Biwako Hotel+ expand detail
Lake Biwa, Japan
527,000 square feet / 49,000 square meters
The Biwako Hotel is located on the southern end of Lake Biwa, Japan’s largest inland lake. Designed to replace the venerable Biwako Hotel, established in 1934, the complex comprises a 23,000-square-meter hotel and 26,000 square meters for entertainment.
The compositional feature of the complex is a series of curves set parallel to the shoreline to maximize views of the lake. The building is clad in tile to create a rich texture. Its colors, mainly blues and greens, were inspired by the waves of Lake Biwa and the surrounding mountains. Silver and yellow accents enhance the form while horizontal patterns accentuate the curves of the building. With its curving, flowing forms, the complex is a striking presence when viewed from the lake and surrounding hills.
The hotel has 170 guest rooms located among 13 floors. Each room faces the water and has a private balcony. The hotel’s four-story atrium is clad in a deep blue-green tile, with a series of small round windows.
Four floors of entertainment include a bowling alley, movie theaters, shopping and restaurants. An outdoor roof-top dining terrace allows for dramatic views of the lake and mountains. The complex also includes Western– and Japanese-style banquet rooms with gardens and terraces, a restaurant and a chapel with stairs leading from an elevated garden to a public terrace below.
A passenger terminal for Lake Biwa pleasure cruise ships is adjacent to a city lakeshore park.