more details on the website below.


There's good news for you. At the moment, we have rooms available for the night of 22nd September 2011.


Matsuri (Festival)

| | TrackBacks (0)

Yesterday my friend and I went to a little shrine festival (Matsuri) in our neighbourhood. I was really looking forward to it, since it was my first Matsuri this year, and a summer in Japan without one wouldn't be complete.


The weather was great! Hot and sunny! Maybe a bit too hot actually. ^^;



Thumbnail image for 11092011754.jpg  11092011758.jpg

I ate all kinds of food, like Yakisoba, Okonomiyaki and Yakitori. I love stall type Japanese food!


11092011756.jpg  Thumbnail image for 11092011753.jpg

There were so many kids, some dressed in Yukata (light summer kimonos). They all looked so happy and were so excited whenever they won a prize in some game. 


Thumbnail image for 11092011734.jpg 

This is me catching goldfish with a little paper fan. This game is called "kingyo sukui" and typical for Japanese Matsuris. It's really hard to catch one though because the paper tears easily when wet. But I prefer looking at fishes over catching them anyway. ;)

11092011752.jpgThere was music as well of course!

I had lots of fun! If you're in Japan in summer, going to a Matsuri is highly recommended!




| | TrackBacks (0)

 One of the best season "Autumn" coming soon

However,It is a time also to worry about Typhoons!

たいふうー.jpgTwo typhoons are  approaching in Japan!!


By the way,I found Special umbrella on Youtube.

I would like to recommend New Yorkers for Irene(Hurricane)!


Hot Spring Trip

| | TrackBacks (0)

Last weekend I was invited to a trip to the hot springs in Hakone! It was my first time going to a Japanese Onsen in summer, so I was quite excited. I love hot springs!

I was a bit sceptical at first though, because taking a hot bath on a hot summer day doesn't really sound very appealing, does it? Well, but then it was raining all weekend and it was pretty cool as well all the time, so in the end I was actually quite happy to hop into the bath. ;)



This photo was shot at Lake Ashinoko which is a famous spot in Hakone.



We stayed at a Japanese style hotel (= Ryokan) which means the rooms were equipped with tatami mats and futons.



Dinner was served inside our room by a girl in Kimono! This is me with my friend's mother who had invited me to the trip.



This is the outdoor bath, or Rotenburo, as it is called in Japanese. When I took a bath in the evening and again in the morning there was nobody else there besides me, so I had the whole bath to myself. Nothing is more relaxing than soaking in a Rotenburo!



The food was also great! This is a small part of what we had for breakfast. Ahhh, I'm getting hungry again just looking at the pictures.


A trip to a Japanese Onsen is a great experience and highly recommended to everyone who wants to experience traditional Japanese life style and food! 



Asakusa walking with Maiko (part 2).

| | TrackBacks (0)

This is the Asakusa walking blog part 2, blog part 1 is for about shopping and playing at Sensoji shrine.


Maiko is living near Asakusa from she was a child, so she introduced a shop of folding fan . (She always bring her folding fan with her.) 













This day, was Bon Festival, so there was a TOUROU-NAGASHI (means, sending off the spirits of the dead on lanterns floated on the waters of a river or the sea) at Sumida River.


Everyone wrote their wishes for the dead people, and play to heaven.

The night illumination was very romantic.


We also wished everyone's play will reach to the heaven.

The Sumida River Fireworks Festival

| | TrackBacks (0)

Is there anyone who will be in Tokyo on 27/August/2011?

This year, the Sumida River Fireworks Festival will be scheduled on 27/August/2011.


It had been held at the end of July.

But this year, the date was changed due to the Great East Japan Earthquake. 


Twenty thousand fireworks will be set off between 7:05 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.


Fireworks is a summer tradition and a summer feature in Japan.

It's worth watching.


You can get more info on official website of the Sumida River Fireworks Festival.

Uchimizu (watering)

| | TrackBacks (0)

 People sprinkle water on the street in the picture above. It is called Uchimizu (watering).

It is very hot and humid in summer in Japan.


Uchimizu is one of ideas to ease sweltering hot days.


What do you do to mitigate hotness?

Edamame !!

| | TrackBacks (0)

Beer and Edamame ( green soy bean) is the best combo in the history.

Edamame has rich nutrient content,and helps decompose blood alcohol.


Edamame, the king of snack!





| | TrackBacks (0)

Late July and August is the season for fireworks in Japan.


Today, 11 fireworks displays are held in Japan.

It is much more than I thought because some fireworks displays including big ones are cancelled or postponed this year.


I do believe that they are worth watching.

And I wish I could watch them all from the air:)

Japanese summer

| | TrackBacks (0)

150,000 sunflowers  at Nigata.

写真 (59).JPG

Yo-yo scooping at Hatagaya.

写真 (61).JPG
Japanese perform dances at Hatagaya.

写真 (62).JPG
Rice paddy at Nigata.

写真 (63).JPG
Enjoy the Summer of JAPAN!!

Day of the Ox

| | TrackBacks (0)

Have you ever eaten eel?

Today is "the day of the ox." Japanese often eat eel on the day of the ox.

Why eat EEL on the day of the OX?
It is said that eel restaurants put the sign up saying
"it is better to eat something starts with U on the day of the ox. (Ox is "Ushi," eel is "Unagi" in Japanese.) So let's eat eel!"

Well, ox and eel are not quite the same, but eel is delicious! (to me, anyway.) If you haven't tried one yet, please give it a try!

サクラカフェ幡ヶ谷 Please check how to get to Sakura Cafe Hatagaya こちらから

  • サクラカフェ 神保町

  • *******************

    Sakura Cafe Hatagaya (日本語/English)

    Sakura Hotel Hatagaya (日本語/English


    サクラカフェ グループ

    • Sakura Cafe Ikebukuro
    • Sakura Cafe Jimbocho

      DF Cafe Harajuku

    Reliable partner

    | | TrackBacks (0)

    It's muggy.


    I feel anxious if I could survive hot summer lies ahead.


    Today, I'd just like to introduce a reliable partner for summer in Japan.


    It is the wind-bell. 


    It is made of metal, glass or pottery.

    When the wind blows, it produces the sound that makes us feel cool.


    I feel the heat eased when I hear the sound of wind-bell.


    Address: 1-32-3 Hatagaya Shibuya-ku, Tokyo Japan 151-0072 
    Phone: +81-3-5330-5250 (03-5330-5250) 
    Fax: +81-3-5330-5251 (03-5330-5251) 
    [email protected]