One of the most appealing things about travel is noticing little details that are different from one country to the next. Bathrooms and hotel amenities fall into that category in Japan.
Most Americans and Europeans fear the hole in the floor toilets seen occasionally at restaurants and department stores, simply because we’re unsure of how to use them. But the Japanese also have some of the most high tech plumbing on the planet, as is shown by this toilet menu from our hotel.
Also at the airport, I went into the bathroom marked “women” and immediately panicked when I saw all the infograms of a male figure using the various types of toilets. No need to fear, they are just there to indicate the type of toilet inside each cubicle. And unlike our toilet stalls, Japanese cubicles do not–at least so far– have spaces where the door closes that one could look into. They are very discreet.
Other fun amenities from our hotel include a tea pot (instead of a coffee pot), an earthquake torch (flashlight), and hooks and hangers on the wall to minimize space use. And of course, slippers and free toothbrushes and hairbrushes. And for those who are wondering about my toothpaste tablet experiment (from Lush). You chew the tablets a little bit and then brush. They taste a bit like a minty, baking soda, charcoal mix. Not bad and less for the TSA bag.
My favorite amenity at this hotel is a pre charged, preloaded cell phone that you can use to get around town with. It was a joy when we went off by ourselves.
The robes were a nice touch too. Well off to bed again to see if a can get a little more sleep. I slept 6 hours at my first stretch so the jet lag hasn’t been awful.
One other surprising aspect of. Japanese bathrooms is that all the toilet paper is one-ply, without perforations. It works fine but somehow the Japanese are able to tear it off in a perfect line. Mine looks like my dog Owen has been chewing on it.
Some of the Japanese bathrooms have music playing so others don’t hear your process. Itoya’s bathroom had nature sounds music. It was lovely. And one held one’s hand up to a wall panel to flush. Really slick. The hand dryers actually work perfectly here, and the bathroom stall locks are an engineering marvel. They swing smoothly into place to lock the door securely.