1605 Kinugawa Kan
Kinugawa Kan and the Kappa Onsen is an abandoned hotel and its public hot spring bath which operated from 1942 to 1999 in Kinugawa Onsen, a resort town in Togichi Prefecture, Japan, not far from Nikko, and approximately two hours north-west of Tokyo.
Kinugawa Onsen was once a stunning landscape of steep valleys leading down to the crystal clear Kinugawa River, featuring an abundance of natural hot springs, first discovered during the Meiji Period.
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The district became a popular getaway spot for many wealthy residents of Tokyo, at its peak, attracting 3.4 million visitors per year.
During the 1970’s, Kinugawa Onsen attempted to capitalise on the attraction of the area, beginning a boom in the construction of huge concrete hotels, spanning the banks of the Kinugawa River.
Overdevelopment ensued, and hotels were crammed into every available space, obscuring any view of the river that is the centrepiece of the area.
The landscape transformed from a natural beauty into a concrete-lined eyesore and the appeal of the area as a picturesque holiday destination was ruined.
The resorts experienced a sharp decline in patronage, and numerous were unable to survive.
Kinugawa Kan was one of the first to close its doors.
The building has degraded significantly over the last 17 years and is now in an advanced state of decay.
It’s exterior is weathered, the signage is rusted, and the interior has sections that have effectively become greenhouse ecosystems with vegetation growing inside the rooms from out of the moss-covered tatami mats and wooden floors.
The integrity of most of the floor was questionable at best. My boot went straight through the matting a few times. In other parts, entire sections of floors had collapsed to the level below resembling something that would appear to be the result of an airstrike.
Large segments the interior were in total darkness except for the outer guest rooms, lounge and restaurant which looked over the gushing river below.
The adjoining hotels to Kinugawa Kan which stretch along the gorge of the northwestern side of the river are also abandoned, setting a ghostly backdrop of decaying concrete facades stretching for hundreds of meters.
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