hotel

Haunted, abandoned hotel complex on Okinawa is a lesson against messing with Japan’s spirits

A luxury leisure resort on the lush hillside of Okinawa. Panoramic ocean views. A waterpark, a petting zoo, a night club. Now crumbling into ruins, swallowed up by nature reclaiming the land developers tried to take. Perhaps the owners should have known better than to build on the site of ancient tombs. The local priests warned them. But they didn’t listen.

This is the tale of Okinawa’s Nakagusuku Kogen Hotel, one of the most haunted abandoned sites in Japan.

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“It’s just like Disneyland!” Our Japanese reporter visits the love hotel where dreams are made

If Japan’s love hotels range from cheap ‘n’ cheerful to downright bizarre, Sky Paradise Rakuen must rank as one of the most marvellously ridiculous. While enjoying a discreet tryst with your partner of choice, you can also take a ride on a gondola under a sparkling jewel-encrusted sky and gaze from your balcony out over theme park-style attractions.

Disney don’t do love hotels, but if they did they’d probably look like this!

Naturally, our Japanese reporter couldn’t resist heading down to Sky Paradise to check in and check it out. Just for research, of course.

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Guests at Taiwanese hotel leave a really crappy surprise for housekeeping 【Video】

When we’re on vacation and staying in a hotel, it’s easy to get lazy and stop cleaning up after ourselves like we normally would in our own homes. We leave the beds unmade, towels and clothes on the floor, empty drink bottles on the bedside table… After all, housekeeping will come and clean everything up for us anyway, right?

But some guests who stayed at a hotel in Taiwan left the room in such a state of disarray that it made local news after photos of the catastrophe were posted of Facebook – poo-stained sheets and all.

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2015 best Japanese hotels, based on their breakfasts

Soft beds, nice views, good location; sure, these are all important factors when choosing a hotel, but what really makes a hotel, or even a trip, memorable is the food, more specifically, the breakfast.

Everyone needs a good breakfast to start their day, so why not eat the best of the best? Next time you’re in the area, you should probably check out one of the Japanese hotels with the most delicious breakfasts.

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A room with a (terrifying) view: Visiting the hotel that overlooks Godzilla’s giant head 【Photos】

When we reported a while back about the giant Godzilla head that has taken up residence atop a Shinjuku skyscraper, we also mentioned how a nearby hotel, the Hotel Gracery Shinjuku, has been quick to set up special Godzilla Viewing Rooms to cash in on its proximity to the fanged monstrosity. Naturally, we headed over there as soon as we could to get a good look at that ugly ol’ head up close and personal!

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Move over, humanoid employees: Nagasaki theme park to open futuristic hotel staffed by robots

Once you’ve tired yourself out playing with your rideable 4-metre tall robot from Amazon Japan and experienced the neon assault to the senses that is Shinjuku’s Robot Restaurant show, you’ll also be able to visit a hotel in Japan with robot staff once the new Hen-na Hotel opens this summer.

As well as robot receptionists, porters, cleaners and waitresses, the aptly-named Hen-na Hotel (literally meaning “strange hotel”) in the Huis Ten Bosch theme park, Nagasaki, will also feature a whole host of futuristic technology aimed at reducing energy consumption and human staffing levels, therefore keeping room prices down.

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We visit the Guinness World Record-holding oldest hotel in the world – established 705 A.D.!

Keiunkan Inn in Hayakawa, Yamanashi Prefecture is famous for holding the Guinness World Record for being “The oldest hotel in the world”. Established in 705 A.D., it boasts such notable former guests as daimyo Takeda Shingen, shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu, and numerous emperors of Japan.

The inn itself is located in the southern alps of Yamanashi Prefecture, nestled in lush valleys in the very heart of nature. It’s the perfect location for escaping from the hustle and bustle of city life. What’s more, the inn is built upon prime hot springs ground, which means guests are able to enjoy numerous open-air and communal hot spring baths. Each room’s shower, bath and sink facilities are fed by pure hot spring water, which is neither treated nor heated by any artificial means. In fact, except for the toilets, the entire inn uses the hot springs water in its daily running, which makes it a very special and luxurious place to visit.

Our reporter, Yoshio, decided to book a stay in “the oldest hotel in the world” in order to share his experiences with the good readers of RocketNews24. Read on for many, many gorgeous photos of his trip!

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Hotel employee reveals the top three strangest Comiket guests he’s ever encountered

Comiket took place from at the very end of December last year, and if you’re lucky enough to have visited in person, or if you’ve just been enjoying the plethora of pictures on RocketNews24, then you probably had a great time.

But there’s another side to the Comiket story: the hotels and other venues that serve the guests who come from all over to attend the convention. Recently on the Japanese blog Livedoor, an anonymous poster who works at a hotel nearby the convention recanted the top three craziest Comiket guests he’s had.

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Inside the luxury Chinese hotel where North Korea keeps its army of hackers

North Korea has put together a secret army of computer hackers that it uses to disrupt South Korean military options and break into US military computers.

It might seem strange that North Korea has a dedicated cyber-warfare army unit. After all, only a few hundred people in the country even have access to the internet. But the country has worked to establish an elite group of hackers.

North Korean defectors say that the country actively searches for schoolchildren who display mathematical talent, and then trains them up in elite universities to become experts in hacking.

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Frozen fans who can’t ‘let it go’ have something to look forward to in January!

Like the fairy tale fantasies that Disney produces, Frozen‘s development has been nothing short of a “Cinderella” story itself. Languishing in development hell for a very long time, Disney wasn’t about to waste such a promising story like “Anna and the Snow Queen”. Their patience definitely paid off, and the millions of fans around the world are eagerly awaiting what’s next for their new favorite characters. Japanese fans won’t have to wait any longer as Tokyo Disneyland has unveiled a whole host of new Frozen additions to the park embracing the theme of “After Frozen”.

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Tokyo court rules that hotels must pay NHK fees according to the number of rooms with TVs

Last year, we brought you news of a court ruling in Yokohama which stipulated that anyone who owns a device capable of receiving a TV signal, regardless of whether they’ve entered into a contract with NHK (Japan’s public broadcasting station) or not, is legally obligated to pay the NHK licensing fee. An important point to note is that the fees are only paid once per household, and not according to the number of TV sets or devices capable of receiving a signal in the house.

However, a recent court decision seems to be taking the issue of NHK licensing fees in a whole new direction. On October 9, Tokyo District Court ruled in a first-of-its-kind lawsuit that the management company behind three Tokyo hotels must first enter into a contract with the public broadcaster. Furthermore, the hotels, all three of which had refused to enter into contracts despite repeated requests from NHK, must also pay their overdue licensing fees in proportion to the number of hotel rooms with TVs.

Just wait til you read how much money that all comes out to be…

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LA hotel gets ready for Hello Kitty expo with themed hotel rooms, food

Now that the whole debacle over Hello Kitty’s identity is settled, fans can get back to other things, like preparing for the first ever Hello Kitty convention, set to take place from October 30 to November 2 in Los Angeles.

And, at least in that small corner of town, everyone is ready. The Line, the official hotel of the convention, is trotting out special Hello Kitty-themed rooms, and a Hello Kitty Spam musubi by chef Roy Choi.

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Stay at the unique Artist in Hotel and absorb some Japanese culture — through your hotel room!

Tired of staying at nondescript, ordinary-looking hotels? If that’s the case, and you’re traveling to Tokyo, you may want to check out this highly unique hotel located in the Higashi-shimbashi area. In fact, when you stay at this hotel, you may not want to leave your room, because the rooms there have practically been turned into works of art, and not just any kind of art — each room is filled with elements of Japanese culture. So, why don’t we take a look at the stylish rooms at the Artist In Hotel, where the interior is not only stunningly artistic, but can be a cultural lesson as well!

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A brand new capsule hotel just opened…in Malaysia

Capsule hotels were something of an anomaly when first introduced to the world through pictures taken in Japan. But it seems the compact rental sleeping areas are catching on abroad. If you thought Japan was the only place you could crawl into a compartment just longer than your body, you’ll be surprised to find that you can now have a similar claustrophobic experience in Malaysia.

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Japanese airline rolls out its summer 2014 Pokémon-themed travel deals!

Pikachu invites you to create wonderful memories with your family this summer as part of All Nippon Airways (ANA)’s 2014 Pokémon-themed travel campaign! The summer campaign has proved popular with families with small children in the past (and with the adults, too…), and 2014 promises to be no exception. Some of the notable features include the chance to fly in a one-of-a-kind Pokémon jumbo jet, a special in-flight animated video, hotel rooms decked out in Pokémon paraphernalia, and other cool surprises! If you’re a Pokémon fanatic, this might just be the perfect vacation plan for you.

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Bored with hotels? Abenomics bringing new lodging options for foreign tourists in Japan

With Japan’s population steadily decreasing, the country is finding itself with a bigger and bigger surplus of vacant houses—7.75 million of them, according to a 2008 survey. That makes more than 10% of all housing units in Japan unoccupied and that is set to increase to 30% by 2030.

But Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s economic reforms, lovingly dubbed “Abenomics,” hopes to turn this vacancy problem into a cash cow for property owners by changing hotel laws and loosening restrictions on renting out your home to tourists planning their ultimate Japanese vacation. And to jumpstart the initiative, a Japanese real estate giant has teamed up with a home rental website to match up homeowners to prospective overseas tourists who want to experience a more authentic Japan.

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“Skippers”, “Ghosts” and “Idol Time”: The secret language of Japanese hotel staff

During my high school years, I worked in a supermarket, where an announcement over the loudspeaker system for “Code 19” always meant it was time to head to the staffroom for a cup of tea. Just like my clever supervisor, many service industry workers have developed their own set of code words that they use to communicate without letting the customers know too much about what’s really going on.

But thanks to this list of the secret keywords used by hotel staff in Japan, next time you’re in a Japanese hotel you can prick up your ears and listen out for any exciting gossip going on amongst the employees! Just for fun, have a look at this list first and see if you can guess what they mean. What would obake, nō-shō, aidoru taimu, chirashi, donden, and sukippā mean in a hotel context? 

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Hidden gem in Tokyo: Black water hot spring hotel

Tokyo may be the largest city in the world, but Tokyoites still long for the comforts of rural Japan. While the less populous cities don’t have all the luxuries of a major metropolitan city, what they have in spades are hot springs. Hot springs remain one of the most popular getaway destinations for the busy Japanese worker. Day trips, short weekend trips, everyone longs for the chance to relax in the soothing waters of a hot spring.

But where do you find a nice, relaxing hot spring within the 23 wards of Tokyo? Is it really possible to find one that is reasonably priced? Can you find one where people respect the rules? Where guests won’t immediately enter the bath before washing themselves which makes the water dirty and suspicious? Where you won’t have to wonder what that thing floating in the water is? The answer is a resounding yes and it’s closer than you think!

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Going to Japan? Be sure to check out our official RocketNews24 travel guide!

Are you planning to make that trip to Japan in the new year and in need of a few travel tips? Well, look no further because we here at RocketNews24 know a little bit about the Land of the Rising Sun and want to share our collective knowledge with you about unique restaurants, free Tokyo attractions, haunted places and surprisingly interesting tours.

So whether you are planning a first-time visit to Japan or you are looking for something new on a return trip to the country we all have come to love, click below and bookmark this post to jumpstart your 2014 travel plans to Japan!

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Sleep in a spaceship and be waited on by robots at China’s newest capsule hotel

Regular RocketNews24 readers will know how much we love capsule hotels – and tiny spaces in general, for that matter – to the point that we were genuinely saddened when one of the country’s premier locations announced last month that it was to close its doors. So when we caught a glimpse of the new Pengheng Space Capsules Hotel in Shenzhen, China, which combines minimalist hotel accommodation with a futuristic vibe similar to that of the Evangelion hotel rooms we’ve drooled over for so long, we could barely contain our excitement.

Join us after the jump for a photo tour of this awesome new capsule hotel!

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