Yoyokaku: Classic Ryokan by the Sea, in Karatsu
One of my favorite ryokans is Yoyokaku, located in the pottery town of Karatsu, in northwestern Kyushu. Run by the same family for over 100 years, Yoyokaku is a graceful combination of understated sukiya-style architecture, comfort, great food and a hospitality that is warm yet comfortably quiet. Attentive yet relaxed. The guest rooms are connected to the dining wing by long glass enclosed corridors with stunning floor to ceiling garden views on both sides. Along the way there is a library sitting room and a tea house. Upper floor guest room windows catch views of the large Japanese garden, the neighboring pine forest and the blue of the sea of Japan. Also, within the compound is a ceramic gallery featuring the works of world renowned potter, Nakazato Takashi and his talented children, Taki and Hanako. Much of Hanako's career has been spent in the U.S. and her work reflects that influence. Next week, I will post photos of the Nakazato compound, sweetly tucked in among hills and terraced vegetable fields.