Hoshi Onsen Chojukan is located near the Mikuni Kaido, a road that has connected the Kanto region and Niigata since ancient times.
The inn was founded in 1875 and it consists of four buildings and three bathhouses. In particular, the main building retains the appearance of a traditional inn during Japan’s early modern period, while the annex building has a rustic feel. The inn is registered as a national tangible cultural property and as a five-star inn by the Kankokeizai News Corporation. During its 148-year history the inn has been visited by many famous individuals, both from Japan and from overseas. These include writers and artists such as Akiko Yosano, Yasunari Kawabata, Bokusui Wakayama, Naoki Sanjugo, Byakuren Yanagiwara, and Hasui Kawase. In addition, the inn’s hot springs have also been enjoyed by Swedish Crown Princess Victoria, ambassadors of various European countries with their families, and famous singers and celebrities.It has been used as a setting for TV commercials and films, and was also the site for the filming of Thermae Romae II, which was screened in 2014.
Hoshi Onsen’s history stretches back to around 1,200 years ago, when it was discovered by the Japanese monk Kobo Daishi during a pilgrimage. There are three baths in this inn, named Hoshi-no-yu, Tamaki-no-Yu, and Choju-no-Yu. Hoshi-no-Yu has derived its name from the hot spring source and is a mixed bath, but there’s also women-only time for a couple hours a day. Hoshi-No-Yu is built in the same style as Rokumeikan, a famous building from early modern Tokyo that fuses Eastern and Western architectural styles. The second, Tamaki-no-Yu, has both an indoor and magnificent outdoor bath. The third one is a smaller bath called Choju-no-Yu.
Unlike many Japanese hot springs, Hoshi-no-yu and Choju-no-yu’s water gushes out from between boulders laid at the bottom of the baths instead of being piped into the baths from a source. Its water originally comes from rainfall in the vicinity of the hot spring, which then sunk deep into the earth to be heated for 40 to 60 years before rising to the surface of the bath. Bathing in this abundant “newly born” fresh hot spring water is a rare and unique experience specially at Hoshi Onsen Chojukan. It has also obtained Tripadvisor’s CERTIFICATE of EXCELLENCE.
The inn is located in the Joshin’etsukogen National Park that is registered as a UNESCO Eco-Park and is also an eco-lodge (accommodation that works to minimize its environmental impact)
650 Nagai, Minakami-machi, Tone-gun, Gunma Prefecture
Official Site Japanese
Official Site English
Closed: No regular holidays
Accommodation rates from 17,750 yen per person
Accommodation rates (tax included) are based on two people occupying one room And includes breakfast and dinner.