Eihei-ji, a buddhist temple in Fukui Prefecture, is developing boutique hotel-style accommodation facilities within temple-owned land. The 18-room hotel will be able to host up to 72 guests in Japanese/Western-style rooms. Guests will be able to experience zazen seated meditation and traditional vegetarian cuisine.
The hotel, which is scheduled to open in late 2019, will be managed and operated by Fujita Kanko Inc. The company operates numerous hotels across Japan including the five-star Hotel Chinzanso in Tokyo.
The 3-storey building will be located alongside the Eihei-ji River and 200 meters west of the temple. Construction is scheduled to start in January 2018. Guest rooms will be over 30 sqm in size, with beds, tatami flooring and individual shower / bathrooms in each room. Nightly rates are expected to start from 16,000 Yen (140 USD) per person, including two meals. Staff will speak English, Chinese and Korean. Fujita is expecting 12,000 guests per year.
Although this temple and others may offer traditional shukubo lodgings, there are very few cases of temples offering hotel-style accommodation in the country.
Eihei-ji was founded in 1244 and sits on a 330,000 sqm hillside site with 70 temple buildings. Its oldest surviving structures are two gates that were built in 1794.
The temple is considered one of Fukui Prefecture’s top tourist destinations and had 581,000 visitors in 2015, up 22.8% from 2014. This is still far below the peak of 1,400,000 tourists that visited in 1989. With new accommodation facilities, the prefecture is hoping to attract 650,000 visitors by 2020 and 800,000 visitors by 2025.
Source: The Fukui Shimbun, May 16, 2017.