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Sunday, Dec. 18, 2011

KANSAI: Who & What

Hilton Osaka hosting big model train diorama

The Hilton Osaka hotel is showcasing model trains running on a large diorama until Jan. 8.

The "Hilton Christmas Train" diorama is in the first-floor lobby and is supported by local companies and groups. A slice of their donations was used for the exhibition, and the rest will be donated to Hakuaisha, a children's nursing facility in Yodogawa Ward, Osaka, and also to disaster-hit areas in the Tohoku region.

The diorama measures 9.6 meters by 4.2 meters and includes an elaborate winter European town and snow-capped mountains. It features G-gauge trains from German model railroad manufacturer Lehmann Gross Bahn.

The hotel is in Kita Ward near JR Osaka and Umeda stations.

For an access map and more information, visit the hotel's website at hiltonosaka.com (in Japanese and English).

Spectacular sunsets on tap in Tempozan

Visitors to Tempozan Harbor Village in Minato Ward, Osaka, will be treated to spectacular views of the sun setting Dec. 31 and Jan. 1 in the Daikan-mon gap between the harbor's breakwaters.

The breakwaters were built 3 km off the coast in 1905 to protect the Tempozan area from big waves, and include a lighthouse with a white light on the north breakwater and another one with a red light on the south side.

The sun sets between the breakwaters from Nov. 21 to Jan. 21, but on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day it sets directly in the middle of Daikan-mon, offering amateur and professional photographers alike the chance to take spectacular shots.

Based on calculations by the Osaka Science Museum, the sun will set at 4:57 p.m. on Dec. 31 and 4:58 p.m. on Jan. 1. There is a margin of error of one to two minutes, depending on the temperature and weather conditions.

For further information, contact the Tempozan Harbor Village at (06) 6576-5501.

Christmas charity concerts at Ramada Osaka

The Ramada Osaka hotel is hosting its Christmas Charity Concert 2011 event from Dec. 23 to 25.

The Dec. 23 concert will be performed by a string quartet from the Kansai-based amateur Shion Symphony Orchestra, and will be held from 11:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.

On Dec. 24, the Soul Bird Choir gospel vocal group will perform at 11:30 a.m. and 6 p.m., while on Christmas Day the jazz and pops Krone Clarinet Quartet will perform from 11:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. The concerts will last 30 minutes and will take place in the hotel lobby on the first floor.

Admission is free. There will be a donation box in the lobby for victims of the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

The hotel is in Kita Ward and is connected to Exit 3 of Nakatsu Station on the Midosuji subway line. For an access map, go to www.ramada-osaka.com (in Japanese, English, Chinese and Korean). For further information, contact the hotel at info@ramada-osaka.com.



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