Staying at Benesse House is a unique experience, and we recommend incorporating it into your Japan itinerary. We suggest spending a couple of nights here to allow plenty of time to explore the galleries and exhibitions on Naoshima and the surrounding ‘art’ islands.
Wayfairer trips are personally tailor-made for you by our Luxury Travel Specialists. Get in touch to start planning your dream trip today.
Benesse House is a modern art museum and hotel set on the shores of Naoshima Island in the Seto Inland Sea.
Part of a project which spans the islands of Naoshima, Teshima and Inujima, Benesse House is spread across four unique buildings, designed by the renowned architect, Tadao Ando.
Various works of art by Japanese and international artists can be found on the lawns and beaches around Benesse House, whilst the main museum hosts the impressive modern art collection of Japanese multimillionaire Nobuko Fukutake, and includes paintings by Jackson Pollock and David Hockney.
As well as the dedicated exhibition space, works by artists such as Andy Warhol adorn the corridors and the walls of the restaurants of Benesse House.
Part museum and part hotel, Benesse House is a fascinating place to stay. Accommodation is comprised of 65 individually designed guestrooms located within the four buildings - Museum, Oval, Park and Beach. Each stylish and modern room features a piece of original artwork.
The Museum and Oval rooms allow guests to get closest to the artwork, and they offer 24-hour access to the main museum.
The Museum rooms feature rare drawings, paintings, and prints, whilst the exclusive Oval suites feature hand-drawn murals by the artists Richard Long and David Tremlett.
There are 10 ensuite guestrooms located on the second and third floors of the Museum building. These sleek, stylish and airy rooms feature large floor-to-ceiling windows facing the Inland Sea. Located on a hill at the highest point in Benesse House and reached by monorail, the Oval’s six guestrooms (two twins and four suites) have huge windows offering spectacular views of the Inland Sea below. The wooden Park building has 39 rooms and two suites, plus restaurants, lounges, a shop and various art spaces, and the Beach building has eight spacious suite-style guestrooms, all of which feature private terraces offering panoramic views of the sea.
Guests can enjoy a buffet-style breakfast at the Terrace Restaurant (Umi no Hoshi) Etoile de la Mer, and in the evening, this Michelin-starred restaurant serves exquisite French cuisine. Museum Restaurant Issen is located on the ground floor of the Museum building and serves traditional kaiseki and seafood. This light and airy restaurant has large windows allowing guests to appreciate the view of the Inland Sea and modern art from any seat whilst enjoying their meal (Artwork on the walls of Issen includes Andy Warhol’s ‘Flowers’ and Hiroshi Sugimoto’s ‘Time Exposed’). There’s also Museum Cafe on the second floor of the Museum building, and Park Lounge on the ground floor of the Park building.
Benesse House features a contemporary art museum with four buildings accommodating guests, plus two restaurants, an exclusive lounge, a cafe, a library, a spa and a gift shop.
Terrace Restaurant offers buffet-style breakfasts and a French dinner menu, and Issen serves traditional kaiseki meals featuring fresh seafood. The Oval Lounge is a lovely place to relax with a cocktail.
At Wayfairer, we aim to work with hotels that support their local communities. Benesse Art Site Naoshima draws hundreds of thousands of tourists to the islands, and their visits support the local economy. Benesse Art Site Naoshima also collaborates with their local community on projects on the island, such as the Naoshima Rice-Growing Project, where they restarted the process of rice cultivation on Naoshima.
At Wayfairer, we also aim to work with properties that are mindful of their natural environments. All four buildings at Benesse House were designed to ensure minimal impact on the environment, and the contemporary wood and glass buildings complement the stunning natural surroundings.