Opened in 1939, the Towada Hotel is a figural part of the scenery of Lake Towada. Its golden glow makes it a memorable building, even if just seen from a cruise boat on the calm waters of the largest lake in Japan.
When I saw it for the first time, I was on a boat, touring the calm waters of the lake and half-listening to the blown out speakers talking about the area I was visiting. I immediately put it on my bucket list to stay there at least once. I spent a while off and on looking availability dates, but when I got the chance to in September, I jumped immediately on it.
It is an expensive place to spend the night, coming it at just over ¥20,000 plus beverages at dinner and breakfast. But if it’s an experience you’re wanting, it is worth every cent in my opinion.
While the heat of summer was still present and heavy in the air during my stay, the crisp breeze from the lake and the mountain’s mist chilled the area just enough to make it seem like a fall getaway. The view of the trees covered in rolling fog come morning was mesmerizing. I woke up the next morning, able to see the lake peeking through the fog as it rolled down from the mountain top.
It is a huge building. Although its clear appearance from the lake makes the size of it well-known, it is something else to see it in person. Standing there in front of it, I had to take a moment and admire the beauty of the hotel tucked away in the mountains.
It is divided into two different parts: a more modern building and the traditional architecture. I stayed in a western style room, which was on the more modern side of the building. You are able to walk around and see all the different communal rooms of the hotel. There are two sitting rooms for guests, filled with different decorations of the area.
The main building is constructed via traditional Japanese architecture techniques. The work of an imperial carpenter, the beauty of the Akita cedar is acutely accented by careful consideration to details. It gleams in ways that I have never seen before. The inside is just as golden and glorious as the outside, a structure like I’ve never seen before in my life.
There are hidden apples here and there, to reflect that the hotel is also very close to Aomori prefecture.
The lake is within walkable distance to the hotel. The paths are clearly marked for hiking routes, making an easy escape into nature possible. The onsen has both indoor and outdoor baths of perfect temperature. Massage chairs are available to use as well, situated right next to windows to get a great view while relaxing.
The meal served is a seven-course Akita specialty feast. Including iburigakko, sashimi, hotpot, and the best roast beef, it was blended flavors of both Akita and Western foods. Even if you’re not a big hiker or onsen goer, I think the meal makes the visit worth it. A major bonus is the waiting staff who will tell you all about each dish you get with a smile.
All in all, Towada Hotel is the place to go for a refreshing get away.
If you are a foodie, love nature and walking, or just enjoy unique getaways, check out Towada Hotel.