The Washington Times - November 14, 2008, 11:30PM

by Jacquie Kubin, Donne Tempo Magazine


Japanese Zen Garden, Grand Hyatt Buckhead, Atlanta (Photo by Jacquie Kubin)
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Atlanta, Georgia … Learning of the Japanese Zen Garden tucked awayat The Grand Hyatt, Buckhead it quickly became a quest to visit.  Not only for the great culinary experience at Cassis, but for the unique three story garden.

Photos, however do not do this bit of feng shui heaven in Atlanta justice. 

It is an instantly pleasing spot that allows one to decompress, breathe deeply and find an instantaneous inner calm.

Eating at Cassis, we declined to sit in the garden where at night the garden lights glow in an otherwordly sort of way.  In hindsight that was a mistake, though recognizing Cassis for the beautiful environment it is, the decision was well founded.

However, for a romantic night, a special occasion or a dinner in solo quiet contemplation, I can think of no better place than the Japanese Zen Garden at Cassis, The Grand Hyatt, Buckhead.

Japanese Garden Concept

The Japanese Garden is intered to retain the authenticity of the garden principle developed in Japan.  Mountainscape to riverscape in which the regional landscape of Georgia is captured by utilizing a 32 feet elevation change between the upper terrace and lower terrace, arranging the indigenous rocks found in the remote countryside, and planting trees, shrubs, and ground covers compatible with the Japanese Garden, and well adapted with the micro climate.

The Japanese Garden shall become instrument for the visitor to relate to the surrounding landscapes by walking through the upper terrace and viewing into the immediate and lower terrace.  Strolling the garden at the higher level aims to give the opportunity for people to touch, smell, hear, and look at various details of the Japanese Garden. Water features (including cascading, running, splashing, and falling through rockscape) at the intermediate and lower levels can be viewed from the restaurants, offices, and rooms of the hotel.  The watercourse running from the Northeast to Southwest is a typical pattern found the Japanese Gardens and symbolizes Luck and Prosperity.

The main Gate, bridge, Azumaya (open Tea-House), bamboo fence, etc. follows the typical methods of Japanese carpentry.  In addition to the carpentry, garden details including rock arrangement, Kakeni, well-type basin, Karesansui (dry landscape), et. Are created by the join efforts of Japanese craftsmen and local professionals.  It is a harmonious product created in this region for the first time in history in such a magnificent scale. 

We all sincerely hope that the garden shall bring unity between the East and West for generations to come.

Grand Hyatt Atlanta in Buckhead
3300 Peachtree Road, NE
Atlanta, GA 30305 USA