Ryokan: Japan's Finest Spas and Inns

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Tuttle Publishing, Dec 15, 2007 - Architecture - 208 pages
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With over 180 color photographs and extensive commentary, this book showcases the beauty of Japanese inn, or ryokan.

Featured are both old and new-from inns with a history dating back a thousand years to modern inns with the latest facilities that nonetheless capture the spirit of old Japan. Each of the properties has been handpicked by the authors for their strong design aesthetic, commitment to service and purity of their spring waters. The photographs showcase the resorts at their best, and accurately express the unique architectural design of each ryokan.

Each chapter begins by introducing the area surrounding the inns and their spas, or onsen, and provides a background of its local history, culture and traditions, as well as the natural environment. The text provides information on the design and development of each ryokan, and descriptions of the owners and their clientele.

For those planning a visit to an onsen, this book provides contact details and information on the number of rooms, type of facilities and food, as well as vital information on travel and booking procedures and whether English is spoken. For those fascinated by Japanese culture and design, this book is an absolute delight.

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About the author (2007)

Akihiko Seki was born in Tokyo in 1939, and graduated from Keio University with a bachelor's degree in Economics in 1963. He and his wife travel all over Japan and Asia in search of the ultimate healing and relaxation experience.

American writer and editor Elizabeth Heilman Brooke lives in Japan and is an ardent student of Japan's natural and cultural heritage. She is a contributing writer for the New York Times, International Herald Tribune and Art News magazine.