Five-star Higashiyama Niseko Village hotel opens in Japan’s frozen north

By Tempus | 26 Jan 2021

State-of-the-art luxury hotel, the first from the Ritz-Carlton Reserve portfolio to open in Japan, offers stunning ski-in ski-out stays in Hokkaido

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The Ritz-Carlton Reserve portfolio has unveiled the newest addition to its esteemed range of hotels; the Higashiyama Niseko Village, a stunning resort located in Japan's top winter sports destination of Niseko.

The hotel, nestled among the snow-capped mountains of the country’s northernmost island of Hokkaido, offers an exceptional escape for guests seeking personal and physical exploration. The resort, owned by YTL Hotels, is a stunning ski-in/ski-out property that interweaves the highest level of personalised service and care with the charm of Japan’s local history, culture and cuisine. Higashiyama Niseko Village is only the fifth Ritz-Carlton Reserve in the world, and the very first Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Japan. 

Dato’ Mark Yeoh, Executive Director of YTL Hotels said of the launch: “Higashiyama Niseko Village offers a world-class gateway to Niseko’s adventurous mountains, renowned gastronomy, culture and traditions.

"With every privilege and convenience afforded, our guests can look forward to being pampered and cared for in every way conceivable through its evolving seasons. YTL will continue to build on the area’s natural attractions to strengthen Niseko Village’s reputation as the most sought-after and snowiest award-winning ski resort in Asia over the next ten years.”

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Higashiyama Niseko Village, positioned at the base of Mount Niseko Annupuri in the heart of Niseko Village, is an integrated all-season alpine resort hailed as one of the world’s premier powder snow destinations. The resort is set within the Niseko United ski area that offers 2,191 acres of skiable terrain and access to extensive backcountry skiing. Visitors will also find an international ski school, chairlifts and gondolas, a dining and retail venue, an outdoor activity park and two world-class golf courses.

Unfolding over a vast landscape with panoramic views of Mount Yotei and Mount Niseko Annupuri, the inspiration behind the ultra-luxury resort lies in the Japanese proverb “Kachou Fuugetsu” (Flower, Bird, Wind, Moon), which encourages appreciation of the transient beauty of nature and wellbeing through self-discovery.

Emotional connections, indigenous aesthetics, unique cuisine and sensory-rich journeys characterise every element of the guest experience. Higashiyama Niseko Village offers 50 guest rooms and suites with elegant design and décor featuring natural polished marble, fragrant cedarwood and flame-brushed finished granite. Every space is designed to frame nature, showcasing the transitions of light and the seasons on the nearby mountains.

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The new hotel’s culinary ethos focuses on the philosophy of “shun”, the celebration of seasonal produce harvested at its peak.

Guests can expect delicious cuisine that mirrors the seasons with the finest locally sourced vegetables, prized cuts and seafood served at Yukibana, or quintessential dining experiences at Sushi Nagi, which observes the omakase tradition of entrusting the “Itamae”, or head chef, to create something bespoke.

Customised cocktails, single malts and local brews can be savoured by the fireplace at Ume Lounge, with an eclectic array of Izakaya-style dishes.

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With a holistic focus on wellness, the hotel’s bespoke spa offers tailored treatments to provide respite for the body and soul. The resort also features a traditional Japanese onsen for guests to luxuriate in the rejuvenating mineral-rich waters of Niseko's natural underground hot springs.

For guests who wish to maintain their workout routine during their stay, the resort offers a fitness centre complete with high-end Technogym equipment.

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Bringing to life the Reserve brand’s commitment to intuitive and heartfelt service, a trusted personal host or “Do San” (a person of Hokkaido) will be on hand to offer guests a highly personalised stay through a single touchpoint to access every service, amenity and offering.

Each Do San’s sense of genuine care and responsibility, known as “omotenashi”, is the gold standard of Japanese hospitality, driven from the purity of heart and mutual respect with no pretence or expectation – something has evolved over the centuries as a subtle art form.

Leveraging Niseko’s heritage and varied recreation, Higashiyama Reservists, the resort’s creative curators are familiar with the locale, terrain and natural wonders, and offer a crafted collection of unforgettable excursions and self-discovery experiences. Reservists are always on hand to provide guests with the best insider tips, exclusive access and priority privileges that span nature, adventure, culture and gastronomy.

Nightly rates at Higashiyama Niseko Village start from JPY 65,000 (£458) in the summer season and JPY 120,000 (£846) in the winter. For information and reservation enquiries, please visit