Our curator Nobuhiro Shigeoka of the Designated Management Department was featured in the school pamphlet of Hanazono University, Kyoto. As a shining alumnus, his succesful efforts to preserve and promote National Historic Sites, as both Murin-an garden and The Former Retreat of Tomomi Iwakura are, were introduced. If you come across the article, take a look! “OB’s MESSAGE”
The “Fresh Greenery Illumination”at Murin-an garden was featured in The Yomiuri Shimbun along with information on the garden and the event itself. Created by Jihei Ogawa VII (7th) under the politician Aritomo Yamagata’s instructions, now for the first time the garden is open at night for the public to enjoy the view of the lush fresh green.
At a meeting of a local tourism promotion organization (’5K会’ ) our company president Kato and Yamada (Heritage and Garden Artistry manager) made a presentation on raising awareness for and promoting Japanese gardens abroad and within inbound tourism. Framed within these topics, they introduced our Japanese gardens abroad as well as our work at Murin-an as designated management company. Especially our efforts to continuously provide bilingual information at Murin-an had been favorably received by the audience. We will strive to continue introducing Japanese gardens to people from different countries and cultural backgrounds.
The “Fresh Greenery Illumination”at Murin-an garden was featured in The Kyoto Shimbun. The event was introduced as a successful synthesis of cultural heritage preservation and tourism effort as the garden was transformed with many lighting equipment without any alteration to the property. We appreciate the efforts of everyone involved in the preparation, especially LEM Design Studio Co. Ltd. Without them we couldn’t have brought this event to the community to enjoy the special night view of Murin-an garden.
Murin-an garden was introduced on two NHK Radio programs (“Kansai Doyo Hot Time” & “Kansai Radio Wide”). Our company president Tomoki Kato and garden craftsman Tomio Sakaue were interviewed about various topics such as the current “Fresh Greenery Illumination“, the benefits and feature of having a garden craftsman as a guide and, in addition, the objective as a designated management company of a Place of Scenic Beauty such as Murin-an garden is. We had a rare opportunity to express the fascination of Japanese gardens on a radio broadcast.
In the past, the trees of Kyoto mountains have been seriously harmed by spread of diseases. Therefore , Kyoto City has started activities from 2005 on, focusing on reforestation and prevention. Their recent activities, which Ueyakato was also involved in, were summarized in their March publication of “Shiki・Irodori no Morizukuri dayori No.5, 2017” (‘Four Seasons・Colourful Reforestation Program’) . At the latest event, up to 110 citizens participated in planting trees. We will continue to provide support in growing beautiful and diverse trees, which shape the scenery of Kyoto mountains. “Shiki・Irodori no Morizukuri dayori No.5, 2017”
Arte broadcasted a documentary on Murin-an Garden. Enriched by historical facts and scenes from the famous Gion festival of Kyoto, the documentary presented detailed knowledge of the garden and its current maintenance and fostering practices. We express our gratitude to the Arte team and appreciate their professionalism with which they covered Murin-an Garden. Link online in French or German (Available till Jun,13th, Europe only).
In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the foundation of ”The Architectural Association of Japan”, an anniversary edition of “Kansai Architectural World/”Gunzo”” was issued. In addition to an interview with our company president about the making of the garden at the “Hoshinoya Kyoto” resort, recent garden activities as well as our garden at the “Hoshinoya Tokyo” resort were covered. We will continue to strive to provide beautiful gardens while expanding the range of activities aimed at raising awareness of Japanese gardens. Anniversary edition “Kansai Architectural World/”Gunzo””
The Kyoto Shimbun (Kyoto Newspaper) published an article on the purple Viola Inconspicua, a small wildflower type that can be found on the lawn of Murin-an Garden, announcing us the full arrival of spring. The garden was built according to the design and thoughts of the Meiji politician, Aritomo Yamagata and Ueyakato devotes considerable effort to foster the various wildflower types, that Yamagata adored. In fact, it is unusual for a Japanese garden to grow wildflowers, most often picked out as weed. Our specialized gardeners have put thorough work into keeping more than 30 types of wildflowers, even throughout the harsh winter season.
Our efforts to foster and maintain Keihanna Commemorative Park received endorsement by Kyoto Prefecture and were featured in an annual manual by the Ministry of Environment of Japan ( “Manual of the Integrated Pest and Weed Management in Parks and Street Trees”). Our garden craftsmen have specialized knowledge in disease control and could early on detect pests on red pines and hydrangeas. By promptly sharing information with local communities and organizations, damages from disease spreading were effectively prevented. We are humbled to receive recognition for our work and continue to provide high quality maintenance of parks and like to share the efforts with local communities.
The research paper of our gardeners Tomio Sakaue, Sanae Handa and company president Tomoki Kato was recently published in the ‘Technial Reports of Landscape Architecture No.9, 2017’ by the Japanese Institue of Landscape Architecture. The paper explains the implementation of diligent care of wildflowers as an essential value in Japanese garden management. It is known that Aritomo Yamagata, the founder of the garden, enjoyed the naturally blooming wildflowers.
Our company president, Tomoki Kato, presented and guided through Murin-an and Konchi-in Temple (part of the Nanzenji-Temple complex) during a group event, which was sponsored by the Kyoto Heritage Preservation Association. At Murin-an Garden, the emphasis of the speech lay on the original garden concept by Aritomo Yamagata as well as how to foster and care for the garden from a perspective of designated management. At Konchi-in, participants could both enjoy a tour of Hojo Garden (created by Enshu Kobori) as well as Hasso-seki, a unique tea room. Participants were listening attentively and reaffirmed the importance of preserving cultural properties.
The Former Retreat of Tomomi Iwakura was featured on Nagano TV NBS program (“Focus ∞ Shinshu”). The episode portrays Taseko Matsuo, a female poet born in Nagano, and her contact to Iwakura in his retirement. The footage presented the well-preserved retreat in the nostalgic atmosphere of around that time.
Our unique event ‘Create a Petite Garden’ was held at ‘Shiun-no-Niwa”, a garden part of Konkai Komyo-Ji Temple that Ueyakato takes care of. Upon request by the Kyoto Convention & Visitors Bureau, the event took place within the 44th Kyoto International Tourism Contents Research Event and the participants were guided personally by our garden craftsmen, Takahito Oka and Yasutomo Inoue. It was an opportunity to propose ideas for tourism and MICE projects in Japan and was well received by participants: “It will be valuable experience not only for VIP clients but also for corporate team building programs.’ We will continue to promote Japanese garden culture and hope to contribute to tourism and MICE projects through workshops alike.
A designated Place of Scenic Beauty Murin-an which we Ueyakato is the designated management agent and maintain and run was featured in Photography Journal ‘Asahicamera’ April 2017 issue.
You can enjoy a picture of Murin-an garden in winter captured so exquisitely by a photographer Shinichi Sato who has been taking photos of various gardens.
According to Mr. Sato, it is hard to shoot gardens in winter as there is no much greenery, however that is when visitors could take notice of other structures such as stone arrangements or streams. Besides, the world of gardens through the lens has another depth to it.
Hojo Garden of Nanzen-ji Temple was featured on Japanese TV (Kyoto KBS ‘Kyoto Kokuho Roman’). Hojo is a National Treasure and its dry garden is said to be created by notable artist Enshu Kobori. The program depicts the history of Nanzen-ji and its present shape in a clear, simple way and reminds us how blessed we are to be responsible for taking care of this historically valuable garden.
From February 27, 2017 ~ March 01, 2017 – Our company welcomed two American interns (Adam and Bryan) from the TRIAD Fellowship Program. They learned the basics of the landscape construction work by actually creating spatial structure (building a Japanese garden) at Keihanna Commemorative Park. Also at Konkai Komyo-ji Temple, they planted maple trees and learned our garden fostering method of ‘Although maintained meticulously, gardens appear like untouched nature’ The participants expressed their appreciation with those words ‘I was able to obtain the totally different perspective.’ ‘I learned the various technics which could be applied to the gardens back home’.
A Family workshop about knowing Okazaki, Kyoto titled “Oyako Okashiru Villa and Garden edition” was held in the Murin-an Garden on February 18,2017. Our company president Tomoki Kato and Tomio Sakauke acted as lectures.
Elementary school aged children acted as guests to the garden and experienced at first hand how broad welcoming hospitality in Japanese culture actually was.
And at the same time, they leanred how the villa and garden function in that respect, as well as what the gardeners regard as most important in everyday maintenance work and Shitsurai (setting made by keeping mind of appreciation of the change of seasons, milestones of preople’s lives, hospitality )means.
It was a delightful day that we were able to show the children how beauty in everyday life could be celebrated.
An interview with our company president Tomoki Kato on our works of the creation and maintenance of the garden of HOSHINOYA Kyoto Inn http://hoshinoyakyoto.jp/en/ was featured in the Japanese magazine ‘OZmagazine'(2017 March, No.539) http://www.ozmall.co.jp/ozmagazine/. It touched foundations of Japanese gardens: the design concept, long term maintenance policy, and how to foster the featured garden which is located in the best part of Arashiyama. We realized that our time consuming fostering efforts paid off as the enhanced beauty of the garden was appreciated.
February 05, 2017 – Our company president made a presentation titled “the operation and tourism of Murin-an Garden” at a conference on “Gardens as touristic resources”. The aim of the conference is to look into the future potential of gardens as touristic resources by following the historical background of gardens used as touristic resources in Japan and Europe as well as the current situation. There were lively discussions on the current situation of the gardens as touristic resources in Japan and Europe with guest speakers from the UK and Italy this year.