4.5 / 5 Gorgeous townhouse - peaceful and quiet
My family and I stayed at Hana and Jo late in the 2016 season. We loved it for the peace and quiet, the quality of the house and of course, like all of Japan, it's cleanliness. The design was superb, with living upstairs and 2 large bedrooms with ample storage downstairs. This house was really well set up for practicality - the kitchen worked beautifully, the laundry area was brilliant, bathrooms superb and there was actually more storage and cupboard space than we required (unheard of in holiday homes!). Yes, the house is away from the action, but it's very short walk to the nearest shuttle stop, and we simply got on the first shuttle that arrived and skied from wherever it went to (whether that be Hanazono or Grand Hirafu). The advantage of being out of Hirafu is it is very peaceful all day and at night, and there were still a couple of cafes and restaurants nearby for an early morning coffee or dinner. We also occasionally walked into Hirafu - at the late stage of the season this was an easy and pleasant walk - when everything is covered in snow and ice it might not be quite so easy, but Shiki's ATM and deli were only 10 minutes away. I was a little concerned there would be road noise, but I didn't notice it at all. Again, late in the season the road is probably quieter than in peak season, but the house is very well insulated and we didn't notice any noise from traffic at all. LOVED the upstairs Japanese style bath and shower area. This was my early morning ritual before the rest of the family got up! We will be back to Niseko again!!