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Reviewed November 27, 2012

We stayed in Aoi and man was this place terrific. Our own Garden and hot tub, perfect service. The location in Gora is very easy for seing the sights. We even got lucky and saw Mt Fuji on a clear day.
While this place is expensive you get what you pay for and here it is so very true.
The quality of the food is most amazing and the grounds are beautiful. One barely sees othe guests.
One note - pack light - you don't need much as you live in your Kimonos while there.

Room tip: Aoi - this is the room you want - best in the place!
Date of stay: November 2012
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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1  Thank mdbasile
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2012

I was keen to stay in a ryokan on my first visit to Japan and was advised by friends who had lived there that Gora Kadan offered the an authentic experience of Japanese service at its best. Despite the truly eye watering price, our two night stay did not disappoint. The immaculate traditional tatami room, with separate sitting and bedroom areas and a miniature Zen garden was out of a movie, really delightful. You are given yukatas and geta to wear and there are lots of Japanese guests, so you definitely feel like you are having a very different experience from a normal hotel. The kaiseki dinner food was excellent and they do make a concession to us westerners by offering the option of a western breakfast for those like me who can't cope with mackerel first thing in the morning. The service was superb, I was really impressed with little touches like giving us maps and vouchers for the Open Air Museum when we told our room attendant we were intending to visit it and being given a list of Kyoto restaurant recommendations for our next stop.... However, you must be ok sleeping on futons and sitting on the floor for meals - which larger people may not find comfortable, and you can hear the cable car from the shared onsen (which was otherwise great). All in all a fantastic experience, though at a price

Date of stay: October 2012
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
1  Thank MDCLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2012

A great hotel with authentic yet luxurious surroundings and extremely attentive staff. So attentive that we felt sometimes like we were in one of those Bond films where he is a guest in a luxurious facility, but under constant surveilance. The meals were lovely and very filling and they made a very impressive effort to accommodate special dietary requirements, without compromising the quality and delicacy of the meal. Our room host was amazing and spoke perfect English. We had a room with an outside private stone bath, which was the real highlight and a must for the relatively small incremental cost. There was no view though, which was a shame. There is a public bath, but it is segregated. I would recommend getting the train from Tokyo witha Hakone Free Pass. The station is very short walk away. It is not really a place to stay for more than one night. If you can eat any foods and especially if you know a bit of Japanese, i think you could have a similar experience much cheaper elsewhere. The cost is obscene, hence only a 4 star rating - not a commentary on the hotel itself.

Date of stay: August 2012
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
3  Thank craig_2159
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2012

Gora Kadan is part of the Relais et Chateaux, which sets the standard (and the price) through the roof. Guests are asked to dress in a kimono and geta (local flip-flops), so it really feels like a beautiful ryokan (tradi Japanese Inn). The little onsen can be privatised for a few hours so you can experience -very- hot spring water and relax with your partner without being in a public bath, which is usually not co-ed -and in the nude.

Service is impecable. Rooms are partitioned like in a small apartment with a zen garden.
The food is also amazing and brought to your room one dish after the other. And if you plan like us to get engaged over there, get drunk on sake and sing it all out in the karaoke in the basement!

Notes: if you have back issues, remember you'll be sleeping on a futon and eating sitting on the floor.
Open Air Museum is in walking distance, a must see for the various masterpiece sculptures in the park.

Date of stay: November 2011
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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1  Thank oumanota
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2012

We were really impressed by this ryokan. The price is very high but it is justified by the quality. Everything in the design, service, location was perfect:
- Our room was very spacious and facing a small Japanese garden.
- Our attendant was genuinely friendly which is not always the case if the kind of hotels.
- The food was perfect, and the quality can be compared to genuine Kyoto kaiseki -food.
- The bar, terrace and relaxing room all facing the green and valley are great.

Only the fitness area is gloomy which is a shame (no windows in the room).

The only thing that would disturb this quiet stay was the cable car passing right by the hotel 2-3 times per hour. It is very noisy each time but last for a few minutes only.

Date of stay: May 2012
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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1  Thank lovetravel004
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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