Mar 19, 2011

Master of "Sunakake"

Beppu City Comprehensive Development Center recognized Ms. Setsuko Imura as the 1st Master of Sunakake. (Suna means sand and kake means covering) The recognition was given to Setsuko on the 22nd day of February, 2011. Setsuko has been working at Beppu Beach Sand Bath, an open air hot spring sand bath located at the center of the sea shore of the beautiful Beppu Bay, since 1996.

Currently, thirteen Sunakake girls are working at two sand baths in Beppu. One is Beppu Beach Sand Bath and the other is Takegawara hot spring (indoor) near JR Beppu station. Setsuko is selected as the first Master of Sunakake not only because of her fifteen year experience but also because of her superb hospitality sprit to her guests.

In the interview by FTIO, she said, “My job is simply to cover the guest with beach sand warmed by natural hot spring water. But I love this job and am fully responsible for it. My guests come to Beppu from far and wide including many foreign countries. I really appreciate it. To express my sincere gratitude to them, I always try to put sand tenderly on guest’s legs, arms and whole body using not only a shovel but also my hands and fingers to fill any tiny gaps between all the parts of the body and sand.”

Comment by a guest;
My first experience of sand bath was really pleasant and comfortable!!! The view from there with the Bay of Beppu direct front is also wonderful! It was interesting to see other guests lying down fully covered by sand. They looked very relaxed and happy. Above all, I was so moved by the sunakake girls who kept smiling to guests while working quite hard. Their skill to cover the sand thoroughly and evenly over guests’ bodies is excellent!
Thank you!!!

Core of the hospitality of the international tourist city Beppu, is “relaxation” and “healing”. At Beppu Beach Sand Bath, you can experience both of them. We strongly recommend you to visit there while you stay in Beppu.

Brief sketch of Beppu Beach Sand Bath;
- Location・・・Sea shore center of the Bay of Beppu
- Access・・・ 15 minutes by Kamenoi bus #26 from JR Beppu station
                      20 minutes by Kamenoi bus #16 from Kannawa
- Nearest Bus Stop・・・Rokusho-en
- Business hour・・・8:30 - 18:00 (March through October)
                             9:00 – 17:00 (November through February)
                             Closed ; 4th Thursday every month
- Fee・・・ 1,000 yen (Cash only)
- TEL・・・0977-66-5737