HOME Hokkaido Hokkaido Hakodate Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu: A 100-year-old Japanese Inn Combining Tradition and Comfort
Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu: A 100-year-old Japanese Inn Combining Tradition and Comfort

Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu: A 100-year-old Japanese Inn Combining Tradition and Comfort

Date published: 4 November 2022

Our recommendations for foreign visitors include sites where you can experience rare Japanese history, tradition, and atmospheres! Here we will introduce the long-established inn, Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu, located in Hakodate City, Hokkaido Prefecture. The inn opened in 1922 and celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2022.

Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu has a magnificent exterior reminiscent of a stately, old-fashioned Japanese home. While keeping its traditional sensibilities, it offers facilities and amenities that meet modern needs.

Read further to learn about a Japanese inn that’s perfected the art of keeping traditions alive for future generations to come!

Table of Contents
  1. A Michelin Guide recognized inn celebrating its centennial in 2022
  2. Spectacular views from a natural hot spring with free-flowing waters
  3. Rooms are designed to optimize comfort with their aromas, bedding, and scenery
  4. Michelin Guide star-awarded cuisine by Executive Chef Narita
  5. Hokkaido’s "Hakodate Yunokawa Onsen" is a famous base for sightseeing in Hakodate

A Michelin Guide recognized inn celebrating its centennial in 2022

A Michelin Guide recognized inn celebrating its centennial in 2022

Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu, in Hakodate, Hokkaido, boasts a natural hot spring with waters that flow freely from its own spring! What’s more, here you can enjoy multicourse Japanese kaiseki meals that use seasonal ingredients. This special kaiseki course has won a star in the cuisine category of the Michelin Guide Hokkaido 2012.

The inn instantly captivates with its beautiful and iconic exterior and ambiance, representative of Japan. Stately Japanese architecture, a refined atmosphere, and traditional hospitality have attracted the attention of many guests, including various dignitaries, since its opening.

The historic inn has had guests such as Helen Keller, who stayed in September 1947, as well as Emperor Showa and Empress Kojun, who stayed in August 1954.

Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu had no choice but to close for a year starting in February 2020 due to the spread of Covid-19. However, this closing time was used for renewal construction.

Private baths
Private baths

Upon its reopening, the inn was upgraded to include two additional private, half-open-air baths! Centering around the concept of "pursuing a freeing and comfortable stay with old traditions," the attractive qualities of the past remain while comforts and conveniences suited to the modern age were added. This style of accommodation has something to offer everyone!

Spectacular views from a natural hot spring with free-flowing waters

Spectacular views from a natural hot spring with free-flowing waters

Another one of the inn’s attractions is the natural hot spring waters that gush from a spring on the premises. The guest room baths and open-air baths overlook the Tsugaru Strait, and on a clear day, the Shimokita Peninsula in Aomori Prefecture can be seen from across the water.

Rooms are designed to optimize comfort with their aromas, bedding, and scenery

Rooms are designed to optimize comfort with their aromas, bedding, and scenery

All 22 guest rooms offer a spectacular, panoramic ocean view from the large windows! There are five types of rooms ranging from Japanese-style rooms of approximately 60 square meters to luxurious maisonette rooms - each accommodating up to four people.

All guest rooms are equipped with the inn’s original futon mattresses and beds for a good night’s sleep. There’s also a range of inn-produced amenities that are hinoki cypress-scented.

In addition to this, some rooms have iPads so that you can enjoy your favorite music and videos during your stay!

For foreign guests. we especially recommend the Japanese-style room shown above! “Yachiyo” is a special guest room with a prestigious and dignified structure and is also a replica of the room that Emperor Showa stayed in.

The inn’s original carvings have been preserved, and together with the hinoki cypress indoor bath, you can enjoy an extraordinarily luxurious experience!

Michelin Guide star-awarded cuisine by Executive Chef Narita

Michelin Guide star-awarded cuisine by Executive Chef Narita

Along with the hot springs, you won’t want to miss out on dishes awarded a Michelin Guide star! Kaiseki, abundant in seasonal ingredients, is prepared by Executive Chef Narita.

Mr. Narita, Executive Chef, Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu
Mr. Narita, Executive Chef, Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu

The cuisine served at the inn is said to embody the spirit of hospitality, also used in Japanese tea ceremonies-otherwise known as the "three ki."

The "three ki" throughout the kaiseki course include the seasons (kisetsu in Japanese), the vessel (utsuwa, also “eaki" in Japanese kanji characters), and the occasion (kikai in Japanese). Meals served at Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu implements “the three ki” into all meals-regarding this concept with the utmost importance.

The dishes are truly first-rate! Everything is meticulously prepared with high attention to detail, letting you experience the essence of the inn through delicate flavors.

Variety-filled breakfasts are another treat!

The spacious dining room is equipped with tables and chairs for a comfortable and relaxed dining experience.

Hokkaido’s "Hakodate Yunokawa Onsen" is a famous base for sightseeing in Hakodate

Hokkaido’s "Hakodate Yunokawa Onsen" is a famous base for sightseeing in Hakodate

Kappo Ryokan Wakamatsu is located within Hakodate Yunokawa Onsen, one of Hokkaido's three major hot spring resorts.

Nearby are Kosetsuen (Miharashi Park), Hokkaido’s only designated National Scenic Beauty*; Trappistine Monastery, Japan’s first women’s abbey; Nezaki Beach, with its borrowed scenery*; a tropical botanical garden with monkeys bathing in hot springs; and Matsukura River. With so many attractions, it’s truly a fantastic base for sightseeing in Hakodate!

*National Scenic Beauty: An approved scenic area under the Cultural Properties Protection Law, designated by the national government.
*Borrowed scenery: A landscaping technique used in Japanese and Chinese gardens that incorporates scenery from outside of the garden as a backdrop (landscape).

After spending the day sightseeing, take a relaxing soak in the hot springs and enjoy luxurious kaiseki! Many guests from both Japan and abroad revisit the inn and all it has to offer.

We also recommend the inn-organized experience packages. Enjoy extraordinary experiences such as hiking (English guidance available), tea ceremonies, and soba noodle-making workshops (Japanese only)!

Health & Safety Measures
・Sanitizer available
・Disinfected after each guest
・Ventilation measures taken
・Coin trays used
・Staff wear masks, gargle, wash hands regularly, and monitor body temperature
・Capacity limited/increased space between seats
・Admission restricted; reservations advised
・Entry declined to anyone feeling unwell
・Guests requested to wear masks and conduct temperature checks
・Restrictions on room service (entry) for staff

Multilingual support
Japanese, English, Chinese

Facility Information
・Rooms: 22
・Hours: Check-in from 3:00 p.m. / Check-out at 11:00 a.m.
・Rate: 22.8 square-meter rooms in the new building start from 39,600 yen / The “Yachiyo” special guest room in the main building starts from 73,700 yen
*All packages are for one-night, two-meal stays (two guests to a room), rates shown are for one guest (including tax, excluding bathing fees).

  • Wakamatsu Hot Spring Resort
    • Address Yunokawa-cho 1-2-27, Hakodate, Hokkaido, 042-0932
      View Map
    • Nearest Station Yunokawa-onsen Station (Hakodate Tram Line 2 / Hakodate Tram Line 5 )
      11 minutes on foot

    Vacancy search, reservation

    Check with our partner site as the latest rates, rate details, and guest room requirements may vary.

*The information in this article is from October 2022. Please check the official website for the latest information.

Written by:

Miyuki Yajima

Miyuki Yajima

After working in planning, editing, and business development/sales at a continuing education business, she is currently working as a writer, yoga instructor, and traveler in pursuit of a multi-career lifestyle that combines hobbies and work. She also likes fashion, Japanese culture, and music.

*This information is from the time of this article's publication.
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.

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