1. Find the best view of Mount Fuji framed by cherry blossoms
It doesn't get much better than this: Each and every room at Hoshinoya Fuji offers an unbeatable vantage point to take in Mount Fuji, and with good weather on your side, it’ll be hard to peel yourself away from the postcard-perfect panorama. Devoid of unnecessary ornamentation, the rooms place the landscape and the cherry blossoms front and centre. The clever addition of an outdoor area, equipped with a modern fireplace and fitted with a kotatsu (heated table), emphasise a strong cultural touch so you can experience glamping with a Japanese twist. We suggest ordering an in-room breakfast bento and greet the new day just like the Japanese do.
2. Experience Japanese design at its finest
Camping is meant to be an exercise in simplicity, and while Hoshinoya Fuji retains this spirit, it raises it to a whole new level. The difference is noticeable even before one steps foot on the property. Located on a slope facing Lake Kawaguchi—one of the five lakes with prized views of Mount Fuji—the hotel’s distinctive architecture is visible from below. Designed by Azuma Architect and Associates along with landscape architects Studio On Site, the white box-shaped structure juts out from the dense red pine forest and begs to be noticed. The deliberate cubist design serves a special purpose: to properly frame a stunning view of the iconic mountain and to immerse you in Japan's minimalist design aesthetic.
Meals at Hoshinoya Fuji follow the seasons so expect delicious sakura-themed dishes if you visit in spring. Throughout the year, guests will find a menu that highlights local producers and smaller farms. In December 2017, the resort launched a new dining area called Forest Kitchen where one can eat al fresco amidst the towering pine trees. We highly suggest going for the Dutch Oven Dinner, which features seasonal regional game caught by local hunters that is expertly cooked and paired with local wines and spirits.
4. Relish the simple joys of being outdoors
Elsewhere in the property, the severe lines and stark whites of the architecture are replaced by a more homespun character. This is most evident in the Cloud Forest, a multi-tiered wooden platform that’s a hive of activity. Here, the simple joys of camping in a forest are brought to life, from enjoying the sounds of the wild to roasting marshmallows on an open fire.This being a Hoshinoya property, luxury is all but expected—you can watch a film outdoors while sipping rare Hibiki whisky. If you're keen to learn something new while on holiday, glamping masters can also teach you how to smoke food, which you can enjoy after the lesson with a local beer or highball.
Sakura season signals the beginning of spring and the Japanese celebrate the arrival of a new season by going outdoors. A picnic with friends spent viewing the blossoms (called hanami) is the traditional way to welcome spring. While there are plenty of opportunities for hanami picnics at Hoshinoya Fuji, why not take in the fleeting cherry blossoms by going on a canoe trip or a horseriding? That's one thing to tick off your achievement travel list, and also the best use of the stylish backpacks you get during check-in.