This building was owned by Marquis Tsugumichi Saigo (1843-1902), younger brother of the Great Saigo. It was the reception hall of his residence, which was situated on a hillock of Kami-Meguro, Tokyo. It has a fine two-storied veranda at one end, which is decorated with delicately jigsawed rafter-end covers and balusters. The reception hall originally faced an extensive garden and it was told that Emperor Meiji once watched Japanese wrestling matches (sumo) from the upper veranda. Some say it was designed by J. Lescasse, French architect and engineer, and built around 1880.

In order to enhance the seismic properties of the building, light-weight copper plates were used for roofing and inside the wall, bricks were buried to prevent floating of the building.

It was designated as an ‘Important Cultural Property’ in 1965.


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