Tondabayashi City - 富田林市

Book & Spa Uguisu

Japanese Name: ブック&スパ うぐいすPrefecture: OsakaCity: TondabayashiAddress: 富田林市大字新堂2094Access: Tondabayashi Station / 富田林駅Type: SupersentoWebpage: ¥750 (Weekend & Holidays ¥830)Holiday: NoneHours: 10:00-25:00
ReviewUguisu no Yu is a supersento in Tondabayashi in the shadow of the PL Tower. It gets good reviews in sento magazines so I thought it was worth checking out. The rotenburo area is built into a cliff side. With baths and a sauna on 4 levels. Sadly the view is of a Joshin parking lot and generic Japanese suburban sprawl although there are some so-so mountains in the distance to gaze at.The baths are all well built. I liked the very shallow sleeping bath. The concrete bottom made it feel like bathing in a fish pond. At the very top is a Himalayan rock salt bath that felt wonderful. One of the best salt baths I’ve ever been in. According to one of the staff all of the baths are filled with spring water with the exception of the cold water baths. The water did feel somewhat like a onsen but I did not like how vague the signage was. Materials used throughout the building were chosen with care but some of wear and tear was showing. The cedar bath was lined with marble. The only cedar was on the outside and a cedar step in the water which was covered for protection I guess by a plastic mat. The indoor baths were fine. Nothing too deep here. None of the jets were built to hit the upper bath also. I liked the choice of a cold and colder water bath. The main dry sauna had a TV that was way too small and only viewable by half of the seats.The bath has a lot going for it, but it’s far from perfect. Still good place if you live in the neighborhood. Not sure if it is worth driving across Kansai for, however.There is a Marugen Ramen shop on the main street leading to Uguisu. Good place for dinner.

Kanpo no Yado Tondabayashi

Japanese Name: かんぽの宿 富田林Prefecture: OsakaCity: TondabayashiAddress: 584-0053 大阪府富田林市龍泉880Access: Car or shuttle bus (see website)Category: Hot Spring Hotel w/ day useWebpage: 600 (Weekend & Holiday: ¥700)Holiday: NoneHours: Dayuse 10:00-15:00
Review: The hot spring pump is broken and may be fixed eventually--but who knows? The lack of spring really cuts down on the appeal of this hilltop hotel. If you're coming here for the rooms or restaurant, that's fine, but that's not what I'm judging this facility on. There are two baths, one indoor and one outdoor. Both are treated, but it's not very noticeable. You can smell the chlorine, however. The view from the outdoor bath is 100% outstanding. Still, on its own, without a sauna, cold water, jets, or the natural spring water, the view doesn't make a strong argument for the ¥700 (spring 2022, weekend) entrance fee.
Day use ends at 3pm with the last entrance at 2pm, so you need to get here early. I went on a hike, took a bath for this review, then kept on hiking. Doubt I would ever go there again. This could be a nice hotel if you need one in Osaka, but you'd definitely need a car if you wanted to do any tourism.
Visit Date: May 2022

Katsuragi Onsen

Japanese Name: 葛城温泉Prefecture: OsakaCity: TondabayashiAddress: 〒584-0024 大阪府富田林市若松町1丁目18Access: 10 min from Kintetsu Tondabayashi Station - 近鉄 富田林駅Category: SentoPrice: Osaka Prefecture Public Bathhouse Association price or cheaper (sauna, if available, may be extra)Holiday: Wednesday and SundayHours: 16:00-22:30
Review: Extremely municipal feeling sento and much larger than expected. This place takes has a large footprint. The smokestack from afar gave me the idea that it would be a more traditional place, but the entrance changed that immediately. Inside the changing room is huge. This was built for a much larger daily user base. This sento has also gone through a piping reinstall. Most sento piping for the showers and the hot and cold faucets at each bathing area is done in the walls, for whatever reason when that plumbing becomes unusable one practice I have seen on a few occasions and at this location is mounting exterior plumbing to the walls. The effect is very industrial or steampunk speaking aesthetically, for a sento person like me it is a way to see an x-ray of the sento, how it is built, and the effort put into it.Speaking of baths there is a quality deep bath on the hot side but other than that everything is passable. The cold-water bath is only big enough for one. There is a sauna (no extra fee), but I did not use it. The main deep bath felt hotter than usual and the other shallow baths were a touch below common temperature.This is the last sento in Tondabayashi City making it somewhat important, so make your way out here if possible.
Usage Note: Smoking is still allowed here as of 2020 which was nostalgic. If you are going to be turned off by that, go someplace else.
Visit Date: December 2020