Yuka's Travel Diary: Shizuoka

Throughout the year, Yuka Morihata travels to Japan to personally select items to sell in the Rikumo store, visit with vendors and enjoy Japanese culture in person. Yuka founded Rikumo.com with her husband, Kaz Morihata, in 2009. Born in Tokyo and Osaka, Japan, they met as students when they both came to the United States to attend the Rhode Island School of Design. After working in interior design and architecture for many years in New York, Tokyo and Milan, Kaz and Yuka settled in Philadelphia and started their business based on their love of design and the Japanese aesthetic. Below is a behind the scenes peek from Yuka’s recent trip to Japan. If you’d like to see more of her travels, catch up here and here.

After spending a few years of my childhood in Shizuoka, I’ve always had a nostalgic feeling for this coastal city. Recently I decided to retrace my sepia-toned footprints with a trip. After driving less than two hours southwest from Tokyo, I was enjoying a cup of locally grown and brewed green tea while surrounded by deep green mountains. Shizuoka is the leading producer of green tea with 40% of Japanese green tea being produced in the region today.

During this trip, I stayed at the newly renovated Nippondaira Hotel, located on the hill top of Nihondaira Plateau. The renovation was completed by renowned architecture firm Nikken Sekkei, where I once worked as a designer.

Every corner of the main building has a spectacular view of 16 acres.

Mt. Fuji, buried under clouds.

Unfortunately the sky was overcast, otherwise the room I stayed in usually has a perfect view of Mt. Fuji.