The owner of a 116-year old former hospital ward in Chigasaki, Kanagawa, has donated the property to the city in accordance with his late father’s wishes.
‘Nanko-in’ was founded by Doctor Koan Takata (1861-1945) in 1899 as a tuberculosis sanatorium. The 18,000 sqm beachfront site in the Shonan area was chosen because of its clean air and environment. A 2-storey, wooden building with a total floor area of 230 sqm (2,475 sq.ft) was built in 1899 as the first hospital ward.
The hospital started with just ten rooms and three patients. One of those was the widow of , a samurai and politician. Author was hospitalised here before his death in 1908. His illness was reported in the Yomiuri Newspaper at the time and elevated the reputation of both the hospital and the Chigasaki vacation villa area.