Sport Laura Robson was victorious in Beijing on Sunday

The Brit lost to Kimiko Date-Krumm

ARCHITECTURE / Going with the flow: Only two buildings on Earth are visible from space. One is the Great Wall of China. The other opens today on an artificial island off the coast of Japan. Kansai International Airport, in the Bay of Osaka, is where the future of building design is about to take off

KANSAI International Airport, on a specially built artificial island offshore of Japan in the Bay of Osaka, opens today. Its single terminal, for domestic and international flights, is the largest in the world. Designed to handle up to 31 million passengers a year, it is also the longest building ever constructed, its boarding lounges accommodated in a single space 1.7km (just over a mile) long. With flowing curves clad in thousands of stainless-steel panels, it is said to be the only building apart from the Great Wall of China which is visible from space.

Departures: Japan ease

THE new Kansai international airport opens near Osaka in Japan on 4 September. On that date, Japan Air Lines begins a new service from Heathrow to Kansai. A ticket bought through JAL (071-408 1000) would cost at least pounds 1,142 return. For only pounds 645, however, you can get a seat on the inaugural flight - as long as you transfer at Kansai to Sydney. The return ticket from Australia is valid a year, and JAL will put you up for the night in Japan before the flight home. This deal is only available through agents, such as Quest Worldwide (081-547 3322).

Women in high-rise flats risk miscarriage

WOMEN who live high up in tower blocks appear twice as likely to miscarry during pregnancy than those who live on lower floors, according to a Japanese survey of more than 400 young women, writes Liz Hunt.

The Broader Picture: All singing, all dancing, all girls

THE Takarazuka company's newly opened show at the London Coliseum begins with a long and indigestible sequence of pseudo-traditional Japanese scenes - a Mikado without the story or the jokes. But the revue really takes off in Part Two, with 'This Side of the Door', an adaptation of an O Henry story set in America before the war. The girls of Takarazuka only come into their own when they put on dinner jackets and bow-ties and patent leather shoes, when they sport quiffs and sharp little sideburns and strut and pose with their melting, hyper-feminine partners.

THEATRE / Love on a branch line: Two women kiss and a nation's housewives swoon. Marianne Brace welcomes Japan's all-female Takarazuka Revue Company to London

In her jeans and silk waistcoat, Takarazuka star Mira Anju doesn't look like a heart-throb. She is tall, thin and softly spoken. Without the tuxedo and stage swagger, though, it's hard to imagine her inspiring besotted housewives to write 'I want to bear your baby.'

PHOTOGRAPHY / Street wise: Edinburgh's 'Liquid Crystal Futures' explores the spiritual side of life in modern Japan. Jane Richards reports

In 1985 Takashi Takagi, a Japanese art director, commissioned Manabu Yamanaka to photograph the street people of Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka who seemed to him to fit the guise of Buddhist arhats (traditional spiritual beings who have attained enlightenment and are detached from all earthly desires, transcending even life and death).

Tennis: Five up as Sampras routs Roux

PETE SAMPRAS, the world No 1, easily overcame the qualifier, Lionel Roux, of France, to win the Salem Open in Osaka, Japan, yesterday. The 22-year-old crushed Roux, 6-2, 6-2, to take his fifth title this year, the 25th of his career.

Clinton opens fire in trade war with Japan: US to raise tariffs on Japanese cellphones

PRESIDENT Clinton gave his clearest warning yet that America will provoke a trade showdown with Japan, insisting that Tokyo's present course was 'unsustainable' and 'unacceptable', both for the rest of the world and its own domestic consumers.

Table Tennis: Matsushita's Open

ENGLAND'S top two players, the former World Cup winner Chen Xinhua and the former European Top 12 champion Desmond Douglas, were unexpectedly beaten by Japan's Yuji Matsushita who went on to win the Cleveland Five Star Open at the Thornaby Pavilion, Middlesbrough, yesterday, writes James Leigh.

Out of Japan: A train named Desire

TOKYO - The breakdown on the new generation high-speed ultra- sleek Nozomi bullet train could not have come at a worse time. At 11.30am on Thursday the Nozomi No 9 from Tokyo to Hakata lost power and stopped in the countryside. On board was China's Railways Minister, Han Zhubin, who was in Japan to inspect the country's hi-tech trains with a view to building similar systems in China.

Motor Racing: Footwork to reduce F1 funding

FOOTWORK, the Japanese truck company, is to drop most of the sponsorship of the Formula One team bearing its name, from next year.

Out of Japan: Filling a nation's spiritual vacuum with an outside loo

TOKYO - There was an architect, there was Zen philosophy and there was the matter of the outside lavatory. Fourteen years later there was the temple with a pond on the roof. First the lavatory.

Out of Japan: Lonely hearts pour out their life stories

KANAZAWA - It was nearly midnight in the coffee-shop, and the guests were not ready to go home. Sitting around the low wooden bar they were drinking coffee, beer or wine and sharing conversation in a manner which would be rare in Tokyo but more common in Japan's smaller towns and villages. Gradually, as the night wore on, a series of life stories began to emerge - and a series of reasons why no one was ready to leave the cosy security of the coffee-shop and go home just yet.

Special Report on Long-Haul Air Travel: Putting a cut-price girdle round about the earth: Operators have bargains for travellers if they eschew routes to the Antipodes via South-east Asia. Simon Calder reports

FARES to Australia and New Zealand being offered by American and antipodean airlines that operate across the Pacific can be as cheap and often less expensive than for routes via the Far East.

Obituary: Shizuo Tsuji

Shizuo Tsuji, chef and teacher, born 1933, married, died Saitama Japan 2 March 1993.
News
The Banksy image in Folkestone before it was vandalised
people
Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts

Sport
football West Brom vs Man Utd match report: Blind grabs point, but away form a problem for Van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Bloom Time: Mira Sorvino
tvMira Sorvino on leaving movie roles for 'The Intruders'
News
First woman: Valentina Tereshkova
peopleNASA guinea pig Kate Greene thinks it might fly
News
Brian Harvey turned up at Downing Street today demanding to speak to the Prime Minister
news

Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010
films

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

Voices
Chris Grayling, Justice Secretary: 'There are pressures which we are facing but there is not a crisis'
voices

Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
India & Nepal
Japan
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Salisbury ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities

The city is home to one of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta, along with the world’s oldest mechanical clock
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album