Sendai

What it’s like inside a $3,000 a night Japanese hotel room 【Video】

The palatial room can be found at a hotel that accommodates the Japanese Emperor on his travels.

Read More

Sexy Japanese actress strokes turtle head in tourism promotion video drawing complaints【Video】

Controversial video expected to be taken down shortly.

Read More

Cats appear at Japan’s famous Tanabata Festival in Sendai this summer

The huge streamer decorations that draw crowds from all around Japan will now feature adorable cat characters created by an anime artist.

Read More

Zoo Jeans from Japan uses denim marked with the claws and teeth of lions

The venture is being promoted by a local branch of Loft chainstores to help revitalise the Tohoku area.

Read More

High school student expelled for having sex, sues school for 6 million yen

Someone’s getting excessively punished here and its up to the courts to decide who.

Read More

Popular Japanese cafe chain apologises for using detergent instead of oil to fry their doughnuts

Afternoon Tea TEAROOM is recalling the affected batch of fried items after customers complained of numbness in their tongues.

Read More

Driving up the Miyagi coastline, four years after the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami

I recently visited several areas of the Miyagi coastline decimated by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. This is what I saw.

Read More

Akira creator Katsuhiro Otomo’s sprawling mural will soon welcome travelers at Sendai Airport

Surely any list of Japan’s greatest animators and directors must include Katsuhiro Otomo, the man behind the likes of Akira, Domu, and Steamboy. Otomo’s distinctive mix of neo-futurism, cyberpunk, and dark humor has earned him both a legion of fans and numerous accolades throughout the world.

We mentioned in a previous article that Otomo would be designing a giant mural for Tohoku’s Sendai Airport. Now it looks like the wait is almost over. The 12-ton mural, which depicts a squat, bespectacled boy sitting astride a cybernetic carp flanked by the gods of wind and lightning, will be unveiled on March 12, one day after the fourth anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake.

Read More

First nuclear power plant set to restart in Japan after 2011 meltdown

Against much public backlash, two reactors at a nuclear power plant in Sendai are scheduled to be restarted. These will be the first to restart operations after all the country’s nuclear plants were shut down indefinitely following the meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi plant in 2011. 

Read More

Anger online as tweeting tech guru Takeshi Natsuno slams Sendai for rejecting IC card

You may have heard the name Takeshi Natsuno before. A Keio University professor, former Senior Vice President at NTT Docomo, Sega Sammy big-wig, and creator of i-mode, he is by all accounts an intelligent, not to mention extremely tech-savvy, dude. So you can imagine the surprise the good residents of the city of Sendai felt when he took to his Twitter account earlier this week to publicly disparage their home town as being “too lame for words”.

Just what prompted this sudden outpouring of ire? Well, it seems Mr Natsuno felt rather short-changed when he attempted to use his prepaid Suica IC Card to ride the Sendai subway. Suica is a Tokyo-based IC card system. Sendai is not in Tokyo. You can probably see where this is going.

Read More

Tohoku University evicts entire dormitory for rampant drinking, is a zany 80s comedy just waiting to happen

On 15 July, Tohoku University sent eviction notices to all 105 residents of Meizenryo, a student-governed dormitory in Sendai. The school claims that the students violated their “promise to abstain from alcohol.”

Although asking a building full of college students not to drink is like asking a building full of tigers not to scratch the furniture, the school is taking a hardline stance of incredulousness at their behavior. Nevertheless, students are appealing saying that not everyone in the dorm drinks and some should be allowed to stay.

Read More

Hiyoriyama newly crowned as Japan’s Shortest Mountain

Osaka has many sights and attractions to boast about. To name a few, there’s the robot drummer clown, the big robot crabs here and there and of course Tenpozan, Japan’s shortest mountain. Standing at 4.53 meters above sea level, it was a tourist draw leading to the creation of an aquarium shopping complex and giant ferris wheel.

However, now it appears Tenpozan has been relegated to second place following a recent survey by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan (GSI). Hiyoriyama in Sendai is now the nation’s lowest summit at a reevaluated height of three meters. Normally, the Osaka resident in me would demand a recount and ask for a discount on it, but considering how Hiyoriyama came to be this way, I’ll humbly congratulate the new record holder and wish them all the best.

Read More

Police in Japan on the lookout for photogenic German fugitive

On 22 October, a young Twitter user with the handle Baku5538 happened to meet a German man out on the town by a stained glass window. The two chatted for around 30 minutes and went on with their business. Later on Baku posted the photo expecting his friends to be super jealous at his encounter with a foreigner.

However, a few weeks later on 13 November, Baku received a shock when a friend told him that a German guy who claimed to be a university student with the same name and looking just like the man he previously met was the subject of a city-wide manhunt after reportedly escaping from police custody facing charges of assault.

Read More

Man walks 1,400km home after getting mugged on the other end of Japan

The mother of a 25-year-old man was stunned to see him arrive home after he was declared missing for several days. When she last saw him he left his hometown of Sendai to attend a national trading card game competition in Kitakyushu city on 23 August.

However, when he never made his return flight on 25 August, she got worried. It turned out that her son was robbed of his wallet and mobile phone and spent the following 11 days traveling back to Sendai on foot. Upon his return the son said, “I never wanted to make a fuss. I’m sorry to everyone I inconvenienced.”

Read More

JoJo fans rejoice! Special 25th Anniversary JoJo Exhibit to take place in Sendai and Tokyo

You have to say 25 years – a quarter of a century – is a very long time to be working on a single story telling project. Well, that’s exactly how long manga artist Hirohiko Araki has been producing the series “JoJo no Kimyo na Boken – or JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure”, commonly referred to as “JoJo” by fans.

Not surprisingly, after 25 years in the making, the comic has a huge following of loyal fans of varying ages. The story line, which revolves around battles of good vs. evil fought between characters with supernatural powers spanning over several generations, is certainly unique, but the comic is also loved for Araki’s distinctive sense of graphic style and color, which leaves quite an impression and which once seen, is not easily forgotten.

Fans of the comic will be delighted to hear that a special exhibition of original JoJo artwork by Araki will be held later this year in Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture and in Tokyo to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the series.

Read More

More and more victims of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake are reporting that they are suffering from visions of ghosts and other supernatural sensations.

The disaster brought many people face-to-face with death and many believe the apparitions may be a manifestation of their emotional wounds.

As Japan has no governmental office that deals with this kind of issue and many people feel uncomfortable consulting family members, leaders from several different religious organizations in Japan have come together to provide emotional and mental support for the victims.

Read More

Operation Arigatou: One Man’s Mission to Say ‘Thank You’

In the days following the Great East Japan Earthquake the United States Armed Forces mobilized to aid Japan’s disaster relief efforts and launched ‘Operation Tomodachi’ (lit: Operation Friend). It has since become a large scale operation with the United States committing roughly 20,000 personnel, 20 ships and 160 aircraft to date.

Efforts so far have included distributing supplies to the disaster area, searching for missing persons off the Sanriku Coast, cleaning up rubble and debris, and restoring a landing strip at the disaster-struck Sendai Airport. The United States also provided a specialized unmanned aircraft to photograph the area around the Fukushima I reactor as the nuclear crisis unfolded.

Moved by America’s compassionate response to Japan’s situation, an anonymous former member of the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) and resident of Miyagi prefecture began making plans to personally express his thanks to the United States personnel involved in Operation Tomodachi. He named his plan ‘Operation Arigatou.’ Read More