Reading some of the positive reviews about this hotel, I'm wondering if my husband and I went to the same hotel - because we certainly did not experience any of the positives praised by these reviewers.
From the outset, we had difficulties with this hotel. They had no email address, so I tried to call them to book. When I called and asked the woman who answered if she spoke English, I received a curt "no" and was promptly hung up on. I then called the extremely helpful tourist information centre in Sounkyo and asked them if they could assist me to book a room, which they were more than happy to do. Hearing nothing after that call, I contacted the tourist information centre again and they followed up their first booking request to the hotel, soon after which I received an email from the hotel, providing me with a Japanese link to book a room and very clear instructions not to respond to their email.
Using the link, I booked 2 nights "room only", which I thought meant no breakfast and dinner, the norm in every other hotel that I had stayed in throughout the world, but apparently not the norm at Northern Lodge.
On arrival at the hotel, we were "greeted" by a curt "hai" ("yes") from a woman at reception (likely the same curt woman who had hung up on me when I had called), who then proceeded to say little more to us other than to ask us to pre-pay for our 2 nights stay (cash only!) and tell us that we had to be out of our room by 10am the following morning so that the room could be cleaned.
Going up to our tatami room, we were shocked by how tiny it was - literally big enough for a central square table and two chairs, which we would have to move aside in the evening to squash in our bedding - the smallest room we had ever seen in our many trips to Japan, and old and dated as well.
Next, we discovered that there were no towels or soap in our bathroom, so we went back to reception to request these from the same curt lady, only to find out that our 10,000 yen per night "room only" charge meant no towels or soap, as well as no breakfast or dinner! And the hotel would not provide us with towels or soap unless we paid the extra amount for dinner and breakfast as well. Totally ridiculous!!
When we asked for our money back so that we could move elsewhere, the hotel first threatened to charge us for 1 night. However, after we said that we would stay that night if we had to pay for it, the hotel then agreed to refund our entire payment to us. We were very glad to get out of there. Not recommended at all!!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.