March 15, 13 | Iwasaki
Recently I had the joy of participating in a two day, one night resort stay at Hoshino Resort Tomamu. Although I've always wanted to visit the resort, I'd never had the chance to make the long journey before. However, after making the trip on Hokkaido's excellent highway system, I realized that it was only a two hour drive to get there!
For this trip I stayed at the luxurious "Risonare Tomamu." My suite featured a spacious living room and bathroom featuring a private sauna. Some of the resorts rooms are decorated with furniture from the Asahikawa brand "Conde House" giving them a homely feeling.
After arriving the first thing I did was head out to the slopes! The rental system is fantastic for beginners, so allow me to highlight it! The slopes have an exclusive contract with ATOMIC (a famous ski brand) meaning that Tomamu may be the only place where beginners can rent such high quality equipment! First time snowboarders can take a 90 or 120 minute lesson where, using a BURTON board, they will learn how to perform consecutive turns to get down the mountain.
I had a hard time deciding which to try, but for this trip I chose to snowboard!
Beginners are all given BURTON boards to use, which were donated to the slope.
I think that the board may have saved my tail bone quite a few times(^^;)
The slopes in Tomamu are well known for their high quality snow, which means that even on the intermediate courses skiers and boarders can enjoy creating huge sprays of powder while they head down the mountain.
If you need to take a break while you're on the slopes be sure to check out "Konko" cafe! The fireplace located inside will help warm those chilly feet as you enjoy a delicious cup of coffee or tea.
A surprisingly interesting attraction is Adventure Mountain.
Here you can participate in a challenging game to recover a special "forest seed" that has been stolen by an "evil genie." This game, while family oriented, has some really challenging areas.
I had a great time on the slopes but it was high time to get a proper resort experience. For some true relaxation I headed off to "Minamina Beach!"
As soon as I walked in, the size of the pool made me do a double take!
The size of the poolside beach area is truly fitting for a resort of this quality.
I enjoyed swimming lazily in the pool, allowing the warm water lull me into a sleepy state, afterwards I headed to the "Ice Village" and waited for the sunset.
While waiting I participated in a really enjoyable activity, "Snowflake Replica Making."
First you catch some snowflakes on a black sheet of paper, then select the one you want to preserve with a brush and bamboo skewer, and finally you encase the flake in a special resin which preserves it for you to enjoy!
When viewed under a microscope the beauty of each flake is truly moving.
Many other ice themed items, created by artists from around Hokkaido, are available in the "ice shop." Window shopping here is truly enjoyable as well!
During my visit the "ice church" was holding a special wedding ceremony, so I went to check it out.
Weddings held in "ice churches" are quite a popular event here in Hokkaido, but the ice chapel located at this resort created a special romantic mood fitting for this "snow country" resort.
I was exhausted after my day of activities, but after returning to my room I was able to relieve my aching bones in the private sauna. I awoke early on my second day to take part in a unique snow trekking event! More on that next time.
Hoshino Resort Tomamu
Location: Tomamu, Shimekappu Village, Yufutsu-gun, Hokkaido, 079-2204
Hoshino Resort Tomamu Official Facebook Page
(Hokkaido Likers Photo Writer - Iwasaki)