Benesse House Hotel
Naoshima | Superior
There’s a privileged pleasure in experiencing good art without crowds of people, and a stay at Benesse House Hotel is a private view with great big bells on. Guests benefit from 24 hour access to the Benesse Art Site on Naoshima, otherwise known as ‘Art Island’, and the property is utterly remarkable in every way. Its unique buildings were designed by treasured Japanese architect Tadao Ando (responsible for the Tokyo Skytree) and the effect is unlike any other hotel we've stayed in. After Selective Asia's Nick stayed there, he came back exclaiming that ‘this is where the Bond villain hangs out while 007 is distracted in Monte Carlo’!
Ando's architecture is extraordinary, and you'll notice his style continued throughout much of Naoshima as you tour the island. We found it hard to be sure where the hotel ends and the art begins... in fact, we suspect they are one and the same.
Your accommodation will be within the art museum, in the park, on the beachfront, or in an otherworldly building known as the Oval, and you'll come across monolithic sculptures and truly inspired installations in and around the hotel. Interiors are suitably Zen: each room is equipped with on-trend low key furniture, and features its own original artwork by a well-respected artist. The most important features are clearly the soft white beds and the enormous glass windows, which overlook the extraordinary landscape outside. Bathrooms are smart and very modern, and many rooms have views of Japan’s Inland Sea - but you may find yourself too busy gawping at the built environment to notice it.
The terrace restaurant serves an expertly prepared seafood menu - dine on in-season local ingredients, overlooked by a couple of 80s era Pistolettis. The museum’s French restaurant is decorated with some of Warhol’s ‘Flowers’. There’s also a bright Scandi style cafe serving breakfasts, light snacks and tea - all three eateries overlook the gardens and out across the water. Two lounges offer coffee, tea, wine, beer and cocktails, with relaxing areas to read and absorb the ambience, and there’s even a spa, which offers a selection of indulgent treatments and packages. After dinner, Nick suggests you take the monorail up to the Oval, settle in to the bar, and see if you can spot a certain Mr Blofeld amongst your fellow guests...
Utterly remarkable in every way - it's hard to know where the hotel starts and the galleries and the rest of the island end...
- Your Accommodation
- 65 rooms & suites
- Superior room amenities
- Eating & Drinking
- Umi no Hoshi terrace restaurant
- Issen museum restaurant
- Museum cafe
- Park lounge
- Oval lounge
- Leisure & Relaxation
- Benesse House Spa
- Superb beachfront location
- Art museums
- Outdoor installations & sculptures