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“A nice find in Abashiri!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hokuten no Oka Lake Abashiri Tsuruga Resort

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Hokuten no Oka Lake Abashiri Tsuruga Resort
Ranked #1 of 24 Hotels / Ryokan in Abashiri
Certificate of Excellence
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“A nice find in Abashiri!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 28, 2013

This is my second visit to this pristine hotel, my last visit being 15th June 2013. We stayed over here while traveling from Shiretoko National Park in transit to Asahikawa (Asahikawa being a good base to visit places like Sounkyo/Daisetsuzan National Park and Furano/Biei regions). But it must be emphasized that Abashiri itself has no lack of scenic spots (you do your own research)!

On arrival to this hotel, we were told to unload our own luggage at the hotel entrance, and to park in the hotel's carpark (you can park in any of the slot you want). En route to this hotel we noticed a sports park within 5 minutes walk (with soccer fields, jogging paths etc), which could easily be a place for fitness enthusiasts to do their daily cardiovascular exercises. One thing we have noted in Japan is this - seldom do we see fitness corners as in Taiwan/Singapore/Switzerland, which are equipped with pull-up bars, dips stations, and sit-up benches. We didn't see a single one in Hokkaido either.

We chose the Western/Japanese twin option, which came with two very large comfy single beds, plenty of space, free Wifi, a nice and large bathroom - all in all a very well equipped and furnished room for the price. There is even a coffee maker where you have to grind the coffee beans manually ... interesting! Some of the Tsuruga chain hotels came with coffee makers which grind the coffee with an electric grinder, but manual grinding was a first for me. I thought it was fun actually!

I used the male onsen (obviously), which had an outdoor rocky area and a larger indoor pool. As previous reviewers had noted, the onsen really felt mainstream and common, although I enjoyed the outdoor pool that night as it was late and fairly empty!

We felt the food was more continental than other Japanese hotels. They made the effort to dish out some interesting options at dinner, like freshly made personal pizza where you select your own toppings, and the chef will bake it for you. There was also a good selection of Japanese dishes meant to be eaten with the rice, make-it-yourself miso soup where you pick out the raw ingredients and put it into the hot pot at your table, and also a complimentary serving of crab legs. Breakfast was a little less interesting, but nevertheless satisfactory, with an average continental selection of western and Japanese options. A good suggestion for improvement to the management would be to include some freshly made indian bread like naan, prata, bhatoora etc (I'm not indian by the way, but finding Indian cuisine in any Japanese hotel would be quite an unique experience). The smell would definitely attract some diners from other parts of the world!

Overall the hotel staff were polite and the rooms were very comfortable. The cleanliness in our rooms were quite impeccable actually! We enjoyed our stay in this hotel (both in 2010 and 2013), and will come back again when we visit Hokkaido maybe in the next two years. Perhaps by then we would find fresh indian bread at breakfast or dinner!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Vincent C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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221 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Any
English first
Hong Kong, null, Hong Kong
Level Contributor
101 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 28, 2013

The hotel is situated on top of a small hill overlooking the lake. We were taken care by a dedicated English speaking receptionist throughout our stay. The decoration is modern blending nicely with traditional Japanese culture. The room is spacious, luxurious and very clean. Even with an extra tatami did not make it felt cramped. With 5000 yen, our dinner was upgraded to a full course French dinner which I think is well worth. Staying in a room with private onsen already has the special French or Japanese dinner included. The gallery holds a collection of wood sculptures and some antique hi-fi equipments. The onsen is a bit small nut we were luck that the hotel was not really full during our stay.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Paul L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore
Level Contributor
105 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 137 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 17, 2012

The room was great – luxuriously spacious on a high floor, very clean, view of the sunset over Lake Abashiri, big comfy mattresses on a raised dais. We booked the lakeside Western beds with Japanese room option. Well-appointed and good design – modern with local accents. The hotel itself also manages to capture rustic charm despite the feel of a large hotel – wood used abundantly in carvings, tables, with a conical black cast iron fireplace taking pride of place at the check-in area.

Service was impeccable – as we drove in, staff came running out to help with our luggage, and guided us in through the winding lobby. Check-in and check out were a breeze, upon check-in a lovely lady called Miura-san spoke excellent English with us, and showed us to our room and the hotel facilities on the way.

The onsen felt a little basic for a hotel this well-appointed – there was a lounge area overlooking an internal garden, and the male and female onsens each had 2 areas, indoor and outdoors. The outdoors onsen was a rocky pool about the size of 4m x 4m, the indoors one was larger at about twice this size. There was also a foot onsen in a separate part of the hotel, that we didn't have time to try. The main onsen shuts from 930am – 2pm, and the foot onsen is open only from around 930am onwards.

The food was where we were a little disappointed – Abashiri is near Lake Saroma, known for its seafood, yet the buffet dinner served items like pizza, chinese style food, with not a lot of Japanese fare, and minimal sashimi. A nice touch was the kani crab legs that each table was served with. Wasabi was not freshly grated, unlike a previous Tsuruga resort that we'd stayed in. Breakfast was similar in nature. This may have been due to the hotel catering to the taste of the large tour group that had whirled in in the evening and left the next morning, but it was disappointing given the fact that this was a region known for its seafood.

Overall we were impressed by the room and how well the hotel fit in with its surroundings, as well as the service by all staff. However, the food and the onsen detracted from the overall experience. Nice touch to have musicians performing at certain times in the day. This hotel featured a harpist, although we did not get to hear her play.

Room Tip: Tip: Avoid the dinner buffet – Abashiri is a good sized town and if you have a car, it may be worth...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank XavierZen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
23 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 24, 2012

After driving several hours as one does on a self drive trip in Hokkaido, getting into this resort hotel was truly wonderful. It is near the lake and is gorgeously done up in rich masculine hues of wood and cast iron.

The onsen experience is amazing.

The dinner is simply the best selection during my 2 week self drive trip. Please arrange for buffet dinner here. It Ian a wonderful delight after the relaxing onsen. You will feel recharged.
There are beautiful photos on facebook so I don't have to use mere words to elaborate. You will not be disappointed.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Juggie888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong
Level Contributor
27 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 5, 2012

My family of 6 stayed here for one night at the japanese-western style room with private open air bath and it was amazing! The room was extremely large and comfortable. Not to mention the service was fab!! Especially after a long car ride, it was great to see friendly faces at the door. We were greeted, and brought to the lobby with a warm fire-place to check-in. Everything went really smoothly and we were welcomed by a nice drink. The decoration in the hotel was incredible and the buffet dinner that was served at night was really good too. The buffet had a large selection and everything was fresh. Dinner was accompanied by a lady who was playing the harp, which was nice! Worth every penny - or yen.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank fluffc11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
singapore
Level Contributor
98 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 9, 2011

Our family of 5 stayed here for one night in a Japanese room. It was a lovely room with a nice view of the sunset in the evening. The service was first rate. As we spoke no Japanese, they assigned an English speaking staff member to attend to us. We were treated to king crab during check-in. When another staff member at the gift shop learnt that we were driving off to Shiretoko and then to Asahikawa, he grabbed some snacks from the shop and gave them to us! They were preserved fruits with a tangy taste and that helped keep me (the driver) fully awake during the long drive.

The hotel is very well-designed and gives you a feeling that this is truely a 5-star establishment. The facilities are good and I noticed that in the lounge, even the music system is high end (Macintosh). We enjoyed the onsen (which includes a rotemburo) and the ashiyu where we dipped our feet in after dinner. Dinner, however, was a disappointment. We chose the Japanese kaiseiki dinner but the cooking and the food quality was not good. No wonder we were the only ones at the Japanese restaurant because all the Japanese guests chose Western dinner! Breakfast, on the other hand, was good.

The one thing that we didn't like about Hokuten no Oka is that there is no free internet in the room. You have to go to the lounge where there is a PC available. In Japanese hotels, we are so used to having free high speed internet connection in the room that this seems to be a glaring omission in a 5-star hotel. Except for this, I would still highly recommend a stay.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank linnman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
somewhere in
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 30, 2009

We stayed one night in this hotel and thoroughly enjoyed it. The service was outstanding and the front desk attendants spoke english well. The decor was beautiful, modern with Japanese touches here and there, both throughout the hotel and in the room. The indoor and outdoor onsen (separate male and female) was fabulous. The breakfast buffet was top notch with Western and Asian choices. We stayed in a Japanese style room since the price was cheaper and really enjoyed it. My husband was excited about the room's coffee maker having the ability to grind provided coffee beans for a fresh cup. The view of the lake was beautiful... we found it interesting that such a high quality hotel was in the countryside with tractors harvesting produce in the nearby fields.
If you have small children:
We have 3 small children all under 5 yrs and found the hotel to be very family friendly. One of the reservation desk attendants went out of his way to offer our children cookies... it looked like he raided half the souvenir shop to give our children treats and wanted no money in return. When we arrived for the buffet the next morning, the waiter showed us to a table that had three children place settings... it appeared they had set a table just for us. The food selection was great, with choices even picky eaters could enjoy. We brought our pack n' play for our 2 yr old and had our infant and 4 yr old sleep on the floor (Japanese style meant the floors were immaculately clean), so I cannot say if they have cribs available. They provided children sized slippers and onsen robes. Cost for each child over 1 yr was about $25 per child. I do not know if they offer babysitting. Our Japanese style room was spacious and had a separate hallway, which we put our 2 and 4 yr old in to separate us for sleep purposes... We all slept well.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LivingforJesus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hokuten no Oka Lake Abashiri Tsuruga Resort

Property: Hokuten no Oka Lake Abashiri Tsuruga Resort
Address: 159 Yobito, Abashiri 099-2421, Hokkaido
Location: Japan > Hokkaido > Abashiri > Abashirikohan Onsen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 24 Hotels / Ryokan in Abashiri
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hokuten no Oka Lake Abashiri Tsuruga Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 80
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hokutennooka Lake Abashiri Tsuruga Hotel

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