Japan's love hotels face legal clamp down

Japan's love hotels face legal clamp down

A new law means fake ryokan inns operating as love hotels will need to re-register, relocate or face closure
love hotels closing
Love hotels will be forced to move and numbers may dive.

Love hotels in Japan could be set to dwindle in number and be shifted out of major areas in January 2011 due to a change in the law.

Business and media site J-Cast suggests their numbers could drop by half, which would leave couples who live with their parents with few options for intimacy. 

love hotels closingLove hotel rates vary depending on the time of day.

Fake hotels to be reclassified

There are around 25,000 registered love hotels in Japan which have been doing brisk business even in times of recession.

But the new law will force another 35,000 hotels currently posing as traditional inns known as ryokan, to change their status to love hotels. Registering as a ryokan allows hotels to avoid rules applied to love hotels, such as not operating within 200 meters of a school. 

This could cost each operator several million yen in documentation or relocation fees, and there are fears that this will drive many out of business.  

The change in law has been supported by groups such as the National Fake-Love Hotel Removal Group.


Robert Michael Poole is a specialist on the Japanese music and entertainment scene.

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