Hachijo Royal Hotel – The former luxury hotel in Hachijō-jima

The Resort Hachijo was one of the largest hotels in Japan and attracted its clientele from the ever-expanding Japanese middle class. The Hachijo Royal Hotel was built in 1963 and quickly flourished.

Tourism on the Izu Islands was booming back then, especially on Hachijo-jima, since the government nicknamed it the “Hawaii of Japan” in an attempt to give the island a positive image and the population of Tokyo a warm place to visit.

Abandoned exterior of Hachijo Royal Hotel / Image source

The Royal Hotel (later known as the Pricia Resort Hachijo, then as the Hachijo Oriental Resort) remained as a functioning hotel until 2006, when it was suddenly closed down. The hotel’s opulent interior includes restaurants, bars, function centers, bathhouses and many guest rooms – all left to decay behind closed doors since its employees departed.

Containing a combination of Western style and traditional Japanese guest rooms, the hotel’s overwhelming exterior seems far too large for its residential location. Miniature jungles thrive inside many of its ocean facing guest rooms due to a damp tropical climate, creating a surreal optical where ferns sprout through carpets, beds and lounge suites.

The ultimate fate of this opulent structure is unknown. Slowly chipping away at its exterior is the salty, corrosive seaside air, creating holes in its rooftop and cracks in the walls.

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