I stayed 5 nights in this boutique hotel from Oct 27 - 31, 2013. While the hotel may easily be missed because of its tiny footprint on Shinmonzen Dori, the care they give their clients cannot be ignored. The general manager and all of the very pleasant staff were efficient but were always warm. They made sure to attend to your every need. If you ask for recommendations for a restaurant, they not only tell you but they also provide you a map, a picture of the restaurant frontage, make reservations, and call you a cab. When I advised them of my plans for the rest of my trip after Kyoto, they printed out information on my destination, the transportation options (with a recommendation for the best route, the specific trains,timetable, and cost, ), layout of the train stations, and even called to verify the schedules! They did not simply provide me the info but sat down with me to walk me through the whole route.
They have only 7 rooms and I had the pleasure of staying in two. The rooms were tastefully designed in a fusion of Asian and European styles. The end result was a cozy retreat which had personality and was very comfortable. Aside from the usual TV, refrigerator, and safe, the rooms I stayed in were appointed with a towel warmer, CD player, heater, and a dehumidifier. It also came with a selection of CDs and DVDs curated by the general manager. You can also have your choice of pillows ( down or tempur memory foam). The bathroom was equipped with a fully automated toilet which lifts the toilet seat as you approach it, is heated, has a bidet with variable temperature and pressure, and a deodorizing feature!
The hotel had a small kitchen which only allowed them to serve breakfast. The breakfast was normally comprised of hot soup (which featured a seasonal crop), an assortment of breads baked fresh daily which likewise showcased fruits, nuts, or vegetables, home made jams, fresh fruit in season, yoghurt, and your choice of hot beverage. Breakfast was very good but was even made more special as the dining room offers a very relaxing view of the Shirakawa river that runs by the hotel.
They also have a daily happy hour (5-7 pm) which allowed guests to partake in bar chow and a variety of complimentary libations which include single malts, sake, wine, and other premier liquors.
The location of the hotel is conducive to walking to the shopping district (Shijo Dori), restaurant areas of Ponto-cho and Kawaramachi Dori, and the historical district of Gion.
Overall, I was made to feel like a friend staying in a home, more than a guest in a typical hotel. It gave me another reason to return to Kyoto.
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