Experience a Japanse Onsen in the heart of Kallang?!? The Yunomori Onsen is the first authentic super sento style Japanese Onsen in Singapore. Yunomori provides a holistic retreat from the hectic nature of urban life. Relax and skip the expense of paying in yen! 🙂
When I was first introduced to the prospect of an Onsen in Singapore, I raised my eyebrow and I went serious?!? You mean a really authentic one?!? U mean like fully butt naked?!? I did not know what to expect, but we were definitely game to try something new as a family.
Booking a weekday for the family to avoid the crowds, we trooped our way down to Kallang Mall for our maiden experience to the Japanese Onsen.
History of the Onsen Bathing Culture
For thousands of years, Onsen bathing has been an essential part of Japanese life. The ritual soaking in hot spring waters is considered vital for the relaxation and recuperation of the mind, body, and kokoro; the spirit, or heart.
Our Experience at Yunomori Onsen
Upon entering the Onsen, we went to the shoe lockers to deposit our shoes. After settling our registration, the boys were separated from the girls and we were ready to visit the hot springs.
I visited the Men’s Spa with my boy and frankly I was a bit nervous, as I did not know how to respond, without any “protection”. Thankfully, the male attendants within the spa was helpful when I told him that this was my first time in the spa.
Once entering the spa, each visitor is assigned a locker regardless of age. Each person is assigned one small kimono (Which is used when you want to go to the cafe), and 1 big towel and 1 small tower. The big towel is for one to dry oneself after your bath and the small tower, which is just enough to cover your crotch is for you to bring into the spa.
Well, we checked in the locker and from then on we went around in the buff. Haha! It was initially quite awkward as there were other people in the changing room. But once everything was off, we immediately proceeded to the pools.
After you enter, the awkwardness disappears. It’s like National Service. Everyone is walking around without a care in the world and both Daddy and Son were quick to settle in.
The Men’s room is bigger than the women’s side. The whole complex occupies a 16,000 ft facility, with the whole Onsen containing a total of 11 Onsen pools – 5 in the women’s section and 6 in the men’s.
When we visited the spa, there were only about 10 more people in the spa and there was still plenty of room for all of us. In fact, I can safely say that the Onsen can probably take about 20-30 people in the room.
Exploring the Men’s room , we discovered the typical sauna and steam room. The Men’s Onsen has 6 pools as each pool is marked with varying temperatures and various healing properties to help one relax.
After soaking for about an hour, we proceeded to the shower area for our bath. The shower areas are individual cubicles with no walls but individual shower heads and toiletries. Each of us had to sit on the the stools provided and shower. Most interesting!
I asked the girls and they said what they really liked was showering while sitting on the stools! Nathan and myself enjoyed the shower as well. I made him scrub my back, while I did his. It was really quite relaxing and we bonded very differently 🙂
One does not need to bring an shampoo or shower gel for the experience. The shampoo, conditioner and shower gel provided are from a Thai spa label called Puri Alchemy. They feel quite comfortable, so one does not need to be afraid that it is too harsh for your skin.
Yunomori Onsen is also equipped with a cafe kitchen that serves a full meal. After bathing, we met up with the girls in the cafe for a catch-up. Meals are at a separate cost, and they cost between $10-$15 for a full meal.
After settling the kids down, Daddy and Mummy proceeded for an hour’s Thai Massage. As the Onsen is meant to help one relax, there is no form of entertainment to occupy the kids visually. As we needed an hour, we armed the kids with a tablet! Needless to say, we had no complaints from our kids! 🙂
How was our Thai Massage?
Totally Relaxing! There is just something about going for a massage after a good soak. We had a couples massage, so both of us were in the room to experience the massage together.
If you don’t like a Thai Massage, guests can also opt for an aromatic massage or a herbal compress treatment. All massages require additional payment on top of the Onsen entry Fee. Foot Massages start from $68 onwards.
Verdict on Yunomori Onsen
Definitely enriching. My boy has been asking me for a boy’s day out for ages and Yunomori Onsen seemed to fit the bill. He liked it so much, that he asked for us to come back again! 🙂
Talking to the wife after the experience, the wife told me that the girls also enjoyed their experience. They had a good time feeling awkward together, trying to cover themselves, testing out the different pools. What made it fun was strangely the fact that all three ladies were in the same undressed state! It bonded them and just made it super girly fun!
One of the great things about the Spa is that upon entering the spa, one is entering a mobile free zone. All the kids had our undivided attention and there is just something special about communicating with your loved ones in the buff! 🙂
For the ladies, disposable underwear is available. However, I gathered from my wife that, you will be the odd one out if you are in your underwear. In other words, once you enter, just be ready to live freely. Afterall, you are entering a full Japanese Onsen, and it is best to make full use of the experience.
Pricing for Yunomori Onsen
Entrance to Yunomori Onsen starts from $38 for an adult and $28 for kids and seniors (15 and under, 65 and over).
There is a One for One promotion running all the way through the holiday up till 28 Dec from Mon – Wed from 7 – 11pm.
It’s really well received and we saw long queues when we came out after our afternoon session for dinner. In fact, we saw joggers making full use of the promotion and heading for the Onsen after the run at the Kallang area.
(Disclaimer: We recevied no monetary compensation for this review. All opinions are 100% our own.)