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“Lakeside location with beautiful views, but expensive and the staff are inefficient” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Fuji Lake Hotel

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Fuji Lake Hotel
3.5 of 5 Onsen Hotel   |   1 Funatsu, Fujikawaguchiko-machi, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi Prefecture 401-0301, Japan (Kawaguchiko Onsen)   |  
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Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Lakeside location with beautiful views, but expensive and the staff are inefficient”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2013

As we did with most of our journey throughout Japan we had no booking here and just turned up and asked if there was any availability. We were in the middle of our Japan road trip over 9 days from Tokyo to Osaka via numerous places we wanted to see, Mt. Fuji being on top of our list. This particular hotel attracted our interest as it claimed some of the rooms had a private onsen bath on the balcony with views to Mt. Fuji. So we parked in the main car park (for free) and wandered inside and enquired. This is one of those hotels that charges you per person and the rate includes dinner and breakfast also. After being shown rates and types of rooms we asked about having a look at the private onsen balcony room with views of Fuji. No problem we were told, please wait a few minutes. I think we waited at least 20 minutes. There was about 6 staff fluttering around all over the place, they all seemed like it was their first day working there. Eventually we were shown the room and we were quite impressed but not happy with the price so we wandered back down to the front counter and tried to bargain with them. Bear in mind it was around 5pm and it was rather unlikely that anyone was going to walk in and book the same room for 2 nights so we felt trying to bargain a bit shouldn't be a problem. The room is priced higher 'per-person' for 2 people, slightly lower pp for 3, and the cheapest pp with 4 people. We asked if we could have the rate for 4 people, even though there was only 2 of us. The staff had to go check with the manager and came back to then advise us they could do us a better deal, however we were too late for dinner to be prepared for us as it's a set menu, so we had to feed ourselves that night. In the end we were tired from driving all day, loved the room so much and were excited about seeing Fuji so we decided to accept their offer. We checked in and were again asked to take a seat in the lobby while the staff took our luggage to our room, we were also given a small cup of honey citrus tea which was delicious. We had a fair bit of luggage so they needed 2 trolleys. 1 staff member took one load up and placed it in our room while we drank our complimentary tea and then the 2nd staff member escorted us, with the rest of our luggage on another trolley. We arrived at the door to our room but the first staff member had been in and gone, relocked the room and taken off with the key. No big deal, we just had to wait again while the 2nd staff member ran down and grabbed it, or another one.

After settling in and grabbing some dinner from the Chinese restaurant right across the street we wanted to see what was on the TV only to discover there was no English TV channels. Quite disappointing considering we were paying around $480 AUD per night. We always have lots of TV shows and movies on our laptop and with our own HDMI cable just plug in directly into most hotel TVs and away we go. The TV in our room was so old this wasn't possible. Ok, we'll just spend more time in our private onsen which helped pass the time and we had an early night anyway so it didn't really matter.

The first morning we got up at the crack of dawn hoping to see Mt Fuji from our balcony and voila, there she was in full view .. amazing. I failed to mention earlier that on our arrival the day before it was cloudy so it couldn't be seen. Plus it gets completely dark here just after 5pm at this time of year anyway. The forecast for the next day was mostly sunny so we had our fingers crossed and fortunately we were rewarded when we got up early.

We then went off to breakfast to the restaurant on level 7 which had incredible views of Lake Kawaguchi out one side and Mt. Fuji out the other. Breakfast is nothing special but still ok and filled our tummys ready for another day of local adventure. As others have mentioned it did feel a bit like a hospital cafeteria though. Most of the tables were just covered in a cloth without any crockery or cutlery and were all setup for 6-8 people, there were no tables for just 2 people at all. A bit strange, and just felt like were almost on school camp again. We were given a table overlooking the lake and placed a few small personal items on it to show it was 'ours' but by the time we came back with food other guests were sitting at our table, not quite sure how that happened but I think the staff messed that up as well. We just moved to another table, again, no big deal, but certainly worth mentioning as this is what we're all here for right?

After a day of adventure we returned around 4:30pm and enquired about dinner times. We were told 6-7:30pm so we asked does that mean we have be seated no later than 7pm or could we be seated at 7:30pm. The answer was 7pm so we wandered up to our room without worrying too much about it, and planning to go up at 7pm. Our room had been cleaned and towels replaced while we were out during the day. Shortly afterwards the front desk called asking what time we would like to be seated for dinner. We asked if 7:30pm was ok and the answer was a very friendly yes. Again, strange, do the staff here know what they're doing?

Dinner itself was amazing. I'm not a huge fan of Japanese food myself, because I generally never feel completely satisfied or full afterwards, so it's more of a snack type cuisine for me (sushi, dumplings etc) but this particular meal was terrific, and I wasn't hungry at all afterwards. Our table had been reserved specially for us so there were no issues like we'd had at breakfast, and the waiter who attended to us was excellent and spoke terrific English. Perhaps this guy should be running the place!

If we ever returned to this region I think we would look elsewhere.

Room Tip: We also suggest you ask for a lakeview room instead of Fuji view because you do look into and over s...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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87 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

The hotel is big and the room we slept in was with a Japanese style living area and two western style firm beds, that is a good choice because futon can be difficult to sleep in.
The thermal public bath (onsen) is very nice and clean with an outside area and a sauna.
We had half-board and both breakfast (western style) and dinner (Japanese and Chef's choice) were disappointing: breakfast is in a very nice hall with a good sight over the lake and the mountains, but in terms if quality is just another breakfast buffet. From the reviews we were expecting a wonderful dinner, but the quality was just average and there was nothing really breath-taking. It's a nice hotel with good facilities and restaurant, but not good value for money.
The English level of the staff was mediocre, but they were really very helpful.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Top Contributor
173 reviews 173 reviews
133 hotel reviews
Reviews in 106 cities Reviews in 106 cities
144 helpful votes 144 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2013

For a hotel priced at USD 400, I expect something more. Therefore, my review is calibrated with that in mind.

Staff are courteous, attentive and respectful. However, bad at problem resolution. I called a few days before to ensure that the room we have is non-smoking, and I reminded them that I am very particular about that. They clarified that the category I booked was all smoking rooms, which was not indicated in booking.com. I changed the category then and told them to ensure that the room does not smell of smoke.

When we checked in, there was confusion in the amendment of the booking. That was fine. Then the "non-smoking room" they gave steeped of smoke! When I raised that concern, all they did was deny that it did. After waiting for 20 minutes in the stinky room, the staff said, "Im sorry but I can guarantee this is non-smoking and I dont smell anything". When I told her, "But I do not trust you and I trust my sense of smell" I told her, "Do not come back until you find me a solution" She said, "Sorry but all non-smoking rooms are fully booked" I told her, "I dont care, find one."

Lo and behold, she said "There is a smoking room, but you can see whether you smell it" We went, just a couple of rooms on the same floor, but this new one is in the corner, a much bigger room, it was okay. My best friend told me, "Hey, this is non-smoking - there is no as.h tray". So apparently, they just refused to give us a bigger room at the start before I reprimanded them for it. What a start!

And their arrangement of non-smoking rooms is primitive. On one side are the smoking rooms, on another side are the non-smoking rooms. One of the guests felt compelled to open the door while smoking, so the smoke went to our room. The hotel does not have the common sense to put all non-smoking rooms in one floor!

And when we cancelled our booked dinner, the receptionist staff was gracious in allowing us to do so. But we would have appreciated if they told us that all the restaurants outside are actually closed for dinner! Their service is very robotic with very little touch of intelligence or reason.

The room and private onsen is good, but at that price, I expected more from the service.

The breakfast selection is good, but dining on plastic trays and plates make me feel like dining in a hospital canteen.

I dont know why this was a super rave from all. At USD 100-150 I would have given this a 5, but at 400, I think I am generous to give it a 3.

I dont think I'll come back.

Room Tip: lake view. because Mt fuji is rarely visible. but if you're sensitive to smoke, avoid the hotel...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2013

I think only my pictures can express how wonderful this place was.

Onsen in the room. The so call "open air" isn't completely open air. It's just that the ensuited onsen has a window to the balcony. Yes, you can roll around in the snow naked in private.

Go for the lakeview rooms. This way you're guaranteed of a great view. The mountain side one, you need a bit of luck. If the weather is lousy, you can't see mount Fuji & you'll be looking into plain buildings (not that great).

Absolutely must get the meal included deals there. The MEAL was FANTASTISTIC!!! It was art. All the crockeries were beautiful. The food was gorgous and tasted fabulous. Must try!

Room Tip: Go for the lakeview rooms. This way you're guaranteed of a great view. The mountain side one, yo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2013

We loved our stay at Fuji Lake Hotel. The staff are very friendly and the hotel has a homely feel. The communal onsen was an interesting experience for a prudish Brit but it was extremely refreshing once I had gotten over the shock! You can drink volcanic water too whilst on the massage chairs in the spa area.

The food is good - we had an evening meal included which was lovely with a variety of courses. We also had a buffet breakfast which had lots of choice.

You can view Mount Fuji from the top floor if your room does not face it. The lake view is gorgeous. Very special. We were given kimonos to wear which was novel.

In terms of location, we travelled from Kyoto so got the bullet train to Mishima and then the Fujikyoko bus to Kawaguchiko. The bus journey was over two hours but worth it for the Fuji Lake Hotel. We only stayed one night but could have easily stayed another had we time to spare.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
singapore
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2013

Upon reaching Kawaguchiko station, we went to the tourist information to arrange for a pick-up but decided to go for a walk towards the lake instead. Within 5 minutes, we were at the lake and the hotel was just right in front of us. The hotel has the full frontal view of the lake. Welcome drinks (juice, tea) are provided at the lounge. The room was spacious, but the hotel was a bit run down. The best part of the hotel is definitely the onsen. Three onsen baths to choose from, including one sauna room. We were impressed with the free massage chairs and free Fuji lava water. If you are interested, there is a drum performance by the hotel staff at around 8.30 pm. At night, it was extremely quiet if your room faced the lake.

Room Tip: Please choose a room facing the lake and not Mount Fuji, as Mount Fuji is mostly hidden from sight u...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2013 via mobile

I booked this hotel via agoda before I reached the hotel about one hour. And the time I reached was quite dark, I didnt know how to reached the hotel when I arrived Kamaguchiko. Then we called the hotel and asked that can they pick us up. They asked my name and said the information from agoda about our booking hadnt come yet. they coulnt find my name, but they still wanted to give us a free ride. Only thing they wanted to know was which station that my train was reaching and they will calculate time to pick us up. And indeed, the hotel didnt charge me at all. What a service it is.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Fuji Lake Hotel

Address: 1 Funatsu, Fujikawaguchiko-machi, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi Prefecture 401-0301, Japan
Phone Number:
Location: Japan > Chubu > Yamanashi Prefecture > Minamitsuru-gun > Fujikawaguchiko-machi > Kawaguchiko Onsen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Fujikawaguchiko-machi
#7 Onsen Hotel in Fujikawaguchiko-machi
#8 Romantic Hotel in Fujikawaguchiko-machi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Fuji Lake Hotel 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
★FREE WIFI★ ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fuji Lake Onsen Hotel
Fuji Lake Hotel Japan/Fujikawaguchiko-Machi

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