Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan was called as the oldest hotel in the world. It was located in Japan, tucked deep in the mountains of Japan’s Yamanashi prefecture. The hotel has tatami floors, kimono-sporting staff and signs in handwritten calligraphy.
It was the year of 705 where the oldest son of Fujiwara no Kamatari, who was the most of powerful aristocratic families in that period, was roaming from his capital city and he discovered a hot spring in Japan’s Yamanashi prefecture. And not long after that, a ryokan, traditional Japanese hot springs hotel, was built in that area.
For the last 1.000 years, the Japanese hot springs hotel has welcomed a lot variants of guests, such as overworked Tokyo clerks, famous leaders like the Tokugawas (the shogun family that ruled Japan for 400 years) and even the current Emperor Naruhito have come to soak in the waters and enjoy the countryside views. This made Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan not only an old traditional Japanese hot springs hotel, but also as a place that holds so many memories and things happen.
Now the hotel is managed by the ancestors of Fujiwara Mahito and there are already 52 generations that have managed this hotel before Fujiwara Mahito. And the hotel was lastly renovated in 1997 and has 37 rooms. Several of the rooms are made with Japanese architecture style called sukiya-zukuri, which incorporates the same construction method as a tearoom.
Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan is already popular as a legendary ryokan for a long time ago. But its popularity skyrocketed in 2011 when the Guinness Book of World Records designated Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan as the oldest hotel in the world, since the hotel was 1,300 years old.
Now, Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan is actively receiving guests, local and traditional, with its traditional tradition as a 1,300 years old traditional Japanese hot springs hotel.