I went to Kyoto with my husband and brought my mother with me - booked a special deal directly from the Starwood/Westin website.
Room: From our rooms, we had a view of the Japanese style cottage/villa - also available for rent if you can afford it... The rooms were spacious for a hotel in Japan, with separate soaking tub and shower. The room also came with complimentary water bottle which was great. Room also came with a mini fridge. Wide/flat HDTV - standard now in hotels. It was 22 years since my husband stayed in Kyoto and was a special occasion marking the anniversary - the hotel sent us a cake for the occasion which was a very nice touch.
Exec Club (10th and 11th fl): wasn't huge but private enough and had a great view overlooking Kyoto. If you have access - there's continental breakfast, tea/coffee in the afternoon and evenings, a cocktail hour (they also serve you a nice Japanese hors d'oeuvres per person) and free wifi in the club lounge area. (otherwise you pay a fee)
Service: they are very attentive and extremely polite - as expected in Japan. The bellhop actually demonstrated how to insert the room key and how you use it to light the room which was very nice of him but possibly a bit over the top.. we're so used to traveling and figuring out these things ourselves so it was kind of refreshing..?
Gym/pool: didn't have time to use but I understood if you have exec club access, which we did - access would be free.
Location: The location is in the far eastern part of the town which is also a benefit - quieter and walking distance to beautiful sites like Nanzenji, Enryakuji and Heianjingu shrine.
Con: But location can slightly be a con if you are trying to make the bullet train. it's about 15-20 min by car from the main Kyoto station. They have a shuttle bus 2x/hr but the driver was very unfriendly and not very service oriented throughout our stay there which was surprising when you are used to the services in Japan. On our last day, we asked to be dropped off at Shijo avenue so we can see the shops - we had our luggages but he stopped the bus next to a ledge off of the subway - no place to drop off a passenger because you have a low wall into the subway and can't get on the sidewalk until you walk past the wall. We were shocked that he couldn't just drop us off 2-3 yards away on a real sidewalk - in the pouring rain no less!! and my mother is a senior citizen.. We were very unhappy with that last experience. The shuttle bus stop at the Kyoto train station is hard to find - as mentioned in other postings - it's on the Hachijo-side closer to the Shinkansen train area. If you take a local train to Nara - you end up on the other side of the train station so you have to find yourself through the maze to get to the other side for the bus stop. Alternatively you can also take the subway - which is located just outside of the hotel and is convenient to use.
Aside from that, we enjoyed the view, great beds, good hotel staff and concierge services except for the bus driver. Overall actually had a pretty relaxing time during our stay in the hotel.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Western-style 11-story Hotel located amid Japanese gardens, 5 miles from train station & 31 miles from Kansai Int'l Airport. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Westin Miyako Kyoto Hotel Kyoto
- Westin Miyako Kyoto
- Westin Kyoto
- Kyoto Westin