While travelling all around Japan, we were delighted to find accommodation that cost us only around £17 each a night for a twin room, but if given the choice I would have paid double to go anywhere else, in retrospect.
It may have been because we went there after having been hotel-hopping through Japan, which is notoriously clean, efficient and generally pleasant, but our experience was pretty much just disappointment after disappointment. When we arrived, we were greeted immediately by a frantically retreating oriental cockroach. We blocked up its exit with our complimentary towels and weren't bothered again by them.
The showers are on the first floor, and we stayed on the eighth floor. It was a little embarrassing to have to navigate sleepily through the lobby and elevator in towels or robes every time we wanted to wash. They do have a bath, but women are only allowed inside it during their allocated hours, of which there are only three a day. Men get seven hours a day. The bath is small and far hotter than an onsen - in my opinion too hot to be comfortable at all.
I ignored the other warnings that this hotel was noisy, located by a train station, assuming that with my earplugs I could sleep through the 5am trains. I couldn't. On days we hadn't been hiking through the sun for hours, I could only manage four or so hours of sleep. I got quite ill one day towards the end of the trip and so elected to stay in and rest while my friend visited Hiroshima, but the noise from the station and from everyone else in their rooms set my nerves so on edge that I think I would have recovered better hiking through the heatwave with him.
Good points are obviously the price, if you are a skilled sleeper, which I am not. The hotel is located so as to be easy to reach many surrounding places. It is a few stops to central Osaka, and two minutes away from a Shinkansen line, so very very easy to hop over to Kyoto, Nara, Kobe, Hiroshima, which is what drew us there initially. The actual location, however, is really not very nice, with one of Japan's highest concentrations of homeless people. I'm not sure if we were just unlucky in our choices, but we also found the nearby restaurants to be pretty unpleasant too, uncharacteristic of the country. If you're hoping to be saved by the comfort of a chain restaurant, you're out of luck as well, with the nearest such places being half an hour's walk away.
All in all, unpleasant. Uncharacteristic of Japan in many ways, and an unfair representation. If you can afford it, go somewhere else. I recommend somewhere like Toyoko Inn for cheap accommodation in Osaka. Quiet, cheerful, almost as cheap, and there are a few locations to choose from.
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- Also Known As:
- Chuo Hotel Osaka