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“Poor Value for Money”

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Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto
Ranked #7 of 376 Hotels / Ryokan in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 31, 2013

I chose this property based on Tripadvisor reviews and was shocked at what a poor value this property is. Don't get me wrong - this is a fine 2-star property, but for the money they charge, it falls FAR off the mark. So caveat emptor. A few observations:

1) The rooms are TINY - half of our previous Kyoto hotel room and a third of our current Tokyo room (both of these hotels cost less than what we paid at Citadines). The bathroom is microscopic
2) The walls are paperthin and ventilation is interconnected, so this feels more like a dormitory than a hotel. We could hear and smell everything going on in the adjacent rooms\
3) Hotel is lacking basic amenities - such as pillow. My request for additional pillows (only one is provided on each bed) was met with befuddlement. After much searching, the staff produced 2 buckwheat pillows (if you have not experienced these, let me assure you that they are an acquired taste)
4) You have 2 choices of rooms - those on the front, which are quite noise from the busy street below, and those on the back, which have another building literally a meter away
5) Premier rooms are advertised as having a private balcony - which is technically correct, but deceitful, as we found out that the balcony is so "private" that even we didn't have access to it. The door is set up to only open a crack. Reception confirmed that there's no access to balconies for security reasons
6) Location is poor. While this may sound counter intuitive at first, give the hotel sits right on one of the 2 subway lines, you'll soon find out that the subway is fairly useless for sightseeing purposes. Indeed you'll either be sightseeing by taxi (if you're loaded) or bus (like us). Issue is that the hotel is in a bus deadzone, with only 3 buses passing by, thus ensuring that you'll either have a long hike to other bus stops, or will have to waste time switching buses. Best hotels locations in Kyoto are either at Kyoto station, or near one of the major bus route intersections.
7) The staff was generally not very helpful and, when forced to help, quite clueless - they don't sell bus passes, like most other hotels, and they were unhelpful when asked to translate the Nara train schedule, which I had to go get from Kyoto station.
8) They nickel-and-dime guests for everything - you want detergent to wash dirty dishes in the mini-kitchen? That'll cost you. You want to drink the water prominently left of the counter? Better seek out the tiny piece of paper hidden on the counter above - that'll be nearly 200 yen a pop (I'll go to 7-11 and buy a 2 liter bottle for the same price, thank you)
9) The towels are tiny and thin - of very poor quality
10) I could go on and on, but you get the gist

In sum, this hotel is fine if you can get it very cheap, but if you're expecting a top-rated hotel, look elsewhere.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
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13  Thank BigDiveNut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,012 - 1,018 of 1,905 reviews

Reviewed March 25, 2013

We were very happy with our 5 nights stay at Citadines!!!

Having paid almost double for a more upmarket hotel chain in our previous trip in Kyoto, we did not expect much with Citadines but were pleasantly surprised. Staff in the lobby were very helpful, friendly & spoke good English. They did all the reservations for restaurants and airport transfers & gave touring directions.

The room was small (to be expected) but extremely functional and clean. The kitchen was well equipped. We bought take away from department stores and had it back in the room most evenings (set lunches at restaurants are much cheaper than dinners).

Even bathrobes got replaced daily - we were trying to be environmental friendly and had the bathrobes hung up in the cupboard to reuse the next day but staff still replaced with fresh ones every day :-).

Location was very convenient - the bus stop for the city buses (for the Y500 daily pass) was only around the corner and the subway Gojo station was literally outside the hotel. It was only 10-15 minutes walk to Kyoto station.

The only small problem that we encountered was taxi drivers did not want to take us to the hotel because of the short distance and small taxi fares from Kyoto station. We ended up walking for almost 20 minutes with our big suitcases and skis. What we could have done to get around this problem was to flag a taxi from the streets instead of the taxi rank. We were a bit annoyed with the inconvenience but could understand why they did it as some had been queuing for a long time in the rank!

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Sydney2000000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2013

I got this hotel after much research, and boy do I research. I consider location, my budget, reviews of others and my comfort level. This place fits the bill perfectly. It's not a shoebox and it's not a tennis court of a room either. It's just right and oh so right it is. When you first see the facade (a bland wall with a simple sign that even my cab driver almost missed) you may first be put off. But wait until you enter the hallway leading to the lobby. Cozy, calming and quiet. So quiet you feel like you're in a library.

The room is great, the kitchen facilities more than adequate. They even thought of the little things like a small origami on the notepad and biscuits for your tea with their logo on it (see pictures).

Location? A 711 right across, Daimaru about six (short) blocks away and restaurants right beside it.

Any criticisms? None, but more of an amusing anecdote. As is the norm for almost all hotel pillows, theirs were too soft for me so I asked if they had harder ones. "Very hard or just hard, sir?" was the question asked of me. Not really caring, I said very hard. A few minutes later the housekeeper was struggling to hand me over two heavy pillows which felt more like two 5 kilo sacks of rice. And they felt, and sounded like it too as I tried to mush my head into "very hard" pillows. Hey, I got what I asked for, right?:-) Again, not a criticism but just an amusing story.

Book here and stop worrying.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled solo
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3  Thank BriCuen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 24, 2013

if I were richer. And I will be back, next time I stay in Kyoto. I've stayed in a number of hotels/ryokans over the last 35 years, and this was a memorably pleasant stay for the balance of attributes it had. Easy to do meals in the room if needed, EXCELLENT bath, and the location was perfect for sightseeing and using the Rail Pass. Have stayed closer to Kyoto eki, but rooms were smaller and getting to subway was a pain. Citadines is on a good bus route, subway is steps away, AND there is a number of good restaurants nearby. My favorite was the Irish pub north on Gojo, Man in the Moon. 10 beers on tap, and Tullamore Dew!
Breakfast was good, staff were great, but with varying degrees of English. I am comfortable in Japanese, so not a problem, but my aunt and uncle were easily confused. Lobby was nice for meeting people, and reading the papers. Laundry facilities were very useful and reasonably priced. This is the only hotel I've seen that had a humidifier available to rent.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with family
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Thank TawnyaSingapore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 24, 2013

Hotel is located just a few steps from one of the exits of Gojo station which is one stop from the main Kyoto station on the Karasuma subway line. It’s about 15 – 25min walk (depending on pace) from Kyoto station. Just exit the Kyoto staion via Central exit, cross the road towards Kyoto Tower Hotel and walk straight until you see a clock tower and a Mc Donald. The hotel is just a few doors away from the Mc Donald.

Apart from Mc Donald there are 2 eateries on the same row as the hotel and a 7-11 across the road. Hotel is also about 30 – 40 min walk to Pontocho and Gion areas.

Stayed in a non-smoking studio double. The room size is spacious by Japanese hotel standard. There is a small coffee table and sofa in the room. As other guests have mentioned, room amenities are excellent. Room comes with a small kitchen complete with hot plate and pots & pans for light cooking, toaster & microwave. Bed is comfy and we had good night sleep. TV in the room has good selection of cable TV channels.

Front office staffs spoke good English and they are friendly and helpful. Check-in and check-out was quite easy and fast. We also managed to have a one hour extension on our check-out.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank lwk-my
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 21, 2013

Booked this purely on the the trip advisor reviews and was not disappointed. Clean rooms great location and very helpful staff. Seven Eleven across the road. Great soba noodle restaurant a couple of doors up. Will definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank gragra050
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 19, 2013

We stayed here because of the location and flex that it offered.
It's a clean, modern and well located aparthotel. Staff were really friendly and helpful.

It was towards the end of our trip so the facilities and apart nature of the complex really helped us.

Nothing to complain about, happy to recommend.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank FiJM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto

Address: 432 Matsuyacho, Gojo Karasuma-dori Higashi-iru, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto 600-8105, Kyoto Prefecture
Location: Japan > Kinki > Kyoto Prefecture > Kyoto > Shimogyo-ku
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Kyoto
#3 Romantic Hotel in Kyoto
#9 Business Hotel in Kyoto
Price Range: $96 - $405 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto 3.5*
Number of rooms: 124
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ideal for business and leisure travel, Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto is located a short walk from the business district and Kyoto's tourist belt. Restaurants, shopping and entertainment are close by as are many of the cultural heritage sites. For destinations throughout the city, the subway is highly efficient and the Gojo subway station is outside the residence. It is one stop from the main Kyoto station of Shinkansen. These stylish serviced residences provide the comfort, convenience and security desired while living and working in Kyoto. Choice of Apart'hotel Choose from the studio twin, studio double, studio premier twin, studio premier double and one bedroom premier for the apartment that suits your requirements and budget. Each of these Kyoto serviced apartments is fully furnished with stylish interiors, designer fittings and modern amenities. The prime address allows for easy access to the city as well as a retreat with 24 hour security, services and facilities. The resident's programmes provide the opportunity to explore and discover Kyoto. Relax in the resident's lounge and work efficiently with business facilities available. Ideal Location Discover Kyoto, the cultural center of Japan. The vast number of world heritage sites, shrines, temples, palaces, and cultural facilities are easily accessible to you from Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto. Shopping, restaurants and entertainment venues are also close by the residence and the business district is a convenient 10 minute walk. The Gojo Subway station is one minute from the residence offering access to the network of subways throughout the city. Comfort and Convenience Every apartment is designed to offer space to relax with the amenities to live, work and entertain in comfort. Each apartment is fully furnished with modern and stylish fittings. The fully equipped kitchen has a cooker hob and hood, microwave, refrigerator, and glassware, crockery, cutlery and utensils. Also provided are the bedroom linens, bathroom towels and toiletries and daily cleaning services. Broadband internet access is available in each residence along with direct dial telephone and IDD service. The home entertainment system includes satellite TV, cable, DVD and a HiFi system. To accommodate your stay you may choose extra services from the flexible service menu to fit your budget and lifestyle. Included are the daily maid service, daily continental breakfast, automatic laundry, dry cleaning service and private car park. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Citadines Kyoto Karasuma Gojo Hotel Kyoto

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