Location: Nakanocho, Ise City
Nationally registered tangible cultural asset (2005)
Main building, storehouse, Ju’enro, Meigetsu-Sekkonoma, front storehouse
It is unclear when Asakichi was founded, but its name appears on a map of the Furuichi Machinamizu (area) from 1782.
It was originally a tea house called Kagetsuro Asakichi, and during the Meiji period it was famous for being a three-storied structure, which was rare within the prefecture. It contained a stage for performing Ise Ondo as well as a large restaurant that was top-class in the prefecture and also employed a permanent staff of around thirty geisha girls.
The Ise Ondo performed at Asakichi, called “Tsuzura Ishi,” is about a famous giant rock located nearby.
There are currently five core buildings that are built in a cascading pattern and reach a height of as many as six stories. From the highest point, it is possible to see as far away as Mount Asama and Futami, which is why it has been known as Ju’enro (tower of collecting distant views). This was also a popular location for literary men to hold meetings.
A quiet, separate room (Meigetsu-Sekkonoma) that was used as a study by Ozaki Gakudo (1858-1954), who was revered as the “god of constitutional politics,” has also been preserved.
Asakichi is now the only vestige left to remind us of the splendor of the former Furuichi area.
March 2016 Ise City Board of Education