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“Very good but not great”

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Takayama Kanko Hotel
Ranked #32 of 187 Hotels / Ryokan in Takayama
Reviewed December 19, 2013

We arrived by rental car and there were already two people at the main entrance to welcome us. They helped with our luggage, check-in and parked our car. When I got the car keys back, there was a nice souvenir attached to it, very nice touch.

A tip, if you are driving from Shirakawa-go, do take the tolled highway, as it costs only 800 yen and it saves you two hours driving time.

The hotel is slightly out of town and sits on a mountain overlooking Takayama. Most of the rooms have great views of the city. We were shown around the hotel by a man who spoke very good English. He told us everything we needed to know.

Our room was big and could easily accommodate all four of us. My father had trouble with their Japanses heeled flip-flops, so I asked at the front desk and got a pair of slippers for him.

They have two onsens, one at the 4th floor which was female only in the evenings, but for men to use in the mornings. There are two free massage chairs outside the onsen, too. The other onsen is in a separate building which required us to brave the cold to visit. That wasn't such a good idea in this very cold weather. This was I think the main reason why my sisters enjoyed the hotel more than I did.

Dinner was served in the restaurant but while the food was good, we had Hida beef shabu shabu, and the lady serving us was very nice, this was not as personal as the experience we had two days ago at Grandia Housen. But then again that's not to say this arrangement was poor. Breakfast next day was served in the other public dining room. It was good and tasty.

They have an interesting entertainment room where there are free massage chairs, mangas and novels for the users. That's nice to have.

Overall the experience is very good, but not great. It is not quite personal enough and the onsens in the separate building is not a good idea.

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank angsa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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53 - 59 of 127 reviews

Reviewed October 8, 2013

we booked 2 nights in this ryokan
Hagi Hotel has a shuttle service from / to JT train / busstation, which is nice as the hotel is situated on top of a mountain just outside the city centre.
Without luggage it is a nice walk to and from the city.
The hotel itself has spacious rooms with a good size bathroom.
It has also 3 onsen.
All is very clean.
The staff at the front desk speaks good English and is very helpful.
The breakfast is very japanese and looks fantastic.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank TheoChristel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2013 via mobile

This ryokan is perched on top of a hill overlooking Takayama. The rooms are large and nicely appointed, with very nice spa-like bathrooms. There are two onsens: a small indoor one on the roof and a larger outdoor one with good views. There is wifi in the lobby (also with great views) but not the rooms. The restaurant was pretty good. The staff is typically helpful and professional.

  • Stayed: September 2013
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1  Thank sfoartboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2013

- - the room: you actually get a little flat with several areas, with every hotel amenity one can think of and more: a shower, a bath, an empty fridge (so you can store your own drinks and not get them from a minibar in a ridiculous price) , a kettle and green tea, a balcony, nice decoration with fresh flowers...
- - location: on a hill top above the city. The views are great. But to get from and to the city center you are dependent on the shuttle with it's limited schedule or a cab. If you are a walker, then walking to and from the hotel is no big deal. We did it several times.
- - tradition: Hagitakayama is a modern ryokan. That means for example that you can stay with your shoes in public areas like corridors, restaurant and lobby and that your meals will be served, usually, in a restaurant with tables and chairs , and not in your room on the tatami mat. This is very convenient, as you do get the Japanese experience, but not in overdose.
- - food: We stayed 5 nights and had 5 dinners. it was very convenient, and quite expensive. they catered for a special food requirement I have with great care. In any case, as they serve you what they choose, it save you to rack your brains in a restaurant outside what to order.
- - attention and care - Listen, it's almost meaningless to say that the service in a certain hotel in Japan is great. All Japanese service suppliers and most Japanese persons are tremendously polite, considerate, and dedicated to their task (and the harmony between people). Nevertheless I'll say: all staff members in Hagitakayama are absolutely adorable! Whether it's a routine service or a special health need - they are there for you.
- - cleanliness : Seriously, don't even bother to check this issue in a Japanese establishment. They clean the floor in a fish market! can you imagine what they do in a bathroom? It's not clean - it's sterile.
- - onsen - and above all they have 3 public baths with hot spring mineral water. one in a garden, 2 on a roof top. Do you need more?

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank everfreebird
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2013

We booked a two night stay in this traditional ryokan. The staff is awesome, very helpful and good english is spoken. The room was VERY large and well equipped. The only drawback is the location of the hotel which is far from the city center but offers a spectacular view!). If you arrive by train, there is free shuttle service to the hotel. To call for the shuttle, you can use the payphone in the train station. They will come pick you up within 10-15 minutes. The hotel also serves free coffee, water and tea. There are some massage chairs, mangas, plenty of vending machines, a gift shop with some snacks. The provided personal care products are of very high quality. Free wi-fi and a computer are available in the lobby. There are three onsens. We used both the public and the private onsens (there is a 3000¥ fee for the use and reservation of the private onsen) . I highly recommend this hotel.

Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
Thank mastervan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 14, 2013

This hotel took a bit of searching out on the web and although might have been a gamble it turned out even better than expected. Top marks for great location on small hill with great views, good Japanese tatami style, staff helpfulness and ... not one but 3 Onsen baths to choose from for late evening open air views of the city or morning re-invigoration before the most stylish and delicious Japanese breakfasts we have ever enjoyed, in a Kimono! Takayama is a joy to explore by foot or on rental cycle and the nearby Folk Village has wonderful wooden houses in a lovely setting to help you imagine the old Japan, with shoji, stoves and beautifully framed views of the trees. We definitely hope to return and see more of the Japanese 'Alps' and enjoy another stay at Hagi Takayami on the hill.

Room Tip: Either side is good - both have good views of town and mountains. Top floor probably best. We staye...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank LondonTumi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2013

Our stay was from Feb 15 2013. Thanks to Japanese Guest Houses, our reservations at Hagi Takayama were all taken care of. They arranged our shuttle pick up at 3.05pm (pick up is just outside the Washington Hotel, across the road on the right side, from the Takayama Station). Its about a 15min ride.

The ryokan has lovely views of the landscape because its located higher up on a hill. We were treated to beautiful snowy scenes from the large windows around the ryokan, as well as from our 16tatami mat room balcony on the 3rd floor. The whole place is very clean and cozy.

We would like to say a special thank you to Mr. Hiroshi Kawabe for his attentive & helpful service throughout our 5 night stay.

MEALS
Good kaiseki dinners with portions that were just nice for both of us. Tender slices of Hida beef.
Our meals were in the restaurant where great and friendly staff attended to the guests. When we were there during the winter, the latest dinner time was at 7pm. The cuisine was a good selection with very fresh ingredients and they changed the dishes every night for us, which was great.

Breakfast is between 7am-8.30am (that means it ends at 8.30am altho one can sit around for a while till about 8.45am). We are not used to having breakfast so early, but on hindsight it was good to have a much longer day ahead of us if we ate at 7.50am.. Again, very thoughtful of them to change the main dishes during our stay eg it was nice to have 2fried eggs with ham on our 3rd morning.

Breakfast is semi buffet – each of us had our own personal tray of special items and we could also help ourselves to the free flow of beverages, croquettes, salad, porridge etc at the side table.

ONSEN
1. They have a public INDOOR onsen with lovely views on the 4th floor (6am – 9.30am is for men, 3pm – midnight is for ladies). Interesting wall designs in the wash area.

On the same 4th floor is a private onsen bath where reservation and charge is needed. Morning 6am-9.45am are for the men and afternoon 4pm – 11.45pm are for the ladies. We didn’t try it so no comments.

There are another 2 public indoor & attached outdoor onsens near the annex – a short walkway from the ground floor (or a quick dash in the freezing cold). Each bath is interchanged between men and ladies daily. Morning times are 6am-9.30am & 3pm-midnight. We really enjoyed the outdoor rock pool esp with the snowy view.

The dressing rooms in the onsens have a very good selection of toiletries.

SIGHTS
As it was snowing and pretty cold most of the days (around -5 degrees C to 10 degrees C) we were more than contented to stay in, relax, catch up on all our reading, soak in the onsen early, just enjoying the accommodation. The views from the large window panes were lovely.

We did visit the Night illumination of the Hida Folk Museum – blessed with nice clear sky that night – it was an enjoyable outing. The ryokan has its own shuttle that took us there at 7.30pm and fetched us back at 8.20pm.

Pros: High on a hill with lovely views from their large windows. Everything was great for us and we will definitely return again.

Lovely snowy landscapes in winter but a little too cold for strolling. So it depends what you are looking for. This season is great for us because we just want to rest and relax and get away from the noise and hustle bustle back home.

Cons: Its too far to walk down to the little streets. So you will have to depend on the morning shuttle to get down to the little city for your strolls (last shuttle 10am). The afternoon shuttle starts at 3.05pm. In between, you will need to take a taxi.

TIPS: If you are planning on taking a train to Takayama – take note if travelling on a weekend. We came directly from the International airport in Nagoya to Nagoya station on a Friday morning (Feb 15).

Our SIA flight from Singapore landed at 8.30am. We cleared customs and immigration quickly and caught the Sky Express train at 9:07am to Nagoya station.

We reached the Nagoya Train Reservation Ticketing counter at 10.05am and managed to catch the 10:47am Limited Express Wide Hida View to Takayama.

If we had not caught the 10:47am train, we would have had a very very long wait for the 4th train, arriving at Takayama very very late. That’s because the next 3 trains after ours were fully booked.

We arrived Takayama at 1:10pm. The scenery (later half) from the train windows during the journey are pretty scenic. We had lunch at a quaint soba/ramen shop opp the street (get a map from the Tourist Information office just outside the Takayama station).

On our return journey from Nagoya station to the airport – Our flights was 10.30am and we caught the 7:20am Sky Express.

Its really worth paying a little more for the Sky Express train. We noticed that the other trains and platforms were pretty packed by 7.15am.

Room Tip: We had a room with the city view - very open wide views to the mts afar.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank traveljet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Takayama Kanko Hotel

Address: 280 Hachimanmachi, Takayama 506-0852, Gifu Prefecture
Location: Japan > Chubu > Gifu Prefecture > Takayama > Hidatakayama Onsen
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #32 of 187 Hotels / Ryokan in Takayama
Price Range: $134 - $380 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Takayama Kanko Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 43
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