Born Again in Karuizawa
September 27, 2022
Highly awarded for its exceptional design and original concept, Shishi-Iwa House is the perfect place to find your ikigai - in Japanese, bliss or purpose in life. Built in the heart of Karuizawa, only an hour from the excitement of Tokyo, the place feels like a natural sanctuary. Wild birds singing, trees whispering, forest dancing... Learn to listen in a different way and feel a new energy flowing through your body and soul.
Forest baths in Karuizawa
As soon as you step off the Shinkansen, Karuizawa is a breath of nature. The fresh air of the forest at the foothills of Mount Asama has been a favourite of the Japanese since the late 19th century. Harmony with nature is at the center of Japanese spirituality. They rejuvenate themselves in Onsen, thermal baths in naturally warm waters heated by volcanoes or via forest baths - shinrin yoku, a common medical practice of reconnecting with trees and embracing nature.
Dancing with the trees
Shishi-iwa house was created to prolong this forest bathing experience. The prized architects from Shigeru Ban designed an undulating roof that follows the “dance of the forest”. They conserved most of the existing trees using a building approach never used before in hotel construction. “I want visitors to experience a sense of unity between the building and the landscape,” says architect Shigeru Ban.
Nature is in the details
At Shishi-iwa house, nature is at the focal point, and in the finest details. Bathtubs are made of hinoki wood, whose subtle scent is said to have the power to clear the mind. Every room is designed to enhance the beauty of natural light. For its restaurant, whose menu is inspired by the beauty of the seasons, Shishi-Iwa house chose Voltra Totem Frosted cordless lamps. Voltra Totem Frosted provide the ideal intimate light to connect with nature from dawn ‘til dusk.