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“Meals outstanding!”
Review of Oyado Yamakyu

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Oyado Yamakyu
Ranked #2 of 174 Hotels / Ryokan in Takayama
Certificate of Excellence
Nelson, New Zealand
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Meals outstanding!”
Reviewed February 25, 2012

I have to start with the meals…wow!!!! We had the dinner ‘cooked by local mothers’ – I have to say after the first night I would happily say this was one of the best meals I’ve ever eaten in my life…each dish was like a work of art, truly great experience. Because they change the menu each night we had an equally wonderful meal the next night. We did breakfast the first morning, again the dishes were amazing, the only reason we didn’t do breakfast the 2nd morning was we couldn’t keep eating all this food! If you stay here, don’t have too much for lunch during the day as there are 11 dishes to get through for dinner! The owners are obviously collectors of many different items; glass ornaments, vases, etc, lots to look at while you wander down the corridors of this lovely Ryokan. The baths were great; especially after being in the snow all day! The heated pads under the table while you sat in your room to have tea was a nice touch, as were the heated pads in the futon to keep your feet warm at night. The staff were always very helpful; they recommended the most convenient hot pools to go to for a day trip; easy bus ride into the mountain area. The owner was very proud of his #1 rating on Trip Advisor, so he should be. I would totally recommend this Ryokan as the meals are an experience not to be missed!

Room Tip: Remember to ask for a 'non smoking' room, for all Ryokans / hotels in Japan.
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Scirocco11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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306 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
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  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
Level 5 Contributor
49 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2012

Originally, we had just planned on staying in a business hotel in Takayama, but I started looking into ryokan instead when the business hotels were turning up to be only a little bit less than the ryokan (and a much worse deal, considering that meals are included with ryokan). Yamakyu jumped to the top of the list based on reviews I'd read here on TripAdvisor as well as on Japanese travel sites. The place lived up to the hype.

Yamakyu is located on the eastern edge of town, a good walk from the train station but in a nice, quiet residential neighborhood close to both the beautifully preserved traditional neighborhoods as well as the cluster of temples lining the hills on this side of town. The building itself is larger than first meets the eye, but is still very cozy and homey. The decor is quirky and feels very turn of the last century (in a good way; this, combined with the attentive and friendly staff in traditional samue clothing and the bustle of guests in yukata gives the place a fun atmosphere reminiscent a bit of the bathhouse in "Spirited Away". Our room was traditional but relatively small, but it's not like we were spending very much time in our room so that didn't matter very much. The meals were simply outstanding (although be aware that they are very traditional, so for those new to Japan, this might require some adventurousness every now and then) and the baths were very relaxing.

Some have quibbled about whether this place is a minshuku or a ryokan, which is in many ways a trivial distinction, but based on the services I would call this a ryokan: 2 meals are included, there is an onsen (with both indoor and outside baths), the staff lay out and put away your futon, bathrooms are en suite, etc. Really, considering what you get, Yamakyu is a fantastic value and the friendly and accommodating staff make you feel at home. Takayama is a wonderful town, and Yamakyu is a very good choice for a home base while you explore the town and surrounding area.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Charles S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
371 reviews
69 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
Reviewed December 23, 2011

This is a cosy ryokan about 20 minutes walk from Takayama station. The hosts and staff do manage a smattering of english, the rooms are quite comfortable and the food excellent. The common bath should be experienced. They also do a pick-up and drop-off to the station.

There are a number of small restaurants within walking distance of the ryokan.

We had a very enjoyable stay here and stongly recommend this place.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank Sanjay0123456
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed December 13, 2011

Excellent Value. Great, traditional ryoken in Japan. As a westerner, was a bit apprehensive about the communal onsen bath, but it was very peaceful experience. Meals were great. Try the dinner! Good location - short walk to the must-see historic streets, shops, and temples.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank PeteAbroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed December 11, 2011

Believe the other reviews. Oyado Yamakyu deserve every compliment and accolade they have received. A stay at their ryokan is quite simply a "must do" while in Japan.

In our entire 3 week trip through Japan Oyado Yamakyu provided the warmest, friendliest service of anywhere we visited. Am I'm not just referring to accommodation establishments here. I mean the best service we received *anywhere* in Japan. When at Oyado Yamakyu it is easy to forget that you are a customer, such is the welcome and friendly service that you receive. You instantly feel like a friend and a guest from the moment you walk through the door (or even earlier in our case). In an example of the level of friendly service we received, we mentioned that we get off to Hida No Sato one morning, and we were generously offered a lift all the way from the ryokan to the village. Amazing, and very much appreciated.

We emailed ahead to confirm our train arrival time, and they kindly offered to pick us up at the train station. When we arrived at the ryokan we were given the most warm welcome. Many of the staff members spoke English, and made us feel at home immediately as they gave us a tour.

The rooms are spacious, very comfortable, and immaculately clean. Being non-smokers and travelling with 2 young children before arriving I was initially concerned that the rooms may smell like smoke, as there are no non-smoking designated rooms, but the room was spotlessly clean without any hints of cigarette smoke smell in the rooms, the tatamis or futons.

The food was SUPERB. Do yourself a favour and opt for the meals when you stay here. There was no "kids" meal options, any my 2 girls are a little fussy when it comes to "traditional" Japanese cuisine, and even they left the dining hall absolutely full and very content after each meal.

My only suggestion to Oyado Yamakyu would be include the option of a "premium" Hida beef meal set, like that which is offered at many other ryokans. The beef that came with our dinners was excellent, but if there was an option to pay extra for special Hida beef shubu-shubu or hibachi like we have had at another ryokan on our last Japan trip, it would have made the meal absolutely perfect.

All in all, the 2 nights we spent at Yamakyu would be difficult to improve. On behalf of my family thank you Oyado Yamakyu and all the fantastic people we met at our short time at your Ryokan for making our stay in Takayama so special. We'll see you again at some time in the future!

Room Tip: Do yourself a favour and opt for the meals at the ryokan with your stay. Incredible food. Also, whi...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Andrew P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong, China
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed October 8, 2011

A lovely family owned ryokan about 15 minutes from the station and convenient to the major sights of Takayama. There is a lovely outdoor bath, coffee / tea service, internet and garden. The meal option is a must - delicious and huge meals. A very good value.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank eiying
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tel Aviv, Israel
1 review
Reviewed October 7, 2011

My wife and I spent 3 nights in the Ryokan as part of our 3 week vacation in Japan. Along the way we stayed at grandiose hotels (such as the Fujiya hotel in Hakone) and ate at 3-star Michelin restaurants. I say this in order to underscore how unique an experience staying at the Oyado Yamakyu ryokan was - in that we did not feel the need to recommend any other place so far. The staff are incredibly friendly and helpful (coming to pick us from the train station, giving us rides back there so we wouldn't need to walk), the food is amazing (definitely worth paying for the dinner here) and the atmosphere is cozy and welcoming. Despite the fact that there is no shower or bath in the room (something that we found initially cause for concern) - bathing in the communal bath turned out to be one of the most pleasant experiences so far, there are 2 gender-specific communal bath areas that change daily (so you each day you go to a different bath) that are extremely clean and the experience of sitting in a wooden hot tub in the fresh outside air is exhilarating, relaxing and uplifting. There was wifi in the rooms and coffee in the lobby in the morning.The staff were always helpful, courteous and friendly. Despite the fact that we had an amazing time it should be noted that eating dinner and breakfast is done by sitting on a cushion on the floor at a low table, and sleeping at night is on a thin futon mattress - so people with problematic knees or other orthopedic difficulties may find it an unpleasant experience.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Urielm_31337
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Oyado Yamakyu

Property: Oyado Yamakyu
Address: 58 Tenshojimachi, Takayama 506-0832, Gifu Prefecture
Location: Japan > Chubu > Gifu Prefecture > Takayama
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Takayama
#4 Best Value Hotel in Takayama
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Oyado Yamakyu 3*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located 5mins from Takayama old Private houses,10mins from the morning market on foot. You can enjoy the best location for sightseeing in all seasons. We hope to offer you our heartful hospitality in historical Hida Takayama. You can use the parking lot before check-in and after check-out for free. It takes 5 minutes by car or 20 minutes on foot from Takayama station. We can also pick you up at Takayama station. If you need this service, please let us know what your arrival time is the day before. We have English and Chinese speaking staff members. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Oyado Yamakyu Hotel Takayama

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