We spotted this nice article over on Global Voices about the "strangest" love hotel names in Japan. It compiles the results of a survey ranking the most unusual names for love hotels. As we know there are some strange-looking love hotels (both inside, with themed rooms, and outside, with gaudy castle exteriors), especially in the countryside. But now we know the strangest name. And it's Banana & Donut. Indeed, this is not a diner or cafe, but a love hotel in Saga Prefecture, southern Japan. Like similar establishments outside of Japan's big cities, Banana & Donut is located ...

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Ever wanted to attend a swinger club in Japan? Tokyo has a vibrant underground scene of happening bars. As regular readers probably know from experience, "happening bars" (or couple kissa) are clubs where you can go and switch partners with other couples, or if you are single just pick random strangers to have sex with. (Theoretically there is a distinction: a happening bar is for couples of singletons, while a couple kissa caters to couples and perhaps single women.) Sometimes they are foreigner-friendly, too, but it's rare. It always helps to speak at least some ...

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As discussed on this blog before, Japan's love hotels have increasingly become focused on amenities. In spite of the western stereotype of love hotels as gawdy, crazy lairs of kinkiness, the actual number of themed chambers and unusual rooms is low -- and largely consigned to the countryside (notwithstanding the odd exception in Tokyo like this steampunk hotel). Instead, the love hotels in the inner cities like Tokyo, Osaka and Kobe have to compete against each other in terms of value and facilities. And that comes down to more mundane yet important things like baths, food, wifi, ...

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"Let's play sex," the guide explains. We've seen these kinds of videos before but they are always fun to watch. This time it's The Hotelion in Sendai that provides YouTuber Abroad in Japan with the opportunity to go inside and check out the rooms. As we know, the somewhat infamous hotels with crazy themes are actually something of a rarity -- most hotels are relatively ordinary. But the amenities are certainly special and, while the the video revels in the unusual themed rooms available at The Hotelion, it wisely focuses on these details, too. (Also note the non-scented body ...

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Former actor Noboru Takachi has been arrested for possession of a stimulant drug and cannabis. Best known overseas for appearing in films like Yamato, the 51-year-old was a big star in the 1990s. Takachi, whose real name is Joji Osaki, recently retired from acting ostensibly to look after his wife's father. He was arrested at a love hotel in Yokohama, where he was staying with Atsuko Isokawa, a 33-year-old hostess. Noboru Takachi had previously been married to AV actress Momo Aida (pictured below), though they divorced after six years together. He then married the ...

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Anyone interested in Japanese sex dolls, love hotels and sex museums (hihokan) should check out this upcoming exhibition by photographer Kyoichi Tsuzuki. Kyoichi Tsuzuki is famous for his photo-books that examine the seedier elements of Japan, such as Tokyo Right Half, Love Hotel: Satellite of Love, and Hihokan. His most popular book is perhaps Tokyo Style and his counter-guide book "roadside" series that showcases unusual sights found while travelling. From June 11th to July 31st, Tsuzuki's work on erotic Japan will be presented at the event space Atsukobarouh Arts Drinks Talk in ...

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How to solve a problem like a hotel shortage? Simple. Convert love hotels. After all, if media reports are to be believed, Japan is sexless and the love hotels are not being used by couples, but rather ordinary businessmen. Tokyo is currently experiencing a massive tourist boom and it has led to numerous new hotels springing up, especially in Shinjuku. But it is still not enough, particularly as the government wants the inbound tourist numbers to continue growing as we head towards the 2020 Olympics. According to a Kyodo News article, the government wants love hotels to provide ...

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Who stays at love hotels? It might not be who you think. The current inbound tourism boom is leading to a serious shortage in regular hotel rooms for traveling businessmen. Business hotels have the lowest vacancy rate ever, it seems, meaning the on-the-move salaryman has fewer choices for where to stay. Where are they turning? According to this article on Ignition, it's to love hotels. It turns to Ken Sato, the manager of the HOTEL SULATA (their caps, not ours) chain, a new contender in the packed field. It opened its main hotel in Dogenzaka, the "love hotel hill" district of ...

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Japanese love hotels come in all shapes and sizes. There are all manner of crazily themed hotels out there, enough to fill more than one coffee-table book. A recent one we looked at is Keibajo US in Niigata, with its classrooms, hospital ward rooms, and more, plus there is this great "vintage Japan" hotel in our old stomping ground of Osaka. Here is another great example of the sheer inventiveness and skill of love hotels to appeal to our fantasies. Again, as we know from the history of love hotels, like with most of the really outrageously designed hotels, it is not in a ...

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Playboy has made a video offering a "rare glimpse" into what they call a "vintage love hotel". Well, Hotel Fukui in the Kyobashi district of Osaka, a business district with a bevy of love hotels behind the station, is actually more like a themed love hotel than a vintage one (initially we were expecting something more like the Hotel Okura). True "vintage" love hotels, as we know, are fairly basic affairs, with nice amenities but a straightforward decor. The gaudy or wacky themes came more recently in the 1970s. Popular Japanese consensus says that by the 2020 Summer Games in ...

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Directed by Ryuichi Hiroki, Kabukicho Love Hotel (Sayonara Kabukicho) came in 2014, promising to be a dark romance. Okay, let's get something straight. As you might expect, star Atsuko Maeda may have left her AKB48 days behind her but unsurprisingly she does NOT strip off in this movie. (Apparently after Maeda was cast the script was radically changed.) Instead we have to make do with modest nude scenes and sex scenes starring members of the supporting cast. As the title suggests, the film is set in a love hotel in Tokyo's sex capital, Kabukicho. Actually, the main sex ...

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Is this the most amazing love hotel ever? All right, that's a pretty bold claim. After all, there are some pretty incredible love hotels out there, from dungeons to swimming pools, and almost every kind of theme or style you could imagine in between. But the Keibajo US in Niigata has got us excited. Shared by @rutile_TiO on Twitter, here are some pictures from the hotel's fantastic rooms and suites. There's a wooden classroom, a samurai sword-themed tacky "Oriental" room, a factory room, a hospital ward room (complete with two hospital beds), and ...

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A story is going viral about a British couple from Brighton who claim they "accidentally" booked a room at a love hotel. And that they liked it so much they stayed a week. After travelling for 27 hours and arriving in a new country for the first time, Hamnams and her boyfriend were probably just relieved to arrive at their hotel in one piece. Having booked online through a reputable agent with no qualms, the pair checked in at the front desk and headed up to their room. "This was kindly laid out at the head of our bed. As confident as we were that ...

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It is said that half of all sex in Japan happens in a love hotel. 1% of the population uses a love hotel on any single day; something like 1,370,000 couples. A large proportion of the nation's new babies are conceived in a love hotel. There are 500 million visits a year. Room occupancy is 600-700% in some busy establishments -- 78.8 stays per room per month! The love hotel industry has an annual turnover of ¥4 trillion yen, which is around four times the operating profits of Toyota and double the anime industry. And yet it's cars and anime that the government wants to push as the face ...

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Google is essential for ours lives -- searching for information, browsing images, checking a location on a map. It can even help you pick the right love hotel. Love hotels have their own websites and there are also plenty of portal sites with information on the various amenities and features at each facility. Needless to say there are images. But none as detailed as these provided by Google Street View, which lets you tour a love hotel in the heart of Shinjuku's Kabukicho. The Designer’s Hotel & Spa Pasha Resort is more fancy than kinky, but sometimes that's what you ...

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Ever been with that special someone and been desperate suddenly to find a love hotel and complete the experience... before the moment passes? Or you know how the date is going and need to surreptitiously check out your options for a more intimate encounter somewhere in the area? Well, Tonight for Two might be the iPhone or Android app for you. The free Japanese app allows you to find and even reserve a room at a nearby love hotel in around ten seconds. Which should be enough time to keep a potential companion for the night interested... Our tip would be to have it on your ...

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We've just heard of this new documentary which takes a look at one of our favorite places, the love hotel. While we don't like the preview's slightly cheap pandering to exoticism and stereotypes about Japan ("in a society where conformity is everything and public affection cannot be shown..." -- really?) that just aren't the whole truth, we shouldn't judge it solely by the trailer. The visuals are interesting, at any rate, promising some nice kinky scenes of S&M inside a love hotel room, by the looks of things. Check out the nurse asking her "patient" if his cock has a ...

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On March 18th, pop singer Hikaru Utada has activated her Twitter account for the first time in 1.5 months. And one of her surprisingly rare tweets involved her confessing that "I have never been to a love hotel." Utada of course has been famous since a young age, making her debut at 15. Even wandering the street is impossible, let alone a secret tryst at a love hotel. She would have been carefully managed by her agency and label, plus she was married to filmmaker Kazuaki Kiriya from 2002 to 2007. Since then she has maintained a lower profile, living partly in London, where she met ...

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It seems the foreign media has just discovered what a love hotel is. Only the other day we blogged about an article that held the love hotel industry up as a shining light in Japan's economic doldrums. Now AFP have followed up with this recent video report to accompany the same article in which an intrepid camera crew interview a hotel manager about the love hotel system. Pressing buttons, pay, get the key and then go up... "Discretion is guaranteed." There is a nice touch where the camera lingers over a catalog advertising some sexy costumes. It also features footage ...

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While much of the economy is struggling to find any positive effects from PM Abe's fiscal policies, and consumers are dreading April and the impending raising of consumption tax, there is at least one industry that seems unaffected by the financial doldrums. Love hotels are doing big business. As we know, sex always sells. It doesn't matter what the crisis is, people will always pay for sex -- whether that is with their partner, material for their own private fun, or to hire the services of a professional. An AFP article has picked up on the love hotel phenomenon as a sign that ...

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Saitama might well have a reputation as a boring suburb of Tokyo but some places aren't as dull as they sound. Japan might also be a nation with 25% older population but the seniors can't be accused of being anything but active. One man was recently arrested for being a little too vigorous, in fact. 64-year-old Yoshio Shimazaki of Utsunomiya in Tochigi had some urges and knew where to do go to sort it out. He went to Saitama. In November 2011 at a love hotel in Kawaguchi City he gave a female high school student ¥20,000 and then had her perform bondage play with him. At the time the ...

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Recently the netizens of Japan got a chance to have an online Q&A with someone who used to work as a cleaner at a love hotel. Here's a summary of what they were asked and how they responded. The person claimed to be in charge of making up the beds after guests were finished with their stay. Q: There's no cameras, right? No, only in the corridors and parking lot. Q: Did you ever bump into guests? Sometimes. But usually we were hiding away somewhere until the guests left. Q: Can you hear the groans? If the inner was left open we could hear. We could hear in front of the ...

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Love hotels. Sites for naughty sex between adulterous couples, couples who still live at home, and of course plenty of liaisons with prostitutes too. A little known fact is that one in four occupants of a love hotel is now said to be over 65, and the love hotels are adapting to these seniors. With the Baby Boomer generation hitting retirement, seniors mean big business for everyone. Seniors, though, naturally like to take things easily, so many hotels are offering longer versions of the so-called two or three-hour "rest" periods, so seniors can get the daytime cheap rate at their own ...

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Our peers at fellow erotic blog Tokyo Reporter recently posted an interesting extract from a Japanese tabloid where a lady with a ten-year career in cleaning love hotels recounts some curious episodes. “Once in a room I found an A4 size notebook left behind by a customer. It contained a written exchange between a man and a deaf women. First they introduced themselves. She wrote that she was working as an instructor for a school for the deaf, divorced, with one child. “The two had apparently met via an ‘encounter site’ online.” A woman using the pseudonym Kana Kogure, a ...

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Ever fancied living in a Tokyo love hotel? One company, Tokyo Style CC, offers you the chance! We just spotted this story over on the blog JapanTrends.com. Tokyo Style CC has converted a small, tucked-away love hotel in east Tokyo into a customized, designer set of apartments. Although Shibuya and its love hotel hill are likely more conspicuous for foreigners, there are actually far more hotels in more dubious areas like Nippori. Many of these are pretty run-down places and you wouldn't catch young couples dead in them. You can see the results of the renovation ...

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