HIRAFU’S newly renovated boutique hotel, Kimamaya, has just opened, retaining the traditional charm of the historical building, while adding a stylish and homely touch.
The ‘alpine luxury lodge’ on Momiji Street was one of the first pensions built in the Middle Village, and now offers nine well-appointed, exclusive residences – five rooms and four lofts.
Odin Projects director Nicolas Gontard years ago befriended the previous owners – Yasuo Watanabe and his wife, Keiko – so much so they agreed to come back and work at the hotel every year.
Nicolas also decided to retain the rustic, exposed wooden structure, and the old name, Kimamaya, which translates to ‘be yourself’ in Japanese.
Appointed with all the comforts ‘like a second home’, a highlight is two Japanese-style spa baths – one wood, one stone – that can be privately booked.