Friday, July 3, 2009
Spaland Isawa
Isawa onsen is a resort town that is 3 trains stations from my apartment. It's a great town, but is also known as a Yakuza hangout spot. Not too worried though as I've never had any problems when visiting. On Wed. a group of us went to Isawa to check out Spaland. It's a Korean style sauna and hot spring resort type thing. You can check out pics on their website, which is

While most onsen tend to cost anywhere from 100yen up to around 1000yen, this place was a bit more pricey. Just to get into the onsen, there is a 1800yen fee. However, you get a set of towels, a shirt and pants outfit, and access to all sorts of bath and beauty supplies including shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioning products, body soap, scrub clothes, face wash and masks, toner, lotion, a toothbrush and toothpaste set, etc, etc. So, it's expensive, but worth it.

After you pay the initial fee, you are given a numbered wristband. You can use this band to purchase various goods and services throughout the restort and then pay on your way out. There are several restaurants, shops, massages services, and spa treatments available. We started out by heading to the Korean spa/sauna area. Right after laying down in one of the hot rooms, we were pulled out by one of the staff. Apparently you have to pay an additonal 200yen fee to use the hot rooms. Some of us decided to stay and others decided to move to the onsen area. I was one of the ones who stayed.

The hot rooms were pretty nice. One room was decorated in all black and had beds of black stones. In the biggest room you could find marble stone slab beds, pink jade stone beds, and a bed of green, red, and white stones. It had a really nice atmosphere. There was also a super hot room, an ice room, and a woman only room. The woman only room had these color changing light stars on the ceiling which were really relaxing to watch.

After the sauna rooms, I headed to the onsen and got myself a body scrub. It's one of many spa serivces offered in the onsen, but you do have to pay extra for it. It was totally worth it though. After the scrub, I hit up the baths. There are quite a few pools in the onsen area. There are 2 baths outside, along with 3 singlue tub style baths. The tubs were normal onsen water, but one of the larger pools was a milk bath and the other was a speical mineral mix. The milk bath was not actually milk. It is a micro bubble bath that supposely helps exfoliate your skin and all the microscopic bubbles gives the pool a milky white appearance. Inside there is a super hot bath, a herb bath, a bamboo floored bath, a wine bath, a bath that has a bunch of water jets, and a shallow swimming pool. My favorite was the wine bath. It smelled like grapes. Love! There were also 3 saunas, one of which had salt scrub available.

After soaking, it was time to finish up. The locker area has a bunch of product available and there was this awesome face peel stuff available for use. I liked it so much I ended up buying a bottle to take home with me. Before heading out we grabbed a bite to eat at one of the 4 restaurants in the building. I had some super tasty celery and tomato ramen. I will probably be returning to Spaland again some time in the future.

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