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Stylishly Renovated from a 30-years-old Hotel! “Hotel Emerald Isle Ishigakijima” Connects People and the Islands
post : 2016.01.17 19:00
Around the corner of the downtown of Ishigaki Island, “Hotel Emerald Isle Ishigakijima” is in a perfect location in 1-minute walk from the remote island terminal or the bus terminal.
Renovated from a 30-years-old hotel, the space creates a stylish yet warm, comfortable atmosphere. The front desk is connected with the bar counter, next to which there is a café lounge. On the same floor, you can find a gallery space where regular exhibitions are held by Okinawan creators.
On the pillar, illustration by an illustrator “poke 104” is drawn in a dynamic fashion.
“I hope that our hotel will be the departure and arrival point for travel, not only for a trip to Ishigaki Island but also one to the other islands of Yaeyama Islands in easy access from Ishigaki Island,” said the hotel owner, Mr. Eisaku Kuroshima
The bar counter, the lounge, and the gallery, all of which were created for travelers, and the people (or things) of the island to be connected to and freely interacted with each other. Kuroshima san desires that the hotel will be a new source of information.
You don’t have to be a hotel guest to use the café lounge. In this exchanging place among travelers, you can enjoy tea in a relaxed fashion, and conveniently use it for business meetings as Wi-fi and power supply are available. This is the best-kept secret café, quiet and calm in the downtown in Ishigaki.
Guest rooms include four types: single, twin, deluxe twin and triple. As rooms have simple but easy to use, comfortable design, I would recommend it for a lady to travel alone as well. This time I stayed at a semi double room with an ocean view. (shown in the above photo)
The place I liked the most in the hotel is this bar counter. (LOL)
When you don’t feel up to go outside but want to have a drink, when you come back from dinner and want to have another drink or when you feel lonely to drink alone, this bar space can meet every situation.♪
While sitting at the bar, you can ask hotel staff recommended spots in Yaeyama Islands, or can exchange travel information with a person next to you. Since anybody can use the space, I saw someone used it for a meeting place.
Sitting at the bar counter, I asked a female bartender to make this.
Their original cocktail, “Emerald Isle”! The color reminds you of a clear water of Ishigaki Island, and the awamori based cocktail with grape fruit juice brings you a refreshing taste. I could sleep very well after finishing up the emerald-colored cocktail, which is perfect for the image of Okinawa.
The following morning, I went down to the café lounge for breakfast. All the accommodation plans come with breakfast of omusubi (rice balls). The lounge and the bar counter, which had an atmosphere of languorous relaxation at night changed to a bright space for breakfast as the sun rose.
Delightfully enough, they can make rice balls in front of you. You can choose your favorite ingredients from six kinds such as salt of Ishigaki, pork, *abura miso, etc. You can enjoy freshly-prepared rice balls!
* abura miso: Okinawan Abura Miso would be a type of seasoned miso, cooked over low heat with some type of rendered fattier meats (or oil with lean protein) and sweetened. The word "abura" in Abura Miso translates to "oil" or "fat." So it sort of means "Fatty Miso" maybe. Traditionally the recipe calls for the island's ubiquitous three-layer pork "san-mai niku."
Rice balls made using Ishigaki rice is a little warm and has a relaxing flavor. You feel as if you were seen off with a word “Have a nice day!” on your departure morning.
And on top of that, you will be happy with a friendly attitude of the local “Father and Mother,” who are in charge of breakfast service. The space provides you with the kindness of the people of the island. It is one of the big charms of the hotel that a stylish space can make you feel the warmth which helps you to unwind. I found that a foreign guest also enjoyed eating rice balls happily next to my table.
The Souvenir Section before the Front Desk
They are planning to build a new bar on the rooftop with a fantastic view for their guests to enjoy alcohol. A manmade beach will be built in a place which you can see from the hotel. The surrounding of the hotel will be more lively. HOTEL EMERALD ISLE Ishigakijima is full of essence which makes your trip all the more exciting.
HOTEL EMERALD ISLE Ishigakijima
Address: 7‐14 Misaki-cho, Ishigaki City, Okinawa
Accommodation Fee: 4,000 yen ～（for single, per night, per person）
＊Parking space is not available, so please use a nearby coin-operated parking lot.
Okinawa CLIP Photo Writer Akiko Ono