Intro & Location:
I recently rounded out a 6 day work trip to Tokyo with 2 days in Kyoto. Unfortunatly we were in a conference room most of the time but the few sites I saw (The Golden Palace, and the Nijo Castle were spectacular.) We also had an incredible dinner up in the mountains behind Kyoto (I can't remember the name of the restaurant) which was about a 30-40 trip up into the mountains and located alongside a river. It was an unbelievable location and very authentic in terms of setting, dress, and food!
Our group stayed at the ANA Hotel which is in a great spot only ~15-20mins by taxi from the main Shinkansen train station and directly across from the entrance to the Nijo Castle. The lobby is enormous and fairly ornate but still has a fairly relaxed aura to it. There is a large open air bar area + the 'international' restaurant where we ate breakfast etc. They have a beautiful rock garden/wall outside these floor to ceiling glass windows which has waterfalls, coy pond etc..very peaceful!
As there was quite a large group of us we all had stock standard rooms which were fairly small but comfortable. Each had two 'twin' beds which were low and hard (typical Japanese style) with a small sitting area, tv/desk, and smallish but fully functional bathroom. The beds were surprisingly comfortable despite me being more then 6'4 (a giant in Japan) and not typically enjoying very hard beds. Tip: Try the 'granular' pillow..bizzare but amazing for your neck!
As noted, it's small but clean and very functional. I was thankful for the handheld shower as most of these hotels had shower heads that were barely chest height! Great pressure and plenty of hot water and of course..the ever amusing 'electronic' toilets were standard.
Our team had the first night 'in' as many of us only arrived around dinner time, and we ate in the Teppanyaki style restaurant on the basement level. It was fantastic and the British/Japanese chef was very amusing and informative throughout the many courses. Are team all raved about how good the food was. We didn't get to try any of the other restaurants except the breakfast buffet which was plentiful but fairly nondescript.
Unfortunatly did not have time to explore this area but the in room brochures seemed to indicate a full size indoor pool with gym etc etc.
Despite this being a group booking and a fairly work oriented stay, the hotel itself was perfect for a 'sleep only' style visit. If you're there to simply see the sights and spend fairly little time in the hotel room itself it's ideal. The hotel is well placed, well staffed, clean and overall a decent spot to spend some time in Kyoto.
Pros: Great location for sights, clean and comfortable, plenty of food options on site
Cons: Smallish rooms, a little bit dated feeling, wired-only internet in rooms.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The ANA Hotel Kyoto looks almost out of place with its modern exterior nestled amongst the sublime beauty and historic grandeur of Japan s old capital. This however belies the traditional hospitality and classic atmosphere to be experienced within her four walls. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Kyoto Ana Hotel
- Ana Hotel Kyoto