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“Brilliant hotel, great location, fantastic food”
Review of Zao Kokusai Hotel

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Zao Kokusai Hotel
Ranked #4 of 83 Hotels / Ryokan in Yamagata
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 9 January 2014

I highly recommend this hotel. It is located very close to the slopes. The onsen is really wonderful and very relaxing. The food is very high quality and delicious. The staff were extremely helpful and friendly. The rooms were comfortable, clean and warm. Please note there is no shuttle bus around this resort although it can easily be reached on foot.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank Yorkiee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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17 - 23 of 161 reviews

Reviewed 23 January 2012

I stayed at Zao Kokusai for three nights from 11 to 13 Jan, 2012.

Value for money: We booked a ski pass-inclusive package for 14,700 yen per person per night, dinner and buffet breakfast also inclusive. The one-day ski pass itself is worth 5,300 yen. The dinner was luxurious with wagyu beef shabu-shabu, sashimi, radish stew, over 10 different appetizers in lesser-kaiseki fashion, plus soba, pickles, steamed rice, miso soup, dessert, fruits.... Most guests can't finish them all. I would say the dinner itself can easily ask for another 5,000 yen. To top it off, staying guests are eligible to one 45-minute session of private onsen for free every day. Most hotels charge 1,200 yen for a private bath sesstion. There are two massage chairs on the second floor of the north building that you can use for free. The breakfast has a nice variety of food. All in all, the room costs almost nothing if you take all perks into account.

Location: The hotel is located right next to a slope near the Sanroku gondola / ski lift station. If you have your own gear with you, it only takes one minute to cross a footbridge from the hotel to reach the slope, where you ski downhill for 1 minute to reach the gondola/ski lift. Extremely convenient, though not exactly ski-in ski-out.

Service: typical top-notch onsen hotel service. Discreet turn-down service when we had dinner in the the dining hall. (We had a Japanese tatami room, so that the futon and duvet had to be laid out every night and made up every morning). The room was spotless and so was all public area.

Zao skiing area: Ice monsters are must-sees. The snow was dry and powdery. There are many slopes to choose from (though mostly green trails for beginners). I won't hesitate to recommend it every to experienced skiers / snowboarders (though you might not want to stay for too many days if you're looking for black diamond trails).

Room Tip: We had a room on the top floor of East tower overlooking the slopes near Sanroku ropeway and ski lif...
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank jaylowe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2011

Zao Kokusai Hotel
This is a quality hotel with all the amenities you could want. We stayed for 5 nights in Jan 2011 and had a really wonderful stay. The staff is friendly and try hard to make your stay a pleasant one.
Our room was serviced daily and spotlessly cleaned. Snacks, tea and toiletries bags were refreshed daily and this was a really nice touch.
The hotel contains a beautiful onsen and rotemburo( outdoor onsen) that is apparently a famous Japanese tourist attraction in itself. It is busy all day and late at night but is a must.
We stayed in a Japanese- beds style room that was quite spacious. Hanging space was a little bit of a problem as the cupboard contained several yukatas. In fact apart from ski gear, you needed little other clothing as it is customary to wear yukatas all around the hotel including to breakfast and dinner.
As the hotel is a little away from the main village, we opted for breakfast and dinner. It was an epic feast every night with about ten courses, including sashimi. Our only complaint would have to be the wine list that consisted of only one super sweet white and one red Yamagata wine.
Getting to Zao Onsen is really easy. We caught a Shinkansen from Tokyo about 2.5 hours -3 hours and a bus from the station 40 mins. The hotel picked us up from the bus terminal within minutes.
The hotel is located close to the ski slopes and to the Sanroku Ropeway. We found it very convenient for skiing.
Zao Onsen is a beautiful ski resort and rivals Nozawa for onsens and village and scenery. It’s well worth a visit.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank HavenSydneyAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2009

a very nice onsen hotel.. 30 mins bus ride from yammgata station. onsen is one of the best we had in japan. do book the private bath early as it s a must try item (free for staying guest).

food is good with good quality yamagata beef.

  • Stayed: September 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank SLTW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 July 2017
Google Translation

Room Tip: バリアフリーで、リクライニングチェアーも装備されていた。カメムシがはいってくることがあるらしいが、考えられないが。
  • Stayed: June 2017, travelled with family
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2  Thank esc2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2017
Google Translation

Room Tip: 普段はお高いのでしょうけど、スィートルームは本当に素晴らしい。閑散期でしたら、私達の様にホテルの好意で泊めてくれるかも??
  • Stayed: November 2016, travelled with family
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Thank むぴょ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2017
Google Translation

  • Stayed: May 2017, travelled with family
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Thank AIICHI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Zao Kokusai Hotel

Address: 933 Zao Onsen, Yamagata 990-2301, Yamagata Prefecture
Region: Japan > Tohoku > Yamagata Prefecture > Yamagata > Zao Onsen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 83 Hotels / Ryokan in Yamagata
Price Range: £124 - £403 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Zao Kokusai Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 65
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