Okinawa Resort Workcation Promotion Council

“Challenge” Ishigaki Island

Post date:2024.02.22

The southernmost event & co-working space in Japan connecting people, islands, and communities.

From the island, making the world interesting! Ishigaki Island's largest event & coworking space.

Located 25 minutes by car or 40 minutes by bus from New Ishigaki Airport, at 510 Tonoshiro, once the economic heart of Ishigaki Island. Founded over  70 years ago, in the same location,  originally named 'Konan Shokai'. Their brand evolved later into 'Konan Home Center' and then ' 'Challenge Home Center’. They have continued to adapt to the island's lifestyle throughout this time. Although they closed their doors temporarily in 2018, in 2022 they re-opened , preserving the name 'Challenge' and their original signboard from  ‘Konan Shokai’, marking the beginning of a  dynamic workspace.

The site of the oldest home center on the island.
What could be done with this building for the benefit of the island?

Four entrepreneurs based in Ishigaki Island, along with a high school teacher, came together to initiate a project. They aimed to create a space for the island's children, who are the future of the island, to establish a hub where children and adults could connect and embrace technology. In 2022, they utilized government grants to establish '”Challenge” Ishigaki Island,' the largest event and coworking space on the island, as a privately-owned facility, to serve this purpose.

As you open the door, the first thing you notice is the communication counter. Here, visitors check in before entering the facility.

There are 61 open seats available. Drop-in use is possible without a reservation.

There are a total of 25 dedicated seats available for personal use. These fixed seats can be utilized without worrying about availability. (Available only to users on monthly membership plans)

Private rooms and semi-private spaces are available through advanced reservations, but if there is availability on the day, you can use them without prior booking. These spaces are ideal for times when you want to concentrate without being seen or need to make a phone call. There is no additional charge for these facilities.There are 8 private booths available, each named after islands in the Yaeyama archipelago such as 'Taketomi' and 'Hateruma,' allowing two people to enter simultaneously. These booths can be used on a monthly basis as minimalist offices. Why not consider them as a base in Ishigaki?

Rather than just a coworking space, it serves as a community hub with a well-sized event space at its center, allowing locals to make use of it. Various events take place here, such as hula presentations, movie screenings utilizing a 200-inch screen, workshops for school trips, and even instances where local elders rent the space for solo practice sessions with the sanshin, a traditional Okinawan musical instrument.

Moreover, renowned figures from around the world, such as legends in the gaming industry or individuals engaged in environmental conservation activities in the Galapagos Islands, have visited the island one after another to hold lectures and events.

There's also a "Public School" program held twice a week targeting high school students on the island. “Public School” is a project-based educational program aimed at fostering skills such as creativity, teamwork, and initiative that cannot be measured solely through academic performance. Students regularly visit “Challenge” Ishigaki Island, where they have natural opportunities to engage in communication with adults they wouldn't normally meet in their daily lives, such as remote workers and guest speakers. It's said that the creativity of the island's high school students, inspired by the knowledge and perspectives of adults, in turn stimulates the adults themselves.

When there are no reservations, the space can be freely utilized as a dining area or a "yuntaku" (chatting in Okinawan dialect) space along with the terrace, free of charge.

Providing a stable internet environment robust enough to host e-sports
tournaments on remote islands with weak network infrastructure.

The most concerning aspect of teleworking is often the network environment. To ensure a comfortable workspace for those who come all the way to Ishigaki for teleworking, we have installed three fully secure high-speed fiber optic lines, providing a stable internet environment even during peak seasons. This year, we hosted a two-day exclusive e-sports tournament organized by Okinawa Cellular.

Because local children are working here, we have the support of the local community.

What began with four entrepreneurs and one teacher has now entered its second phase, with a team of eight staff members comprising a diverse range of ages and backgrounds, from high school students to housewives, both from the island and beyond. With local children working here, the interest of the island's adults has also increased, making it an even more intriguing place that integrates well with the local community.

When you come to “Challenge”, there's an exciting sense of anticipation that something interesting is bound to happen.

At ”Challenge”, our analog handwritten matching board serves as a platform for people to mix and match based on various concepts such as 'I WANT' and 'I CAN,' facilitating talent discovery. From chiropractors to IT engineers, skills vary widely. If you're interested in someone, feel free to inform our community manager.

We want to cherish the potential born from “Challenge” and nurture the created opportunities with care.

“Challenge” Ishigaki Island: Mr. Yuji Sumiyoshi (left), Ms. Hiroko Sato (right)

"Ishigaki Island isn't just the southernmost point of Japan; it's the gateway to Asia. It holds the potential to showcase interesting ideas to the world. With “Challenge” Ishigaki Island, we aim to create a space where people of all ages can connect, explore the island's charm and new perspectives, and challenge themselves in various ways. Before the pandemic, Ishigaki Island's international airport operated regular flights to destinations like Hong Kong. With plans for its renewal and reopening, “Challenge” Ishigaki Island is also working on multilingualism, with three staff members fluent in English."

“Challenge” Ishigaki Island is not just an event and coworking space; it's a diverse hub where various businesses participate, including public schools, food trucks, shared bicycles, and Ishigaki Island's community currency. With plans for starting a car rental business in the future, “Challenge” is a never-ending endeavor.

It's a unique coworking space where interesting people gather and evolve every day. Why not consider it as your next resort location for remote work?

Fee Plans

Drop-in¥1,500 for 3 hours
Meeting room¥2,000 for 1 hour
¥15,000 for 1 day
Event space¥5,000 for 1 hour (50% off on weekdays)
¥30,000 for 1 day (50% off on weekdays)
Workation plan¥7,000 per week
¥14,000 per month

Other services are available as well.

“Challenge” Ishigaki Island

Address: 1st floor, 510 Tonoshiro, Ishigaki City, Okinawa Prefecture