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“Sleek, cool, comfortable lodging in Hakuba”
Review of Gakuto Villas

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Gakuto Villas
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
46 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Sleek, cool, comfortable lodging in Hakuba”
Reviewed August 9, 2014

Nicely designed, sleek modern Japanese cottages. Really comfortable and excellently appointed. Wifi, Skype phones, heated floors, cool bathrooms, nicely equipped kitchen (for breakfast cooking, at least) and really nice Scandanavian/Japanese feel to the place. Hardwood floors, cathedral ceilings. Views are not so great (unless you like rusty tractors), but a nice setting in the woods with the noise of the river to lull you to sleep (in summer). If you're skiing or touring the area in any season, these cottages are strongly recommended.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LosAngelesRon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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101 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (9)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Perth, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed April 23, 2014

The two storey villa suited our family (2 adults and 2 boys) perfectly. Everything was new, clean and well-presented. The villas are located in the Wadano area, about a 5 minute drive from the Hakuba train station and a similar distance to the Happo area and ski gondola etc.

Our host, Yokokawa-san, was amazing. He was always helpful, prompt and cheerful. He helped us arrange ski hire and ski school and a visit to the Jigokudani monkey park as well as some fishing at the local trout pond (which was a highlight). Nothing was too much of a problem, so thank you Yoko-san for your fantastic hospitality.

We visited in spring, so the snow conditions were not ideal (a bit slushy) but we had fun nonetheless and weather overall was fresh, clear and sunny.

Although we didn't use it much, the villa has a small kitchen with microwave, toaster, kettle, rice cooker and hot plate. The local dining options are pretty good!

The underfloor heating keeps the villa warm, but watch out as it can get a bit too warm.

A washing machine is also provided. The dryer function wasn't particularly effective, but the previously mentioned heating meant that clothes dried on the drying rack overnight with little trouble.

We highly recommend this as family accommodation.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Frandon29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 26, 2014

From the booking procedure, recommendations and final experience, ours was delightful at Gakuto Villas. But honestly, Tori was the star with Henry not far behind in the rating. This couple really go beyond to help you in achieving the best experience possible.
We recently traveled with our 3 young children, and it was the perfect start to our Japanese 3 week experience.
From the comfortable Villa, to the ski gear rental, ticketing information and options, shuttles to the supermarket and different restaurant recommendations, all was impeccable.
Highly recommended. We will definitively come back to Gakuto Villas and can only hope Tori & Henry are still there when we do so.
Ask for shoulder season specials as early March is really worth it.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank eweisinger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2014

Really nice villas - some of the reviews here have the issues highlighted - it's very modern so the stairs are a fall hazard for children (can be mitigated with baby gates they have), and the downstairs room is massive, but does get hot and has a small-ish bed. Not a game breaker though.

The furnishings are really modern, there is a comfortable couch and a good fridge, plus a washing machine so you can clean your dirty snowboarding socks. REALLY nice bamboo floors with underfloor heating. Much fun to be had sliding around in your socks! A short walk from a lift, though it's not the Sakka base which is not really walkable in ski/snowboarding boots - though you can walk back. There is a great Onsen at the Monemoki Hotel just 200m away.

Excellent staff - they helped us out with transfers, dropped us at a couple of restaurants, helped with baggage delivery and modified the supermarket runs to accommodate us.

But let's get to the real issue here. The Rug. They have this green fluffy rug upstairs and I have one piece of advice for anyone staying here. Don't lie on it if you have anything you want to achieve that day. It's soft, it's fluffy - and the underfloor heating makes it really nice and warm without being too hot. I fell asleep on that rug a total of six times - one with the rest of the house making breakfast around me. It's amazing, but be careful - don't lie on it if you need to go out that day and mind the First Rule of Naps - no napping after 1600 because that will destroy your evening.

So yes. Overall pretty happy with the Villas, but be careful of the rug.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Fest_mkiv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gakutovillas, General Manager at Gakuto Villas, responded to this review, November 19, 2014
Hi Fest_mkiv,

We are pleased to announce that the beds in the master bedrooms of Gakuto Villas have been upgraded to a luxurious King size (195cm length by 194cm wide)! We hope that you would choose us on your next trip to Hakuba, and come and enjoy the enhancements that we have made!

Warm regards,
The Gakuto Villas Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed February 5, 2014

We stayed here in January for 9 nights, the villas are in a great location to the ski lifts (the staff will show you where the short cut is) and there are some nice restaurants nearby. The staff are great, very accommodating. The villas are very clean the only problem we had with them is that the upstairs room is quite small, and half of the wardrobe is taken up by a trundle bed. Also the blinds do not shut out the light and there are no blinds on the skylight so I would suggest taking an eye mask with you as the room gets quite bright once the sun starts rising. The downstairs room is huge although its gets very hot at night time due to the low ceiling. I also found the pillows very soft and uncomfortable so if you prefer a firmer one bring yours from home. I would further suggest that you take some Yen with you as my friends found it quite difficult to withdraw cash from the ATM (e.g. they were limited to small transactions). Apart from all of this we had a wonderful time in Hakuba and I would definitely recommend staying in the Happo-One area as some of the other areas seemed quite remote. Also if your looking for ski or board lessons I would further recommend Hakuba Snow Sports School, they were wonderful and picked us up every morning.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Kristin266
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gakutovillas, General Manager at Gakuto Villas, responded to this review, November 19, 2014
Hi Kristin,

At Gakuto Villas we take our customer’s feedback very seriously, and are pleased to announce that the beds in the master bedrooms of Gakuto Villas have been upgraded to a luxurious King size (195cm length by 194cm wide)!

We have also added a guard rail has been built at the stairs, so you wouldn't need to worry about children’s safety when staying here with your family. We at Gakuto Villas hope that you will choose us for your next stay at Hakuba!

Warm regards,
The Gakuto Villas Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed February 4, 2014

We stayed at Gakuto for five nights and wish it could have been longer! The villa was very spacious and well-equipped for a family of six at the snow, even though it was only two bedrooms - we had an extra single bed in the kids' room, and a bed in the lounge.

The whole place was extremely comfortable, and the bus stop outside the door was perfect. The staff were very helpful and friendly, nothing was too much trouble. The shuttle bus is very handy, and the local knowledge excellent.

My only comments were that the drying room could have had more hanging space (we had six lots of skis/boards/jackets/boots in there!), and either the instructions for the washer/dryer were tricky or I was not very bright! But luckily drying didn't take too long because of the beautifully heated floors.

Room Tip: We had Villa02, which received a bit of noise on the Saturday night with revelling skiiers heading h...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank janeedham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ipswich , Queensland
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed February 1, 2014

My second trip back to Hakuba and Gakuto Villas.. and I still love it.
This time we bought two other families with us, a total of 6 adults and 7 kids and we had a great time.
Was great to have the washing / dryer machine in the villa this time as well.
Nathan and the guys were always friendly and eager to help out with info from eating out, ski lessons etc and then also shuttling us around to buy groceries.
I totally enjoyed my time back and will definitely be back there again !!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Madog71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Gakuto Villas

Property: Gakuto Villas
Address: 4720-1,4721,4722 Hokujyo, Kitaazumi-gun, Hakuba-mura 399-9301, Nagano Prefecture
Phone Number:
Location: Japan > Chubu > Nagano Prefecture > Kitaazumi-gun > Hakuba-mura
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 100 Specialty lodging in Hakuba-mura
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Gakuto Villas 3.5*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Gakuto Villas, nestled in the Hakuba Valley of Nagano, Japan. Only minutes away from world renowned slopes, with 10 ski resorts in the vicinity, we offer affordable boutique accommodations for the conscious traveler. Our twelve chic, two-story houses were specifically designed to provide a distinctly comfortable and modern level of hospitality to our guests. As your home away from home, we are dedicated to making your stay as rejuvenating as possible! ... more   less 
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