11 Things You Shouldn't Miss On Your Next Trip To Osaka

Experience award-winning restaurants and festivals rooted in tradition.
PHOTO: istockphoto

Have you ever been to Osaka? The beautiful Japanese city is worth the visit.

Here are several newly-opened establishments worth your attention!

KawaUme

The recent renovation of the second floor of The Hilton Osaka has introduced four new dining establishments. One of these new spots is KawaUme, which specializes in sushi and kaiseki, or the traditional multicourse meal popular in Japan. The restaurant flourishes under the helm of chef Kazuo Takagi, whose restaurants have maintained two Michelin stars every year since the Michelin Guides to Kyoto, Osaka, and Kobe were first published in 2010. To top it off, a selection of locally-sourced sake is available at the sake bar.

1 Chome-8-8 Umeda, Kita, Osaka, Osaka


Centrum

Another exciting development at The Hilton Osaka is the opening of Centrum, a modern grill that  offers a vast collection of fine wines. Its menu of grilled specialties comes hand in hand with wines recommended by the in-house sommelier. The Centrum also provides an intimate setting in its wine cellar, where a private room is made to host special celebrations. 

1 Chome-8-8 Umeda, Kita, Osaka, Osaka


Muji's Aeon Mall branch

Not your average Muji store, Muji's Aeon Mall branch is the largest in the world. While it's got the standard home accessories and stationery sections in check, half of this particular Muji branch is made up of food items, making it the first-ever Muji to offer fresh products like meat, seafood, and produce. The 4,300-square meter concept store also houses Café&Meal MUJI, which serves all-time favorite Japanese recipes. 

1/F Aeon Mall, Sakai Kitahanada, Sakai, Osaka


Don't miss out on ongoing and upcoming festivals, concerts, exhibits, and exclusive screenings.

Masterpieces of French Landscape Paintings from Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts

Classical art lovers will find that they won't need to travel all the way to Europe to enjoy works by greats like Claude Monet. For a limited time, the Pushkin State Museum of Fine arts in Moscow is lending 65 of its prized paintings on French landscapes to the National Museum of Art in Osaka. These works date all the way back to the 17th to the 20th century.

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On view until October 14, 2018, 4-2-55 Nakanoshima, kita-ku, Osaka, nmao.go.jp 

 

Full Moon Festival

One of Japan's most anticipated festivals in the latter half of the year is the Full Moon Festival at the Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine. This is typically held on the day of the Harvest Moon, which in this year's case falls on September 24. During the festival, haikus and selected poems are recited on the shrine's arched bridge and a traditional Sumiyoshi dance and bugaku are performed.

September 24, 2-9-89, Sumiyoshi, Sumiyoshi-ku, Osaka, sumiyoshitaisha.net 

Visit these under-the-radar spots and enjoy some of Osaka's best-kept secrets.

Nissoukan Sunset Viewing 

Sunsets have always been a romantic and majestic part of the day, but the view is made even more special when seen through the West Gate opening of the Shitennoji Temple. This occurrence happens on fall evenings, starting September 23. On a regular day, tourists can come to visit the temple and the nearby market. 

Palette Art Alive

Japan has always been home to the unique, and contemporary fashion boutique Palette Art Alive is a testament to that. Emerging Japanese brands that you probably have never heard of but undoubtedly learn to love make their retail debuts here. You can also check out the online shop here.

1-19-1 Nishi-ku, Osaka, palette-art-alive.com 


Biotop

While many of us can't help but frequent the high-traffic Dotonbori and Shinsaibashi districts, other areas like Horie deserve as much attention. One of the quirky retail concepts on Orange Street is Biotop, a multilevel establishment that combines shopping, dining, and gardening. On the top floor, visitors can find Biotop Cubierta, an al fresco Italian restaurant featuring a rooftop garden, while on the ground floor sits Biotop Corner Stand, a coffee shop that offers drip coffee and pastries. In the floors between, there are racks of menswear, womenswear, cosmetics, artisan ceramics, and vintage designer bags.

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1-16-1 Minamihorie, Nishi-ku, Osaka, biotop.jp/osaka 

Check out what's trending—these establishments are receiving noteworthy buzz. 

Hajime

In this year's Michelin Guide, Hajime was the only non-Japanese restaurant based in Osaka to receive the coveted three stars. It is also consistently recognized by the Asia's 50 Best Restaurants list. While aesthetics are important to owner Hajime Yoneda, his restaurant's cuisine makes good of innovative techniques that result in imaginative culinary creations. Its popular offering called chikyu, or planet earth, consists of 110 different vegetables that are prepared and plated to represent the natural elements. The tasting menu can set you back by 30,000 to 34,000 JPY. 

1-9-11-1F, Edobori, Nishi-ku, Osaka City, Osaka, hajime-artistes.com/ 


Yonemasu

Don't let its simple interiors fool you. Two years in and already Yonemasu has earned its first Michelin star this year. It takes its name after its owner, Tomoya Yonemasu, and under his helm, it's become almost impossible to secure a reservation at the kaiseki restaurant because of the long waitlist. Beyond the fare, guests also find genuine warmth in the hospitality of Tomoya and his wife, and the couple has become one of the restaurant's biggest draws.

1F, Yamabiko Bldg, 1-9-16 Oyodominami, Kita-ku, Osaka, yonemasu.official.jp 


Houba

Two Michelin star-awarded Houba has perfected Korean cuisine but raises the bar by using Italian techniques to prepare traditional dishes. It's run by a mother and son tandem and offers only two time slots per day, which makes booking a table extremely competitive.

2F, Shin Daibiru, 1-2-1 Dojimahama, Kita-ku, Osaka, houba.jp 


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