Example CustomerRyukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach
An innovative resort hotel aspiring to be the “best in the East”
Teppan Dining Restaurant “Niji” The hotel has nine bars and restaurants.
The Ryukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach, which opened in July 2022, is a popular resort hotel in Okinawa that is experiencing a significant resurgence in tourism demand. In addition to its high-quality environment, which offers guests an extraordinary sense of luxury, the hotel's high-quality cuisine and elaborate productions are designed to surprise and awe guests. The kitchen, designed to create an optimal environment, and the system for quick deployment of high-quality food at large banquets are both originals based on the executive chef's extensive experience. The hotel stands out for its innovative approaches in everything from marketing to facilities and operations, earning it widespread acclaim.
All 443 rooms have ocean views
A 20-minute drive south from Naha Airport, Okinawa, The Ryukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach opened in July 2022 in Nashiro, Itoman City. It is a resort hotel with 443 rooms, all of which have views of the ocean. Most of its food and beverage facilities, such as nine bars and restaurants, feature open kitchens. It also has one of the prefecture's largest banquet halls to accommodate large-scale events. It is managed by Ken Hotel & Resort Holdings Ltd., which operates approximately 8,900 rooms of hotels and inns in Japan and abroad.
“We've been so busy since the COVID-19 lockdown ended that the phrase 'V-shaped recovery' would be an understatement. In addition to repeat visitors, we are also seeing an increase in new visitors through word of mouth," says Executive Chef Tomohiro Komatsu. "We continue to improve our menu and service in order to stand out even more, based on our motto to be the 'best in the East'.”
Breakfast buffet provides a 'wow' factor for international visitors
The Ryukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach is home to nine food and beverage facilities, including restaurants, bars, and lounges, all of which reflect the expertise of Executive Chef Komatsu, who has overseen the establishment of numerous luxury hotels in Japan and abroad and is always on the lookout for new food trends. Take, for example, the "Nashiro" buffet dining room. As the venue for serving breakfast to hotel guests, it is renowned for its extensive menu of 150 dishes.
Chef Komatsu explains, “We try to surprise our guests by including a one-of-a-kind element in each zone, rather than just serving a large number of items. Breakfast is exclusively for overnight guests, which means that the majority of them are from other prefectures, so we make an effort to serve Okinawan dishes and island vegetables. Umibudo (sea grapes) are served with vines and stems still attached to provide a unique local experience. For the salad area, we thoroughly researched the selection and color assortment of items from 'depachika' (the underground food section of Japanese department stores that contains popular specialty foods), and smoothies are made fresh on-site. We also have a Chinese chef on staff to provide a 'wow' factor for well-traveled Asian customers and offer several options of Chinese porridge with 12 different types of condiments.”
- Arrangement in the “Nashiro” buffet dining room. Many customers comment on their amazement at the variety and elegance of the menu.
The majority of lunch guests, on the other hand, visit from outside the hotel. For this reason, they prioritize creating a menu that encourages guests to visit from Naha City, which is around 10 kilometers away. “In general, most of Okinawa's food and drink is 'local production for local consumption', so for our lunch and dinner menus, we try to introduce seasonal ingredients and menu selections from Japan and abroad that are not often used in Okinawa, as well as dishes that are popular overseas. This approach has been well received,” says Executive Chef Komatsu.
The hotel also offers a fine dining restaurant, “MILANO,” a Japanese fusion restaurant, “Kanazawa,” a teppan dining restaurant, “Niji,” as well as a BBQ terrace, soba dining, VIP pool bar, and lobby lounge. Executive Chef Komatsu explains, “'Kanazawa' is not a purely Japanese restaurant but rather a fusion of Japanese cuisine with styles that are popular elsewhere, such as in Dubai.”
- Japanese fusion restaurant “Kanazawa,” featuring an open kitchen. In anticipation of inbound tourism, the a la carte menu has been expanded.
Teppanyaki restaurant specifications reflect
extensive real-world experience
The kitchen at the Ryukyu Hotel & Resort Nashiro Beach has installed many Fujimak appliances and products, including custom-made items. “We visited the Fujimak factory in Fukuoka to directly communicate our requirements based on our past experience,” says Komatsu, the chef, “and they were able to customize the equipment to our satisfaction.” He mentions the Teppan dining restaurant “Niji” as an example of their exacting standards, saying, “We wanted a highly refined space that clearly showcases the chef's techniques, including how they use knives and plate the food, and visitors come to enjoy meat, seafood, and vegetables with wine.”
●Customization for Teppan dining restaurant “Niji” (highlights)
Key points are shown in the figure. Lighting was installed in the hood to illuminate the food being cooked because “it is difficult to see the color of the meat or the amount of salt the chef uses to flavor the food if the cooking area is too dark. We believe that not only must the food be excellent, but so must the performance.” (Executive Chef Komatsu).
The floor drainage has been installed without exposed grating. According to Executive Chef Komatsu, “It helps to prevent humidity from rising. An environment that is hygienic and chef-friendly is also food-friendly.” All food and beverage facilities use hood lighting as well as flooring without exposed grating.
In addition to a wall-mounted cellar in the seating area, in the center of the room is a 2.82-meter-high custom-built wine cellar with glass on all four sides, which is used to stock fine wines and can be seen from any direction, front, back, left, or right. To preserve the sense of openness near the ceiling, the refrigeration pipes were installed under the floor rather than from the ceiling. Because the restaurant faces the beach with beautiful sunsets, it was installed with specially designed vacuum glass that cuts ultraviolet rays while providing excellent thermal insulation. The glass was also treated with a special film to protect the quality of the wines inside.
- 2.82-meter-high custom-built wine cellar. It also has a width of 2.2 meters. It is stocked with 240 bottles of fine wines from around the world, including the five iconic châteaux of Bordeaux and Opus One.
A constant quest for optimal cooking,
obsessed even with temperature differences of 2-3 °C
According to Executive Chef Komatsu, Ryukyu Hotel & Resort Nashiro Beach rarely holds special menu fairs. He says, “We attract many customers and are highly popular even without special food fairs to attract customers. Instead, our hotel focuses its energy on perfecting the ideal cooking temperatures and techniques for every dish. That way, we can serve them to a higher standard. That is why combi ovens are a perfect match for our stringent requirements.”
For example, the roasted tenderloin we serve at weddings is marinated for 24 hours, then left at room temperature for a period of time before being vacuum-cooked in the combi oven for three hours. “We tenderize the meat while adding flavor, and then grill it at the end to enhance the flavor before serving. A difference in heating temperature of just 2 to 3°C makes a difference in the firmness of the meat that you can feel when cutting it with a knife. We obsess over minor nuances like this. I really appreciate the great performance of the combi oven when cooking requires delicate control to create differences in mouthfeel and texture.”
- Vario series large-capacity pans are also used in the banquet kitchen (photo left). “Pressure cooking takes one-fifth the time of traditional stewing. When deep-frying, the temperature recovers quickly after ingredients are added, allowing for consistent coloring and shape” (Executive Chef Komatsu).
A banquet kitchen with zero-movement serving lines
Ryukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach boasts one of Okinawa Prefecture's largest banquet halls, which can accommodate not only weddings but also major business events such as MICE (Meeting, Incentive Travel, Convention, Exhibition/Event). The kitchen layout is designed for fast operation so that food can be served at the best possible level, even during large-scale banquets. This is one of the kitchen designs that Chef Komatsu is particularly proud of.
The banquet kitchen features a 15-meter-wide wall that separates the hot, cold, and pastry kitchens from the serving area, as well as built-in pass-through refrigerators and warming cabinets. The serving area, where the food is served, has three rows of 10-meter-wide island-style serving tables with cold tables and drawers for storing dishes and other items. For each row, staff members are assigned specific roles according to the process, such as finishing or serving, and when a dish is passed to the next row, they only need to turn around and place it on the serving table. No walking motions are required.
“In order to serve hot dishes hot, cold dishes cold, and serve them quickly while in their best possible condition,” says Executive Chef Komatsu, “we created a layout that allows for the shortest possible serving distance with zero human walking lines.” He adds, “Occasionally, we raise the roll screen that separates the banquet room from the kitchen (back right corner of photo ④ below) to allow people to see the food arrangement process.”
●Banquet kitchen serving area
Ryukyu Hotel & Resort Nashiro Beach employs roughly 100 chefs and actively seeks new graduates. Executive Chef Komatsu says, “I always tell young people, 'Try paying for a meal at some other hotels; then you will understand our advantages'”. Ryukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach continues to refine its many innovative initiatives on a daily basis, including marketing menu strategies designed to surprise and impress guests from Okinawa, other prefectures, and overseas; facilities created based on real-world experience; and operations coordinated with its facilities to deliver food quickly and in the best condition. Given these factors, we can expect its advantages to continue to grow.
- Executive Chef Komatsu at the counter of the Teppan dining restaurant "Niji" Designed at the request of Executive Chef Komatsu, the height of the hood prevents the chef's toque from hitting it while standing.
|Ryukyu Hotel & Resort - Nashiro Beach
|Ken Hotels & Resorts Holdings Ltd.
|963 Nashiro, Itoman City, Okinawa Prefecture