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Saturday, February 24, 2018

Take A Vacation On A Floating Hotel

I haven't gone on a vacation since maybe 2006, since just after my son was born, and in retrospect, I shouldn't have gone that time, either.

I went to Chicago for a few days to deal with the comic book convention there, as a last-ditch attempt to have a comic book written by my self recognized as being the funniest thing since sliced bread.

Not a high target, as sliced bread is notoriously unfunny.

Usually whenever I have time off, I have to spend it at home... and for whatever reason, everyone else is home too, so I can't even veg out in front of the TV playing LEGO Indiana Jones on the PS3 (I hate the PS4). So I have to do stuff.

i also had a bunch of writing to do for work, which sticks in my craw... plus I had to do my writing for this blog, and for Pioneers of Aviation...

I'm probably reaching terminal burnout soon enough, as baseball season started last weekend (indoor practices), for which I am a coach, plus the outdoor hockey season is still on for a couple of weeks more.

Whatever... I suppose I should continue to enjoy while I still can...

Still... there a part of me that recalls the three years I spent in Japan... and every time I got to that stressful tipping point, I would stop, look around and think: "I'm in Japan!"

Even then I knew that the odds I would ever return once I left would be slim to none, as I would have a job, a home and a family, each with its own financial burdens.

As such, I did my best to enjoy every blessed moment I could in Japan... not really giving a sh!t about what others thought (or so I told myself).

While it's true I often went on "vacation" through Japan, not being one of those foreigners who would simply use the country as a blasting off point for other international destinations. Sure, I did that, but it was also imperative for me to see as much of Japan as possible.

I did not see Hokkaido... that huge island to the north... but what the hell... I figured that scenery-wise, it would just look like Northern Ontario, and I've been there-done that a few times.

One of the more epic trips I took in Japan was with Ashley, as we traveled by bullet train (shinkansen) down from Nasushiyobara to Tokyo, and then west to ... Nagasaki, I think... and from there, we took a boat across the Seto Inland Sea to Kyushu where we traveled around in the humid, rain.

It always rained when I traveled in Japan. It's why they called me the ame otoko (rain man).

So... long story shortened, what we have here is something I wish was available to me 26 years ago... a floating hotel that takes visitors across the Seto Inland Sea.

Created by Japanese architectural studio Yasushi Horibe, the beautiful hotel called "Guntu" is inspired by traditional Japanese architecture and features wooden interiors amongst its 19-room hotel.

"A tranquil journey unique to the Seto Inland Sea can be found here at this little hotel," says Guntu. "Time passes slowly on board, enveloped in the refreshing fragrance and gentle warmth of wood.
When you enter your cabin, exquisite views of the Seto Inland Sea spread before your eyes."

I'm paying how much for this non-gaijin-friendly seat?
Along with the 19 guest rooms, there's a scenic guest lounge with open view of the sea, plus a restaurant, a sushi and cocktail bar, a gym, sauna, spa, relaxation zones and a stunning rooftop terrace.
Should you become bored of screwing your mistress or boy toy, one can always come up for air to visit the outdoor dining terrace. Spectacular! Maybe next time you'll take your spouse. Nawwwwww.
And all with a beautiful nautical view surrounding you.
Your view from your bed... the headboard at the forefront of the photo...
There are three levels of cabin available, rich, very rich, and stupid rich (my terminology):
  • Guntu Suite (stupid rich) offers 90 square meters (969 square feet) of space as the largest cabin. I believe there is only one;
  • Grand Suites (very rich) is the mid-range, and offers the widest berth at 80 square meters (861 square -feet), not to mention the widest balcony. Suck on that, stupid rich!;
  • Terrace Suites are 50-square-meter (538-square-foot) cabins that allow one to up-size to a room with an open-air bath. I only assume there's some sort of protective covering... unless it's like when I used to own my own condo apartment on the 17th floor, and would just stand there at the large wall-to-wall-to-ceiling window dressed only in my birthday suit.
Further full disclosure: I was in such good shape at that time, that you could have bounced a silver dollar off my backside and got four quarters in change. Now, not so much... I might owe you 40 cents. 

Each of these three types of suite comes with a double bedroom, a private outdoor terrace with lounge area, mini bar (NEVER order from the mini bar), full en suite with shower and an outdoor bathtub.
Your own private bath... towel and stuff flapping in the breeze.

The Guntu floating hotel departs from Onomichi City, in Hiroshima-ken with trips up to three nights available to guests.

Prices start from ¥400,000 (US$3,780) per night for two guests, including all meals and access to on-board facilities and services.

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream...
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dreammmmmm,

Andrew Joseph
PS: For all you Alice in Wonderland fans, and who isn't: Don't wake the Red King.

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