Thursday, February 28, 2013

Family trip to Hakone, Japan. Yunessun Hot Springs Spa Resort and Hotel Marroad

This past Sunday, February 24, 2013, our family went to Hakone, Japan to enjoy the hot springs, hot baths and onsens. We woke up bright and early and made it there at 10am-ish.  Check in, at the hotel isn't until 3pm, so we went directly to the Yunessun Spa place right away for a day of soaking and having fun.
There was still snow in a great deal of Hakone. The sunny areas were melted granted but still lots of snow in the non sunny spots. : )  Oh and the weather freezing cold! : )
Pic, right before we entered.
This coffee bath, smells exactly like coffee. Smells so good. The temperature is pretty hot and it feels so nice especially on a cold day like it was, when we were there. Like sitting and soaking in a Starbucks tumbler of coffee. ; )
The wine bath. Is hot too, but a teeny tiny pinch less hot then the coffee one.  : )
I didn't lock down any of the pics so you can double click them all. Except the soda pic. I don't think anyone would want to double click that one anyway though. ; ) The water coming out of the wine bottle is nice and hot. No wonder Branden stood under that.

We stayed in each bath so long. And then we went back and forth all day and evening long.
Noah being silly, holding on trying to pour perhaps. ; )
And the snow scattered in the background was nice.
Green tea, nice and hot.
See how my camera lens is getting foggy. It did that a lot this time/trip.
We soaked in here for a long time too. And see construction back there, there is a rose bath coming. I think it's rose, but don't quote me on that though, hahaha. : )
Snow, mountains, nature and soaking in a nice hot great smelling bath. Good conversation. It was awesome.
The other green tea bath.
A sake soak. But you can barely see Branden and Noah. I kept having to wipe the lens. And 1 second later it would be fogged all over again.
View and a giant wine bottle in the background hahaha. : )
Then we went inside. This fogged my lens immediately.
It took us forever to take this pic because the lens again it fogged up so badly. You can tell it's Branden, Noah and Noboru but it's hard to see their faces super clearly though. It fogged before I could even snap the picture.
This must be picture attempt in the chocolate bath #23 hahaha. At one point you just have to give up and say to yourself, the lens is too foggy and the picture just isn't going to come out.  Clearly this chocolate bath picture will not be on the upcoming New Year's card this year lol. Just way too foggy. : )
Chocolate treats hanging above our heads. So cute! 
These were like the final 2 attempts and again fog city here. And this point we just said, no more tries. We were all tried out. And you really got to give them credit they stood there smiling for mama and her camera and it just wasn't happening. : ( So we did try our best. But again....just didn't turn out so well these chocolate bath pics. Sorry. : )
Oh and fwiw, the chocolate bath was a huge disappointment to us all. It did *not* smell like chocolate not even 1 dot. It smelled like the charcoal bath they have on the other side of the spa. Imo. But yeah no chocolate smell at all. This was the one we were looking forward to most of all. But nope, a total wonker. Looked very pretty but smelled, ehhhh.  Sorry just being honest. And nope, no chocolate smell at all. The other baths all smell fantastic and like you expect them to. But not this one. : (  The bright side is at least we tried it. So silver lining there. Plus we were all having so much fun didn't really make or break our trip at all.
We went back and forth from wine to coffee and whatnot all day and by now it was 3pm-ish. Branden and Noah wanted to ride the free slide outside. Noboru was like no way can I go out there, but he went anyway and stood with me to take a pic of the boys, what a sweetheart. So the both of us, stood outside in like 0 degrees C/32 F weather in swimsuit my hair was turning to icicles to take their pictures. The both had asked me, "mama please take my pictures" The lifeguard keep in mind was so freaking cold wearing swim trunks and a huge warm coat btw. Meanwhile there I am wearing 1  swimsuit and no coat. Shivering and hair turning to icicles. I stood out there so they could go down once and then inside both Noboru and I ran. Branden, picture take one. Glad it came out! : )
Noah you look pretty good, I wish that girl wasn't standing there when I was trying to take this picture. Granted, even though she took a turn like 3 minutes beforehand, oh well maybe she wanted to soak, dangerous place to stand at the end of a water slide imo, but oh well what can you do, anyway her forehead is now forever in your picture hahaha oh well what can you do, but smile at times like these. But it was so freezing cold, and I wasn't about to ask Noah to go again.
Finally the girl moves and I quickly took this picture and ran inside. Noah ran inside after me. Branden was already inside. hahaha.
Look at that great big nose hanging. If you have allergies or whatever you can soak in here.
This picture came out great but the edges of this picture are starting to fog. Wasn't intentional but you know, with the fogged edges this kinda works for this pic. : )  Hi Noah!
Penny for your thoughts my sweets! : )
This one is salt. Noah suffers severe dry skin in winter, so he could not go in and I also have dry skin in winter so I couldn't go in this one either. Our dry skin wouldn't have appreciated this salt bath at all. Hahaha, last time Noah and I both went in and we were both on fire, meaning our skin. So this time we just stood and watched Branden enjoy it. Branden is lucky to have no skin problems at all so he got to go in and enjoy it.
Around 4:45pm we left the Yunessun and we went to dinner. Dinner is right downstairs though at the Yunessun. They have a yakitori restaurant and they also have a very good Italian restaurant. We always forget the name of this place. But our family just lovingly calls it, "fake Capricciosa" we don't mean it in a mean way at all. It's just the menu is identical to Capricciosa. Right down to the rice ball. The food is delicious and the price is similar to Capricciosa. We like it so much, we always go here. It's just we can never remember the name. If you ever head down to Hakone, definitely come here. It's really good. : )
We had 2 pizzas and 2 extra large pastas and were stuffed.
Yeah, we ate a lot, were really stuffed afterwards. But it was a nice way to wind down a nice long day of soaking from tub to tub.
Gift shop at the Yunessun. We bought some bath powder. I'll try and post the pics to those later.
We always have an ice cream after dinner in the Yunessun gift shop area. It's tradition for us hahaha.
I had a hard time deciding between grape and chocolate. I went with grape, but I should have picked chocolate. : )
Branden holding his vanilla and Noboru's vanilla.
Noah eating chocolate. Poor Noah... everyone took a lick from Noah's chocolate cone. Me too. It was delicious. We all sort of thought we should have ordered what Noah picked afterwards. Hahaha.
Melon cider soda. We've had cider soda before obviously and we've had melon soda before too. But melon cider. From Shizuoka. We bought one to take back to the hotel.
We checked into the hotel around 6pm-ish. They had the futons for Branden and Noah laid out already.
Our beds.
We were stuffed, since we just ate dinner. We were at the hotel for about 5 minutes and we said you know what, they have a wonderful onsen and rotenburo downstairs in our hotel, let's do that. So, we all switched from our regular clothes to these. And with hotel slippers we went right downstairs like this. Btw, as were were checking into the hotel you could see a few families wearing these walking around the hotel, so it's okay. So from the 4th floor to the 1st floor we went. Also the hotel wasn't so crowded, it is usually pretty full in October/November. there were lots of parking spots outside we noticed on the way in.
I wore peach. And Noboru wore blue, under the green one. Noboru and Branden and Noah went inside the guys side. And we picked a time to come out by and meet. We said 8pm we'll meet outside of the onsen on the first floor. We all agreed. And I went into the girls side. One woman was in the dressing area but she was leaving as I was coming in. She was putting her clothes on while I was taking mine off. Once inside the showers and onsen area, I realized I am alone in here. Nobody else was in there. Awesome, I thought! All the products for their hotel are Shiseido. So, I shampooed and conditioned my hair with Super Mild. Smells fantastic btw. Body washed with Super Mild body wash. Washed my face with the many many types of face wash they have. I washed my face twice even. And then I went to soak in the rotenburo. By now it is super deeply freezing. But I was in this superly hot onsen outside just soaking away. All clean and fresh. Feeling really at peace. Having a great time. Feeling all relaxed. I soaked in there until it was near 8pm. At 7:50pm I got out, dried off and put my peach yukata type thing back on. Sorry if there's a more technical word for it. And went and sat in the waiting area near the onsen, not the real lobby of the hotel. Hahaha. This one is on the lower ground/basement. There's a TV and drink machines and cup of noodle vending machine. They came out a minute or two after me. And we went right up to our hotel room.
Every time we're in a hotel in Japan Noboru needs to eat instant noodles. I am not sure why, but he likes it so and that's okay. Branden and Noah were heating the hot water pot for Noboru to have his noodles, which he brought from Chiba btw, hahaha. Hahaha. : )  We watched TV Sunday night. We had soaked and bathed all day and night, so I think it's safe to say we were really really clean by the time we went to bed.  : )  We woke up the next morning feeling refreshed. We all got a great sleep. Noboru and Branden and Noah went downstairs to have a morning soak around 6:50am. Meanwhile, I stood in our room and flat ironed my hair and put my makeup on and put on a pair of jeans and a fleece zip top over my long sleeve top. And by the time I was dressed and done, they came back to the room shampooed and washed all over again all 3 of them. I passed the boys their clothes and Noboru got himself dressed and we went downstairs to eat.  Ready for breakfast.
A gorgeous view. Noah waiting for his breakfast and we chit chatted and drank juice while waiting. It is always so fun having breakfast here.
The kids meal. French toast, minestrone soup, fruit cup, salad with vinaigrette and mashed potatoes like 1tbsp amount under a sausage. A very delicious kids breakfast.
Branden had the same kids breakfast. Both the boys enjoyed their breakfast so much.
My meal, and Noboru had the same meal also. Ham and cheese toast, fruit cup, salad with vinaigrette 2 sausages on top of the 1 tbsp of mashed potatoes and 1 onsen egg. Drinks were free refills, they also had a nice assortment of teas besides coffee. And orange juice and milk. The hotel name is the Hotel Marroad Hakone. And this place is probably my most favorite hotel in Japan. The hotel is not brand new, maybe built in the 70's if I were to guess. But it's so well taken care of, the rooms are so spic and span clean. The onsen downstairs is amazing not huge like the Yunessun granted, but it's private and quiet and so clean and peaceful to soak there at night. The people working there are cheerful and kind. We've been seeing the same workers here for the past few years lol. But it is so relaxing being there. And the beds are so clean, the sheets are so fresh. I feel very comfortable staying there. I love the Hotel Marroad in Hakone.
It looks like a little chateau. Which is funny because the one and only restaurant in there is French, where we just had breakfast. It was starting to snow not sure if you can see any pieces in this picture but it was. Very lightly though. : )
Anyway, this was our family trip to Hakone for February 2013!!! Hopefully we can go back again this coming October or November. Because we really love Hakone a lot. The Yunessun is awesome and this hotel is our family's favorite. : ) Hope to come back here this coming Fall. : )
We brought back 3 bath powder packets. Just something small to take back home to sort of remember our trip to Hakone a bit more and the soaking we enjoyed while there. Now we can enjoy a bit of the same soak, but here at home. In coffee, wine and green tea. We haven't used them yet. Maybe this weekend we can use one. : )