So you’re going to Niseko for a ski holiday. The land of delicious ramen, fancy Japanese toilets and the most snow that you’ll ever see. With all the time you’ll probably spend on the slopes, you’ll want a comfortable place to rest your head at the end of the day – so we’ve rounded up the below luxe suggestions for you.
Get ready for delicious dining options, great amenities and, of course, onsens galore.
1. AYA Niseko
Welcome to paradise. This hotel, located in Niseko’s Grand Hirafu, has been open for less than a year and offers 79 luxury apartments and penthouses, designed by renowned Hokkaido architect Koichi Ishiguro. It’s ski-in, ski-out, and offers various amenities to make your stay a beautiful one – such as a 24 hour reception, ski valet, natural onsen hot springs, private family onsen, gym, yoga studio, restaurant, art gallery, kid’s club and ski school access.
Feeling hungry? Enjoy a meal in AYA’s restaurant. Or maybe you’re stressed out after the flight? AYA offers a spa with shiatsu and oil massage. When you’re ready to head out on the slopes, the concierge will even book your lift passes, ski lessons and hire equipment. Find their website here.
2. Zaborin Ryokan
If you’re looking for a relaxing holiday, Zaborin will be right up your alley. Make yourself at home at one of their 15 villas, nestled into a private forest in Hanazono. Each villa has its own private indoor and outdoor baths, fed with water direct from the Zaborin onsen. Choose from traditional Japanese accommodation, complete with tatami mats and futons, or go for Western-style beds. You can entertain yourself with Apple TV or the Bluetooth sound systems with iPod connectivity, and do it all while lounging around in your Zaborin pyjamas. Find their website here.
3. Kasara Townhouse
Find this set of townhouses at the base of Mount Niseko Annupuri. The three-bedroom, two-storey townhouses have been designed by YTL Hotels and Design Intervention as an ode to Japan’s heritage townhouses, inhabited by craftsmen and wealthy merchants at the end of the Edo period. If you’re travelling with a group of six, the three bedrooms will be perfect for your group; the dining room can also be converted to accommodate two kids under 12.
A Kasara townhouse will be your home away from home, with a fully-equipped designer kitchen, laundry facilities, a heated ski gear storage room, garage, internet and a flatscreen TV complete with DVDs. It’s the perfect option for those who don’t want to cram into a hotel room while travelling. Find their website here.
Get a whole lot of friends together and rent out Kasetsu. This three-storey house, located in Lower Hirafu, accommodates up to 17 people and has six bedrooms, three bedrooms, a dry room, media room and an open plan kitchen/dining/lounge area. There’s even free use of a rental 4WD van if you visit between December 15, 2017 – March 31, 2018 – meaning you’ll easily be able to explore the surrounding area and all the ski resorts you want to see. Find their website here.
5. Greenleaf Hotel
This ski-in, ski-out hotel at the base of Mount Niseko Annupuri is everything you could want from a hotel getaway. With 200 rooms, fully refurbished in 2010, you can choose from Deluxe Twin rooms, Deluxe King rooms or Suites. Each includes a 32” flat screen television, dream beds, beautiful furniture and décor, complimentary internet, Japanese teas and slippers. You’ll be surrounded by ski slopes, views of Mt Yotei (the local volcano) and the relaxing local countryside; in your downtime, enjoy the spa, onsen and bar and dining facilities. Find their website here.
6. The Vale Niseko
It doesn’t get much more ski-in, ski-out in Hirafu than it does at The Vale, Niseko. This five-star hotel actually offers 49 residences that vary from hotel rooms to one, two and three-bedroom luxury apartments, giving you plenty of space to prepare for your day on the slopes. Each residence offers complimentary wireless, televisions and iPod connections, along with a traditional Japanese robe and slippers. Opt for an apartment if you’d like a kitchen complete with all necessary appliances, or go for a penthouse if you’d enjoy a private onsen on your balcony that overlooks Mt Yotei.
Once you’re done shredding the famous powder of Niseko, you can soak your weary muscles in the natural hot spring before grabbing dinner and cocktails at their Bar & Grill. Find their website here.
7. Kimamaya By Odin
This micro-boutique hotel in Hirafu is the perfect place to settle in and make the most of Niseko. Kimamaya offers just nine rooms in four different configurations, sleeping between two to four people. When you’re not enjoying the contemporary furnishings and deluxe bedding in your bedroom, or taking a dip in one of two communal hot spa-bath rooms, enjoy the lounge – a common area with cosy seating around the fireplace, a library and a bar. Kids are also welcome, with their own kids room complete with cushions and a big screen TV.
While at Kimamaya, be sure to check out their restaurant, ‘The Barn’ – this beautifully designed building, inspired by the the architecture of Hokkaido’s traditional farming barns, offers French alpine food and wine. Find their website here.
8. KI Niseko
This boutique hotel offers up hotel rooms, 1-bedroom condos, 2-bedroom condos or a penthouse. If you’re looking to spend as much time skiing as possible, Ki will be perfect – it’s nestled right into the base of the Grand Hirafu ski resort, close to the gondola. Services include a shuttle, onsen, spa and ski valet, along with An Dining and the An Café and Bar offering both casual and fine dining. Enjoy free wifi, luxury amenities, premium bedding and even humidifiers in each room to make you feel better in the dry Niseko air. Find their website here.
Are you heading to Niseko this season? Where are you staying?