Suizenji Jojuen 水前寺成趣園 was originally envisioned by Hosokawa Tadatoshi, the third Lord of Hosokawa, who desired a quiet retreat to savour an excellent cup of tea in the Way of Tea.
The design of Suizenji Jojuen Garden encompasses the Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido Road.
The Tokaido Road dates back to the twelfth century and was a highway that connected Edo (present-day Tokyo) and Kyoto.
Representation of Mount Fuji in the garden, as part of the Tokaido highway.
The location of this retreat had been chosen for the purity of the water of the Choju springs.
The fresh, cold water of the springs originate from nearby Mt. Aso and runs to the garden through underground currents.
Clean, pure, fresh water is essential for an excellent cup of tea.
It was here in this Kokindenju Room that the Imperial Prince Toshihito had been initiated into the secret of traditional waka poetry by the first Lord Hosokawa Fujitaka who had been a master of waka.
Lord Hosokawa Fujitaka and Hosokawa Tadatoshi on the grounds of Suizenji Jojuen.
The Hosokawa clan had once ruled Kumamoto for eleven generations.
The Izumi Shinto Shrine on the grounds of the tea retreat was built in 1878 in recognition of the cultural, moral and intellectual leadership of the Hosokawa family.
Izumi Shinto Shrine is where members of the Hosokawa family are now enshrined.
The Longevity Fountain.
The pure water of the garden springs are claimed to enhance longevity.
The Inari Shinto deity oversees success, harvest abundance and prosperity.
The circular garden of Suizenji Jojuen is of the Momoyama period style that evolved during the reigns of the fourth and fifth Lords of Hosokawa.
The name Suizenji Jojuen 水前寺成趣園 conveys the meaning Garden of Elegance.
Work on Suizenji joju-en 水前寺成趣園 began in 1636 and was completed about eighty years later.
The broader our vision, the deeper our aspirations, the greater the time and effort it takes to realise our intentions.
Eighty years for one garden from the vision of one man that millions of people around the world can now can experience and appreciate.
水前寺成趣園. The Suizenji Jojuen Garden.