- Breathtaking views of the “strolling pond” garden from the main drawing room; experience its beauty throughout all four seasons
- The 150 year-old wisteria vine and its cascading clusters of beautiful, fragrant flowers which bloom each May
- The impressive Japanese-style residence, with a floor area of 4,000 square meters and 65 rooms
The 100 tatami mat main guest room
Once you pass through the main corridor of this massive mansion, you will find an amazing garden artistically arranged in front of the 100 tatami mat main guest room. Here you can take time out to tune into your senses and enjoy the beauty of Niigata’s nature. Through the flowers, you’ll experience a mix of colors while smelling fragrant blossoms. Now…listen to the relaxing sound of rustling leaves and singing birds. You’ll soon forget how quickly time passes.
The History of a Great Farming Family of Echigo, the Ito Family
The former estate of the Northern Cultural Museum once belonged to Mr. Bunkichi Ito, who was one of the largest landowners in the Echigo Province (currently Niigata). This traditional mansion, also known as “the residence of the wealthy farmer,” is located in the Yokogoshi area of southeastern Niigata. Yokogoshi Town, which runs parallel to the Agano River, once housed the “Soumi” district and castle during the early Edo Period. While this quaint castle town prospered, the Ito family (with over 10,000 acres of land) also began to prosper, mainly through agriculture.
It is estimated that the size of his property was approximately 300 times as large as Tokyo Dome. In fact, one could travel about 50 kilometers from the Ito residence in order to worship at Yahiko Shrine without ever once trespassing on another farmer’s property.
I usually go there on weekdays. When I am lucky, I end up spending a really luxurious time alone in a hall with a hundred mats of Tatami.
Yes…sitting in the hall, just a little distance from the garden…watching it all through the traditional wooden Engawa and Kamoi, which serve to frame the garden view like a photo. That’s how I like to enjoy such a peaceful space.
Don’t like to sit on the floor in Seiza style? Please don’t worry! There are chairs in the hall, so you are welcome to relax and take all the time you want when looking out into the garden.
Soumi 2-15-25, Kounan-ku, Niigata City, Niigata Prefecture
9am -5pm (April to November), 9am – 4:30pm (December to March)
Adult 800 yen, Children 400 yen（Children free on Sundays and holidays）
Taxi from Niigata Station 25 minutes; taxi from Niitsu Station 10 minutes
Route 49 from the Nihonkai Tohoku Expressway Niigata-Kameda IC about 15 minutes