Skiers crave speed, thrills, and the discovery of what’s just over the next mogul. International skiers crave all these things, plus the rich experience of a new and distant culture. Nowhere are either of these two breeds of adventurers more rewarded than Hokkaido, in northern Japan. Though considered by some a rural outpost, this northern island and the Hokkaido hotel scene here is a place where skiers offer copious praise for the island’s Niseko resort area. Here, some 15 meters of powdery snow fall each winter, widening the eyes of skiers. But there is actually a second season of pleasure to be found here. Niseko hotels also fill up in summer with watersport lovers, such as rafters and fishermen, and with hikers and mountain bikers. And in both seasons, the nightlight and restaurant scene is buzzing, giving rise to claims that this is Japan’s version of Aspen. Below find a list of our selection of boutique and luxury Niseko hotels.