Such a comfortable and welcoming place. The Pension is owned and ran by a lovely family who do everything they can to help. We were greeted and picked up from the train station by Usamu (I hope I've spelt that correctly). My partner needed to rent ski equipment so Usamu was more than happy to stop on the way back to our accommodation to get this task out of the way for us. They also took it back for us at the end of our stay which means one less thing to worry about! This place is truly value for money. Our room was fantastic, modern with a nice bathroom. We were lucky to get a corner room which was beautiful on the mornings we woke up with snow, opening up the curtains. Breakfast is served every morning with the regular options (corn flakes, bread, spreads, coffee, tea), along with eggs served differently every morning. Perfect start for a day on the slopes. The communal lounge is a great addition, fire place, fantastic bar with a nice whisky selection, and a massage chair that has to be sat in. It's also a great area to get to know other guests, they even brought in a band one night to enjoy after dinner. Usamu and his wife Asako, along with Asako's mother do everything they can to ensure your stay is as enjoyable and comfortable as possible. You're able to sort out lift tickets for Goryu, 47 and Happo at the hotel which is an awesome service (FYI you still need to collect lift chip from Goryu and 47). There are shuttle buses in close proximity to get you to the ski hills. Happo has a lift relatively close, around a 15-minute walk through a lovely path amongst the trees, so we walked there on the days we skied Happo. They also offer dinner every night if you so choose and charge it to your room. We ate there one of the nights and the food was great. It was nice to spend a night in. Skala is also super close to Echoland main strip, around a 7-8 minute walk. We walked in and out regularly. Echoland also offer a number of dining options and we found them to be quite reasonably priced.
I couldn't recommend this place highly enough for anybody looking for a nice little humble accommodation option. Although the snow wasn't the best it could be, we had such a fantastic time at Hakuba and Skala,got in some nice skiing days and will definitely be back.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Grove Inn Skala is a country resort owned by family. Privacy, comfort and personal care are all yours. Located in the center of Japan's main island, in Hakuba village, Nagano prefecture. Many people know about Hakuba, as it was the sight of the 1998 Winter Olympic events: Giant Slalom, Downhill, Nordic Combined, Cross-country and Jumping. The Jumping Stadium is just about 10 min's and shopping area is also 10 min's on foot from our hotel. Hakuba is about 300km north west of Tokyo at the foot of Northern Japan Alps. It takes approximately 3 and half hours by train and 4 hours by car. Paragliding, Downhill mountain bike riding, Hiking, White water rafting, Tennis, Fishing, Canoe & Kayak are all awaiting you through at a year The main sports are of course, ski & snowboard in winter term till early spring ... more less
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