Dolls and Incense
‘Hina-matsuri’ at Keiyo Plaza, Tokyo
The hotel industry is perhaps one of the most innovative in the hospitality segment. The Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo (KPH), one of Japan’s most prestigious international hotels located in Shinjuku, Tokyo, will host a special exhibition entitled “Hina-matsuri (Japan’s Traditional Girls’ Doll Festival)” where 6,800 magnificent and ornate handmade dolls and other traditional decorations will be displayed and be held in the lobby from February 1 to March 29, 2018. The exhibition this year will also have a special corner highlighting the history and tradition of Japanese incense culture.
Incense burner made of Wajima lacquer
Incense arrived during the Asuka Period of Japan (From 592 to 710) originally as part of the Buddhist religion from overseas. Over time, incense became an intrinsic part of daily grooming of Japanese, and later became an important part of Japanese artistic culture helping to reflect the mood of its song and seasons. In the Heian Period (From 794 to 1185), aristocratic Japanese began mixing various incense materials to be used as perfumes for clothing, to be given as presents and to become an intrinsic part of aesthetic Japanese culture.
During the Kamakura Period (From 1185 to 1333), Japanese samurai warriors commonly used fragrant wood in their daily lives, and it developed to become an independent cultural art form. To reflect the various incense smells used during these various time periods, the long established “Yamadamatsu Incense-wood Co., Ltd.” in Kyoto and Kyoto City will participate in this exhibition to provide rare traditional craft items and fragrant woods to introduce the history of incense culture in Japan to the guests. In addition, applications of incense culture including lacquer items from Wajima and earthen ware from Karatsu made by famous artists will also be displayed. Also, displays showing how incense was used in famous Japanese literature such as “The Tale of Genji” and “Kokinshu” will be shown.
The hanging decorative art ornaments are specially hand stitched using finely woven silk cloth from old kimonos by the quilt artist Mitsuyo Matsuo and the some 90 members of her “Himarwari” Art Group expressly for the Keio Plaza Hotel exhibition. The handiworks carefully crafted for this exhibition symbolically reflect the hopes for the health and happiness of children. Also, the different decorations created for this exhibition have various symbolic meaning such as monkeys with the capability to ward off calamities, mandarin ducks reflecting love between spouses, and pillows representing children who sleep well and grow healthily. Traditional wooden Mataro dolls from Kamikamo Shrine in Kyoto will also be displayed alongside the magnificent 3.3 meter high hanging decorative art ornaments in the third floor main lobby area to welcome guests to our hotel. Our guests from around the world are awestruck by the grandeur of this central exhibit, which offers the perfect opportunity for guests to take pictures as memories of this exhibition.
During the course of this exhibition, ten of our restaurants will serve specially prepared “Hina-matsuri” menu items. Also, there will be special “hanging ornament handicraft” workshops, lectures on “culture of Japanese incense”, and special lunches where the aesthetic affect of incense upon food and meals will be demonstrated with host special workshops for guests to learn about the Japanese culture of fragrant sachets commonly carried by Japanese women.
* Special menu items served until March 31
To be served at: Ten restaurants, including the traditional Japanese kaiseki, Japanese cuisine, tempura, French and Italian, Chinese, Korean and other dining and lounge facilities. Chefs at each of these facilities will prepare special menu items in the image of Girls’ Doll Festival.
For Restaurant Information and reservation: +81-3-3344-0111
Note: Reproduced/edited for style with permission from Business Wire (c), A Berkshire Hathaway Company.