【Special features of the (MU) ROOM】
The (MU) ROOM creates a space around two-and-a-half to four-an-a-half tatami mats in size in which, intentionally, nothing is placed, and in line with the meditation program overseen by Professor Hiroaki Kumano of Waseda University’s Faculty of Human Sciences, the room environment is controlled with a combination of mist, light, sounds and fragrances that induce a meditative state. Professor Kumano says that: “There is one type of meditation in which the purpose is that the meditator focuses on their feelings and experiences a deep world in their inner selves, and another type of meditation in which the purpose is to sharpen the five senses and feel as though one is existing together with the world. Through the control of spatial environments it has become easier for even novice meditators to experience both types.” In addition, the physical data of guests when using the program will be measured, and meditation scores*2 provided by a dedicated smartphone application.
Model introduced at HOTEL ANTEROOM KYOTO Illustration of meditation in the (MU) ROOMNB: Two-and-a-half tatami mat size introduced at HOTEL ANTEROOM KYOTO. It is possible to adjust sizes to suit the room.
The meditation program comes in two types with different effects.
The purpose of “concentrative power meditation” is to nurture concentrative powers by focusing awareness on one single thing and sharpen the heart and mind. The purpose of “awareness meditation” is to nurture awareness by widening the meditator’s perspective and help them gain a feeling of the world extending to all of its corners.
By selecting these programs using a dedicated application, for a period of 30 minutes the audio guidance combined with the silky fine mist*3, the system adjusting the lighting, color and images, the sound and aromas change the spatial environment and lead to a deep meditative state.
■Physical measurements/meditation scoring
In the (MU) ROOM a physical measurement device records the user’s pulse and breathing during the experience, and a uniquely developed algorithm calculates a score for the meditative state. Furthermore, based on responses to questions made using the application changes in sense of fatigue, tension and refreshment before and after the experience are also calculated. With a combination of advice for further meditation in the future regarding the results and the changes in the graph showing the meditative state are displayed on the application, providing support for checking.
Cooperation in device development: AffordSENS Corporation
The algorithm for scoring meditation was developed after conducting experiments on experiment subjects from February to September 2020.
- ・Phase1: Verification of visualizing meditative states through acquisition of physical data from people with plenty of experience in meditating.
- ・Phase2: Verification of the meditation support effects of audio guidance and environment control in the (MU) ROOM.
The verification work was conducted under the instruction of Masahiro Fujino, Program-Specific Assistant Professor at the Kyoto University Open Innovation Institute.
【Main technologies in the (MU) ROOM】
■Silky fine mist technology
The mist is a dry mist with a minimal sense of moisture created by ultra-fine particles measuring around 6 µm in diameter, which are sprayed out of a uniquely developed twin fluid nozzle. Since the particles consist of water their effect on the human body is negligible, and as they easily circulate around the room it is possible to create a space that exerts a sense of immersion by combining the mist with lighting. Moreover, since the instantaneous spraying of long-lasting aromatic essence has been enabled, it is possible to make fragrances float through the space.
■Spatial sound technology (high-resolution sound)
A sound environment in which the user is unaware of the position of the speakers and becomes entirely enwrapped in sound is created using high-resolution sound that provides an enhanced meditative effect on the mind and body, and enables the users to look deeply into himself or herself.
■Ambient lighting system (directed by Izumi Okayasu Lighting Design)
Through a twin variety of lighting configurations an array of variations is produced, creating an environment perfect for meditation. Subtle variations eliminate the sense of depth in the space, inducing an out-of-the-ordinary meditation experience.
■Easily installed panel construction
The panels are constructed so that their size can be altered to fit in the required space, and assembly of the factory-made parts enables flexibility and ease of installation.
■Meditation experience application
As well as providing program choices and experience support, a unique algorithm calculates medication scores based on the pulse and breathing measurement data, displaying meditation results that include changes in psychological indicators.
Cooperation in application development: BASSDRUM inc.
Continuing to meditate produces considerable effects. Panasonic hope to aim to provide a support service for turning mindfulness activities into a habitual practice by enabling people to feel for themselves the effects of meditation in the (MU) ROOM and providing the next steps in order for them to continue meditation. With the (MU) ROOM application as the connecting point between hotel and home, Panasonic will provide a total experience branding.
Explanation of technical terms
- *1 A mental process in which the subject concentrates their awareness of what is happening at the exact moment, it can be taken to higher levels through repeated practice such as meditating. There are cases of mindfulness being incorporated into the medical and welfare fields.
- *2 Developed by Panasonic’s Technical Division with the support of the Japan Science and Technology Agency’s Center of Innovation Program.
- *3 An ultra-fine mist created by the twin fluid nozzle developed exclusively at Panasonic. As it vaporizes swiftly after effusion it imparts very little sense of moisture and achieves a comfortable and refreshing feeling, making it a hitherto unknown mist that can be placed close to people.
■HOTEL ANTEROOM KYOTO
HOTEL ANTEROOM KYOTO is a hotel and apartment block planned, designed and operated by UDS (Shibuya, Tokyo), which converted what was a former student dormitory in 2011. The interior has a gallery and breakfast restaurant bar. Following further renewal work in 2016 an additional 67 rooms were created and the building now consists of 128 guest rooms and 50 apartments, adding a new sense of Japanese harmony to the hotel’s concept of “art and culture.” Perceiving these three concepts in the present continuous tense, the hotel expresses “modern day Kyoto.”
Outline of Panasonic Corporation
|Representative ||President & CEO Kazuhito Tsuga |
|Headquarters ||1006, Oaza Kadoma, Kadoma-shi, Osaka |
|Established ||December 15, 1935 |
|Business ||Comprehensive electronics manufacturer producing, selling and providing servicing in fields ranging from components to household electricals, electrical appliances, FA equipment, telecommunications equipment, and housing-related devices |
|Website ||https://www.panasonic.com/ |
Outline of UDS Ltd.
|Representative ||President & CEO Tetsuji Kuroda |
|Headquarters ||2nd floor, 1-19-19 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo |
|Established ||February 26, 2009 |
|Business ||Business planning, architectural design and outlet management relating to town planning |
|Website ||https://www.uds-net.co.jp/ |