Notice regarding the designation of “Shinsen-kyo” as a national place of scenic beauty

Hakone “Shinsen-kyo”, which was created by Meishu-sama, had been recommended by the Council for Cultural Affairs as a nationally designated “place of scenic beauty ” last fall. We are pleased to inform you here that it was so designated and officially posted in the government bulletin “Kampo” as a notification of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology dated March 26, 2021.
On June 15, 1953, Shinsen-kyo was completed by the devoted construction service of those who had been impressed with the ideals of the Meishu-sama and had come from all over the country by bringing their own foods during the extremely difficult period from the end of the war to the postwar period.
Meishu-sama’s desire behind the creation of Shinsen-kyo was to build a garden as a “piece of art” that harmonizes the beauty of nature and the beauty of man-made garden for people who have lost confidence and hope in a devastated and confused society. In addition, it was hoped that the Hakone Museum of Art would be built for people to enjoy the museum and garden as one as a “true paradise.”
Moreover, with the hope that it would play a role for supporting Japan’s national policy of informing the world about Japanese people’s high aesthetic sense and excellent skills of art, the tea house “Sangetsu-an” was built with Sukiya architectural style, the unique architectural beauty peculiar to Japan.
In addition, in the research report of the Committee (Chairman, Takenosuke Tatsui, Honorary Chairman of the Japanese Garden Association) who made a great deal of effort in the research of Shinsen-kyo’s values on artistic appreciation and academic values, reported as the following. He said, “Shinsenkyô is exceptional for its unique and original qualities not found in other modern gardens, from the viewpoints of landscape composition and the history of Japanese gardens.”
Taking this great opportunity, together with all of you, we would like to move even stronger to expand the activities of the Shinsen-kyo, “the treasure of the world,” and the heart of Meishu-sama behind its creation.
Please see here for the details of Shinsenkyo.
* What is the “Place of Scenic Beauty”
According to the “Law for the Protection of Cultural Properties”, it is considered to be the important asset among “the gardens, bridges, canyons, beaches, mountains and other scenic spots that have high artistic or admiration value for Japan.” The place of scenic beauty, which expresses the beauty of the country in various ways, is a monument that demonstrates its value through the appreciation of the scenic landscape. It is roughly divided into humanistic ones, which are mainly created by human intentions and techniques, and natural ones, which are mainly caused by the activities of nature and natural materials.
The characteristics of the “place of scenic beauty,” which finds notable site in famous scenic landscapes and finds value in such excellent scenic landscapes, can be seen in the fact that such places are often designated both as historic sites and natural monuments.
Places of scenic beauty is to pass on the thoughts that people living in Japan have spun into their respective lands to famous places, landscapes, and gardens. (From the website of the Agency for Cultural Affairs)