The renowned Japanese haiku poet Matsuo Basho lived in a hut overlooking the valley where Chinzanso Garden stands. Prince Aritomo Yamagata built a villa here and named it Chinzanso "House of Camellias” because of the many camellias that grow here. Yamagata incorporated the topography of the grounds to its best advantage to create a unique Japanese garden here. Later the property was purchased by Baron Fujita who decorated the grounds with historical monuments from all over Japan. Most notably a thousand year old pagoda was transported from the Chikurin-ji temple in Hiroshima Prefecture. Other cultural treasures are found in the garden include stone lanterns and many Buddhist rakan or disciple sculptures. The grounds of Chinzanso are now a part of a large luxury hotel, however visitors are free to walk the grounds of the garden.