北一ホールKitaichi Hall

© Kitaichi Hall

There’s something incredibly romantic about dining in the spacious Kitachi Hall, with its high ceilings and organic light, coming only from 167 oil lamps, all painstakingly lit by hand天井の高い広いホールを照らす167個のランプ。樽で出来た椅子、小さなステンドグラスの窓、そこを通る淡い光、木製の棚で静かにきらめく美しいグラスコレクション。北一硝子が運営する北一ホールは、そこを訪れる者に幻想的でロマンチックな時間を約束してくれる。





Text: Bonnie Oeni
Translation: Asami Miyamura
. Add to that the delicate sounds of piano music and an aromatic meal which features the best of local Otaru cuisine, and you’ve got yourself a dreamy, nostalgic atmosphere that takes you back to the past.

Despite modern developments in society, Kitaichi Hall has somehow stubbornly resisted the onslaught of time, focusing on providing an authentically vintage dining environment. It is rare that the warmth and intimacy found in the restaurant comes solely from the warmth and light provided by gas lamps, which takes 30 minutes to light up each day. With barrels for seats, small stained glass windows that allow pale light to stream in and glass collectibles from different countries sparkling lightly on wooden shelves around you, it’s little wonder that this beautiful restaurant/café is popular with visitors from all over the world.

Although the restaurant only opened in 1983, the stone building it is housed in is infused with history, having been built in 1901. The Kitaichi Glass business has been an integral part of Otaru’s vibrant past, first established as a business manufacturing gas lamps, glass fishing buoys and accessories. In the 70s, as the fishing industry declined and the use of plastics in manufacturing grew more prevalent, this business took a backseat.

As Otaru Canal began new life as a tourist attraction featuring a whole street of galleries, Kitaichi switched its focus to producing illumination objects and artistic glassware. The business has now expanded to include restaurants/cafés like the Kitaichi Hall, as well as wine shops.

Kitaichi Hall is tucked inside Kitaichi Glass Gallery, which means that you can slowly enjoy a cup of coffee after a long day of shopping. Along with half-hour live piano performances scheduled on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, this retro place is sure to delight anyone’s heart.

Kitaichi Hall
Address: 7-26 Sakaimachi, Otaru, Hokkaido
Opening Hours: 9:00-18:00 (L.O.17:30)
Tel: 0134-33-1993

Text: Bonnie Oeni

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