Tuesday, 31 August 2010

The Prince Hotel - Hakone

The Hakone trip can easily be done in a day, but we decided to take our time and stay overnight. After a bus trip from the station to the lake and a wander down the cedar tree avenue, which was beautiful, we were ready to check into the hotel and relax. The Prince Hotel is right on the banks of Lake Ashi and has stunning views of Mount Fuji and the surrounding area. It was so lovely to be somewhere quiet and peaceful, where the air was clear and we could breathe! The hotel has a slight feeling of being lost in time, but I loved some of the original decor.

After a nap in the room with the lake breeze filtering through our window, I went for a massage and then we went for dinner. It was a gorgeous meal, but tiny and extortionate! We came out of there £100 lighter, with hungry bellies and nowhere to go as we were in the middle of nowhere! Luckily we found a convenience store in the hotel and stocked up on Pringles to take back to the room. By 9pm, the place really was a ghost town, but then on a wander round the grounds, we realised that everyone was in the onsen, steaming themselves and wallowing. Every guest room provides a set of pyjamas for each guest and people put their jim jams on in their room and then scuff down to the onsen in their provided slippers where they wallow in the calming waters looking over the lake. It sounds gorgeous but we sadly did not partake. We love the idea of doing it, but would like to go together and the baths are separate for male and female. Maybe one day we'll feel a bit flush with the cash and reserve a room in a ryoken with its own private onsen....

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