By THE NATION
The new hotel, Amari Niseko, is scheduled to open in 2024. It will be a central feature of the much-awaited Aruku-zaka Street mixed-use development plan, designed to complement the Hirafu area’s unique character and setting.
Created as a village hub for both visitors and the local community, Aruku-zaka Street will be made up of a series of low-rise buildings framing central plazas and a vibrant pedestrian walkway.
Aruku-zaka Street will be home to a carefully-curated selection of lifestyle with retail, food and beverage offerings, complemented by residential apartments and the all-new Amari resort.
Located at a strategic site in central Hirafu, in the Abuta-gun district of Kutchan town just off route 343, Amari Niseko and Aruku-zaka Street will be easily reached via a two-hour scenic drive or train journey from the new Chitose Airport in Sapporo.
A year-round resort and the ideal base for skiing in the winter, and hiking and biking in the greener months, Amari Niseko will offer 126 rooms in a variety of studio, one-bedroom suite and two-bedroom suite configurations.
Featuring contemporary Thai-inspired design with touches from the locality, Amari Niseko will also offer a concept restaurant that transitions from breakfast to a destination cocktail bar as night falls.
Douglas Martell, President and Chief Executive Officer, ONYX Hospitality Group, said: “Originally from Thailand, Amari has been going places and introducing its unique take on contemporary Thai-ness to new markets such as the Maldives, Malaysia, China, and Sri Lanka in recent years. We are excited to be introducing our flagship brand to yet another new destination with the signing of our very first hotel in Japan. We look forward to a long-term collaboration with Metropoly Holdings as the sole hotel operator of the landmark Aruku-zaka Street development in one of the world’s most popular ski destinations.”
Ang Renyi, Managing Partner of Metropoly Holdings Limited, said: “Aruku-zaka Street will be the first development of its type in Niseko, a large-scale private development aimed at providing generous public space and endless activities for the local community and tourists alike. We have always believed in our vision to create a vibrant year-round destination with plenty of shops, restaurants and open space. We are confident that the brand-new Amari Niseko will leverage ONYX Hospitality Group’s expertise in hospitality management and success as one of Asia’s fastest growing Asian hotel companies, and propel Aruku-zaka Street to become an exciting landmark project that will continue to bolster Niseko’s reputation as a world-class tourist destination.”
ONYX Hospitality Group has a growing regional portfolio of close to 50 operating properties across three core brands in seven countries. The group has a robust development pipeline of more than 20 new properties in China, Malaysia and Laos among others , and has set a target of having 99 hotels open by 2024 as part of its journey towards being the best medium-sized hospitality player in the region.