Hassōan (Eight Window Hermitage) Teahouse


The Hassōan teahouse in the museum’s central garden, also called the Gansuitei, was originally built in the garden of the Daijōin sub-temple of the Kōfuku-ji Temple in the middle Edo period. It is a famous teahouse designed with the multiple-window style favored by the Edo-period tea connoisseur Furuta Oribe (1544–1615). It is one of the “Three Teahouses of the Yamato Region,” along with the Rokusōan (Six Window Hermitage) from the Jigen’in the temple of the Kōfuku-ji temple (presently located in the Tokyo National Museum) and the Okiroku (moved to Tokyo then lost in the war) from the Shiseibō sub-temple of the Tōdai-ji Temple.

Charitable locals who wished to preserve this teahouse perpetually in Nara donated it to the former Imperial Nara Museum, and the teahouse was relocated to the current museum grounds in 1892.

The interior of the Hassōan is a yonjō-daime, four-mat, tearoom in the geza-doko style with the tokonoma alcove placed to the rear of the host’s seat. The building is in the Sōan “grass hut” style with an irimoya hip-and-gable style thatched roof. The interior has a straw-braided ceiling from the alcove to the host’s seat, and the rest of the roof is exposed with an undecorated ceiling, kesho yaneura.


Hassoan Tearoom Floor plan

The teahouse is available for tea parties, haiku poem gatherings, flower arrangement, kōdō incense ceremonies, and other cultural gatherings with a small number of people.

  1. Available facilities and fee
    1)Facilities available: Hassōan, koshikake-machiai (waiting place), anteroom, and so on.
    2)Fee: \20,000 per day for the facilities listed above (9:30 AM to 5:30 PM) (Utilities fees and tax included)
  2. Available days and hours
    1)Available on the days the museum is open; closed on Mondays and from December 28 to January 4; Unavailable when the museum is used for a special event.
    2)9:00 AM to 5:30 PM (The user must clean the teahouse and leave by 5:30 PM.)
  3. Conditions
    1)When the teahouse is used for a tea ceremony, there must be someone among the users who can properly instruct the ceremony.
    2)Rental tea ceremony equipment is not available. Please bring your own equipment.
    3)The users must clean the rooms after use. Please contact the museum regarding cleaning or advance preparation before you use the teahouse.
    4)When the users leave the teahouse, they must check on its condition and report to the museum office confirming that the fire in the hearth is completely extinguished, that no scratches have been made on the hearth, tatami mats, and the walls, that no scorch marks have been left on the tatami mats, and that the rooms are completely clean.
    5)All users must wear a ribbon provided by the museum as an ID. Please return the ribbons to the museum after using the teahouse.
    6)Please follow the guidelines for the using the facilities.
    7)If you need to drive in to carry ceremony equipment, please report this to the museum office in advance.
  4. Information and reservations
    Event Promotion Team, General Affairs Section, the Nara National Museum
    TEL 0742-22-7771 (Operator)  FAX 0742-26-7218