|The windows are closed in winter but open in other seasons.|
If you read Japanese and search for unique hot springs, you might know Rankeisou Onsen. Japanese guidebooks to unusual and remote onsens often include this inn. Far from major cities, not many foreigners know about Rankeisou, and even fewer have the joy of staying there.
|Rankeisou stands out for its heartfelt customer service.|
I was lucky enough to visit this past March and March of the previous year. In 2021, snow, even though it was spring, surrounded Rankeisou like a white Cashmere scarf on the shoulders of a beautiful woman. At night, candles burning outside the hotel flickered like jewelry.
|View of candlelit Rankeisou.|
|The Rankeisou garden without snow in spring|
In March of 2020, while on a press tour of ateliers and galleries in the nearby artistic twin cities of Tsubame and Sanjo, I stayed one night at Rankeisou.
|Public outdoor bath by the river|
When the time came to choose a romantic location for our twenty-fifth anniversary, I decided to treat my wife to the exquisite service, baths, meals, and service that the current owners offer guests. The great-great-grandson and his wife are maintaining the high standards set by the founder.
Guests enjoy feasts in private rooms. On my first trip, I ate fish, meat, and local vegetables. But on my second visit, the owners and chef served vegetarian dishes to my wife and me. They do their best to accommodate special requests.
|Tasty and culturally rich Japanese vegetarian feast|
|The hallways are like Japanese art museums.|
For more information on snowshoeing in Sanjo and our experience at Rankeisou, please click on the next link to read a story that I wrote for Snowshoe Magazine.
Note: I stayed once at Rankeisou as a nonpaying guest, but I was treated by a travel company, not this inn. The second time that I visited, I paid the full rate. My positive recommendation is an honest one. I have never received free services from the owners of this inn.