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Osaka Canal and Bright lights

Osaka Travel Guide Japan's 2nd largest city but still intimate, approachable, and welcoming

As Japan’s original commercial capital, Osaka prefecture, which wholly incorporates the city that bares its name, has been at the center of Japanese culture for over 1,000 years. Today, the Osaka metropolitan region is the world’s 8th richest metropolitan area, on par with cities like Los Angeles and Paris. The city is roughly divided by an uptown district and a downtown district. Uptown, or the Umeda district, is characterized by its many skyscrapers and Osaka station; while downtown’s Namba district is known for its extensive entertainment and shopping. Aside from its long history and modern cosmopolitan atmosphere, Osaka is known throughout Japan as the nation’s kitchen; it is said that what Tokyoites spend on clothes, Osakans spend on food!

fall leaves in iwate along river with boat

Iwate Travel Guide Japan’s most under-explored hidden wonder

Nestled in the northern region of Tohoku on Japan’s main island of Honshu, Iwate prefecture is one of Japan’s most underexplored hidden corners. Traditionally considered a remote frontier land, Iwate still retains much of its rustic appeal, complete with all the convenience of modern Japan.

Iwate happens to be Japan’s second biggest and least densely populated prefectures after Hokkaido; so, there’s plenty of room to enjoy the open air and get exploring. The prefecture contains some surprisingly magnificent natural and cultural scenery that will equally delight and stir your mind and senses!


Winter Golf in Tokyo

Admit it, you think golf in winter is crazy talk. Only a fool would brave Japanese winters to play golf on a frozen course you say. Well, I am here to debunk this myth and explain why golfing in winter in Japan is not only great fun, but equally as enjoyable as any other season.

To be fair, Tokyo is nowhere near as cold in winter as people might imagine. Sure, everyone skis in the mountains of close by Niigata and Nagano, but the vast majority of golf courses in and around Tokyo are snow free year round. And aside from a few seasonal adjustments, winter golf is just like golf during any other season. To prove this point, I went golfing during a winter week at 4 separate courses--each with its own special way to handle the winter weather.

Escape from Tokyo: North or South? A closer look at Hokkaido and Okinawa

Tokyo winters are very mild. The daytime temperature hovers around 10 C and snow rarely disrupts the capital. It’s just business as usual. Which is why Tokyoites look to get away when they have a chance. And many of them head in different directions: some head north, some (especially golfers) go south.

The Japanese archipelago is always described as stretching for 3,000 km from north to south, but that’s not strictly true. It stretches from the southwest to the northeast, from just above the 24th parallel (Ishigaki Island in Okinawa Prefecture) to the 45th (the tip of Hokkaido). Ishigaki’s latitude puts it south of Miami, Riyadh and Taipei. Surprisingly, Hokkaido, Japan’s snow country, is no further north than Milan or Ottawa.

But to the residents of Tokyo, Okinawa and...


First annual Japan PPGA TOUR event to debut October 2019 Introduction of the ZOZO Championship

The popular shopping site ZOZOTOWN operated by ZOZO Inc. announced a title sponsorship agreement with the PGA TOUR, establishing Japan’s first annual PGA TOUR tournament planned in the fall of 2019. 
 The 'ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP' is scheduled from October 21st-27th of 2019, and the main competition will be held on the 24th, as one of the early events of the 2019-2020 PGA TOUR season. The planned venue for the tournament Narashino Country Club in Chiba prefecture. The prize money of $9.75 million dollars(approximately \1.1 billion yen) will be the highest in Japan’s golf history. 
 Every year since 1993, the PGA TOUR has had at least one member from Japan on its membership roster, and there has been a total of 18 Japanese players who have held PGA TOUR membership to date. Currently, there...

Ryder Cup 2018 5 takeaways from the European victory

So if you were lucky enough to have satelite TV, and dedicated enough to stay up late to watch the 42nd Ryder Cup, you would have been impressed with a fortified European team and rather disapointed with an incohesive and quiet team USA. The final scoreline of 17.5 - 10.5 suggests a romp, but there was in the afternoon of the single matches, a glimpse of hope for the Americans. But the barage of superior shot making by the Europeans, and a tight and punishing course in the form of Le Golf National, proved decisive in giving the Europeans victory on home soil.


Taylormade Golf Introduces GAPR Distance gapping in your long game

Featuring SpeedFoam Technology, a new trio of products engineered to Fill Distance Gaps in a player's long game, has come onto the market.

TaylorMade Golf, the original creators of the rescue line of hybrids in 1999, announced the debut of GAPR, a highly innovative trio of products with unique identities and performance deliverables providing golfers with the right clubs to fill gaps in the long game.

Nearly every golfer has a gapping challenge in the long part of their set; specifically, the difficult-to-manage yardage between the longest playable iron and the shortest metalwood. With a majority of players not comfortable hitting 3, 4 and even 5 irons consistently to precise yardages or with any dependable accuracy and 5, 7 and 9 woods often difficult to control,...

ODYSSEY EXO Odyssey releases new high-MOI putter

Odyssey has just revealed a high-MOI (moment of Inertia) mallet putter line with the launch of its EXO range.

Bringing together elegant detailing and Tour-level performance with some of the finest finishes ever seen in an Odyssey Putter, the EXO line marries the on-trend red and traditional black putter look in one technology-rich package.

All three multi-piece designs take inspiration from two classic head shapes in Rossie and Number Seven and a more recent shape, the Indy, from Odyssey’s Toulon Design family.

Each head is precision-milled, with a weight-saving aluminum red section contrasting with an elegant, milled black stainless steel body that drives significant increases in MOI, pushing putter performance to new levels for all golfers.

On impact...


The Tavern - Grill & Lounge Brilliant creative food in a casual upscale atmosphere

An area that has undergone a remarkable transformation over the last few years is Toranomon 1-chome. This classic Tokyo business town has evolved into a modern, youthful promenade, thriving around Kanata Street. Towering over the district is yet another remarkable Mori Building Co. creation, Toranomon Hills. On the top 6 floors, nestled over a plethora of blue chip companies and the JOC, is the Andaz Tokyo Toranomon Hills hotel, which is the focus of our attention. In particular the newly conceptualized The Tavern - Grill & Lounge, which under the creative brilliance of Executive Chef, Shaun Keenan, and his dedicated team, has come into its own.


There has been a buzz with BMW owners since the unveiling of the BMW Concept X7 iPerformance at the Frankfurt motorshow, the BMW Group is not only pulling back the covers on a new model concept for the luxury segment, it is also introducing a whole new take on luxury for the BMW brand. The Concept X7 iPerformance is it's largest SUV to date. It's striking exterior composed of intently focused lines with simplified accents. The interior offers 3 rows of luxurious comfort and cleant elegant design. The BMW TwinPower Turbo petrol engine to create an exceptionally efficient and dynamic plug-in hybrid powertrain that excels in all driving situations – including running with zero local emissions.

The X7 will join the 8 Series, the 7 series, the BMW i8 and new BMW i8 Roadster in the...

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