Look for a sign like this just off R17 before GALA Yuzawa

Badbest Sports Bar in Yuzawa

The place to go for apres-ski entertainment in Yuzawa

Look for a sign like this just off R17 before GALA Yuzawa
Rufus Starbuck   - 3 min read

It is often noted that many ski towns in Japan lack an apres-ski scene, with most domestic visitors choosing to enjoy a few drinks in their hotel room or just as an accompaniment to their meal. Badbest in Yuzawa is trying to rectify the situation in Yuzawa with their sports bar/club and inject some fun into the nightlife in the town.

It opened at the end of the winter season in March 2012 in an old pachinko parlor on the way out of town. It is run by a team who spend their summers managing bars on various beaches in Japan, so they have a strong pedigree. No expense has been spared in renovating. It is a huge space and they have filled it with plenty of things to keep the reveler amused.

You usually enter into the seating area and bar. There is a full menu with substantial meals as well as bar snacks to satisfy those big appetites of people rolling off the slopes. The drink menu is comprehensive too. Down a few steps you get to the event space (and there are regular events and after parties throughout the season.) There is a wall of speakers around the DJ booth. Luckily Badbest is on the main road and away from any houses so they are free to crank up the volume levels. If there are no big events there is a pool table, table football, darts and video games. There is also a stage with simulation golf. You hit real balls at a giant screen and it works out from the trajectory where it would land. It’s lots of fun and very immersive - it is a bit of a shock to leave your sunny course in Florida and come back to the big snow drifts of Yuzawa. Downstairs is a little skate park and half pipe.

It is an amazing place to hang out. The only problem is that it is either a very long walk or a short taxi ride from the center of Yuzawa (though it is right underneath GALA if you are looking for a couple of drinks right off the slopes). This might be enough to dissuade some or just keep it out of sight, out of mind. There is so much to do though, that it is a destination in its own right, and if you are looking for some evening fun in Yuzawa, this could be a great option, especially if you can round up a group of friends.

Rufus Starbuck

Rufus Starbuck @rufus.starbuck

Hanging out in the mountains of Niigata. Arrived by accident and yet to leave. Seem to spend far too much time eating...