Good news coming out of Kyoto last week with word that Shangri-La Group has acquired a large development site on the northern side of Nijo Castle in Kyoto. The 4,700 sqm site is about 100 meters west of our restored machiya townhouse.
Two more traditional boathouses in Ine, Kyoto, have been refurbished into luxury overnight accommodation.
A year has passed since the introduction of new regulations covering short-term letting or Airbnb-style rentals in Japan. Take-up has been slow with just 6,438 registered properties across the greater Tokyo area, which includes Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, and Saitama prefectures. Before the new law was introduced in June 2018, there were 16,000 properties listed on Airbnb’s website in Tokyo’s 23 wards alone.
In an effort to attract luxury hotel brands, Aichi Prefecture and Nagoya City governments are both considering offering subsidies that will total up to 2 billion Yen (approx. 18.5 million USD).
The Japanese government has sued the owner of a derelict hotel in Aomori Prefecture to demolish the building and return the state-owned land. The Towada Kanko Hotel sits on the shores of Lake Towada. It was founded in 1950 before closing in 2012. The owner filed for bankruptcy in 2014.
Hirado City in Nagasaki Prefecture is looking for someone to open a small hotel within Hirado Castle’s turret. According to the Japan Castle Foundation, this would be the first accommodation to be created in a castle in Japan.
Demolition has started on an abandoned hotel and local eyesore adjacent to Okinawa’s Nakagusuku Castle that has been sitting idle for almost five decades. In a rare move for privately-owned property, the prefecture has taken charge of demolition due to the need for a careful investigation for any historic artifacts and to avoid harm to protected wildlife. Demolition is expected to be completed by March 2020, after which the land will be converted back to parkland.
Details have come out for the large-scale future redevelopment of the Meiji Jingu Baseball Stadium and Prince Chichibu Memorial Rugby Stadium district in central Tokyo. The 17.4-hectare site straddles Minato and Shinjuku wards and adjoins the new Olympic Stadium.
The former Karasuma Church in Kyoto is facing imminent demolition. The 5-story concrete building is a local landmark for its unusual design.
A waterfront district down in Kanagawa’s Miura Peninsula is being pushed as a potential luxury resort targeting wealthy foreigners. A current development proposal includes villas and high-end condominiums that could include their own berths for mega-yachts along with 20-minute access by helicopter from Tokyo. The villas could range in size from 340 ~ 1,120 sqm (3,658 ~ 12,000 sq.ft).