interviewHost Family Stories

interview Kanagawa / June 2019

Experience Japanese culture in a tatami room while sightseeing around Hakone, Kamakura, and Enoshima!

Host Family Stories


Having new encounters with my guests is what makes my life meaningful and vibrant

Said Marilena, who has 18 years of experience running a host family and lives there with her husband and son.

She started the host family when her son was just 3-years old, and she has been enjoying interacting with guests from a wide variety of countries.

One reason we would recommend Marilena’s home is the Japanese-style rooms where you can get a glimpse of the local Japanese way of life.

It is perfect for people who are from outside Japan and want to try sleeping on a futon in a traditional Japanese tatami room. It is also ideal for anyone who wants to lie down and stretch out their arms and legs in a Japanese-style room.

The first floor is dedicated to the guests and there are two guest rooms with a size of about 10 tatami mats each. The interior of both rooms has only recently been renovated, and with Marilena’s cleaning they are really spick and span.

On the same floor, there is a toilet, sink, and mini kitchen for guests only, so guests can have a comfortable stay like at a vacation rental while enjoying doing a homestay.

On the 2nd floor, where Marilena and her family stay, there is a living room and bath that are shared between hosts and guests. Guests are welcome to make themselves at home in the living room and have a chat with Marilena and her family.


Comfortable guest room with brand-new tatami mats


Mini kitchen with a refrigerator and microwave oven for guests only

It’s amazing that I already have bookings for the period of the Tokyo Olympics in July 2020

Marilena’s home is in a location approximately one hour by train from Tokyo. It is hugely popular not only with guests visiting the center of Tokyo, but also those going to Hakone, Kamakura, and Enoshima.

Marilena: Last year (2018), we submitted our notification for offering private lodging, and we have been visited by many people. We already have bookings for the period of the Tokyo Olympics in July next year (2020).

We have some repeat customers who book again and again because they like the tatami rooms. With the country’s inbound policy, the number of tourists visiting Japan has rapidly increased, and we are keenly aware that the age has changed.


Enjoy your stay in a Japanese room!

Marilena: Japanese rooms, made out of natural paper and wood, are different from the western-style rooms you will find in a hotel. The glass and tatami, built in a way that draws on the wisdom of our ancestors for dealing with the climate in Japan, creates a space where you can truly relax.

There are fewer and fewer rooms made with the traditional tatami, with which Japanese people have lived since ancient times, so please take this opportunity to enjoy staying in our Japanese rooms, just as you stay with your own family.

Host Family Stories

I am really looking forward to your visit!

Marilena:Through NiaHomes, I have been able to return to the way I originally felt when starting a host family and want to invite more people to stay. I am really looking forward to your visit!

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