New Japan, Old Japan / Elements of Hokutosei sleeper train revived as Tokyo hostel
In 1988, the Hokutosei sleeper express was the first train to use the Seikan tunnel to link Ueno Station in Tokyo to Sapporo, over a journey of 1,200 kilometers. It gained popularity through such charms as luxury sleeping cars and a dining car where travelers could enjoy French-style cuisine. However, to the regret of many fans, in August 2015 the train service was completely discontinued due to the opening of the Hokkaido Shinkansen line and the aging of the Hokutosei train cars.
Last month, the Hokutosei was “revived” as a hostel in the Nihonbashi Bakurocho area of central Tokyo. Called Train Hostel Hokutosei, the hostel reuses train car equipment and has become a hot topic among railway enthusiasts who consider it a rebirth of their beloved sleeper express.
The hostel differs from ordinary accommodations, with large dormitory-type guest rooms shared by men and women on three floors and a large guest room exclusively for women on one floor. Its 38 bunk beds and two semiprivate rooms can accommodate up to 78 overnight guests. Restrooms, shower rooms and a kitchen are shared.
今回取り上げるのは “bunk beds” です。『ライトハウス英和辞典』（第5版 研究社）で調べると、「（子供用の）2段ベッド」とありました。Merriam-Websterには “one of two single beds usually placed one above the other” と定義されております。
さらに、bunkだけで引いてみると、「（船、列車などの壁についた）寝台（berth）」（『ライトハウス英和辞典』）という意味が見つかり、今回はこちらの意味でのbunk を用いてbunk bedsと表現していると考えられます。（aqua）