Since Japan has further relaxed their travel restrictions for overseas travellers to visit, now is the time to go on and explore with the pioneering, premium, all-inclusive holidays that is Club Med.
“Japan has been on the wish list of many of our guests and travellers alike, listing the country as the top place to visit amongst Asian travellers post-pandemic, according to a survey by the Development Bank of Japan and Japan Travel Bureau Foundation. Our resorts in Japan have been preparing to welcome back our guests with the needs of post-pandemic travellers in mind,” said Rachael Harding, the Chief Executive Officer of East and South Asia’s Pacific Markets at Club Med.
Club Med has four resorts in Japan, each offering unique locations and experiences, ideal to immerse in some of the best powder snow in the world found on the ski slopes of Hokkaido to the blue azure waters of the Ishigaki Islands in Okinawa this winter season. An all-inclusive, hassle-free holiday experience that Club Med is renowned for is within travellers’ reach; from accommodation with refined comfort and contemporary interior design, gourmet cuisine and an open bar, to a myriad of activities and entertainment throughout the day including ski and snowboarding classes with ski passes and a kids’ clubs for four- to 17-year-olds.
“We are very excited to showcase both enhanced and new programmes plus activities aimed at multi-generational families, allowing everyone to spend quality time together. Of course, there is also plenty to do if you just want some me-time, all in line with more meaningful travel experiences to compensate for the lost time in the past two years,” added Harding.
Here’s what you can do with Club Med in Japan:
1. Club Med Kiroro Hokkaido
For trendy travellers looking for unconventional snow vacations, this resort – opening in December 2022 – embodies an integrated snow resort with two distinctive buildings at Club Med Kiroro, where the mountain meets the ocean and is accessible to a one-of-a-kind, untouched snow experience. Designed for couples and families with teenagers, Club Med Kiroro Peak has a minimum age access of 12 years old while Club Med Kiroro Grand – opening in 2023 – welcomes guests of all ages with a wide host of family-oriented activities and facilities suitable for two-year-olds (subject to change).
Located a 90-minute drive from the New Chitose Airport and only a 40-minute drive from Otaru Chikko Train Station, the ski-in-ski-out resort offers snow enthusiasts direct access to an untouched ski domain with 23 courses for all levels and pristine off-piste ski slopes, providing avid skiers with an unparalleled exploration across both the Asari and Nagamine mountain domains. Frolic in the abundant snow coverage and long ski seasons that start as early as November and last until May this area has the highest annual snowfall in Japan, averaging 21 metres of snowfall a year, making it the only mountain resort in Asia to offer spring skiing!
Aprés-ski the Hokkaido way as Club Med Kiroro offers a wealth of wellness experiences, featuring Club Med’s first traditional Japanese onsen Rotenburo; outdoor, open-air hot bathtubs, saunas, and a dedicated wellness hub. More facilities include cultural workshops and activities, nature centres, and an indoor resort pool. Explore beyond the resort through a 40-minute trip to the majestic Otaru Coastal Town. Take a stroll through the picturesque streets filled with historic sites and wonders while immersing in the local arts like glasswork and music boxes and indulge in delicious seafood and sake distilleries.
2. Club Med Sahoro Hokkaido
Unlock Hokkaido’s mountain charm by experiencing authentic Japanese culture and heritage. Blending authentic Ainu designs and the latest modern amenities, this resort offers a unique selection of magical experiences and moments to share with family and friends.
Surrounded by the Hidaka mountain range known for its fresh and snowy slopes, experience the exclusivity of a private mountain and be amazed by the fine Japanese powder-like snow and breathtaking landscape while zipping down pristine slopes. Whether you are a beginner or a pro skier, the experienced team of English-speaking, national ski school instructors here will get you up to speed in no time. Those new to the winter mountains can feel right at home with Club Med’s first-ever Ski Simulator within the resort – designed to simulate real movements, the virtual ski experience is set to improve ski skills with a variety of slopes to choose from.
Look forward to a range of fascinating excursions including ice fishing, snowshoeing, and exploring the forest to the Kasumi waterfall before ending the hike at the serene Tomuraushi hot spring. A must-try après-ski is the outdoor Canadian bath, an open-air hot bath perfect for soaking and relaxing amidst the scenic view of snow and mountain vistas.
Discover the best of Hokkaido’s specialities at the resort’s two dine-in restaurants. Be spoilt over a variety of local delicacies, including the freshest sashimi and handcrafted udon and soba, or indulge in a traditional nabemono dining experience. Be sure to take part in the Hokkaido cooking lessons and learn how to prepare a traditional Japanese dish from the masters.
3. Club Med Tomamu Hokkaido
Adventure seekers looking to ride a different wave are in for a treat at this 145-hectare ski-in-ski-out resort situated amidst Tomamu mountain. Be the first on the mountain and strap on your skis or snowboard to hit the freshly prepared white powdery slopes all day long along 29 ski runs. The fun doesn’t end after the sun sets as the expert Gentils Organisateurs (GOs) pave the way for a memorable night skiing session under a star-filled sky. Hop onto that sledge and race your family and friends down snowy slopes or reconnect with them through nature as you explore Hokkaido’s beautiful mountain landscape on foot with guided snow trekking.
For some unique winter excursions in this magical winter wonderland, traverse the iconic Ice Village, opened exclusively during winter, where temperatures drop as low as -30°C. Go ice skating, watch fireworks, dine at an ice restaurant, and sip on cocktails served in glasses crafted from ice at the bar. You can also enjoy warm waters all winter long at Japan’s largest indoor heated pool, Mina Mina beach, where one can float, swim, paddle board, and enjoy a peaceful reprieve from the daily stresses of life at the outdoor Japanese public bath, Kirin-no Yu.
Savour a farm-to-table authentic yakiniku barbecue with premium local Hokkaido and Wagyu beef at the speciality restaurant, Haku. The unforgettable culinary experience continues with the best local brews accompanied by a guided tasting of three premium Japanese whiskies and sakes at The Nest.
4. Club Med Kabira Ishigaki
Marine lovers seeking the sea and sunshine in winter are recommended here. The all-inclusive resort off the coast of Ishigaki Island is a hidden Okinawan marine paradise, exuding tranquillity while offering exhilarating experiences for the whole family. For cultural enthusiasts; learn and be in awe of the pure Okinawan tradition amidst verdant landscapes and crystal-clear waters while engaging in unique activities.
Embrace the richness of Okinawan culture with a dedicated Ishigaki Day at Club Med Kabira. Ignite your artistic flair and sign up for guided Sanshin lessons, a traditional Okinawan musical instrument. Give a hand at Okinawan cooking classes or step into the shoes of an Okinawan dancer to learn the traditional dance.
Be one with nature and windsurf on emerald waters or go snorkelling and get up close and personal with the majestic manta rays that call the pristine reefs home. Explore the wonders of nature in Kabira with a fun and engaging leaf treasure hunt. Discover the diverse flora and fauna at the resort and learn interesting facts – the little ones can bring home an activity book.
Apart from classic menus from around the globe, authentic Okinawan epicurean delights hailed as the island’s much-lauded secret of longevity are offered. Rejuvenate the mind and body with traditional spa treatments at Club Med Kabira, and with dedicated zen areas for relaxation, anyone can acquire their own relaxation space.
As the pioneer of family-friendly resorts and with over 50 years of kid’s club expertise, Club Med has a team of experienced and dedicated GOs to ensure the well-being and safety of young guests. From their first attempts in the snow garden skirting around figurines in Hokkaido to experiencing the unique Ishigaki lifestyle in Okinawa, all four Club Med resorts in Japan offer a variety of playful pursuits and clubs tailored for different age groups from four months to 17-year-olds.
Peace of mind in a post-pandemic world
Club Med has developed Safe Together, a guest assurance programme with the support of Ecolab, a global leader in water, hygiene, and energy technologies and services to ensure optimal health and safety of the travellers through a series of heightened hygiene and safety protocols implemented across all of Club Med’s resorts and aligned with recommendations from the worldwide health authorities and local regulations.
By understanding the need for increased flexibility and security with travel planning, Club Med also introduced the Peace of Mind policy at the start of the pandemic, giving travellers the freedom of a complementary change of travel date, a book-now-pay-later option, and free cancellation of up to 30 days before the travel date. Complimentary COVID-19 coverage is also included in its all-inclusive holiday package for international destinations.
Offering a unique blend of sports, cultural experiences, family activities, and peace of mind, Club Med aims to make travel happen again to the land of the rising sun, with a renewed purpose of providing their guests with a premium, all-inclusive, worry-free experience. The same all-inclusive signature formula of great people, transformative experiences, and idyllic destinations await guests at Club Med.