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Reviewed August 13, 2018

As someone who has previously lived in Japan for several years, and now constantly returns for quick pleasure trips, I really enjoy indulging my ‘onsen addiction’. The end results are that I’ve definitely stayed in more onsen hotels in Japan than every Japanese person that I know, by far. With such an elaborate onsen background, on top of being the quintessential jaded New Yorker, (and you know we don’t impress very easily), I was unsure how things would go at this hotel. BUT, I can honestly say that I had an absolute blast at Nanpurou! It’s a fabulous place, and we really had a lot of fun during our few days there.

Onsen hotels can be quite large, but Nampurou is huge! You actually have to take time to explore the hotel, as there are so many places and things throughout the property to see. There is one important caveat, however, that goes along with its size. Make no mistake that this is a real family orientated place. There are tons of things throughout the property geared towards children. There are kids water areas, numerous play areas, and even a petting zoo which houses the resident goat along with his rabbit pals, who roam the grounds freely. It’s also a magnet for tour groups. We saw one large senior citizens group arrive, and between the family and kids that were already milling around, and the bus loads of seniors shuffling about, the large lobby was just a madhouse. So…can a young couple without kids (such as my wife and I) enjoy this place? Can you have a romantic getaway here? Can you have peace and quiet without screaming kids in the background? YES, YES, and YES! If you are traveling with your kids, however, I can almost guarantee they will enjoy themselves. You, as a family, will enjoy a memorable time at this onsen hotel. If you’re a Western family and you’d like for your kid to play and interact with some Japanese kids, then this definitely is an excellent opportunity. But…but, if you want a more relaxed, intimate stay you can also have that. How? Aside from the main hotel there is a completely separate area called Grand Ocean’s. It has its own separate check-in area, own elevator, and is comprised of only a few rooms in a completely isolated environment. Let me say from the onset, that the rooms at the Grand Ocean’s are ultra modern, sleek, and luxurious. Minus the onsen, it’s like a NYC studio apartment, it’s that cool. In our room we had our own outdoor onsen, which was just spectacular. Your balcony is secluded enough, whereas you can enjoy everything in your ‘natural state’ without being seen (trust me on this one, as most of my time out there was in my ‘natural state’) . I really loved the Grand Ocean’s, as it was like being in a completely different world away from the crowds at the regular hotel. While the hotel does have numerous pools and onsens scattered throughout, we did not use those other facilities, as we had our own private one. From what I saw however, they seemed to be quite nice.

The staff is quite nice and accommodating. Even though I spoke only my bad Japanese while there, some of the staff appeared to have modest English skills. I do not think you will have any problems if you do not speak Japanese. I saw one other Westerner during our stay there. In addition to being quite large, the main lobby features free coffee, tea, and even ice cream during selected parts of the day, which was quite nice. They also stage different cultural shows in the evenings, which is also a plus.

One comes to an onsen hotel to enjoy in the reputed benefits of a mineral bath, but one also comes for the food. I can say that the food was fantastic. As can be expected, it’s impossible to get into specifics about the food. There are just too many fantastic dishes to recall. I can only say that wifey and I are hardcore foodies, and we were both really happy and impressed with everything we ate during our stay. If you’re new to Japan, then you really have to try as many dishes as you can. It’s one of the best parts of traveling to distant lands, trying the local food. You may not like everything you try, but it’s a lot of fun giving it a go. You’ve traveled way too far to be hanging out at MacDonald’s or TGIF, right?!

In closing, I can really recommend this place. It’s quite rare in Japan that a place can satisfy two completely different crowds. If I had kids I would definitely come here during my visit to Japan, AND, it’s a fantastic place to also have a romantic getaway. If you’re in the Nagasaki area, then this is a really nice get away, but even coming from Hanshu, it’s well worth it. We genuinely enjoyed our time there. When we wanted to be around people we’d walk about the grounds a bit, and when we wanted our quiet time together in a beautiful, modern and upscale environment, we headed back to our area. There’s nothing else I can really say, but just go, if you have the chance.

Hope this review helps.

Date of stay: January 2018
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank mapglobal2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 27, 2016 via mobile

My husband and I travelled with my 4 year old and my mother-in-law from Unzen and decided to stay in Shimabara for a night before heading back to Fukuoka via bus. This hotel is quite the gem. The lobby is huge, filled with all kinds of activities, crafts, toys and manga for children and it has a large outdoor play area with small animals and toy cars too. At night the lobby came alive with a cultural performance of Japanese music and dance. The lobby also has a generous free flow of coffee, tea and ice cream in the afternoon - perfect for a break from the hot sun in summer. The outdoor onsen is huge and beautiful. The hotel service is impeccable - went out of their way to help us secure our bus tickets to Fukuoka even though we did not speak Japanese. There is something for everyone in the family in this gem - we enjoyed ourselves so much that we were quite sorry to leave. The only thing is that it's quite a long walk to town...but it is still walkable so no complains.

Date of stay: June 2016
Trip type: Traveled with family
1  Thank TravellingWriter2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 26, 2016

Love this hotel so much, it's located in a quite area near Nagasaki; The hotel has a great ocean view with lots of spaces for outdoor activities. It's definitely suitable for families or couples.

Our room is located at a new building with a balcony facing the ocean, very nice large room with good facilities. The osen is good too. Food at the hotel are very nice. The staff and very nice with smile.

Room tip: book a room at the new wing with ocean view and balcony.
Date of stay: October 2016
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank bigfatyan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 15, 2016

The hotel is conveniently located. We stayed for 4 days 3 nights. Shimabara has many attractions which are clustered in the town, a short drive from the hotel. Unzen Mountain and onsen village are near. Nagasaki City is an hour drive. Kumamoto/Aso Mountain are across the bay and can be reached by ferry and car. Nagasaki City is also not far. Western-style rooms in the new "green" building do not have "mountain" view as advertised and they are relatively small. The Grand Ocean rooms with private bath look much better and come with private outdoor bath.The hotel is family and pet friendly. It is lively and has many activities going on all day. Dinner and breakfast are good. The staff has "serviced mind", is very efficient, helpful and can converse in english.

Room tip: Grand Ocean rooms
Date of stay: October 2016
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank NIMITCHAI S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 1, 2016 via mobile

We booked Hotel Nanpurou through Traveladvisor's booking system in May, a month prior the trip. The price was amazingly attractive (JPN43,200 for 4 persons, including one-night accommodation, 9-meal course dinner and breakfast).

We travelled to Shimabara from Nagasaki City by local train (duration: 2 hours) Nagasaki to Isahaya, then Isahaya to Shimabara.

The emperor of Japan used to stay at Hotel Nanpurou with his wife some twenty years ago. Although the facility appeared to be quite old, the hotel staff at Hotel Nanpurou were friendly, pleasant and very helpful. The dinner was a nice surprise. We did not expect the foods were so rich that we forgot to take photos for record(!).

The biggest surprise came at last - after-dinner entertainment! The hotel staff reminded us not to miss the entertainment session from 8pm to 9pm. The session was held in the hotel lobby, including ping-pong; air-ball game; arcade games and so on. It was a night filled with fun, sound of laughter and unforgettable memories.

Date of stay: June 2016
Trip type: Traveled with friends
Thank mayw503
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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