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Vacation Can Make You Happy


5 ways to discover omotenashi


WIn the West one may think that we know the meaning of hospitality, but once compared with the Japanese tradition of OmotenashiYou will feel that the true definition of the translation has been lost. Forget about the western path where the giver can be hospitable to gain something. In the heart of OmotenashiInstead, hospitality is geared exclusively to the recipient. It is a host who takes care of the needs of a guest before he can even be spoken.

Because the concept is so deeply rooted in Japanese culture, there are many ways to experience it on your journey in full, lofty ways. Here are five promising starting places.

1. Flying ANA, Japan's largest 5-star airline

ANA All Nippon Airways aircraft

Photo: All Nippon Airways

You do not have to wait until you touch up to get the first impression Omotenashi – It's alive and well at 30,000 feet on yours All Nippon Airways Flight. You'll find it in everything, from the staff's attitude (ranked # 1 by Skytrax across Asia) to the on-board amenities – adjustable, 180-degree flatbeds. 17-inch monitors; Pajamas and cardigans; Noise-canceling headphones are just some of the goodies wait for those in the business class or higher. If you want to sleep, wrap yourself in a down comforter (presumably to remind you that you are traveling between the clouds).

And we have not even come to the menu yet. ANA's "Connoisseurs" program offers gastronomic offerings developed in collaboration with top chefs from Japan and around the world. When hungry, you'll be able to choose between dishes such as Japanese beef, cooked slowly in a rich demi-glace sauce, and a rockfish fish marinated in a sweet, sparkling miso sauce. In fact, you do not have to wait until you're hungry because ANA lets you pre-order your meal 24 hours before departure. Think of it as another fun step in planning your ultimate Japanese adventure. and consider All Nippon Airways to be the consummate host who's ready to get you on the right track Omotenashi,

2. Participation in a traditional tea service

Once you have landed in Japan, there is no more fitting continuation of the Omotenashi Experience as one Sado, a Japanese tea ceremony. In fact, the practice of Omotenashi has its roots in Sadoa tradition dating back to the 9th century. A host takes part in the traditional tradition of preparing and serving tea to his guests, a gesture that should come straight from the heart.

Wabi SabiThe Japanese idea of ​​beauty in transience is also an integral part of this tradition. Therefore, all utensils and dishes are kept simple and draw the attention of the participant to the tea. A proper ceremony can only be done in one Tatami Room with mats on the floor to determine where the host and guests are to sit. Most of the time the host wears one kimono, with guests dressed in either one or a formal western outfit.

Tips: ON Sado Depending on the formality, it can take up to four hours. Wear modest, simple clothing and avoid exaggerating the jewelry or perfume. When the tea is served, lift it up with your right hand and place the bowl in your left palm. Turn the cup with its front facing away from you, drink a few sips, and then put it back on the mat. Repeat this process until you have finished your tea.

3. Bowing – as a sign of honor and respect

During your ANA flight, you may find that cabin crew members bend slightly when interacting with you. When you arrive in Japan, this practice is repeated from every place you meet. Another manifestation of Omotenashi, Bowing shows respect, acts as a gesture of greeting and gives thanks, among other things. A small bow of the head is rather casual, while a deep bow from the waist is a strong and sincere sign of appreciation. As a foreigner, you are expected to return a small bow, an offer that is much appreciated.

Look again at the example of Sado: When you enter the first time Tatami Room, you should bow your host a little, as a thank you for your welcome. Bow down again when you leave after the ceremony. In this way, you honor them and the time they took to record their stay.

In general, during your trip to Japan, you will notice that people bow to you when you check in your receipt, food, or hotel. In each of these cases, it is appropriate to reject oneself as a sign of recognition and respect. Consider the bow as a silent thank you, and you have a good sense of when and how the gesture should be used.

4. stay in one Ryokan

If you want to have a really intense experience Omotenashi – one that will forever change your definition of "hospitality" – a stay in one Ryokan, These small country inns are designed to offer their guests the highest level of personal care and service.

Explore your inevitably beautiful surroundings – one of the best areas around Ryokan Is she tend to be near Onsenor hot springs – and come back to enjoy a traditional multi-course dinner with a menu that reflects the region. Typically for a one or two night stay (like a spa), treat that Ryokan Experience a relaxed, quieter trip during your otherwise busy journey.

5. Learn the art Ikebana

As in many cultures, floral arrangements call for care and respect. The Japanese – no surprises here – bring this concept to an even nicer level Omotenashi through the art of Ikebana,

In Japan, Ikebana is the meticulous arrangement of flowers, branches and leaves in a spectacular shape. Beyond the outer beauty that projects it, Ikebana allows the participants to create a spiritual connection with nature and to refresh body and soul. Take time to learn the practice Ikebana during your visit, and then present your creation to a loved one. And so you are on the way to grasp the spirit of Omotenashi,

The post Omotenashi: 5 ways to discover traditional Japanese hospitality on your journey first appeared on Matador Network,

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