Important Cultural Properties
From the late years of the Meiji period, to the beginning of the Showa period,
there were as many as 25 banks that supported the financial state of Otaru,
and it was often referred to as the largest economic city in northern Japan.
One of these, the former Mitsui Bank Otaru Branch, symbolizes the glory days of Otaru.
The Renaissance exterior is made of bold stonework,
with hallways that encircle the vaulted ceiling and beautiful plaster sculptures that adorn the ceiling.
Enjoy the many elegant pieces of work, in a dignified atmosphere of the old bank building.
Safety Deposit Box Vault
Apart from the newly constructed shelves for the safety deposit boxes, the original construction and fixtures of the vault still remain. You can also see the decorations of the ceiling up close.
Hallway in the safety deposit box vault
Due to the fact that the safety deposit box vault for the former Mitsui Bank Otaru Branch was in the basement, the walls cool during the summer, resulting in condensation on the walls. For this reason, the hallways were created to capture the condensation. Matted mirrors line the hallways to provide security.
The original tang leather wall paper and chamois leather chairs remain in tact. The clock which hangs on the wall, which is older than the building, dates back to the thirties of the Meiji period.
Designed by the Sone- Chujo Construction Company, the leading company in construction within Japan at the time, the building is an elegant and classic masterpiece that showcases cutting-edge structure, and detail of that era. Enjoy the beauty of architecture that depicts the glory days of the once, highly esteemed, economic city of northern Japan.