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Sento

Tokyo: sento lockers
 

One of more enjoyable aspects of moving to the new ‘hood are the expansive local sento options. There are two easy ways to identify that a sento is nearby – a smoke-stack that juts out from the lo-rise skyline; and at ground level following the trickle of pristine punters to the source of their pristinity.

The Shimizuyu sento in Sangenjaya is more interesting than most – layers of bath-house history dating back to the 1920’s encapsulated in objects & practices: an expansive Mt Fuji mural; a pool with a surprisingly strong electric current, a wood decked veranda to cool off and take a smoke; bottles of milk sitting in a glass fridge; a 1st gen massage chair that accepts 10 yen without living up to its end of the bargain.