Ehime prefecture is well known for the fruit orchards that are supported by its warm climate. The other well-known product of Ehime is the Imabari towel, which is admired for its high quality. It started being produced in 1894 when a newly modified cotton-weaving machine was introduced by a man named Heisuke Abe.
Later, Imabari went through a period of struggles, unable to compete with the inexpensive towels that flooded Japan from overseas. However, Imabari towel makers stubbornly continued to focus on improving the quality of their product, and eventually succeeded in creating an upscale name brand. They survived a sharp decline in the 1990s, and in the following decade, Imabari’s market share greatly increased, reaching 50% of Japan’s towel production in 2010. Nowadays, Imabari towels have a luxurious image overseas as well as in Japan. All towels must pass a strict quality tests before being sold as Imabari towels. Criteria include how well they soak up water, and their softness (They come recommended for baby skin!). Imabari towels’ colors do not fade after numerous washes, unlike some other brands. The great durability means you can make an Imabari towel into a longtime companion for your bath or face/hand wash.
People can usually tell how nice of a hotel they are staying at when they step into their rooms and check out what it is stocked with. Nice hotels tend to have nice thick white towels. Therefore, some five star hotels overseas are now offering Imabari towels for their guests. We hope you will get to experience these exquisite Imabari towels, whether it’s at home or in a fancy hotel.
5-14-3 Higashimoncho Imabari-shi Ehime-ken
Ehime Tourism Bussankan
Okazaki Sangyo bldg 1F 3-6-1 Ogaido Matsuyama-shi Ehime-ken