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“'Elegant simplicity in all things'”

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Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat
Certificate of Excellence
Darwin, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“'Elegant simplicity in all things'”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 April 2014

There is much to be gained from truly letting go and embracing a quiet, simple, elegant way of being in a beautiful Japanese setting, framed perfectly by the Australian bush. The staff are superb, as is the Japanese food and you will feel welcomed and cared for. There is something wonderful about tatami mats and soft, supportive futons. Gosh, we did not want to leave...

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank ballaguya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 20 April 2014
Hi,

What a wonderfully written review.

Thank you for your eloquent comments.

Gosh, we didn't want you to leave!

Best wishes,

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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171 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 March 2014 via mobile

We came here for a relaxing one year anniversary and to escape the hectic lifestyle back home. We left our shoes at the entrance of the retreat along with our outside worries. We were greeted by the friendliest of staff with Japanese robes and slippers and encouraged to wear them around the retreat. We couldn't take them off! It's amazing how quickly this place allows you to unwind with their simplistic decor, lush bush surroundings and peaceful ambience. We each enjoyed a one hour massage before returning to our room for a Japanese banquet dinner that we opted to have Japanese style on the floor in the privacy of our own room. The attentive staff quietly entered in and out of our room to serve each beautifully presented course.
We loved our Japanese room with private two person jet spa, small terrace and courtyard. There are no outside or digital distractions so you are left to unwind and enjoy each others company.
We enjoyed breakfast on the terrace overlooking the lush greenery surrounding the retreat before departing. What a wonderful experience. Thank you Shizuka Ryokan. We will return.

Stayed March 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Miki4Linda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 12 March 2014
Hi,

Thank you so much for taking the time to record your impressions of our service.

It's great that you appreciate the ambience that we offer through the various small touches such as the yukata robes and slippers.

We look forward to welcoming you back again soon.

Best wishes,

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney
Level Contributor
55 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2014 via mobile

I stayed for a total of three nights with my partner and also opted for the in-house dinner on one night along with the reflexology and shiatsu treatments.

The entire property is extremely well-maintained. The ensuite bathrooms in particular appear to be almost brand-new and I really liked the separate shower and spa-bath as this allows you to use the shower to clean yourself and the bath strictly for soaking (as per the Japanese way). The rooms themselves are not the biggest as they consist of eight tatami mats. But it is more than enough room for two people. Plus it also has a sitting area/sunroom and a private garden. I also liked the way that the lobby/dining room gracefully merged Australian architecture with tasteful, modern Japanese-inspired interior furnishings.

The dinner is a multiple-course meal which varies from time to time. You don't get a choice in relation to the food as it is an 'omakase' menu where the menu selection is entirely up to the chef. However they are more than willing to accommodate special dietary requirements and I even received some complimentary chocolate almonds as I was staying as part of a graduation celebration. The dinner I had was delicious and I only wish I could have opted to have the in-house dinner on more than one night of my stay. But in hindsight, the fact that we had to find dinner elsewhere on two nights gave us the opportunity to sample the region's produce and cuisine.

Breakfast is provided each morning and is included in the room rate. There is a set Japanese meal option as well as three other set meal options which are Western. Although we opted for the Western options on one morning for some variety, I highly recommend the Japanese breakfast - which was delicious, healthy and filling.

The reflexology and shiatsu treatments were a great and relaxing way to spend an afternoon. The two treatments compliment one another very well as they can treat different issues. These two treatments are performed fully-clothed and are a good alternative for those who don't like the feeling of massage oils on their skin and/or those who do not like being undressed in front of others. We actually got a package which included the dinner and the two treatments for two people which was great value.

The service throughout our stay was impeccable - Everyone was efficient and friendly and seemed very willing to assist. I also liked the way that the place never seems busy - even when the place was fully-booked on one of the nights during our stay.

Having stayed at ryokans in Japan before, I must admit that I had certain expectations. But Shizuka Ryokan and its staff met those expectations in their own way. I would love to have the opportunity to visit again.

Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank MissMicha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 5 February 2014
Thank you MissMicha for taking the time to offer your extensive and thoughtful comments.

We are particularly pleased to hear your positive feedback as you have also experienced ryokan hospitality in Japan.

We also remember your partner's strong interest in Japanese culture and so we accordingly value your comments very highly indeed.

We appreciated that you flew some distance to stay with us but we do hope that we may welcome you back again one day.

Peter
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Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 November 2013

My wife and I recently stayed a night at the Shizu Ryokan and had a wonderful time. Excellent service, lovely room, a very relaxing massage and delicious Japanese dinner and breakfast cooked by Margaret. It reminded us of our honeymoon in Japan a few years ago and we will definitely be back, hopefully for 2 nights this time! Couldn't fault anything.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank SeanDas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 23 November 2013
Sean

Thanks for your kind comments.

It would be a great idea to come for a longer visit next time as our nightly rates are lower for a two-night stay and even lower again for a three-night stay.

Not just for the financial incentive, a longer stay also gives you more time to relax, refresh and rejuvenate!

Best wishes,

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Springvale South, Victoria, Australia
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 November 2013

A beautifully decorated and simple yet intimate Japanese themed resort.
The minimal Japanese approach to décor gives guest a very calming sense of tranquillity and relaxation, the service here is beautiful the Japanese workers are very polite and welcoming, and immediately make you feel like you're at home. The shiatsu massage was amazing, The breakfast and banquet dinners were amazing.
Very well recommended place for a a relaxing trip or a short alternative to a trip to Japan in our own backyard. very authentic! LOVED my stay here and would definitely come back (me and my partner were already discussing our return when we check out)

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Anthony T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 19 November 2013
Hi Anthony,

Thanks so much for your very kind words.

Your stay last week coincided with our Victorian Tourism Award win and so we are enthused about the prospect of maintaining and increasing our customer service standards.

We were pleased to have you stay and we look forward to your return.

Best wishes,

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 October 2013

My partner and I came here to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and Shizuka Ryokan provided us just that. This place is beautiful, peaceful, homely, it's everything we expected it to be and more. The moment we stepped into here we could feel all the stress and tiredness drained away, replaced by a sense of tranquility. We were greeted by Peter, who had everything we requested prepared for us and Maki, always with the brightest smile and exquisite service. Absolutely adore her and she made our stay all the more wonderful.

I love how all the rooms are named after different species of flowers (ours' Cherry Blossom). Our room is lovely and very comfortable. Personally, the little patio connected to the room that leads out into a little private japanese styled garden is my favourite. I cannot explain the simple joy of just sitting there, enjoying the view and soothing sound coming from the tsukubai (a stone water basin with a bamboo spout pouring water).

All the guests are provided with yukata (casual cotton kimono) which can be worn around the premises. No shoes are allowed but bedroom slippers are provided. As I'm really short (5") and the yukata provided was too long for me, Maki was really quick in helping me get a yukata that fits me. We were here for two nights and both nights I had the most amazing rests. We had both the Japanese breakfast and banquet (we got to dine in the room!), which were hearty with excellent flavours. We felt so nurtured.

It was an amazing experience and it made me miss Japan.
Thank you for the past three days!

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Michelle O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 10 October 2013
Hi Michelle

Thanks so much for your very thoughtful comments.

I have shown your review to all our staff, with our Japanese girls now smiling even more!

Please come again.

Best wishes,

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 August 2013

My partner and I stayed for two nights at Shizuka and had a wonderful time. The service was top notch - very attentive and helpful - and the stay was comfortable and peaceful. Plus the food was excellent - had both the Japanese breakfast and banquet on Saturday and the food was excellent. Hard to flaw anything at this place.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Shikoda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ryokan, Owner at Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat, responded to this review, 29 August 2013
Hello

Thank you so much for your very kind comments. All our staff were thrilled with the feedback. We hope to welcome you again to Shizuka Ryokan in the future.

Peter
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat

Property: Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat
Address: 7 Lakeside Dr, Hepburn Springs, Victoria 3461, Australia
Phone Number:
Region: Australia > Victoria > Hepburn Springs
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Room Service Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 11 B&Bs / Inns in Hepburn Springs
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat 4*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Slip off your shoes and enter the tranquil world of the Japanese ryokan. Hospitality of honour. Zen design. Tatami flooring. Sliding shoji paper screens. A deep soaking bath overlooking your private courtyard garden. "Omakase" dining. Delicious breakfast. Spa and holistic wellness treatments. Australia's renowned Japanese guesthouse, the award-winning Shizuka Ryokan is a tranquil environment in which to relax and reenergise. The accommodation is traditional ... fully authentic in every detail including its architecture, furnishings, gardens, warm hospitality and personalised service. It's a small piece of Japan just 80 minutes drive from Melbourne. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat Hotel Hepburn Springs
Shizuka Ryokan Japanese Country Spa Retreat Hepburn Springs, Australia - Victoria

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