Ryokan Uemura is a delightful little place, right in the middle of a dreamy district of lovely Kyoto.
All the problems mentioned in other reviews are true: it is a bit rough around the edges, the toilets (shared!) are spotless but a bit dingy, it is a bit cold at night and yes, it feels expensive for the kind of luxury it offers (or better, it does not offer), but the truth is that Ryokans are a different experience from western hotels: they cost a lot (upper end Ryokans prohibitively so) and offer you basically a cot on the floor in sparse sorroundings, and, again, shared toilets (I cannot stress that enough: in the West, a shared toilet is found in the cheapest hotels, here it belongs to ryokans).
But you don't stay to Ryokan for the plasma tv: you stay for the welcome, the silence, and the location: tourists (japanese tourist) look at you with amazement and envy while you are putting your shoes on the steps of the hotel (inside is strictly slippers, and different ones for different rooms: god forbit that you step in your room with your toilet slippers!). Monks roam the street in the early morning, praying for alms. You walk the cobbled street and you join the midst of the tourist procession along the temples of Kyoto.
Mrs Uemura welcomes you personally every time you return home, and has always biscuits and tea for you. She even ran after me on a very early morning carring a warmer jacket, when I stepped out of the ryokan with only a yukata: it is probably a cultural pas faux, but she was honestly worried I'd catch a cold.
Breakfasts are amazing: if you are brave you can dare to try the japanese style one (my wife could not), but western ones are so fullfilling too, with toasted breads and fresh fruit.
Were I to return to Kyoto, I would like to try a more luxurious ryokan, if I can afford it, but in its price range (again, for ryokans, a cheap one, almost a minshuku) nothing can beat this little home in the middle of amazing, poetic Higashiyama.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.