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Reviewed January 4, 2018 via mobile

Rare gem in the foothills of Mt Zao. Immaculate indoor and outdoor onsen facilities. Phenomenal kaiseki and teppanyaki dining. Ready access to Miyagi Zao Eboshi ski resort. Unbelievably gorgeous snowscape!!

Date of stay: December 2017
Trip type: Travelled with family
1  Thank Hiee W
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2017 via mobile

My husband and I spent two relaxing nights here. The grounds are gorgeous and peaceful. It is a very quiet place.

Our room was spacious and inviting--great mix of modern (espresso machine) and traditional. We had a room with a private onsen.

They have men and women public onsens as well as two private outdoor onsens you can use with a reservation (for free). We used one of the private onsens one afternoon. It was much larger than the one in our room.

The staff were extremely accommodating and helpful. They went out of their way our entire stay. Their attention to detail was impressive. They were always two steps ahead of us.

The food was five stars--each meal was unbelievable. We ate so much! They provide breakfast and dinner. You are on your own for lunch but there are several restaurants within 15-20 minutes by foot. They will also provide transportation if you prefer.

You don't need to bring much here-they provide traditional Japanese clothes and slippers for you to wear the duration of your stay. You leave your shoes at the front door and don't see them again until you leave. They even provide running/athletic shoes if you choose to use the gym.

In addition to the gym, there is a spa. We did not use any services at the spa.

If you're looking to do an outing-we hired a car for a couple of hours and saw the Okama crater. It was beautiful and worth the trip. We also stopped in the wooden doll museum and cheese shop.

This is the ultimate spot for relaxation.

Date of stay: September 2017
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Sarah K
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 18, 2016

Chose this resort hotel due to its design and easy access to Mount Zao where you must go visit the crater lake. Hotel is tastefully designed with a beautiful & spacious lounge, where you can enjoy free drinks and just read and relax.

Rooms are extremely spacious.

Restaurant is great with attentive & friendly staff, excellent food selection (For example, they they use tofu from a 100-year old small business just down the hill). After dinner, they even provide you late night snacks which is just too much for your stomach! (lol)

Their souvenir shop sells some rare local finds. Due to limited inventory, I would recommend you buy on first day and not wait for the last.

Date of stay: July 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Ada C
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 21, 2016

Chikusenso is wonderful - though not quite a traditional ryokan run by a little old lady I had initially wanted when researching a place to stay. It is under 2 hours from Tokyo via Shinkansen and then an hour's private hotel transfer through villages, fruit orchards, climbing steadily uphill. And then suddenly by a rushing river amidst trees, you see Chikusenso. The Junior Premier Suite is beautiful modern Japanese with tatami floors, real beds, a spa-like bathroom with a hinoki tub, serene sitting area and balcony. I love my room - it gives a real sense of a hideway, looking out to waving bamboo in the sunlight and with the sound of the rushing river. The room also has free wifi in-room (a rare thing), a Nespresso machine (helpful in the mornings), complimentary drinks in the fridge, in-room safe - so stuff you want but may not get in a traditional ryokan.

The breakfasts and dinners are phenomenal - a blend of traditional and modern Japanese seasonal cuisine at its best served in beautiful tableware / lacquerware. Delicious regional sakes. Though meals are not held in-room, the dining space is private and set around an idyllic courtyard and the very enthusiastic chef will visit and make sure you are enjoying his cuisine and have you try their house sakes.

The onsens are great to relax in after a long day in the cold - the ladies share 2 onsens - 1 outdoor and 1 indoor. There are also 2 small outdoor onsens that can be reserved for private use.

While researching options, I found it challenging to find a ryokan that will accept single travelers, has an in-room onsen and wifi, easy to get to from Tokyo, and additionally has sight-seeing options in the vicinity. Chikusenso fits every criteria. Lunch can be had in the tiny onsen town - 10-15 mins walk or 2 mins car ride. Food-wise, there is an izakaya, a German place, a seafood restaurant, and a cafe and there is a public onsen and a few local shops and a 7-11. Chikusenso is close to skiing on Mt Zao - which I didn't manage to do this trip - and also has an easier Snow Monster tour organized by one of the snow parks - very good fun.

My thanks to Naoki & the rest of the front office team plus the chef & his team for their help during my stay.

Date of stay: February 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
2  Thank adriennewu
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2016

I agree with everything that is said in the other reviews. This is a very expensive luxury onsen near mount Zao. When i was there with my kids at Christmas the room charges came out at £300 or $450 per night per room with breakfast and dinner.
The location is hidden in a valley besides a stream. There are some nice short walks besides the stream through the dwarf bamboo and trees. There was no snow this year.

The welcome was what one expects in japan and the service as always excellent. The original onsen hotel was recently bought by a Hong kong based client of the establishment who gave the hotel a 40 million yen makeover using materials of the highest quality and wonderfully tactile finishes. The hotel is now catering to an international clientele and in consequence has lost a little of its japanese character. A couple of criticisms:
1/ There was no fresh milk for breakfast or coffee. Strange as there are milk cows just down the road!
2/ no fresh orange juice for breakfast
3/ The food was good and beautifully presented but not the best i have had in an onsen
4/ The airconditioning was erratic and you could not get the heat down without opening the windows
5/ and this is perhaps the most major criticism. Since becoming Chinese owned the rigidity of the timetable for meals is totally absurd. If you are not down for breakfast at 8.30 am sharp you get a phone call at 8.35. The same applies for the restaurant dinner at 6.30 pm [far too early an hour - we are not after all in the US!]. I found that irritating.
6/ The wifi in the room is very erratic

Date of stay: December 2015
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Artdealer186338
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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