Slice of Life

Writer Stephen Short | November 5, 2015

Twenty-eight years after opening Matsuhisa restaurant in Los Angeles, Nobu Matsuhisa’s growing brand shows no sign of slowing. He reveals where he eats, rests and indulges.

TREASURED HOTEL OR RESORT

NM:  The Wakaya Club & Spa in Fiji. I take my family there and stay all week. As for resorts, I like the Lanai, a Hawaiian island with two hotels, a lodge and two Four Seasons. We have restaurants there. In fact, we have one opening in December.

FAVOURITE HOLIDAY DESTINATION

NM: I built a second house 10 years ago in Japan in an area called Hakone, where you have natural hot springs. It’s beautiful – mountains, nature, very quiet. They have 24-hour burning hot springs. When I go there, I don’t see anybody except my family.

FAVOURITE JAPANESE RESTAURANT

NM: There is only one and its name is Komatsu Yasuke in Kanazawa prefecture. The chef is 85 years old and he’s still making sushi. I learnt from him. It’s not just technique – he performs for people. It’s passion.

3 THINGS TO PACK

NM: I exercise every morning, sometimes swimming. So I need goggles with a snorkel, so I can swim and breathe. I like New Balance trainers because of the ‘N’ of ‘new’. The same initial as me.

FAVOURITE SPA FOR SOME ‘ME’ TIME

NM: Nobu in the Philippines; beautiful spa, nice massage, it’s at the City of Dreams, Manila.

MY TOP PLACE TO DINE

NM: The Araki in London. The chef Mitsuhiro Araki is a three-Michelin-starred master from Tokyo, who moved to London because of his family. There are only eight seats, one table. It’s mostly countertop. They do two seatings; 6–8pm and then 8.30pm onwards. I’ve eaten there three times.

ON MY PLAYLIST

NM: Yoyo Ma. I don’t like loud music. I prefer classical and jazz.

SOMETHING I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT

NM: Exercise. It is my habit. It keeps me in good health, young, fit and strong.

THE MEANING OF LUXURY

NM: I travel 10 months of the year: so for me, it’s a private jet. I use Falcons, Cessna Citation X; it depends on the destination. I like Challenger too, and the Dassault Falcon 900 is my favourite plane.   

Exercise. It is my habit. It keeps me in good health, young, fit and strong.
~ Nobu Matsuhisa