Treat each guest with honor. — Rumi
At Arcana Izu there’s no front desk. No check-in. No elevator to your room…
These were all very auspicious signs. I knew instantly this was an enchanted place to be savored.
For those with an inclination for hermetic wanderlust, yet covet a place wholly immersed in nature, there may be no better place on earth than Arcana Izu. In other words, if you appreciate the great outdoors but don’t consider yourself the outdoorsy-type then Arcana is where you should pitch your proverbial tent.
There was no ‘stumbling upon’ Arcana in any format. It took many, many hours of trolling the Internet comparing onsen to ryokan, traditional to contemporary… Let alone physically getting there would mean several modes of transportation, and would add four extra legs of travel to the end of my trip. The Izu Peninsula to New York City is no small feat.
(Spoiler alert: all, and I mean all, of this was worth it.)
The 2.5 hour transit from Tokyo to Izu City positions you, rather rapidly (the Bullet Train is heavenly), for this transition. The hair-bending turns through the lush, bucolic landscape was a harbinger of the stun-ning natural setting that was to come.
Staying at Arcana Izu was an experience unlike any other. From the private open-air bath to our personal butler’s ability to foresee our needs long before even the foggiest desire had entered my mind was otherworldly. Waking up to sound of birds singing and the river whispering below was surreal. Not “kind of” surreal, the kind of surreal where you question everything you’ve ever known.
The options are bountiful when it comes to resorts, inns, and ryokans outside of Tokyo. For a country that is roughly the size of California you could easily cover a lot of Japan by train. If an immersive forest locale laden with privacy and luxury appeals to you (and why wouldn’t it?) hop on that Bullet Train for Arcana Izu.
Izu City, Shizuoka 410-3206