When I sent my book to all my interviewees, and immediately I was flooded with kokeshi, hand written letters, a box of peaches and a box of fish! Usually I get emails to say "thanks!"(or nothing at all) from my interviewees, but this is above and beyond, ... I should be sending them fish not the other way around!! They really are so nice, not just polite but truly warm people.
edited to add: I don't get endorsements for including anyone in my books/ articles and so on, they really have to add some kind of value to the project, whether it is their creative prowess, or experiences. Usually its pretty obvious if an article in an ad in disguise, but just so you know!
We shot the Naruko Hotel folks a few years ago -- I could see people walking around town wearing kokeshi yukata, and we found out they were from the Naruko Hotel. We went in without an appointment, and the manager took us around as they have a HUGE kokeshi collection(at least a couple of hundred, if not a thousand plus)
Most of the accommodation in Naruko is really simple, Naruko hotel has some gorgeous suites with private footbaths and impressive views.