Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

The town of Shiraoi that embraces Lake Poroto is a region where many of the Ainu settlements were found. On the opposite shore, Kotan, a traditional Ainu village, spreads as one of the outdoor exhibits of the National Ainu Museum, while Mount Tarumae can be seen in the distance. We sought to develop a hot spring inn that would reflect the Ainu culture while making the most of the sceneries.

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Mem, a spring, was important to the Ainu for their daily use, as it did not freeze in winter. The source of Lake Poroto is Mem just a few kilometers away, and there was also a Mem on the side of the parking lot of the project site. We decided to draw the lake water into the site to create a modelled landscape of the Lake Poroto basin. The approach from the parking lot follows the route the Ainu once traveled along the stream from the Mem to the lake.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

©Toshihide Kajihara 客室棟1階エントランス。室内に配置された白樺は集落の森を再現している。中央のコンクリート打放壁は、白樺丸太を型枠として打ち込み、コンクリートに白樺模様を転写させている。 photo

©Toshihide Kajihara First-floor entrance of the guestroom building. The white birch trees inside are reminiscent of the forest of the settlement. For the exposed-concrete wall in the center, white birch logs were used as a formwork to create the white birch texture on the concrete surface.

On the lake side where the guestroom building bridges over the river, we decided to create a sunken lounge close to the water where the canoe dock and ice-free water surface can be viewed while sitting around an open hearth.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 客室棟1階ロビーから北を見る。湖を眺めながら火を囲う、宿泊客の交流の場としている。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL The view to the north from the first-floor lobby of the guestroom building. The guests can interact around the fire while gazing at the lake.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL アイヌ民族の家の中心にあった囲炉裏(アペオイ)をロビーに配している。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL The hearth (Apeoi) found at the center of Ainu residences is placed in the lobby.

The guestrooms have a lounge space around a low table in a shape of hearth with gentle indirect lighting, honoring the Ainu family custom of conversing around the hearth of Chise (home). Ainu patterns were used in various ways such as wallpaper, cushion cover, and art for guests to sense the lifestyle of the Ainu, whose lives are surrounded by mats and clothes with traditional patterns.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL ローテーブルの内部に仕込んだ照明の光が、薄くスライスした天然石を透過して淡く発光する。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL The light installed inside the low table softly emits light through a thinly-sliced natural stone.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts

The bathhouse was inspired by Kucha, the Ainu’s temporary hut used to bivouac when hunting for bears or waiting for salmon in the mountains, and has a quiet presence that nestles close to the surroundings without intruding on the beautiful nature. Kucha’s structure is referred to as Ketunni, a tripod structure made of three logs that are connected on the sides. Its distinctive feature is the inverted triangular pyramid apex with the end of the logs protruding out, which serves as a smoke exhaust and skylight. By turning this into a design element, the hot spring facility with limited windows became an ecological structure with a gentle and uniform shower of natural light as well as natural exhaust of warm humid air by updraft. When viewed from the guestrooms, the cone-shaped huts blowing smoke from the apex becomes part of the scenery without disturbing the horizon of the lake.

©Toshihide Kajihara  photo

©Toshihide Kajihara 

©Toshihide Kajihara 町と漁協の許可を得て土地を堀削し敷地内に湖を引き込むことで、湖に囲まれる温泉棟を実現。 photo

©Toshihide Kajihara With the permission from the town and fisheries cooperatives, we excavated the land to draw in the lake water, creating a bathhouse surrounded by the lake.

©Toshihide Kajihara 三角錐の建物群のボリューム は景観に配慮し、温泉がでる場所の周辺を最小限に囲むような佇まいとした。 photo

©Toshihide Kajihara The volume of the cone-shaped buildings has a minimal presence surrounding the hot spring area.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 温泉棟△湯の湯上り処。温泉棟はアイヌ建築を継承し、道産材のトドマツの丸太を三角組みした「ケトゥンニ」 を基本構造とした「カシ(野営小屋)」を再解釈した。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL “Sankaku-no-Yu” (triangular bath) lounge in the bathhouse. The bathhouse takes the traditions of the Ainu architecture, reinterpreting Kashi, a bivouac hut, with use of Ketunni, tripod structure, using Sakhalin fir logs grown in Hokkaido.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL △湯。北西に湯上り処を見る。奥には「ケトゥンニ」をモチーフにしたフロアライトがある。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL Sankaku-no-Yu. The view of the bathhouse lounge towards northwest. Ketunni motif floor lamps are placed in the back.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

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©Koji Fujii / TOREAL △湯。浴場には内風呂と露天風呂を備え、頂部のトップライトは自然換気としても機能している。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL Sankaku-no-Yu. The bathhouse has indoor and outdoor baths. The skylights at the apex also assist natural air ventilation.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts 

Since no view could be provided, “Maru-no-Yu” (round bath), the bathhouse for the locals, was designed as a cave with an underground hot spring. The skylight has no glass, warm air is naturally exhausted while rain or snow fall inside. The hot spring is a black moor spring that contains organic substance from plants, and reflects the light from the skylight clearly on the water surface. This encourages the behavior of intuitively raising the line of sight upward in search of the light source.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL

©Toshihide Kajihara  photo

©Toshihide Kajihara 

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts

The development site was vacant, and we planted indigenous trees along with white birch. White birch is a mother tree that germinates before others on a desolate land, restoring the forest while protecting other vegetations. We created a forest of white birch lumbers from thinning on the exterior and inside of the hotel, with a message of protecting and nurturing not only the development site itself, but also the Ainu culture. The resort remembers and wishes to restore the profound relationship the Ainu people once had with the forests and rivers.

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL  photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL 食事処の間仕切りは節の多い杉板の節を抜くことで、朝は窓からの日光、夜はブース内からの光が節穴を通して星のように漏れ出す空間とした。 photo

©Koji Fujii / TOREAL By removing the knots of the cedar panels in the dining area, the morning sun filters through while the light from the inside of the booth glitters like stars at night.

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts

©Hoshino Resorts photo

©Hoshino Resorts 

©Hoshino Resorts ポロト湖から温泉棟と宿泊棟を見る。 photo

©Hoshino Resorts The view of the bathhouse and guestroom building from Lake Poroto.

Completion
2021.10
Principal use
Accommodation
Structure
RC+S+T
Site area
9,339㎡
Total floor area
4,951㎡
Building site
1-1018-94 Wakakusa, Shiraoi, Hokkaido
Construction
MAEDA CORPORATION
Structure design
Yamada Noriaki Structural Design Office Co.,Ltd, MAEDA CORPORATION
Facility design
HALS Architectural and Environmental Design Ltd.
Team
Taisuke Ishibashi [former staff], Sadaharu Aoto, Takumi Shido, Kohei Taniguchi [former staff], Eizaburo Suzuki
  • The Hotel Awards: the world's 42 best hotels in 2022The Hotel Awards: the world's 42 best hotels in 2022, Best design hotel