The Park Hyatt Niseko Hanazono is a massive luxury resort complex. It’s so big that you’ll be forgiven for assuming it has everything a fastidious traveler could want. It has 11 excellent restaurants, after all. Also, it’s gifted with a hotel team that doesn’t seem to have never used the word “no.”
Most of the things we experienced during our stay were absolutely wonderful. Even the experienced traveler in me was slightly surprised. We were in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic that had brought the world to its knees. How could this hotel still manage to make its guests so happy?
Manpower resources were low for every luxury hotel in Japan at that time. In fact, most hotel teams were operating at 30% to 50% capacity. Nevertheless the Park Hyatt Niseko Hanazono delivered a wonderful experience befitting, if not over, its fancy price tag. This is not a cheap hotel.
HOW TO FORGET ABOUT THE PANDEMIC
However we enjoyed ourselves so much that we actually forgot about the COVID-19 virus raging in the world outside our cocoon — even just for a few days. For the pandemic-weary, this temporary respite from the coronavirus, as offered by the Park Hyatt Niseko Hanazono, is expensive. Nevertheless, it is worth every yen.
SWEET SURPRISES AT THE PARK HYATT NISEKO HANAZONO
Sometimes, too, the sweetest delights are the most unexpected. What a treat it was to discover that famous Parisian patissier Pierre Herme actually had an outpost for his cakes and sweets at the hotel. It was so far from civilization as we usually know it. After all, Pierre Herme has been called the “Picasso of Pastry.” Moreover, his shop in Paris along Rue Cambon is a major destination for travelers with deep pockets and a sweet tooth.
THE BEST PASTRY CHEF IN THE WORLD IS IN HOKKAIDO
Well, happily, Pierre Herme fans need not travel so far anymore for their fix. He has outlets in Japan, of course. However, this is the only Pierre Herme outlet I know of so far in Hokkaido, land of excellent cream and butter. In addition, the hotel has a sweets counter right in the lobby and it’s filled with the classic cakes that Pierre Herme has become famous for.
Of course, there are the classic assorted macarons that every Pierre Herme fan know very well. What makes the Pierre Herme counter at the Park Hyatt Niseko Hanazono very special, however, is the extraordinary variety of cakes and tarts.
THE PIERRE HERME SOFT CREAM SUNDAE
Every cake that made Pierre Herme famous was available at the hotel when we were there. Best of all, the Pierre Herme soft cream sundae, made with pure Hokkaido milk and cream and garnished with summer berries and syrup.
This soft cream sundae, which is so characteristic of Hokkaido and yet also of the best of Pierre Herme, was so good. So I actually ordered it two days in a row. I even managed to get it delivered to the suite so I could sit in the corner living room with beautiful views of the Mount Yotei, having my sundae. II was ever so happy to disregard calories and simply live a delicious Travelife.