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For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni
For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni 

Things to do in Japan

A serene luxe hideaway on the Izu Peninsula

People come to ABBA Resorts on the Izu Peninsula to find peace and quiet just two hours from the centre of Tokyo….

By Kiyofumi Machida
General manager of ABBA Resorts Izu

ABBA Resorts, Izu Peninsula

People come to ABBA Resorts to find peace and quiet just two hours from the centre of Tokyo, rather than to explore the Izu Peninsula itself – though it is a beautiful part of the country. We are surrounded by ancient woodland where some of the trees are more than 300 years old. It’s soothing to sit and listen to the rustling of leaves, the whisper of bamboo, birdsong and the magical sound of running water. If you’re very still, you might even see a deer.

The refined Japanese architecture is in perfect harmony with the natural setting, something that encapsulates the country’s culture. None of the rooms and villas is the same in layout or décor, but they’re all designed to be calming spaces where guests can connect with nature. I like the way different types and colours of wood are used; you can really appreciate the craftsmanship involved. Many of the baths are made of hinoki – cypress wood – which has an amazing scent that lifts your mood. There’s nothing better, in my opinion. They’re quite rare in Japanese ryokans as they’re hard work to maintain, so I’m delighted that we have them here.

Another rarity is our gallery of rare samurai swords: katana in Japanese. It’s part of our commitment to delivering an authentic taste of the country’s culture to our guests. You’ll find this echoed in everything from the welcoming cup of matcha tea we serve when people first arrive and the delicious Japanese food made with the finest local ingredients to the layout of the garden with its ponds of brightly coloured carp.

It’s so restful here that our guests sometimes stay longer than planned. Last year, one foreign visitor arrived with his family and physician to recover after an illness. He was meant to be here for a week and ended up staying for 41 nights! When he left, he made a very moving speech through an interpreter …

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Alfred & Kiyofumi Machida

Kiyofumi Machida was born in Nagasaki prefecture on Kyushu, the southernmost of Japan’s four main islands. He began his career in hospitality at some of the country’s leading hotels, including Park Hyatt Tokyo and Hotel Okura Fukuoka. He later joined KPG Hotel & Resort as a deputy general manager of high-end ryokans such as Hakone Suishoen and Atami Fufu; as a director in charge of development in the Kyushu area he worked on many projects. He joined ABBA Resorts in June 2019.

Alfred&

Your journey will start with one of our UK team – someone like Malcolm, who's travelled extensively in Japan. They’ll shape your ideas into the trip of a lifetime. But they won't do it alone. They'll draw on the expertise of our contacts on the ground, connecting you to the people who'll make your holiday one you'll always remember - the tea devotee who'll introduce you to the ceremony surrounding Japan's national drink, the noodle guru who'll teach you how to make the perfect bowl of soba and the ryokan owner who'll tutor you in the relaxing art of the onsen.

Freephone an expert 01306 744 656