Beppu hot springs may accept tattooed visitors during Japan's Rugby World Cup and beyond
Japan Times -- Feb 02
Hotels in the famed hot spring resort of Beppu, Oita Prefecture, are considering accepting tattooed visitors in October during the 2019 Rugby World Cup and possibly afterward, according to local industry sources.

Beppu onsen hotels have been generally reluctant to accept tattooed visitors, with some of them restricting those visitors from using spa facilities, as many people in Japan still associate tattoos with those perceived negatively such as yakuza.

Overseas, tattoos are more widely accepted as forms of culture, tradition and fashion, and many foreign athletes have tattoos.

After Japan was selected in July 2009 to host the 2019 Rugby World Cup, the Beppu hot spring industry saw a rise in the number of inquiries and bookings made from France, Australia, Britain and other countries.

Five matches are scheduled to take place in Oita, including a first-round match between Canada and defending champion New Zealand.

An association of ryokan inns and hotels in the city of Beppu, including the hot spring district, plans to draw up guidelines for accepting tattooed visitors as early as this month, following a recent survey of its more than 100 members.

News source: Japan Times
Aug 24
Japan's government has announced that ballistic missiles are believed to have been launched from North Korea on Saturday morning. (NHK)
Aug 23
Japan's Foreign Minister Taro Kono has summoned South Korea's ambassador and lodged a protest at Seoul's decision to end an intelligence-sharing agreement between the two countries. (NHK)
Aug 23
The US Department of Defense has expressed its "strong concern" and "disappointment" at South Korea's decision to terminate its intelligence-sharing pact with Japan. (NHK)
Aug 23
Japan's capital is set to lay claim to the country's tallest building in 2023, when developer Mori Building aims to complete a 330-meter tower as part of a major redevelopment. (Nikkei)
Aug 23
Japan's space agency said Thursday its Hayabusa2 space probe returning to Earth late next year will drop its capsule containing asteroid samples in Australia's southern desert. (Kyodo)
Aug 23
To boost the number of male employees taking paternity leave and promote female participation in the workforce, Japan's labor ministry decided to increase government subsidies for companies whose employees do so, sources close to the matter said Thursday. (Kyodo)
Aug 23
Kanagawa Prefectural Police have arrested a woman and a man for allegedly introducing a teenage girl to men for prostitution last year, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Aug. 21). (tokyoreporter.com)
Aug 23
A man affiliated with Japan's largest crime syndicate was shot Wednesday in Kobe apparently in connection with a feud among factions of the Yamaguchi-gumi organization in the western Japan city and surrounding areas, police said. (Japan Today)
Aug 23
Defending champions Naomi Osaka and Novak Djokovic are the No. 1 seeds for singles play in the U.S. Open, it was announced on Wednesday. (Japan Times)
Aug 23
Japan will include sharing activities like Airbnb-style vacation rentals in gross domestic product calculations as early as fiscal 2020, Nikkei has learned, as the government seeks a better picture of the growing sector. (Nikkei)