Have you ever thought of combining a sauna with live music? It may sound weird, but it is actually possible at “Sauna no Umeyu,” a well established public bathhouse located in Kyoto City.
It’s definitely not your typical old-fashioned pubic bath as it allows people to enjoy live events in its traditional space. Most of the events are aimed at the younger generation so lots of youngsters come in and out of the bathhouse, but it is open to all ages!
盛況に終わった梅湯ライブ風呂一番、如何でしたか？？ 本日から変わらず、お風呂入れます！ー pic.twitter.com/7sLyI6xyV4
— サウナの梅湯 (@umeyu_rakuen) November 6, 2015
Japanese culture is all about manners. There is a certain etiquette to be followed when visiting a public bathhouse (sento) in Japan. Rules immediately apply the moment you walk in, but following these rules will make your visit fun and enjoyable.
One of the basic rules when enjoying the bath is not making too much noise. It is very important that you respect other people in the bathhouse. You will notice that people in Japanese bathhouses are quiet and respectful of everyone as this is a place of relaxation.
Although this is the case for most traditional bathhouses, certain establishments are starting to change! Music is now breathing life into these peaceful public bathhouses. In some places, live performances are now being held for guests to enjoy, although this is often done on days when the public bathhouses are closed to bathers. In 2017, several silent discos were held in some public bathhouses in Tokyo. This kind of disco allows people to listen to music through wireless headphones.
こんばんわ！グレードアップした梅湯です!! 二階の窓がカラフルに灯りました♨︎♨︎ ※二階は開放していません。 pic.twitter.com/g0GoHLP4JL
— サウナの梅湯 (@umeyu_rakuen) November 27, 2015
Just like other traditional public bathhouses, Sauna no Umeyu is also encouraging its guests to observe proper decorum and manners upon entering its venue. This bathhouse had actually been planned to be abandoned a few years ago but was saved by Sanjiro Minato, a businessman who took over the business. He is so fond of public bathhouses that he made every effort to save Sauna no Umeyu and it has worked!
Several activities have already been held in the venue since 2015. Music performances are organised when the sento is closed. It is normally open from 3:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily except Thursdays. When you use the sento, you will also notice reminders on the wall just like other public bathhouses. If you want to bathe, you have to approach the front desk and inquire about it.
Entrance fee is 430 yen and towel rental is 30 yen. If you want to have your own towel that you can keep, you can buy one for 430 yen. Shampoo and soap is free. If you want, you may also purchase some sento merchandise which you can keep for yourself or give as a gift!
Another difference about this bathhouse compared to others is that people with tattoos can enter without worrying about hiding their body art. Sauno no Umeya is approximately 15 minutes from JR Kyoto Station so it is really accessible.
Various events are held in this public bathhouse on Thursdays. These are done on a regular basis so if you feel like attending live performances or talk events then you should definitely drop by the place!
If you don’t quite feel like live music but just want to experience the atmosphere of relaxing in a public bath instead, then you may do this as well on normal opening hours. You can inquire further by contacting the venue as the staff speak English! Visit this unique bathhouse today for a sento experience with a difference!