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“Perfect choice for Kyoto” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Granvia Kyoto

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Hotel Granvia Kyoto
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   901 Higashi Shiokojicho, Shimogyo-ku | (JR Kyoto Station Karasuma-Central Entrance), Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture 600-8216, Japan   |  
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Ranked #7 of 141 hotels in Kyoto
Grimsby, Ontario CANADA
Top Contributor
85 reviews 85 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
85 helpful votes 85 helpful votes
“Perfect choice for Kyoto”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2012

My wife and I stayed in Kyoto for five days recently, and we chose this hotel for our first three nights in this UNESCO listed city. It worked perfect for us as we took the bullet train from Tokyo.
After arrival at the station it was a short ten minutes walk to this beautiful hotel located right inside the equally beautiful and amazing Kyoto Central Station.
We took excursions during our first few days in Kyoto including the must see city of NARA (another UNESCO listed historic city) as well as Hiroshima (UNESCO again) and neighbouring Miyajima Island for the splendid in the water Tori Gate (an enduring symbol of Japan). We got up very early to take the AM trains for these excursions and therefore the location of the hotel was unbeatable. During our stay, it was cold and very dark after 5 PM, and we were not interested in going out of the Station area in the evening to have our supper.
The hotel has at least 6 restaurants which we did not try as there were at least 10 times that many right in the Station itself, especially on the 11th floor of the Isetan Department store. All the different Japanese cuisines are available here incl sushi, tofu, tempura, shabu shabu, noodles houses, as well as western fare.
As for the hotel itself, it was lovely and extremely comfortable. The room was a little on the small side, but perfectly acceptable. It was extremely clean and well appointed. The service throughout was unimpeachable. We used the concierge a lot to help plan our sightseeing, and the staff here was simply excellent. For the last 2 nights we moved onto a wonderful ryokan (the Hiiragiya) or traditional Japanese inn, and I HIGHLY recommend all travelers consider doing this. It would be a once in a lifetime experience and richly enrich your experience of Kyoto and Kyoto/Japanese culture. Afterall this is why we travel.

Room Tip: higher rooms are better and bigger,
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (185)
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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2012

We spent a perfect weekend in Kyoto recently and the Granvia can partly take credit for this. The hotel is conveniently located above the station, with easy access to trains and taxis. We made our reservations via JTB including the Shinkansen tickets, which worked out cheaper than making separate reservations. The concierge staff were very helpful and knowledgable - their advice definitely added to our experience. We also made use of the hotel's luggage forwarding service, which made traveling back so much more convenient. The only slight negative point was that we could hear the announcements from the Shinkansen station, it did not keep us awake, but we were definitely aware of it. A room on the other side of the hotel could be a good idea for light sleepers.

Room Tip: Rooms facing towards the city instead of the tracks should be quiter.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Sydney, Australia
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2012

What could be better than staying at a top class hotel right at Kyoto station, with easy access to trains, buses and taxis and all the great shops, department stores and restaurants within the station complex? I stayed for three nights and it was great! The hotel has its own art collection including really nice pieces which are on display, and when I was there there was also a terrific exhibition of woodblock prints in the foyer area. The staff were very helpful and agreed to store my larger piece of luggage for two and a half days while I went to Takamatsu/Naoshima before checking in. Room and ensuite were a good size and bed very comfortable. Free internet worked well. There seemed to be less free tv choices than at a couple of other places I'd stayed, but maybe I didn't fully understand the options. Would definitely recommend.

Room Tip: Try to get a room with a view over the city, as opposed to a very close view of the station architec...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 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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Melbourne, Australia
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

We stayed here for 3 nights from 1 December to 4 December 2012 on our honeymoon. Although we had not informed the hotel it was our honeymoon, we were upgraded on check-in to their top floor - the "Granvia Floor" which comes with it's own concierge room and service. From the moment we checked in until the moment we left, the service, courtesy and helpfulness of every single staff member we encountered cannot be faulted. The hotel itself is immaculate and I say that as someone who is regularly told that I, and my own home, are anally retentive neat and clean! so I can assure anyone who is like me that this hotel will not disappoint. It is a grand hotel in every respect.

The location is superb - right above Kyoto station. Although it is not in the heart of the main shopping district, it is only two stops awayon the subway and incredibly convenient for all JR line and Shinkansen, as well as subway lines. Loads of food options on your doorstep.

This truly is one if the loveliest hotel experiences we have ever had and we would not hesitate to stay here again. An enormous thank you to all staff for contributing to a great honeymoon.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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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Perth
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2012 via mobile

First up, if you're getting dropped off by the airport limousine bus, here's the easiest way to access the hotel. As you get dropped off, look for an elevator in the building jus opposite the bus stop. This will take you down to the subway. As you get out of the elevator turn right past the smokers zone which is partially outside and walk along into the subway thoroughfare. Keep heading in a straight line. You're basically walking underneath the station towards the hotel. Eventually you'll see directional signage to Hotel Granvia which will take you towards another elevator that will get you back up to the ground floor and just outside the hotel/station building. As you come out of the elevator turn left. You'll see a set of escalators just in front on the right hand side. Take these up to the first floor and as you turn left off the top of the escalator bear right through the glass doors and into the lobby area of Granvia. We didn't have any clear directions of how to find the hotel when we arrived, but the concierge advised us of this route when we were organising our return bus to the airport!

The hotel is vast and seems very popular with the over 50s. Or room was a double with a kind size bed and good sized sitting area that looked over the train tracks and Shinkansen. The walls and windows seemed to be quite thin as we could hear noises for the station and or neighbours, so light sleepers may need ear plugs to avoid being disturbed. The bathroom facilities were very good with the standard Japanese toilet, and a bath and shower.

We didn't have breakfast included, but chose to eat at the hotel and pay for it, as it was the easiest and best option for a western breakfast, but there was all the usual Japanese breakfast fare available as well. The restaurants were pretty busy when we were there (on a weekend), so be prepared to wait if you don't have a reservation, or have to go elsewhere. The station has a large food court area where you can buy takeaway items and have a regular (but nothing fancy) meal. In terms of location, finding more local restaurants seemed to be a challenge, as everything seemed to hinge around the station, so there weren't many other (non western) places to eat within close walking distance of the hotel.

Although this is in a very central location for public transport, and has a lot of on site facilities, it is just a very big, and therefore, very soulless establishment, so if you're staying in Kyoto for more than a couple of days, and are looking for accommodation that has a bit more 'heart' to it I'd suggest looking at somewhere else. We primarily stayed here as we were just in Kyoto for a couple of days and needed to get to Osaka Airport for an early flight, and so being close to the limousine bus stop was important.

Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Washington, District of Columbia, United States
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2012

My wife and I stayed at this first-rate luxury hotel located conveniently right above Kyoto Station. You're within minutes to the trains, buses, taxis, and subways, making this hotel an ideal base for exploring Kyoto, Nara, and other nearby locales. The service is exquisite! While I have a fully Japanese name, I'm a U.S. citizen born and raised (as is my wife) so the hotel delivered an English-language newspaper every morning to our room and answered our calls to the desk in English even without us asking. The restaurants are solid too (though Kyoto is one of the centers of traditional Japanese cuisine so one should get out). The breakfast buffet is one of the best in a country where hotels generally provide excellent breakfasts. There's also a lounge on the top floor for drinks and bar food in case you want to relax during an evening and look out onto the city. Unlike most Japanese hotels, the rooms are spacious too! Finally, it's the first hotel in Kyoto to offer wireless Internet in every room. I can't say enough good things about this fabulous hotel.

Notes on Japanese Hotels

- Room Size: Japan has the 10th largest population in the world living in a country ranking 62nd in land mass so real estate comes at a premium! Don't expect Western hotel room sizes even with exorbitant prices.
- Room Styles: Most hotels will differentiate between Western and Japanese style rooms. The former is usually a double twin bed arrangement (rarely do they have single king-sized beds) while the latter has tatami flooring and futons. Make sure you reserve the right room for you!
- WiFi: While technologically advanced, Japan hasn't yet fully embraced WiFi (let alone free WiFi). Some larger hotels and chains might offer free WiFi in lounge areas, but Internet access in rooms is usually available only through a USB cable.
- No Tipping: By and large, one does not tip hotel employees in Japan. Service charges are usually included in hotel tariffs and restaurant bills. You can tip taxi drivers by letting the driver keep the change.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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.
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2012

Great location in train station, next to shopping centre, department stores and restaurants. Excellent concierge. Great view from top floor. Club lounge is nice, free coffee, soft drinks and newspapers, but we did not have time to use the facilities, would try to make time if we returned. Staff there organised for a bag transfer to Osaka very quickly and efficiently, we just gave our bags to staff and collected them at our next hotel 2 days later!

Very large buffet selection for breakfast, mix of japanese and western food. We would without doubt stay again if in Kyoto.

Room Tip: High floor rooms have grew view.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Hotel Granvia Kyoto

Address: 901 Higashi Shiokojicho, Shimogyo-ku | (JR Kyoto Station Karasuma-Central Entrance), Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture 600-8216, Japan
Phone Number:
Location: Japan > Kinki > Kyoto Prefecture > Kyoto
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 141 hotels in Kyoto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hotel Granvia Kyoto 4.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautiful 15-story hotel atop Kyoto Station - Broadband connection in all guest and banquet rooms - Easy access to Kansai Airport. ... more   less 
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