Herbal Medicine Laboratory

2021@Taki, Mie Prefecture

The Herbal Medicine Laboratory is a facility that researches and manufactures the medicated bath formula offered at Honzo spa, a bath facility in the VISON in Mie Prefecture. It is annexed with a shop and café. The Honzo spa offers 72 different kinds of medicated baths over one year—that makes for a different formula roughly every five days—according to the herbal bath calendar called the “Honzo 72 Pentads.” The role of this facility is to develop and produce the recipes. Since this facility is predicated on herbal medicine, we focused on the relationship with the natural environment with regard to arrangement and design.

The welcome scene: Guests walking up the hill from the commercial area are greeted with the scenery of the mountains and the Herbal Medicine Laboratory. The building design was conceived from the scenic composition with the mountains. Photos by Takenori Hikosaka/SS (this and five photos hereafter)
Approach: The building shows up when walking halfway up the winding hill path.
Full view: A simple, one-story wooden building. The right side is the laboratory and workshop, across the core, on the left side is the shop and café.
Full view of shop and café
Café: The continuity from the inside to the outside is emphasized by the ceiling.
Inside the café: Photos by Takenori Hikosaka/SS (Six photos up to here)
Intermediate zone: The large space under the eaves produces a continuous area connecting the inside and outside. Photos by ToLoLo Studio (this and two photos hereafter)
Inside the shop
Café counter
Space under the eaves: The space under the overhang penetrates the front side of the building. A variety of uses, including herbal tasks and workshops, are expected. Photos by Takenori Hikosaka/SS (this and two photos hereafter)
Lighting and scenery: We carefully chose lighting that brings out the best of the evening scenery.
View from the Honzo spa parking space: Mountains of Mie, the actual site of herbal medicine studies.