The Annual Year-End Cleaning of Our Bath

One of our traditions here at Dai-ichi Takimotokan is the year-end cleaning of our large bath. Our staff gathers to scrub and polish with warm thoughts of the past year and gratitude for the health-giving waters that flow into it for our guests and visitors to our home here in Hokkaido.

We have done this annual cleaning since the construction of the current bath in 1986 (Showa 61), which makes this year our 34th time. On Monday, December 23, all of our staff, new arrivals and veterans alike, comes together with brushes and towels in hand to scrub the bathhouse and prepare all 1,500 tsubo or nearly 5,000 square meters, for the New Year.

Afterward, we decorate the pillar of the center bath with a shimenawa, a traditional rope woven of rice straw, and pray that the bounty of the hot spring will continue. It will hang here until the New Year arrives as a symbol of our hopes and a seasonal greeting for everyone who visits.

Finally, we gather for a group photo to remember this special moment and the work accomplished. All of us look forward to welcoming you, our guests, and enjoying the New Year together at Dai-ichi Takimotokan.