Looking to escape the heat for cooler climes? If you're on the fence about a visit to Japan in winter, this fam-friendly pad might just persuade you...
We’ll be honest; we don’t need much convincing when it comes to the idea of a holiday in Japan with the family. From historic Kyoto to futuristic Tokyo, and then there’s the skiing! Yep, if you needed another reason to add Japan to the list, then skiing could be it. And to seal the deal, we’ve gone and found the ultimate family digs (courtesy of the lovely folks over a The Luxe Nomad) for a winter getaway in style. Take a peek inside Setsu Niseko…
SETSU NISEKO – THE ULTIMATE FAMILY OUTDOORSY GETAWAY IN JAPAN
Heard horror stories about Japanese accommodation options being on the small side? Not so at Setsu Niseko. This is the perfect space to house your entire brood. And after a busy day hitting the slopes, who wouldn’t want to come home to this space.
The apartments are located in Hirafu, an easy two-minute drive to the Grand Hirafu chairlift, so you can hit the slopes early. If that wasn’t enough, the location is also ten minutes from Hanazono, which is part of ‘Niseko United’, a world-famous winter paradise made up of interlinked ski resorts. In Hanazono, the family can try everything from snowmobiling and cat skiing to snow tubing and guided snowshoeing tours. Psst, there’s even a kid’s indoor playground here too!
These newly-built ski apartments boast everything your family could want and then some. Each apartment has an open-plan living/dining space, which has all the mod cons and is finished to the highest standard. We’re swooning over the Japanese-inspired design and all the extra touches such as tatami, washi paper on the door, and onsen in the room – so you get the real deal and a truly authentic Japanese experience. Don’t just take our word for it; check out the pics!
The apartments offer a range of options and configurations depending on your family’s needs, and all bedrooms can be set up as one double bed or two single beds. Bedrooms are also en-suite, which is always a plus when you’re travelling with kids. We love the kid-friendly touches in the spaces. For instance, cots and highchairs are available free of charge, and there are all the essentials like cable TV and Wi-Fi to keep the kids entertained.
Visiting outside of ski season? This makes a great family getaway all year-round. You can check out Niseko’s stunning Green Season, the Tokyu Golf Course is just a few hundred metres away, or get the family active and take on the cycling route around Mt. Annupuri, which starts just outside the door. There’s also easy access to river rafting and kayaking, with the spectacular view of Mount Yotei as your backdrop.
It’s not just the high-spec interiors and that awesome location that we love at Setsu Niseko, though; wait until you’ve checked out the food. If you don’t fancy cooking after a busy day on the slopes, then you’re in luck; Setsu Niseko is also home to one of the widest selection of dining options in the area – always a good thing when you have little ones in tow. And they’re sure to love the ramen and winged gyoza dumplings at AFURI. Looking for an extra special treat for the fam? Indulge in French and Italian cuisine, which celebrates Hokkaido’s ingredients, at Michelin-starred restaurant méli mélo -Yuki No Koe-.
It doesn’t stop there – for winter 2022/2023, there will be new additions at Setsu Niseko, including Sushi Kato INORI and Tempura Araki (the new sister restaurant of Sapporo’s two-Michelin star ‘Tempura Araki’). For more European-inspired classics, Luke’s Oyster Bar & Chop House will also be opening soon!
Looking for some extra R&R? Setsu Niseko also has the perfect wellness hideaway to ease the aches and pains of skiing (and parenthood). Check out the oldest Japanese tradition of onsen bathing at Rikka spa (which just so happens to have the largest wellness facility in Grand Hirafu). There are indoor and outdoor hot spring baths, plus a whole range of wellness treatments (including private onsen rooms), and even a gym! We say let Dad have the kids for an hour or two and have some me-time; it is a holiday, after all!
ALL THE ADDED EXTRAS FOR A STRESS-FREE TRIP
Sounds great, but what about getting there? That’s where the complimentary concierge service comes in. They’ve got everything covered, from arranging airport transfers to sorting your ski passes all in one go. They’ll even advise on in-accommodation catering and restaurant reservations. You can also hire skis on-site through the shop Rhythm Japan, and there’s a ski locker, too – ticking all the boxes when it comes to convenience.
Once you’re there, there are more perks to enjoy, such as the complimentary Hirafu ski shuttle service, so you don’t need to worry about the kids complaining about lugging their skis to the slopes.
We’ll see you on the ski lift!