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AYA Niseko | Ski-in Ski-out Luxury Accommodations in Hirafu Village | Niseko, Japan

AYA Niseko | Ski-in Ski-out Luxury Accommodations in Hirafu Village | Niseko, Japan

We just got back from a wonderful 4-night stay at AYA Niseko, and I’m excited to share all about it! Everything in the hotel was so sleek and tastefully done. I loved the basket weave theme that is all over the hotel. Gorgeous.

You need your key card to enter the areas with the rooms (we shared the 5th floor with Powder Yoga so this is to ensure that non-hotel guests can’t just be roaming the halls).

You need your key card to enter the areas with the rooms (we shared the 5th floor with Powder Yoga so this is to ensure that non-hotel guests can’t just be roaming the halls).

Living Area + Kitchen

AYA Niseko Review - Luxury Ski Resort in Niseko, Japan | travelhappy blog
AYA Niseko Review - Luxury Ski Resort in Niseko, Japan | travelhappy blog

Flatscreen TV (the only one in the apartment) and a couch for lounging and reading.

AYA Niseko luxury ski resort | where to stay in Niseko Japan | travelhappy
AYA Niseko luxury ski resort | where to stay in Niseko Japan | travelhappy

The full kitchen came with a refrigerator, stove, dishwasher; and oven/microwave; plus glasses, dishes, and utensils. It also had a Nespresso machine (they had different capsules than the standard ones I’m used to so I kind of had to guess as to what I was drinking).

Bedroom with En-Suite Bathroom

AYA Niseko luxury ski resort | where to stay in Niseko Japan | travelhappy

I didn’t take pictures of the second bath or bedroom but they were pretty basic. The second bathroom (located by the foyer) had a washer and dryer which would really have come in handy if we had stayed a little longer.

AYA Niseko’s Resort Amenities

Amenities include an on-site onsen, a kids club, a yoga studio, gym, spa, and art gallery. The kids club, “Powder Yoga” studio, and spa services all cost extra. There is an onsite restaurant, Ginger, located next to the ski valet on the ground floor, but it is not affiliated with the hotel, so you can’t do a room charge for your meal— bring your credit card.

Ski-in Ski-out Luxury

View of the family base ski lift & the mountain right behind the resort

View of the family base ski lift & the mountain right behind the resort

AYA Niseko’s location at the Family Base of Grand Hirafu was super convenient. Plus, my adult group ski lesson with Go Snow Niseko started at the Family Base, and people taking lessons with GoSnow get priority access to the Family Base’s quad lift.

Resort Location

AYA is located on the edge of town; next to a national forest and just two streets/blocks away from the main street in Hirafu Village. We loved our view of the forest from our room — so serene and beautiful, not to mention private. The resort offers a mountain view, forest view, or resort town/ski view and I would recommend the forest view hands down — otherwise you’ll have to close your blinds all the time for privacy.

View of the forest from our room at AYA Niseko

View of the forest from our room at AYA Niseko

On two out of the four nights we were in Niseko, we either took cabs or the hotel’s free shuttle to dinner (restaurants in Niseko require strict punctuality) and then walked back to the hotel afterward. Cab flagfall is 660 yen, but our tab rarely went over that amount.

Best Places to Eat Near AYA Niseko

Kanon Crab restaurant and Bang Bang Izakaya were both in walking distance from the hotel and were amazing options. Sessa Hotpot was not in walking distance but had its own free shuttle service (so great!). I’m going to do a separate post about all the amazing food we ate in Niseko and I’ll update this space when that happens

ginger salad.jpg

Ginger is the hotel’s on-site option. It doesn’t serve authentic Japanese food (and everyone working in the open kitchen and all of its serving staff appeared to be from out of town).

The katsu curry was kind of sad, but I had a delicious burger at lunch. We also had this vegan salad that was pretty good, and my morning latte was great).

As mentioned before, Ginger does not do room charges so you’ll need to bring your wallet when dining here, even if you’re staying at AYA.

 

AYA Niseko’s Service & a Note About Tripadvisor/Review Sites

Front desk at AYA Niseko

Front desk at AYA Niseko

Firepits in a glass box are all the rage right now

Firepits in a glass box are all the rage right now

Service was great from the moment we pulled in to the hotel until check-out. We arrived at 1:45pm to kind and attentive service and a ready room (yay!) — despite written warnings in their reservation policy that check-in was not possible before 3pm. All the ladies who helped us - from bell desk duties to check-in to concierge/restaurant reservations - were uniformly friendly and helpful. I was kind of dumbfounded to read otherwise on Tripadvisor.com — which was just another reminder that you have to take commentary on review sites with a grain of salt. Most people don’t write reviews of hotel stays, but angry/easily slighted people do.

Booking at AYA Niseko

As a travel agent, I can get you special rates at AYA that are not available to the general public (yay!)

I would love to help you book your family ski trip; your fancy friend trip; or your couple’s getaway! I’ll also personally assist you in purchasing or arranging lift passes + ski or snowboarding lessons + rentals + dinner or lunch reservations (restaurant reservations are an absolute must in Niseko’s busy season). Let me know!

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