By John Blagys
With its sophisticated appearance and comfortable, friendly atmosphere, the Phoenix Hotel is an ideal base for getting down to some serious recreation in the Japanese Alps. It has a fantastic location at the center of Hakuba, the 1998 Olympic ski resort hub about 50 minutes from Nagano City. The well-traveled route from Tokyo makes for convenient transportation options, and your stay at the Phoenix makes for a pleasurable time.
Up to 90% of Phoenix guests are from overseas, and the western-style lobby reflects its popularity with foreign visitors. There are 15 accommodation options in the hotel, with 2- and 3-bedroom chalets sleeping 6 and 8 guests respectively. All guest rooms are traditional Japanese style, with tatami flooring and comfortable futon bedding. The combination of West and East results in an elegant balance. Standard rooms, at 13,000 yen including breakfast, are all equipped with washroom facilities, and the superior room has an extra shower.
The hotel houses a large Japanese-style onsen bath, which is open throughout the day, with a sauna and shower rooms built into the same space. The forest next to the facilities makes for inspiring morning walks.
A good example of what you can get into with Phoenix is a 2-story, 2-bedroom chalet. Spacious bedrooms and accompanying bathrooms are situated on the first floor, while the kitchen and living room (with another bathroom) take up the second. Everything inside and outside, including the furniture and tableware, is completely new, functional and of the highest quality. Fixtures, such as automatic sensor lights, are all modern and fully functional, and the entire facility is covered by wireless LAN. Large windows allow guests to view Hakuba’s beautiful nature.
For your comfort and convenience, your Phoenix stay includes these standard amenities:
Wide screen TV with DVD player; sofas for 4-5 people; beds and blankets; dining table & chairs; modern system kitchen with oven, microwave, refrigerator, and cookware; stylish Wedgewood tableware and Narumi & Riedel wine glasses; and lovely, tranquil surroundings.
Since they live in a world-class winter-summer resort area, you know Phoenix staff are all happy to be there! Everyone is extremely friendly and passionate about helping guests get the most out of both the hotel and the Hakuba area. All are bilingual English/Japanese speakers, and they can assist you in making arrangements for the multitude of activities for which Hakuba is renowned. There is a free shuttle to and from local ski areas from the Phoenix Hotel, as well as a limousine service, so you will never be stuck without a car.
Phoenix has a well-equipped 10-seat bar on-site where you can enjoy a variety of cocktails, whiskey, wine, coffee and more. Feel free to use the bar’s iPad while enjoying your drinks. (4pm to closing)
Phoenix is proud to provide a top-class restaurant specializing in wine, food and great service. The Australian chef’s home-country roots mesh with Japanese techniques, resulting in inspired creations. Fresh, local ingredients are featured, and a vegetarian menu is available.
The owner’s love for wine is apparent in the 130-bottle wine list covering selections from Australia, California, France, Argentina and more. Meals here are truly exceptional! (6pm to closing)
In the morning, a self-serve buffet-style continental breakfast, with hot and vegetarian options, is available.
～How to enjoy the Hakuba area around the Phoenix Hotel～
Skiing & snowboarding (nearest ski resort: Hakuba Happo-one; free shuttle transport to and from local ski areas from the Phoenix Hotel); back-country snowshoeing, snow mobiling and sleighing; tea ceremony; glass-making; fishing; and of course hot springs (some travel agencies offer hot springs monkey-viewing tours)!
Spring & Summer seasons:
Rafting; kayaking; fishing; tennis and athletics; walking around Lake Aoki (or cruising), firefly watching and insect collecting; paragliding; horseback riding!
3-color maple leaf-viewing (sandan-koyo), new buckwheat noodle-eating (shin-soba); mushroom collecting!
Pubs, bars, clubs, karaoke!
There are 10 popular hot springs (onsen) in Hakuba, with two types of water. Happo onsen water is a murky brown and slightly salty. Shionomichi onsen is known for beauty, and is effective after outdoor activities.
Recommended onsen spots around the hotel are Obinata and Kurashita, each 5 minutes by car from Phoenix.
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