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Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses
  • Hokkaido’s second largest city Asahikawa may have gained popularity thanks to the towering Mt. Asahi and the Asahikawa Zoo but that’s not to say that there isn’t plenty of culture and, of course, drinking opportunities in the city. Proof lies in the renovated red brick buildings of the Kuraimu facility which houses a beer hall and restaurant, design gallery, an interior shop, a dance studio, a rehearsal hall, and even a gallery solely dedicated to chairs.

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    In the early 20th century, this inconspicuous collection of red brick buildings just a five-minute walk from Asahikawa Station was a complex of storage warehouses owned by the Kamikawa Warehouse Group. In recent years the buildings have been put back into use after they were renovated and reincarnated as the stylish Kuraimu complex. Red brick buildings are a somewhat rare sight in Japan as they often don’t survive earthquakes which makes this attractive collection of buildings a unique feature of the region.

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kicking off with the Design Gallery, this open space showcases a whole host of works of art from both local artists and those from further afield. The style of the exhibitions varies significantly depending on the time that you visit so you can expect to see anything from paintings to graphic design and crafts. Free to enter, this eclectic gallery is a must-visit for some inspiring and unique local art. In June or July the venue hosts exhibitions and occasionally opening parties as part of the annual Asahikawa Design Week.

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    For an even less conventional gallery, head over to the Chairs Gallery. Exhibitions of contemporary chairs change on a six-monthly basis promising some high quality chair eye candy. The majority of the designs come from Northern Europe, specifically Scandinavia, and include photos of the chairs in use and sketches as well as exhibits of chair legs.

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    The centrepiece of the Kuraimu complex is the Taisetsu Ji-Beer Kan, the “Big Snowy Beer Hall”. This restaurant and beer hall is most loved for its delicious assortment of craft beers which include Kela Piruka, and the unmissable Taisetsu Pilsner. The restaurant serves up a huge range of food for any time of day including meat, seafood, and veggie dishes, which include ramen and izakaya-style small dishes for sharing. If you’re in the area at the weekend, be sure to head along to Taisetsu Ji-Beer Kan on a Friday or Saturday night for some live music and carousing with the locals.

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    Kuraimu - Asahikawa Store Houses

    After discovering the galleries and taking a rest in the beer hall, don’t forget to stop by Interni, a lifestyle design shop on the Kuraimu grounds. The shop offers a mixed bag of interior goods such as furniture made in Asahikawa and a number of craft works for the home. The shop is also home to a small cafe which serves up delicious coffee and snacks.

    For anyone arriving into Asahikawa by train there shouldn’t be any problem finding the Kuraimu complex, just five minutes by foot east of the Asahikawa Station. Alternatively, those making use of the Asahikawa sightseeing buses Fanfan or Machikuru will find the complex on the route: Kuraimu & Taisetsu Ji-Beer Kan Mae bus stop.

    Taisetsu Ji Beer Microbrewery
    rating 81 Reviews
    Address
    Hokkaido Asahikawashi Miyashitadori 11-1604-1
    Phone
    0166250400
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