My Shogun Story
The smell of ancient cedars stirs the senses of memory and imagination.
Journey back through the ages and take a voyage to a point in history where Japan’s future precariously hung in the balance. Journey back to Nikko and visit both a sacred site and historical landmark that takes a nation broken by war to a new era of samurai ethics and etiquette, a rebirth of culture, and a new robust economy that shapes the nation for the next millennium.
Take a Journey with the Shogun to a time and place of astonishing discovery and realization, as well as personal growth and discovery.
Tokugawa Ieyasu (1543-1616), a pivotal shogun in a long history of wartime strife, brings the Shogunate that begins with him to an era of stability and prosperity – The Edo Period. But managing a nation that still needed to heal from centuries of turmoil is no easy task. Tokugawa Ieyasu’s story is complex and nuanced. His own journey one intricately embroiled in political balancing, as well as being a lighting rod of unification to his people. It was only Tokugawa Ieyasu who could guide a Japan needing to emerge out from dangerous old patterns into a new epoch of hope, order, and peace.
Your journey to Nikko begins with an immersion into the training that raised the shoguns of the past into the leaders that Japan needed for the future. It is here, from this sacred place, that Japan became renewed, and it is from here that you too can touch the still beating heart of the Shogun Code, as it still thrives and survives through the nation and its people.
A Sensory Exploration of the Roots of Nikko
The soul of Nikko is sublime and subtle, hardened by historical conflict but supple enough to flow through time to nurture and grow generations of Shogun through the years.
Your experience begins in personal discovery of ancient martial arts practice. Learning of both bow (kyudo) and sword (katana), combined with the samurai etiquette in how to compose both body and mind. You step into a time well preserved by the lineages of families that have kept these treasured traditions authentic and true. From composure in both home and in battle, the warrior develops an inclusive unity in both form and spirit, poised and ready in all environments, be they for wartime or for peace.
Nikko is home and haven to many cultural expressions of Japanese heritage and aesthetics. The elaborately designed Toshogu Gate is a place where we may pause for Shinto blessings and spiritual inspiration. Stand in awe of its intricacies and embellishments, a living testament in filial piety. While standing at the threshold of inspiring history we also peer into the future. You may feel the energy of this sacred space flowing through you. This is where the spirit of Nikko and the voices all through its history come to resonate.
Dining and Spirits in Nikko.
Celebrating a Joined Heritage.
We will spend a magnificent time enjoying food, spirits, and music in the esteemed British Embassy Villa Memorial Park, situated on the shore overlooking pristine Lake Chuzenji. In years past, this was home to Ernest Satow, a British diplomat and first foreign chronicler of the Tokugawa Shogunate. His love of nature, botany, and bridging culture, knowledge, and appreciation, both to and from Japan, resonates here still.
While both imagination and curiosity may well be fed during your cultural and spiritual journey to Nikko, we must also attend to your appetite as well. Come along with us for a marvelous reception to serve both your palate and your ears.
An elegant reception and cocktail party await. Explore flavors that are local to Tochigi Prefecture as well as authentic Japanese traditional delicacies. For your listening enjoyment, professional musicians are at the ready to soothe mind and soul.
Luxurious Stays in Nikko
While spending time the sprawling magnificence of Nikko there will come a time when the sun will set and we will need some time and space to retreat, refresh, and rest. The Shogun Story features two very distinct and unique luxury accommodations: The Nikko Kanaya Hotel and The Ritz-Carlton, Nikko.
Both of these splendid hotels offer what all those who journey need at the end of the day: calm and soothing atmospheres, exquisite cuisine and libations, and beautifully rendered rooms for maximum comfort and relaxation.
But these two astonishing accommodations are nothing like the other in some significant ways. The Nikko Kanaya Hotel has a rich tradition over many years with an illustrious list of internationally recognized guests through history beginning in 1873. The Ritz-Carlton, Nikko is fresh, new, modern, and fuses ancient tradition with present day features and amenities.
There are now two very good reasons for extended stays in Nikko. Take time to fully enjoy and appreciate them both.
Time Slip to the World of Shoguns
We begin our voyage into the past from a bustling urban train platform at Asakusa Station. All aboard the SPACIA X – to bring you to Nikko, the land of shogun, and the very heart of Japan’s rebirth as a nation of culture, etiquette, nobility, and peace.
Cruise backwards in time in simple luxury and comfort as SPACIA X smoothly traverses hill and field, to a place of waterfalls and volcano. We move away from the coastline of Japan and plunge deep into the center of Japan’s history and heart, Tochigi Prefecture and the sacred land of Nikko.