The Hotel Royal – Midori-ku, Japan - Atlas Obscura

The Hotel Royal

Midori-ku, Japan

This seven story Japanese love hotel now stands in ruins. 


The Hotel Royal haikyo (a Japanese word for ruin) in Kanagawa is the grand-daddy of all love hotels, streaking several empty stories up into the big blue sky, a giant vermillion flag on the banks of Sagamiko Lake calling out to all and sundry in a mega-watt alto: “Need some discreet time alone with your loved one? Come on down!”

The ruined hotel has seven floors with around 35 rooms of varying sizes, all of them decorated in a unique manner, some of them a bit wacky, most fairly plain. It’s in a quiet area, on a road far from the nearest train station, overlooking a peaceful lake.

So who was the target audience? Young people looking to sow their wild oats in private would unlikely have access to a car, so we can rule most of them out. Couples trying to get away from the kids would be going out of their way to come here, so why not then have a properly classy time in a ryokan, where they could still do any of the deeds a love hotel is famous for. That leaves a third class: married men and women on surreptitious affairs, looking for an out of the way place where they wouldn’t be seen conducting their illicit liaisons.

However, obviously, not enough of these wayward husbands and wives came to this love hotel as it now stands in ruins.

Written by Japanese Haikyo expert and explorer Michael John Grist. More about this place and other Haikyo can be found on his site here.

Know Before You Go

It has an alarm, and probably movement sensor. Security personnel will arrive shortly after the alarm has been triggered.

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