The sea and the wide underwater universe always attracted people. Jules Verne also dedicated one of his book exploring 20,000 miles underwater. Maldives, Caribbean, Tahiti, Hawaii or Fiji is some of world’s most prestigious beach & sea destinations. Besides the classical hotels, some are popular as a destination having an underwater hotel. The most famous is located in Maldives while others are in Dubai, Florida, Sweden or even in Tanzania. Popularity of underwater hotels underline people is oriented to spend more time in the nature and its discovery. If on top of it, they can contribute to the environment, it is even better.
Japan is a one of few countries surrounded by the sea and the ocean, natural resource beneficial as per not only environment or gastronomical point, but also as a tourism development. More than 6.000 islands spread on 3.000 kilometers’ length offering subpolar, temperate and subtropical climates is a unique diversification for a single country. Okinawa is situated on the south and attracts domestic and foreign people looking for beautiful beaches, transparent sea and activities such as snorkeling and diving.
Approaching with big steps the target of 40 million until 2020 with the incredible increase of foreign tourists, Japan literally jumped from 10 million in 2013 to 28 million last year. With existing domestic travels counting more than 300 million annually, Hotel rush is not a surprise. Many new hotels, ryokans (traditional), capsule, hostels, private accommodations or country’s original love hotels are enriching Japanese travel environment on daily basis. For example, worldwide known interior and living products company MUJI plan to open a hotel in the center of Tokyo or ‘Hen na Hotel’ where only five people are managing while reception desk and all other tasks are done by robots is attracting many guests. Many new hotels are announced for the near future but Japan is still waiting for the first underwater hotel.
For Japan, developing a sea-ocean related new offers and products would attract important world media coverage, boost tourists keen for an exclusive experience and enforce the position as a prominent Sea Resort destination. Another benefice of sea and beach tourism development would be spreading the concentration of foreign tourists from the most popular city destinations to wider areas, contributing to regional development.
So, where would be the first underwater hotel in Japan?