We are featured on Asahi Newspaper!
We are looking forward to seeing you at the hostel 64 osaka！
excerpt from formal Asahi shinbun news release————
“CONVERTED OFFICE PROVICES A GLIMPSE OF ‘REAL’ JAPAN”
OSAKA–You wouldn’t think a vacated office building would be the ideal lodging
for a foreign tourist hoping to take in the charms of Japanese hospitality.
Yet that seems to be the case in this commercial capital,
where an architect has turned a four-decade-old office/dormitory
into a chic Japanese-style hostel.
Hostel 64 (Rokuyon) Osaka opened in mid-March in the revamped
four-story edifice built in 1964 in Nishi Ward. It has rapidly
become a favorite among tourists who love its Japanese atmosphere.
Four standard-size Japanese tatami-floored rooms are available
for 9,800 yen ($106) a night per room, while three Western-style
rooms with beds run between 10,800 yen and 13,500 yen per room.
In all, the hotel has nine private rooms and a multi-compartment dormitory.
Two superior suites feature ornate red wallpaper portraying gold plants
in the bedroom, with an antique writing desk and chair occupying an alcove-like
second room. Each suite costs 14,700 yen per night for up to three guests.
Guests share the toilets and shower rooms.
German tourists Michael Hilberg and Sonia Schwappach, both 34, said they were
impressed with their superior room, which they found both “stylish” and replete
with Japanese atmosphere.
The building was originally the office and dormitory of a tool manufacturer.
It caught the attention of architect Noboru Nakatani, 45, who had been impressed
by a hostel where he once stayed in Spain that was inside a condominium building.
“I thought it was interesting, as it allowed tourists to learn about the local
lifestyle,” Nakatani recalled. Convinced that Japan, which is trying to capitalize
on tourism, could offer a similar style of lodging, he proceeded to search
for prospective sites.
After looking at about 300 properties, he selected the building last August.
After a colleague at his office Art & Crafts Co. checked out the building’s
earthquake resistance, Nakatani spent about seven months and 30 million yen
transforming it into an inn.
According to the land ministry, 134,000 structures were demolished nationwide in 2008.
Experts have pointed out the inherent wastefulness of Japan’s “scrap-and-build” attitude.
“The view that buildings should be torn down and rebuilt after 30 years set in during
the era of high economic growth,” said Yukio Komatsu, a professor specializing in architecture
at Waseda University in Tokyo.
That thinking has led to “many buildings being torn down even though they posed no problems
in terms of quake resistance,” Komatsu said.
Nakatani said his hostel “can continue to be used for another 80 years if properly maintained.”