Hot spring with view of Southern Cross to open on Iriomote

Haemi Kanko Co. is opening a hot spring facility in Haemi, Iriomote Island, in the southwestern corner of Okinawa Prefecture in January.

The company aims to complete the construction of the facility within this year. It is an adjoining facility to La Teda Iriomote Resort that the company also manages.

Haemi Kanso CEO Takumi Saito says, “This is the only hot spring facility in Japan where one can see the Southern Cross. We would like this facility to invigorate Iriomote.”

The facility will be named “Iriomotejima Onsen Campanella.” It will have about 358 square meters of total floor space, and is adjacent to the south wing of the hotel with 32 rooms. The facility is a 2-story concrete building with a red tile roof. It will also include an outdoor bath with a view over the ocean.

Haemi Kankou bought the 2,500-square-meter lot of land from its private owner in September 2014, and applied Okinawa government for a permission to drill for the hot spring in November. They started the work in April 2015, and hit groundwater containing sodium and calcium components in three months. The total construction cost came to about ¥120 million.

The name “Campanella” is derived from the fact that the Southern Cross is visible from the spot from December through June. It’s the name of a character in “The Night of the Milky Way Train,” a novel by Kenji Miyazawa, in which the last stop of the train is the Southern Cross.

The hotel is constructed with nature-friendly principles, with shell gingers and alocasia planted on the premises, and utilizing biotope systems for rainwater drain throughout the premises.

Saito says, “We are preparing the kind of space where you can enjoy watching the Southern Cross in the star-studded sky and fireflies throughout the year. We would like to become a new sightseeing spot that invigorates Iriomote.”

emerald-ocean-side