• [Because it’s fun to help others have fun: The attentive sociability of a super-positive Kamigata rakugo artist]
    In this fourth edition we feature Osaka rakugo artist and entertainer Hachimitsu Tsukitei. In the world of light entertainment, hardly short on sociable sorts, Hachimitsu has been singled out as western Japan’s “king of hospitality”. Though still in his thirties, he is adored by fellow entertainers of all ages, as well as the general public. He’s the man everyone wants to have a beer with. We asked this Kamigata star his secret.

  • [An elegant cuisine ryokan offering natural hospitality in a natural way]
    The third part of this series features a cuisine ryokan in Hanase, Kyoto, called Miyamasou. Each of the four rooms of this elegant ryokan is designed in a style based on tea-house aesthetics. Miyamasou has been a favorite of famous cultural figures including the late writers Masako Shirasu, Masaaki Tachihara, and Ryotaro Shiba and nowadays the artist/politician Morihiro Hosokawa. Set in the middle of nowhere, what is the attraction of this ryokan for so many people? We talked with the proprietress-to-be Sachiko Nakahigashi.

  • [The beliefs and practices of a long-established coffee shop adored by regulars and tourists]
    In part two we feature Inoda Coffee, a long-established coffee shop in Kyoto. Even in Kyoto, where traditional coffee shops still thrive, Inoda Coffee stands out with its distinctive interior and omotenashi. Many of the customers are regulars, but it is also a firm favorite among tourists. In this shop, adored by all kinds of people both young and old, there is an abiding philosophy and aesthetic of omotenashi.

  • [The wisdom and ingenuity of Kyoto’s kagai as revealed by the proprietress-to-be of Tomiyo, Naomi Ota]
    In this series we will be talking to some of the masters of omotenashi from various walks of life about the profound and carefully thought-out hospitality of Japan. This first article will feature Kyoto’s kagai (entertainment district). In March 2014, Kyoto’s kagai culture was designated “intangible cultural heritage of Kyoto” by the city, for its concentrated blend of traditional and omotenashi culture, and its splendor and refinement, lauded both in and outside Japan. So what is this exceptional level of hospitality in the kagai all about?