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A Spectacular Sight | Enjoy a Sea of Clouds at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo

A “sea of clouds” is a rare and sought after sight by those who love travel. It can be usually witnessed from a high peak early in the morning under certain weather conditions. It’s the moment when you see the clouds beneath you, rolling over a valley just like the waves of the ocean. The sea of clouds is such a rare view that it is considered a miracle to even witness it once. 

Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo offers its guests the chance to enjoy a sea of clouds in the heart of the city. Chinzanso Garden is enshrouded in a mist several times a day morning, noon, and evening from October 1st 2020. When viewed from above, the mist looks like a sea of clouds. With the tips of the trees and the Three-Story Pagoda towering over them, it looks just like islands in the ocean. See what five things guests love most about the Tokyo Sea of Clouds.

 Why a Sea of Clouds Now, in the City?

Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo has always aimed to be an oasis in the heart of the metropolis. The beginnings of this hotel can be traced back to 1952 when it opened as restaurant Chinzanso right after the end of the war. Tokyo was in ruins back then, and the revival of the garden that had existed here since the early years of the Meiji period (1868-1912) was for everyone a ray of hope. The garden works all the more as an oasis now when the spread of a virus changed our lifestyles, preventing us from traveling.

Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo invites you to enjoy the sea of clouds in its garden so that everyone visiting can feel the joy of viewing a rare and wonderful sight. With all the travel restrictions still in place, it is a true blessing to be able to see spectacular natural scenery in the heart of the city. A sea of clouds is a phenomenon that can be witnessed usually only in the mountains early in the morning in fall and winter, and only under certain weather conditions.  

The Features of the Sea of Clouds in Tokyo

The hotel uses the latest technology to create a veil of mist that enshrouds the garden, which, when viewed from above, looks just like a sea of clouds. The mist is blown away by the breeze creating a dynamic, surreal scenery. Rising above the veil of mist, the iconic Three-Story Pagoda of Chinzanso Garden stands out with its tranquil beauty as it watches over the garden with the strong, reassuring presence of its 600-year history.

The most exciting part of the sea of clouds at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo is that garden visitors can actually walk in the mist. (*1) In the summer, the mist has a cooling effect–a true blessing on a hot day.

*1… If you’re visiting the garden while the sea of clouds takes place, it is recommended to stop where you are in order to avoid accidents due to the low visibility. The veil of mist disappears naturally in about one or three minutes.)

The veil of mist can, of course, be watched from above, too – either from your hotel room with a garden view, if you stay at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo, or from the various vantage points in the garden. Watching the sea of clouds, you’ll get the feeling you’re on a high peak in the heart of nature. 

Chinzanso Garden, enshrouded in the sea of clouds, looks surreal. You might even forget for a moment that you’re in the heart of a busy metropolis. It is exactly this kind of wonder and joy that Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo intends to bring to its patrons–the blessing one feels when being surrounded by ever-changing, magnificent nature.

The Sea of Clouds and Japanese Culture

The sea of clouds, unkai in Japanese, conjures images of high peaks piercing the clouds–the otherworldly realm inhabited by deities and sennin, immortal sages. In many stories and myths, a veil of mist is what separates our world from a sacred world where fantastical creatures and a great adventure await. Mist and the sea of clouds are phenomena that reveal the mysterious power of nature; they are a hint that there is more to nature that waits to be discovered. 

On the other hand, Japanese culture treasures what is called “the beauty of imperfection”. This concept refers to objects whose beauty is enhanced by a fault, a crack, or by something that menaces the very existence of that object, like the passage of time. For example, the Moon is perceived as being more beautiful when hiding behind a thin cloud than on a perfectly clear night. When something obstructs our view, we instantly imagine the part that is hidden. Through our longing to see a certain object in its entirety, we are actually involved in the creation of that scenery. Clouds remind us how much we love the things that they hide.

What makes the sea of clouds in the Chinzanso Garden particularly beautiful is the presence of the iconic Three-Story Pagoda. The pagoda towers above the sea of clouds as if refusing to be completely enshrouded by mist. A surreal, dramatic scenery centered around the pagoda unfolds before our eyes every time the sea of clouds is released in the garden. Its appearance, a brief disruption in the routine, makes us love this oasis even more.

How to Enjoy the Sea of Clouds at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo

The best way to enjoy the sea of clouds is by spending a leisurely time as a guest at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo. The garden enshrouded in mist is visible from all the rooms with a garden view, as well as from some of the restaurants within the hotel. To celebrate the addition of the sea of clouds as a new feature of Chinzanso Garden, a special accommodation plan is available for guests to enjoy the garden view with the sea of clouds, illuminated by a thousand lights at night.

If you come to dine at one of the restaurants, enjoy a walk in the garden before or after your meal. Around noon or in the evening, the sea of clouds is shown several times. 

Delicious Tokyo Sea of Clouds Cookie Sand ~Butter & Raisin~ inspired by the sea of clouds are on sale at the  shop of Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo. They make the perfect souvenir from your visit.

Guests who stay at the hotel have the chance to enjoy, at leisure, various facets of the sea of clouds at different times of the day. In the morning, the drops of mist look brilliant as they reflect the morning light. It is a wonderful experience to witness the sea of clouds while taking a morning walk in the garden. 

At noon, guests can enjoy watching the sea of clouds from above, before or after lunch, at one of the hotel restaurants. The seasonal colors of the garden, the vibrant green of spring, the summer, or the red and orange of fall, will stand out even more through the thin veil of mist.

In the evening, the sea of clouds looks spectacular from above. Chinzanso Garden is lit up at night with a thousand twinkling lights that emphasize the dreamlike atmosphere. Moreover, on clear nights, the sea of clouds reflects the moonlight, turning the scenery into a surreal view. At all times, Three-Story Pagoda towers above the garden scenery with its dignified presence making us all forget that we’re in Tokyo.

The Sea of Clouds in Tokyo–A Treat for the Eyes and the Heart

The sea of clouds is a rare phenomenon that makes our hearts dance at seeing something out of the ordinary. It reminds us of the mysterious side of nature and fills us with joy and hope. 

If you come as a guest at Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo, how about arriving a little earlier to enjoy lunch at the hotel and enjoy the sea of clouds in the garden at noon? You’ll notice that the garden enshrouded by the veil of mist looks very different in the evening, when the garden is lit up, or in the morning when the air is clear and filled with light. Of course, viewing the sea of clouds before lunch or dinner as a restaurant patron is also a rewarding and memorable experience.

Whenever you feel the need to relax amid nature, the garden of Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo is there to welcome you right in the heart of Tokyo. It is a true oasis that brings enchantment to our lives and reminds us of the magnificence of nature.

Tokyo Sea of Clouds experience schedule

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