Japan

Add “Night at The Windsor” to List of Things to Do Before You Die

The Windsor Hotel Toya put itself on the map by hosting the G8 Summit in 2008, but the appeal of the Hokkaido resort and spa remains today. The mountaintop hotel offers expansive views of the vast Lake Toya in addition to unparalleled entertainment and amenities.

I had the good fortune to stay at The Windsor this summer, and I’m going to share seven things that show that visiting this resort belongs on everyone’s bucket list. Read More

If it suits him on a particular day, a spray-painting artist appears underneath the bridge at the Odakyu Department Store at the West Exit of Shinjuku Station. The elusive wizard with the spray cans handles his tools deftly and produces stunning works of art.

To put it bluntly, the way he paints is crude, and it seems as though he is cooking without a cookbook. His hands are sticky with multiple colors of paint as he manipulates the paper, cans and various props.

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Attention, gluttons on holiday in Japan: RocketNews24 has compiled a list of five restaurants that feature signature dishes with gut-busting, imagination-defying, comically-oversized portions.

First, some vocabulary to help you enjoy your eating spree. You probably already know to ask for o-mori when you want a large portion of rice and an extra helping of the main dish, but there’s still one level to go: deka-mori.

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Free Admission – Twelve of Tokyo’s Best Kept Secrets

Expensive Tokyo living got you down? Are you staring another three-day weekend in the face and wondering what havoc it will wreak on your wallet?

There are places to enjoy yourself for free all over Tokyo, if you know where to look. RocketNews24 has sifted through the many options and has come up with 12 suggestions that will not disappoint. Try them next time you have a last-minute date or cobwebs in your billfold! Read More

Timeless Fukuoka Ramen Shop Serves Up Good Memories, Cheap Eats

Part the curtains at the simple storefront of Shoryuken, wrestle the creaky, swollen sliding door open, and step back in time to 1972.

A worn, handmade menu at the Fukuoka City ramen shop advertises ramen bowls for 100 yen, and it is clear that that price has persisted through the restaurant’s 39 years of existence. Read More

Beer. Shochu. All-You-Can-Drink. 299 yen. Yakitori Marukin. Shimbashi. Now.

Tired from a long day at work? No money in your wallet? You’re headed straight for Yoshinoya for a beer the beef bowl and salmon set, aren’t you? That’s about 1,000 yen out of your pocket right there.

Fear not, we’ve found a better way for you to stretch that thinnest of Japanese bills. Yakitori Marukin in Shimbashi offers an all-you-can-drink special you can’t afford to pass up – 30 minutes for 299 yen! Marukin rolls out Kirin Ichiban Shibori as well as “Kuro Kirishima” imo shochu, “Kumeshima no Kumesen” awamori and a host of other popular shochu drinks. It’s possible to get pretty plastered in just one half-hour session. Read More

Noboribetsu Onsen is a veritable department store for hot springs lovers, with many different kinds of springs bubbling forth from one of the best onsen regions in Hokkaido. Located in Noboribetsu City, Hokkaido, it is overflowing with sights to see, from Jigokudani (“Hell Valley”) with its spouting gas and high-temperature onsen to the century-old hot spring pond “Taisho Jigoku” and the giant hot spring pond “Oyunuma.”

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The goldfish booth is a favorite pastime at Japanese summer festivals. Kids plop down a couple coins and get a flimsy paper net with which to catch goldfish out of an inflatable pool. The object is to catch as many fish as possible before the net breaks.

For one day in Akihabara, grown men had the chance to fish for something far more exotic than some fish that will go belly-up in a few days. On August 28, grown men plopped down single 500-yen coins and got a string fixed with a metal hook with which to catch plastic balls out of an inflatable pool.

The fantastic prize? Striped panties wadded up and stuffed inside the balls.  Oh, Japan.

The event took place at adult superstore “m’s” in Akihabara. Overwhelmingly popular Akihabara information site Akiba Blog reports that the women’s underwear came in blue, pink, and green striped patterns.

Some would call this event nothing more than a chance for perverts to snatch women’s underwear in broad daylight with their dignity intact. Perhaps it’s better to believe that the men who lined up to go fishing for panties were looking for presents for their girlfriends and wives.

Source: Akiba Blog

Ensky Co., Ltd. has fashioned a set of playing cards based on the famous lines of Takeshi “Gian” Goda, a bully character from the hit anime and manga “Doraemon.” In the series, Gian spends most of his time making outrageous demands of other children and bullying main character Nobita, but there are times when he shows his courage and displays true friendship.

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A Day in the Life of a Cosplay Photo Buff

I slung my camera over my shoulder, ready to invade the world of cosplay for the first time at this year’s summer Comic Market 80 at Tokyo Big Sight.

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When Mr. Satoh needs to get his heart pumping, he walks. He runs. He jogs, and he does a wealth of other physical activities.

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Everyone knows JAL and ANA, but have you heard the name “StarFlyer” while strolling through Haneda Airport? StarFlyer boasts a fleet of fashionable aircraft featuring all-black exteriors and cabin interiors. The first sight of a bitchin’ all-black airplane zooming down the runway will take anyone’s breath away.

StarFlyer planes travel most between Tokyo and Kita-Kyushu, but the airline added flights between Tokyo and Fukuoka on July 1. I flew to Fukuoka on business last month, so I figured I’d give StarFlyer a try. Other than the stunning black of the body and interior, I took note of six features of StarFlyer planes:

 

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An acquaintance of mine visited Ulleungdo Island, a volcanic island in the Sea of Japan over which Japan and Korea are locked in a territorial dispute. Three Japanese politicians aiming to visit Ulleungdo last month were denied entry into Korea, but Japanese are normally able to tour the island. There is even a tourist website for the island that targets Japanese.

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“Beer Hour” Portable Server Enjoys Heady Success

Once I heard the Takara Tomy “Beer Hour” portable beer server, I just knew I had to have one. It works with both 350-ml and 500-ml cans and produces more foam than you can get from a can without shaking it up first. It looked perfect, so I ponied up the 1,995 yen and took one home to try it out.

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Lady Gaga Scares Up New Fan Base in Japanese Countryside

Lady Gaga fans languishing in the Japanese countryside, your day has arrived.  No longer will you only yearn to see Lady Gaga in your midst, far removed from the Budokan and other popular metropolitan venues in Japan. She has already arrived and is performing in a rice field near you. Read More

Luxman Unveils Luxury USB Cable

High-end audio electronic product manufacturer Luxman has announced its sale of the JPU-150, a high-definition reference USB cable that purports to improve the sound quality of the digital audio data it transfers. Read More

Tokyo Chikara Meshi Takes Beef Bowl to New Level

I finished my “special” beef bowl at Tokyo Chikara Meshi and immediately called for the cook.  I wanted to grab his hand, shake it, and thank him for the absolute best beef bowl I have ever had the pleasure of eating.

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It’s already late August, and there are but a few more fireworks shows left in the summer season. I don’t know about you, but when I try to take pictures to help remind me of summer memories, they never turn out as beautiful as the memories themselves.

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Minutes before the tsunami that wrecked hundreds of miles of Japanese coastline hit land on March 11, an untold number of people flipped open their mobile phones and turned on their video cameras to record history in the making. New videos continue to pop up on Youtube and other sites.

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In Nakano Broadway, Giant Soft Serve Ice Cream Eats You!

Tucked away behind a counter on the first basement floor of renowned manga, anime and action figure haven Nakano Broadway is Daily Choco, a simple soft serve ice cream joint.

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