The Houshi ryokan (a traditional japanese style hotel) was built over a natural hot spring in Awazu in the year 718. Until 2011, it held the record for being the oldest hotel in the world.
The inn has been visited by the Japanese Imperial Family and countless great artists over the centuries. Its buildings were destroyed by natural disasters many times, but the family has always rebuilt.
I consider Houshi my most intimate and emotional story.
I visited the hotel twice and each time, it was an intense period – members of the family really opened up in the conversations we had. It was almost too much: in my interview with the daughter, she learned from me of the decision made by her father for the first time. Captured in the final film is the moment where she first hears about it and reflects on it honestly.