Shishi-Iwa-House is a collection of countryside boutique hotels, conceived by Japanese "starchitects," where art and design harmonize sustainably with nature. Three locations in the resort town of Karuizawa present a 21st century evolution of the retreat concept, inspiring a more meditative mindset in guests.
SSH No.01 and No.02 were both created by Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Shigeru Ban. The former is a two-storey timber structure that weaves its way through lush surroundings. The latter, again a two-floor construction, is a wood-and-glass structure that appears to ‘float’ amid the surrounding treetops. Both sites see Ban extend this holistic vision to interiors, including guest rooms featuring his own custom-designed furniture. Contemporary art, including works by the celebrated Hiroshi Sugimoto, are displayed across both private and social spaces.
SSH No.03 is the brainchild of fellow Pritzker winner Ryue Nishizawa. Ten interconnected wood pavilions form a minimalist, yet wholly serene, construction that draws upon traditional teahouse aesthetics. Nishizawa’s design, intended to harmonize with Karuizawa’s cool, temperate climate, boasts multiple large-scale windows looking out onto dense forests and the mountains beyond.