Seikantei is a traditional Japanese house owned by Marquis Nagashige Kuroda since 1906 (39 Meiji). Since 2005 (17 Heisei) it was registered as tangible cultural property and Odawara city has owned this villa since 2008 (20 Heisei). You can see the traditional Japan design here and see with your own eyes, the building that have been build since Meiji period. This is a must-visit place for you who love Japan traditional culture.
Unique Design of Seikantei
When you step into the house, you will feel the calm and majestic traditional Japanese house. Wood construction, old window glass (the glass type is different from our glass window right now, and can not be produced anymore), shouji (sliding door), and tatami mat… what a lovely house! You can also see the carefully designed garden from the big window. In my opinion, the rain drops made the graden even more beautiful.
The construction style is called sukiya-zukuri. Compared with the usual traditional building style shoin-zukuri, sukiya-zukuri is not too formal, more of a free and playful type of construction. You can see the uniqueness of this bulding in several places.
What captured my attention at first was the uguisu floor. The wooden corridor was made with a technique that will make the floor let out a sound like uguisu (Horornis diphone) cry, thus the uguisu floor name.
There are also the previous owner living room at second floor. There is a fusuma (sliding door) to separate man and woman rooms. The sliding door knobs have different ornament. Made from cloissone ware, the square tough-looking one (left picture) is for man, and the delicate oval one for woman.
The former Odawara neighborhood were flourished for their tea ceremony (sadou) culture. The storehouse that was built in 1941 (16 Showa) now used as a small gallery that shows the former owner of Seikantei, some old photos, and also how to make a delicious tea! Talking about tea, the building also preserve the traditional fireplace for the tea ceremony.
Traditional Japanese house also have tokonoma. Tokonoma is a place to put calligraphy, flowers, potteries and so on to decorate the house. The calligraphy at Seikantei tokonoma is so hard to read (sometimes even Japanese can’t read it). That’s why there are little explanation board to read what the calligraphy means.
Event at Seikantei
When I visited Seikantei it was almost the time for Tanabata Festival. So I wrote a wish on tanzaku (a paper strip) to put on the bamboo tree outside Seikantei. I wrote : Wish I could go to Japan again! (ღ˘⌣˘ღ)
Not only in Tanabata, Seikantei also do events according to the seasonal events such as Hina matsuri (doll festival) or Otsukimi (moon sight-seeing in Autumn) concert. For more information about events at Seikantei please refer to Seikantei website or send an email for them.
For this July Seikantei display some works from Kashiwagi Art Foundry. Cute wind chime in front the entrance welcomed us with happy chime and some were displayed at the Seikantei shop too.
Relax and Enjoy at Seikantei
You can also use the cafe part for free!! Come here to enjoy the calm atmosphere and scenery while having your lunch. Please keep it clean when you bring your food here! You can also order drink and sweets from the cafe menu.
I ordered matcha set when I went to Seikantei. The matcha was served with uirou (traditional Japanese sweets). The uirou was matcha flavor. The combination of uirou sweetness and maccha light bitterness was a perfect combination!
Thank you for reading this article. If you visit Odawara, please come and enjoy the traditional building, Seikantei! Have a good day ♥
|Address||Kanagawa Prefecture, Odawara-shi, Minami-cho 1-5-73|
|Operational Hour||From 11 a.m. until 4 p.m.|
|Closed||Closed every Tuesday and New Year (may closed on another special occasion too)|
|Getting there||Walk from Odawara station approximately 15~20 minutes|
※ Please make sure the info you see is the latest in advance.