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“Home away from home”
Review of Grove Inn Skala

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Grove Inn Skala
Ranked #8 of 366 B&Bs / Inns in Hakuba-mura
Reviewed April 22, 2013

This review is very much overdue yet my family still has fondest memories of this place.My family of 6 stayed in Skala for a few days in Feb. Right from the pick up at the train station and the warm reception at the lobby we were made to feel right at home. Since we had booked 3 rooms,Miwa (the owner) even very graciously let us pick which rooms we liked. Of course we chose the 3 closest to each other.Osamu her son-in-la was indeed her right hand man;from driving us around to the supermarket, to serving our meals and overall just making sure our needs were attended to. The breakfast reviews about the place are indeed true as we were treated to Miwa's finest cooking. Special thanks to Miwa who took time from her busy schedule to drive my mom to the clinic as she was feeling ill. She even stayed with her throughout just to make sure there was someone there who could translate English to Japanese. On top of that, considering it was our first ski-trip, she followed us to the ski school to ensure that we did not get ripped off for our classes. She also so graciously lent us some ski outfits which we so appreciated. The location was just nice as the free shuttle to the ski resorts were just a short walk out. Overall, my family had a wonderful time there. The snow was beautiful and staying at the Grove Inn Skala just completed our dream holiday. We would definitely be back for more!

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Angelina P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
skalainn, Miwa at Grove Inn Skala, responded to this reviewResponded April 25, 2013

Thank you for writing us a so good coment. And glad to know you enjoyed staying with us.
We want our guests to feel comfortable and safe in our hotel, so we will do anything for the guests as far as we can.
I hope you enjoed Tokyo and your mom regained good health.
Thank you,
Miwa

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Reviewed January 25, 2013

My adult daughter and I stayed in Skala for a week. It was outstanding service from the moment Osamu picked us up from the bus station. Miwa and her family are sincere, friendly and hard-working people who would bend over backwards for their guests. The breakfast is a treat and dinner is exceptional. Both Miwa and Asako are gourmet cooks. The charming lodge is nestled in a picturesque woodland setting. The lounge is cosy and equipped with a bar and for those who are so inclined, there is an armchair which does an excruciatingly funny massage replete with sound effects.
Going to the ski fields is a cinch with the bus stop to take the free shuttle just around the corner. If you go out for dinner, it is a fair walk to the shops (and this would be true for all the pensions in the woods). We didn't find this troublesome.
For the amount that we paid, it was great value for money. We had the most memorable stay and we would definitely return.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank DLCSSA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2013 via mobile

Highly recommend Skala. Gracious and warm hosts, comfortable room and stunning food. Thoroughly enjoyed our stay and would stay there again quite happily. Location was slightly out of the way from main road, which made it quiet but also further to walk at night in the dark and snow if wandering for food. But then it was difficult to find food as good or so reasonably priced.

  • Stayed: December 2012
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1  Thank AquagirlNZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 31, 2012

Pros - food to die for, service out of this world, family friendly, people orientated and fair. You'll never feel ripped off! Free bus to snow fields, pick up shuttle from happo one. Did I mention the food? Atmosphere after dinner that evokes pleasure and conversation amongst fellow travelers. The food!! Ok, joking apart i've just stayed at The Grove Inn and i would rate it at the top end amongst 5 star accommodation. I felt like family, it was xmas and my husband was working, so i took my 16 year old son skiing. Skala and japan is very safe for a woman and her children to holiday alone. Easy to navigate and helpful hotel staff who arranged everything from ski gear to lessons. Coming back? Definately! It was toast warm, dvd, roaring fire, 5 course meals, lovely house wine ¥6. The only draw back was that i have long hair and didn't realize that a hair dryer was available if id asked until the last day, so I went out with wet hair. The other thing I would do differently is book lessons ahead so that you have lessons from day one and bring my own shampoo etc. But that's just being fussy. Id rate this hotel 5 star over the hilt on in Tokyo which I would review at 2 stars.

Room Tip: I stayed in the traditional japanese room and would do this again even though you make your own futo...
  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Donna P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
skalainn, Miwa at Grove Inn Skala, responded to this reviewResponded January 11, 2013

You are too sweet to coment us "Better than Tokyo Hilton by far"
We will try to make our guests to stay confotable as far as we can.
Next year, we will wait you come back with all your family including your husband.

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Reviewed April 9, 2012

My two coworkers and I came up with idea to go skiing while in Japan (from the US) during our 3-4 week stay. We found Grove Inn Skala thru the snowjapan.com website (great site) and decided to give it a try. We were NOT disappointed! Miwa, Asako, and Osamu were absolutely fabulous. From the moment we were picked up at the train station, we knew we found the right place. We didn’t have to figure anything out – they handled everything for us – lift passes, rentals, transportation, meals, and on and on. When it’s your first trip to a new place, you tend to stumble around a little to get things right – not here! I simply cannot tell you how helpful the family was. Oh, by the way – definitely do the meals. You’re in for a culinary delight! - and ask for extra soup…

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank mr_ed_stl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2012

We feel very lucky to have come across this guesthouse which is run by an extremely friendly Japanese family in a perfect location right near Happo-one ski resort in Hakuba. The double room was very large, comfortable and spotlessly clean. The room also had a DVD player and there was a large library to choose from. The common areas were very comfortable and cosy and on the Saturday night entertainment was even provided with a local trio performing an acoustic set. As others have mentioned, the optional breakfasts and dinners were AMAZING and excellent value. The Ishida family also helped arrange discounted ski lift passes, ski equipment hire and a free lift to the slopes each morning and to the bus station on the final day. A really memorable experience and very highly recommended.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Bemused85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 22, 2012

Grove Inn Skala is a warm and cosy escape for skiers and travellers searching for a comfortable home away from home. Excellent hosts and food, well appointed rooms, inviting lounge and fireplace guarantee a relaxing sojourn. The food was skilfully prepared by Miwa and her daughter, Asako, two excellent chefs, and we looked forward to the variety of each night's menu. Highlights were the squid ink rice, beef casserole with apples, baked salmon in pastry and of course the chocolate mousse, all served with care and attention by Osamu. The hosts ensure all your skiing needs are taken care of, which in my case required more than one trip to the ski hire shop. Nestled in the woods but close to the shuttle bus and nearby village life Grove Inn Skala is a conveniently located, comfortable specialty lodge.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ElphSydneyAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grove Inn Skala

Address: 2940-19 Hokujo, Hakuba-mura, Kitaazumi-gun 399-9301, Nagano Prefecture
Location: Japan > Chubu > Nagano Prefecture > Kitaazumi-gun > Hakuba-mura
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Ski-In / Ski-Out
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 366 B&Bs / Inns in Hakuba-mura
Price Range: $122 - $177 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Grove Inn Skala 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grove Inn Skala is a country resort owned by family. Privacy, comfort and personal care are all yours. Located in the center of Japan's main island, in Hakuba village, Nagano prefecture. Many people know about Hakuba, as it was the sight of the 1998 Winter Olympic events: Giant Slalom, Downhill, Nordic Combined, Cross-country and Jumping. The Jumping Stadium is just about 10 min's and shopping area is also 10 min's on foot from our hotel. Hakuba is about 300km north west of Tokyo at the foot of Northern Japan Alps. It takes approximately 3 and half hours by train and 4 hours by car. Paragliding, Downhill mountain bike riding, Hiking, White water rafting, Tennis, Fishing, Canoe & Kayak are all awaiting you through at a year The main sports are of course, ski & snowboard in winter term till early spring ... more   less 
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