Shizuka Ryokan – Nakai san

Shizuka Ryokan is the only traditional Japanese Ryokan in Australia, and one of the very few outside of Japan. We are passionate about sharing Japanese culture with our guests with genuine omotenashi, and authentic cuisine, architecture, interior design.

When our guests check-in at Shizuka Ryokan, they slip off their shoes, exchange their clothes for yukata, and enter a world that is distinctly Japanese. They experience hospitality of honor, authentic cuisine, and nourishing spa treatments. The simple Zen design, light and shadow created by shoji screens, the scent of tatami and ritualised routines help them to quiet their mind and soothe their soul. We give them a retreat from the tensions of the wider world in a uniquely Japanese way.

Our amazing team is the most important reason that our guests love their stay at Shizuka Ryokan so much. We are all passionate about showing true omotenashi and sharing Japanese culture with our guests. Each one of us brings our unique way of doing this. We are becoming more busy and we are now looking for more staff. If you have an interest to share Japanese culture with our Australian guests, please apply to join the team and live on site at Shizuka Ryokan. We are looking for two new team members to be nakai san, kitchen hand, cleaner and front desk. 

About me: I am Catherine Defina. I am the current custodian of this traditional Japanese ryokan on Dja Dja Wurrung country. A series of synchronistic life events and a romantic notion that I would one day, run a wellness retreat, lured me away from living in Japan and then Sweden, to buy Shizuka Ryokan. Shizuka Ryokan was built nearly 25 years ago and I took custody of this very special place six years ago with a vision to share an even more authentic and traditional Japanese experience with our guests.

About the team: More important than me, are the amazing Japanese and Australian team of twenty…chefs, nakai, housekeeping, gardening, massage therapists, yoga instructors, living and working in Australia, who are equally passionate about sharing traditional Japanese culture with Australia.

Location: Shizuka Ryokan is located in Hepburn Springs, a vibrant tourist town with loads of great cafes, restaurants and day spas, in the heart of Australia’s spa country in the Central Highlands of Victoria. We are a 90 minute drive from Melbourne through the majestic Wombat National Park.

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Shizuka Ryokan
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