Keeping to traditions at Amanemu
By Elaine Anderson | Published #66, Autumn 2016
On the shores of ago bay (also known as the Bay of Pearls) in Japan, nestled in Ise Shima National Park, is the newly-opened Amanemu, a hot spring resort by Aman that embraces classic Japanese decor in the ryokan tradition. Upon entry, guests travel along the windy drive, framed by cherry and maple trees. The interior aesthetic of Amanemu is simple; the Japanese timber walls are lightly adorned with accents of Japanese Art (including works of Japanese Kimono and Obi artisan, Genbei Yamaguchi and traditional Kumiko artwork developed in the Asuka Era); each suite has floor-to-ceiling windows with textile and timber sliding shutters; and the furniture is custom-made from white oak and neutral fabrics.
Designed by Kerry Hill Architects, the exterior low-slung tiled roofs are complemented with dark-stained walls, inspired by Japanese Minka Buildings. Each suite and a selection of villas include their own onsen (hot spring), imitating traditional Japanese bathing retreats.
Amamenu works to translate omotenashi, the warmth and spirit of Japanese hospitality, to its guests by keeping to a number of traditional practices. This includes having an okami, a female manager whose job is to tend carefully to guests and assure that all aspects of the retreat are up to quality.
The resort’s amenities include a yoga studio with an outdoor deck that overlooks a garden and a restaurant that draws on the Japanese izakaya style of sharing.
Lounge at Amanemu
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Weather to go
From March to May and September to November, Japan experiences little rainfall, clear weather and mild temperatures. These spring and autumn periods are also known for their blooming cherry blossoms and autumn leaves respectively. Summer is to be avoided in big cities, especially Tokyo, as the weather is hot and humid. Winter provides Japan’s famous powder skiing, at its peak between December and February.
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